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                                                                        Agenda Item No.

 

CABINET

 

Minutes of a meeting held on 28 April, 2014.

 

Present: Councillor N. Moore (Chairman), Councillor S.C. Egan (Deputy Vice – Chairman); Councillors: B.E. Brooks, L. Burnett, R.F. Curtis, C.P.J. Elmore and G. John.

 

Also Present: N. Hodges.

                                                    

C2282                        MINUTES –

                  

RESOLVED – T H A T the minutes of the meeting held on 7 April, 2014 be approved as a correct record.

 

C2283             DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST –

The following declarations were received;

 

Councillor L Burnett

Agenda item 8 – Charter Between The Vale Of Glamorgan Council and Town and Community Councils

 

Reason for Declaration –

A Member of Penarth Town Council – Non Prejudicial and therefore was able to speak and vote on the matter

 

Councillor B Brooks

Agenda Item 8 - Charter Between The Vale Of Glamorgan Council and Town and Community Councils

 

Reason for Declaration –

A Member of Barry Town Council – Non Prejudicial and therefore was able to speak and vote on the matter

 

 

Agenda Item 17 – Mobile Library Pop Up Service

 

Reason for Declaration –

A Member of Barry Town Council and having taken part in the discussions and voted on the matter during Town Council Meetings.

 

 

 

 

 

Councillor R Curtis

Agenda Item 8 – Charter Between The Vale Of Glamorgan Council and Town and Community Councils

 

Reason for Declaration –

A Member of Barry Town Council – Non Prejudicial and therefore was able to speak and vote on the matter

 

 

Agenda Item 17 - Mobile Library Pop Up Service

 

Reason for Declaration –

A Member of Barry Town Council and having taken part in the discussions and voted on the matter during Town Council Meetings.

 

 

 

Agenda Item 20 – Outcome of the Statutory Notice on the Proposed Expansion of Ysgol Gwaun Y Nant from a 210 Place to 420 Place School to Meet the Growing Demand for Welsh Medium Education in the Barry Area

 

Reason for Declaration –

A Local Education Appointed Governor at Oakfield Primary School. As an LEA appointed Governor his personal interest did not equate to a prejudicial interest and therefore he was able to speak and vote on the matter.

 

Councillor S Egan

Agenda Item 7 – The Planning (Wales) Bill 2014

 

Reason for Declaration –

A Barry Town Council Representative on the Community Liasion Committee.

 

 

Agenda Item 8 - Agenda Item 8 – Charter Between The Vale Of Glamorgan Council and Town and Community Councils

 

Reason for Declaration –

A Member of Barry Town Council – Non Prejudicial and therefore was able to speak and vote on the matter.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Agenda Item 15 – Review of Library and Information Services in the Vale of Glamorgan

 

Reason for Declaration –

Interest was Personal and Prejudicial as his wife was employed by the Building Cleansing department at the Barry Library.

 

 

Agenda Item 17 – Mobile Library Pop Up Service

 

Reason for Declaration

A Member of Barry Town Council, but took no part in any discussions on this item at Barry Town Council Meetings and therefore he could take part in presenting this report to Cabinet..

 

Councillor G John

Agenda Item 5 – Individual Schools Progress Meetings

 

Reason for Declaration –

A Local Education Appointed Governor at Llantwit Major Comprehensive School. As an LEA Appointed Governor his personal interest did not equate to a prejudicial interest and therefore he was able to speak and vote on the matter.

 

 

Agenda Item 8 - Charter Between The Vale Of Glamorgan Council and Town and Community Councils

 

Reason for Declaration –

A Member of Llantwit Major Town Council – Non Predujicial and therefore was able to speak and vote on the matter.

 

 

At the start of the meeting the Leader brought forward Agenda Item No 15 ‘’Review of Library and Information Services in the Vale of Glamorgan’’ for the benefit of members of the public who wished only to hear this item. Also the Leader decided to take Agenda Item no 33a ‘Eagleswell’ Primary School Inspection report’’ after agenda item no 24 titled ‘’Proposal to Create a New 420 Place Primary School as Part of the Llantwit Learning Community by Amalgamating Eagleswell and Llanilitud Fawr Primary Schools’, so the reports could  be considered together.

 

C2284            REVIEW OF LIBRARY AND INFORMATION SERVICES IN THE VALE OF GLAMORGAN (L) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – LIFELONG LEARNING) –

 

During consideration of this item the Cabinet Member for Adult Services left the room and took no part in any discussion that took place.

