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Apologies for Absence
There were no apologies received at the meeting.
Declarations of Interest
To receive any declarations of interest. Members are advised to consider the advice contained within the Declaration of Interest form attached at the back of this agenda. If a Member declares an interest, they should complete that form and hand it to the officer clerking the meeting and then take the prescribed course of action.
There were no declarations of interest.
To approve the summary of recommendations and decisions of the Cabinet meeting held on 03 October 2017, copy attached.
Councillor L. Fairbrass proposed, Councillor S. Piper seconded and Members agreed the minutes as a correct record of the meeting that was held on 03 October 2017.
Members considered the report on the draft Local Plan, which set out the legal requirements for the Local Plan and the guidance which affects decisions through the Local Plan process. They were advised that the Local Plan supported the Council’s Corporate Plan priorities and was important for creating a framework for fulfilling the priority to promote inward investment and job creation. Together with the Council’s newly adopted Economic Growth Strategy, it sets the framework for achieving the Council’s economic ambitions.
Cabinet also noted that the Local Plan also makes provision for new housing to meet local needs and to support the growth of the workforce, and other development requirements, and supports the provision of key new infrastructure. They discussed the main issues raised during the consultation on Proposed Revisions to the draft Local Plan (January 2017); and provides recommended responses to those issues as reported in Annex 1 to the Cabinet report.
Members acknowledged that the draft Local Plan had to be based on sound evidence and followed Government guidance in order to meet the statutory requirements that would be considered by the Planning Inspectorate when adjudicating the merits of the Plan. As a result, key changes were being proposed for the pre-Submission Publication stage and these were as follows:
1. The identification of a number of sites as Local Green Space (as set out in this report);
2. The identification of Landscape Character Areas for the district, with the Landscape Character Assessment to be published with the intention of adopting it as a Supplementary Planning Document (SPD);
3. New general housing policy to reduce the repetition of key policy requirements in housing allocation policies;
4. A Supplementary Planning Document (SPD) for the Westwood retail area, detailing pedestrian connectivity and the goal of transforming Westwood into a cohesive town centre;
5. Ensuring the draft Local Plan policies are consistent with Natural England’s advice regarding the coastal international wildlife sites;
6. A policy for the protection of allotments;
7. Policy support for new education and health facilities at key locations in the district;
8. Continuing the policy from the adopted Local Plan to safeguard land for grow-on space for the QEQM hospital;
9. Updating the evidence and policies relating to the National Technical Standards;
10. Remove the Westwood Lodge site from the Green Wedge policy area and include it within the urban boundary; and
11. Updating the Plan to recognise the changes in the status of some housing sites, including the allocation of two additional sites – Shottendane Farm, Margate (8 units); and Lanthorne Court, Broadstairs (up to 56 units).
Cabinet was urged not to delay the Local Plan process because a delay could result in intervention by the Department for Communities & Local Government (DCLG), effectively removing Council control of the process. Investment in the area could be significantly undermined or delayed, with a significant impact on development, economic growth and investor confidence in the area.
In making a decision on this issue, Members were also made aware that that ... view the full minutes text for item 460.
Members noted that there are a number of off-street car parking areas that are currently free of charge. By changing these areas to pay and display with an hourly charge in line with other areas additional revenue would be generated. Charging also helped with turnover of vehicles and marked parking bays help to deal with inconsiderate parking.
There were a number of on-street parking areas around the district that could benefit by having a resident’s parking scheme, pay and display or both. Some of these areas were currently time limited bays and this was not an effective system.
As the Council was under extreme budget pressures it is estimated that all phases of the newly proposed parking schemes if put in place, would bring in additional annual revenue of approximately £390k per year.
Community consultation on the new parking scheme proposals was carried out between 5 May and 6 June 2017. The Council received a total of 290 community submissions, which were then considered as part of these new proposals.
The community feedback showed that by location the proposals for Minster/Monkton were of the greatest concern. Residents in instances where a charge was being introduced wanted later starting times and a reduced rate per hour. Responses to Minnis Bay proposals felt that there would be a negative effect on businesses and visitors; and generally opposed any parking scheme or parking control.
The following Members spoke under Council Procedure Rule 20.1:
Councillor I. Gregory.
Councillor L Fairbrass proposed Townend seconded and Cabinet approved the new revised parking schemes.
Members agreed that the Council’s first priority is a clean and welcoming environment and to achieve this would require maintaining a zero tolerance to littering and an approach that encouraged positive behaviour to help improve the local environment.
The Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime & Policing Act 2014 provides the Council with new powers to continue to enforce dog fouling and dog control issues within the district. The previous legislation used to do this needs to be replaced by a new Public Spaces Protection Order.