 

In presenting this item the Leader read out the following Statement:

 

˜’Members will be aware of the importance of this report for our staff and the current and future users of our library services. It sets out a number of important ‘proposals’ to modernise our services, ensure that they remain a relevant and vibrant community resource, whilst also recognising the reality of ongoing pressures on public finances.  The Cabinet is committed to the Library Service and the proposed strategy includes investment in buildings and services.

 

The report has been the subject of understandable interest and comment over recent days. This is to be expected given the fundamental nature of the proposed changes and the importance of our library and information services. However, it is also the case that the report has suffered from misrepresentation over recent days.

 

I am making this statement to clarify a number of important issues and provide assurances to staff and service users.

 

1/         The proposals within the report are the culmination of work by a Cabinet led working group beginning in September 2013 and ending as promised in March 2014.

 

2/         The work of the group has been supported by a public consultation process in November and December last year and a number of staff focus groups. The results of these processes are set out in Appendices E and G of the report

 

3/         As indicated the proposals seek to secure the future of all of the Vale’s libraries and broaden their appeal to a new generation of library users. In some cases this will need to be through different and more innovative models of service delivery. 

 

4/         The proposals in relation to community-managed libraries are an example of this and are based on positive evidence from experiences elsewhere. The objective is to seek to maintain rather than cut key library services.

 

5/         The key point to make clear is that the report before Cabinet today sets out a number of important proposed changes for the service.  It should not be considered as a fait accompli and there is clearly a long way to go in progressing such a strategy.

 

6/         The proposed strategy will clearly need to be the subject of consideration by Members of the Council’s Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee.  Prior to implementation of the individual proposals full consultation with service users, staff, trade unions and wider stakeholders will be undertaken.

 

7/         A particular focus of the consultation process will be engagement with communities where community supported / managed libraries are proposed.

 

8/         The focus of consultation with employees and trade unions will be to seek to minimise any implications on jobs and terms and conditions arising from the specific proposals within the strategy.

 

9/         The staff consultation process going forward will be undertaken in accordance with the Council’s agreed Avoiding Redundancy procedures (where appropriate) and with a clear emphasis on pursuing redeployment options, exploring consensual ways of managing changes to staffing rotas and seeking voluntary reductions in staffing levels (where this is necessary).

 

10/       There is, as indicated a long way to go and the involvement and engagement of all stakeholders will be important in achieving the underpinning objectives of the review. The direction of travel is in my view clear, but the means of getting there will be need to be informed by the consultation process.

 

11/       It will be noted that as a ‘starting point’ the report recommends a referral of the proposals to the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee.  This will be helpful in ensuring the robustness of all aspects of the report.

 

12/       On the basis of the above it is accepted that Cabinet will approve the report in principle today and make a final decision on the strategy after considering the outcome of the consideration by Lifelong Learning Scrutiny. Following this and before implementation of any of the individual proposals, consultation will be undertaken with staff, communities and relevant stakeholders.

 

13/       In accordance with the above and for the sake of clarity, I wish to amend the recommendations within the report as follows: -

 

1.    That Cabinet approve, in principle, the proposed Library Strategy as set out in Appendix A.

 

2.    That this report is referred to the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee for their consideration.

 

3.    That final approval of the strategy will be made by Cabinet at a further meeting and after considering the comments and any recommendations from the Lifelong Learning Scrutiny Committee.

 

4.    That delegated authority is given to the Chief / Director of Learning and Skills in consultation with the Leader to implement individual proposals within the Library Development Plan after considering the results of further consultation and any specific equality impact assessments where relevant.

 

Approval was sought for the proposals put forward by the Library Review Group following a fundamental review of the service.

In recent years the library service had been required to reduce operating costs and secure efficiencies. Whilst an incremental approach to reducing the budget enabled services to be sustained in the medium term, given the severity of the cut to the Council's revenue settlement for 2014/15 and the anticipated reductions in consecutive financial years, it was clear that a fundamental review of the service was required.

A Cabinet led review group was established in September 2013 and work commenced on the review in late September and concluded at the end of March 2014.

The terms of reference for the review were attached at appendix A to the report and set out the drivers for the review, the areas to be examined and the desired outcomes which were listed below:

  • Deliver statutory duties, work to Welsh Government standards and development frameworks, and provide a high quality service in the most cost effective manner.
  • Identify gaps in the current level of provision and make recommendations on how and if those caps can be filled.
  • Make the best use of assets for the benefit of local communities.
  • Ensure that the service is flexible, adaptable and sustainable for the future.
  • Ensure the service is accessible to all, supports the most vulnerable and individuals as required throughout their lives.

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)          T H A T Cabinet approve, in principle, the proposed Library Strategy as set out in Appendix A attached to the report.

 

(2)          T H A T the report be referred to the Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning) for their consideration.

 

(3)          T H A T final approval of the strategy will be made by Cabinet at a further meeting and after considering the comments and any recommendations from the Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning).

 

(4)          T H A T delegated authority be given to the Chief / Director of Learning and Skills in consultation with the Leader to implement individual proposals within the Library Development Plan after considering the results of further consultation and any specific equality impact assessments where relevant.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)          The proposed strategy would enable the Council to provide a comprehensive library service to all residents that was more relevant, efficient and sustainable.

(2)          The Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning ) was consulted on the future direction of the library service during the early stages of the review. It would now want to consider and comment on the proposals put forward by the Review Group.

(3)          To consider the comments and recommendations from the Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning)

(4)          The Development Delivery Plan would enable the Strategy to be implemented in a timely manner and provided a means to monitor progress to ensure consultation with communities in areas where a community supported/managed library was proposed and where staff and trade unions were an integral part of the plan.

 

C2285                        CAPITAL MONITORING FOR THE PERIOD 1ST APRIL 2013 TO 31ST JANUARY 2014 (REF) –

 

The Scrutiny Committee (Corporate Resources) on 18th March 2014 considered the above report of the Managing Director.

 

Details as to the financial progress on the Capital Programme up to 31st January, 2014 were appended to the report.  The Head of Financial Services referred to paragraphs 6 - 20 of the report which contained explanations from the relevant officers of those schemes where it was evident that the full year’s budget would not be spent during the year. 

 

In noting the £107,000 savings in relation to the demolition of St. Cyres Comprehensive School, the Committee was informed that this money would be rolled into the School Improvement Programme.

 

A Member of the Committee made reference to the Vehicle Replacement Programme and queried why the amount that was to be carried forward to 2014/15 was different to the figure previously presented at the last Scrutiny Committee meeting.  The Head of Financial Services indicated that the difference related to further changes made to the original proposals in respect of the Vehicle Replacement Programme and this had included additional slippage monies that had been identified due to ongoing service reconfiguration. 

 

It was

 

RECOMMENDED - T H A T the following recommendations be endorsed and be referred to Cabinet for approval, noting recommendation (2) was for referral to Council:

 

(1)       T H A T the following changes to the 2013/14 Capital Programme

 

·           Various Schools Legionella Control Works - Request to vire £8,000 from Romilly Dry Rot Eradication.

·           Hen Goleg Lift and Kitchen Works - Request to vire funding totalling £19,569 as follows; (Castle Avenue External Structural Works £8,367, Rondell House Boiler Replacement £4,212,. Demolition of Bryneithin £5,000, Day care re-configuration - Rondell House - £1,990).

·           WHQS - Rewires - Request to vire £1240k from WHQS Roof Renewals.

·           Voids - Non WHQS Works - Request to vire £475k from the WHQS Non Traditional Properties scheme.

·           WHQS - Bathrooms -Request to vire £900k from WHQS Non Traditional properties £525k, WHQS - Roof Renewals £60k and WHQS - Kitchen Replacements £315k. 

·           Emergency Contingency Budget - Request to vire £190,225 from the Housing Improvement Programme Emergency Contingency Budget to fund a number of schemes as set out in paragraph 16.

·           Dock Offices - external repairs - Request to vire £2,812 from Dock Offices - Replace Defective Rainwater and Waste Pipes scheme.

 

(2)       T H A T Cabinet recommend to Council the following changes to the 2013/14 Capital Programme:

·         Penarth Learning Community - Request to increase the budget by £902k in 2013/14 to be funded from increased Welsh Government grant brought forward from 2014/15.

·         Penarth Learning Community - Request to revise the funding of the Penarth Learning Community scheme in 2013/14 by increasing the Welsh Government  funding by £8m and reducing the Council and S106 funding in year by £8m.

·         Llancarfan Demountable  - Request to carry forward £5,465

·         High Street Primary Boiler Renewal - Request to carry forward £1,022

·         Gwenfo Boiler Renewal - Request to carry forward £690

·         Fairfield Boiler Renewal - Request to carry forward £2,694

·         Woodlands ATC Demolition - Request to carry forward £45k of funding

·         Rondell House Boiler Replacement - Request to carry forward £788

·         Vehicle Replacement Programme - Request to carry forward £369k to 2014/15 Capital Programme

·         Skatepark at Paget Road - Request to carry forward £31,965

·         Barry Regeneration Partnership Project Development Fund - Request to carry forward £120k

·         Barry Regeneration Partnership Project Development Fund  - Routes into Enterprise - Request to carry forward £5k

·         Data Centre at the Civic Offices - Request to carry forward £420k

·         Security Software Data Loss Prevention - Request to carry forward £120k.