The Council can make a Public Spaces Protection Order if it is satisfied that two conditions are met:-
Members were informed that in relation to dog fouling and the control of dogs the proposed Public Spaces Protection Order would exclude and restrict dogs from designated areas, not allow dogs within fenced children’s play areas and control dogs in cemeteries.
The order would also require dog faeces to be picked up by owners or any person in charge of the animal, require dogs to be kept on leads; or placed on a lead if considered to be out of control upon request by authorised officers and require persons in control of dogs in a public place to have a suitable receptacle on their person to pick up their dogs faeces.
A community feedback on the proposed Public Spaces Protection Order was carried out between 10 August and 2 September 2017 and the Council received a total of 74 community submissions, which were taken into account when drafting the order.
Britain Tidy Group. The Kennel Club made positive suggestions to the order and generally supported the provisions of the order and the Council’s approach.
Council would be publishing a list of restriction free alternative locations for dog walkers on our website, and in the coming months will also review communication with local dog owners.
Following that positive partnership working with Keep Britain Tidy and the Kennel Club, an amendment to the proposed PSPO for Dog Fouling and Control was tabled at the meeting. The amendment would allow the seasonal dog bans to remain in their current form.
The proposed PSPO would now:
· Exclude dogs from fenced children’s play areas;
· Exclude dogs from Minnis Bay, Viking Bay, Margate Main Sands Ramsgate Main Sands (Harbour end) from 1 May to 30 September;
· Control dogs in cemeteries;
· Ban dogs from 1 May to 30 September during the hours of 10am and 6pm on Botany Bay, Joss Bay, Louisa Bay, Stone Bay, Westbrook Bay, West Bay and St Midlred’s Bay. At Walpole Bay, dogs will need to be kept on ... view the full minutes text for item 462.
Members discussed the assets identified and approved for disposal by Cabinet in June. These assets have now been through the disposal consultation process and there have been no adverse comments received by Council.
One of these disposals, Charlotte Court, had been through legal searches and has been identified as being part of a lease with a housing association and therefore Council would not progress with the disposal of this asset.
Councillor Campbell and Councillor Taylor-Smith spoke under Council procedure 20.1.
Councillor Townend proposed, Councillor Crow-Brown seconded and Cabinet agreed the following:
1. To proceed with the disposal of assets listed in Annex 1, Part B, considered by Cabinet in June 2017 with sale proceeds being used to fund the asset management and capital programmes;
2. To proceed with the disposal of assets listed in Annex 2, Part B, considered by Cabinet in June 2017 to Parish & Town Councils and eligible community groups to ensure their continued use for the benefit of the community;
3. To withdraw from the disposal list the asset listed in Annex 2, Part C as considered at June 2017.
Cabinet discussed the corporate performance report which reflected changes to twelve targets to make them more challenging. New performance indicators have been added to performance monitoring and this was in order to better reflect the corporate priorities and customer service.
Councillor Campbell and Councillor I Gregory spoke under Council Procedure 20.1
Councillor Crow-Brown proposed, Councillor Stummer-Schmertzing seconded and Members agreed to note the report.
Cabinet noted that the number of people in the district living in unsuitable housing or facing homelessness is increasing and there is an urgent requirement for new affordable homes to meet this need and that the council retained a proportion of right to buy receipts for the purpose of providing new affordable homes for rent. The funding could pay for up to 30% of the cost of a new home, but required match funding by the Council from its Housing Revenue Account.
The use of Housing Revenue Account capital receipts into the council’s approved development programme would, in turn release resources that could be used to match fund the available right to buy receipts.
Members considered proposals to allocate £1.5m of Housing Revenue Account funding, together with £630k of retained right to buy receipts to fund a new acquisitions programme. The total funding of £2.13m would enable the Council to acquire 10 to 12 new homes that would then be let to people in housing need on an affordable rent.
This new programme would supplement the Council’s existing £28m approved development programme, which will have provided around 140 new homes by 2019. The new programme would also ensure that new homes could be provided expeditiously for people living in unsuitable homes or facing homelessness.
Councillor Campbell and Councillor Savage spoke under Council Procedure 20.1.
Councillor S Piper proposed, Councillor L Fairbrass seconded and Cabinet agreed the following:
1. To the principles set out in this report for an initial acquisition programme of approximately 10-12 homes;
2. To allocate £630k of Right to Buy 1-4-1 receipts, together with HRA match funding of £1.5m to fund the programme;
3. To delegate authority to Head of Housing, to complete the acquisition of new homes within the programme.