 

Reason for recommendations

 

(1&2)  To allow schemes to proceed in the current or future financial years.â€

 

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Cabinet having considered the recommendations of the Scrutiny Committee (Corporate Resources)

 

RESOLVED  –

 

(1)          T H A T  the following changes to the 2013/14 Capital Programme be approved;

 

·           Various Schools Legionella Control Works - Request to vire £8,000 from Romilly Dry Rot Eradication.

·           Hen Goleg Lift and Kitchen Works - Request to vire funding totalling £19,569 as follows; (Castle Avenue External Structural Works £8,367, Rondell House Boiler Replacement £4,212,. Demolition of Bryneithin £5,000, Day care re-configuration - Rondell House - £1,990).

·           WHQS - Rewires - Request to vire £1240k from WHQS Roof Renewals.

·           Voids - Non WHQS Works - Request to vire £475k from the WHQS Non Traditional Properties scheme.

·           WHQS - Bathrooms -Request to vire £900k from WHQS Non Traditional properties £525k, WHQS - Roof Renewals £60k and WHQS - Kitchen Replacements £315k. 

·           Emergency Contingency Budget - Request to vire £190,225 from the Housing Improvement Programme Emergency Contingency Budget to fund a number of schemes as set out in paragraph 16.

·           Dock Offices - external repairs - Request to vire £2,812 from Dock Offices - Replace Defective Rainwater and Waste Pipes scheme.

 

(2)          T H A T the following changes to the 2013/14 Capital Programme be recommended to Council:

·           Penarth Learning Community - Request to increase the budget by £902k in 2013/14 to be funded from increased Welsh Government grant brought forward from 2014/15.

·           Penarth Learning Community - Request to revise the funding of the Penarth Learning Community scheme in 2013/14 by increasing the Welsh Government  funding by £8m and reducing the Council and S106 funding in year by £8m.

·           Llancarfan Demountable  - Request to carry forward £5,465

·           High Street Primary Boiler Renewal - Request to carry forward £1,022

·           Gwenfo Boiler Renewal - Request to carry forward £690

·           Fairfield Boiler Renewal - Request to carry forward £2,694

·           Woodlands ATC Demolition - Request to carry forward £45k of funding

·           Rondell House Boiler Replacement - Request to carry forward £788

·           Vehicle Replacement Programme - Request to carry forward £369k to 2014/15 Capital Programme

·           Skatepark at Paget Road - Request to carry forward £31,965

·           Barry Regeneration Partnership Project Development Fund - Request to carry forward £120k

·           Barry Regeneration Partnership Project Development Fund  - Routes into Enterprise - Request to carry forward £5k

·           Data Centre at the Civic Offices - Request to carry forward £420k

·           Security Software Data Loss Prevention - Request to carry forward £120k.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1&2)  To allow schemes to proceed in the current or future financial years.â€

 

C2286                        INDIVIDUAL SCHOOLS PROGRESS MEETINGS (REF) -

 

The Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning) on 17 March, 2014 considered the above report of the Chief Learning and Skills Officer.

 

The Committee received an update report on the progress meetings that had been held at Llantwit Major Comprehensive School undertaken by a Panel of three members of the Committee. 

 

In February 2013 the Scrutiny Committee had agreed to establish School Progress Panels consisting of three members, this approach being agreed in order to seek to increase the accountability of schools for pupil attainment.

 

The Chairman, in presenting the report, advised that in April 2013 the Panel subsequently undertook a visit to Llantwit Major Comprehensive School where they were provided with a competent description of the analysis of work to be undertaken to fully diagnose and address the barriers to high attainment that had been faced following the results in August 2012.  At that time the school had presented a very positive outlook for GCSE examination performance in 2013 to the Panel and provided details of the support programme that had been put in place to assist the process. 

 

Following the re-assessment of the examination results in August 2013, the proportion of pupils achieving higher grades in English had increased but this still meant that the school remained in the bottom quartile.  The Authority was therefore concerned that the standards of pupil performance were unacceptably low when compared with standards attained by pupils at comparable schools.  However, of note was the fact that performance at Key Stage 3 had improved materially in 2013 and was now in the top quartile compared to similar schools.  The school had also commissioned continuing support in the interim to improve performance. 

 

As a result of the performance of the school, a letter was sent by the Chief Learning and Skills Officer to the Chair of Governors and Headteacher, in October 2013, advising that if the school did not make sufficient progress during the year, the Chief Learning and Skills Officer would have to recommend to the Council that it exercises its powers of intervention in the governance and management arrangements of the school in accordance with the Schools Standards and Organisation (Wales) Act 2013. 

 

The Chief Learning and Skills Officer had received a response from the Chairman of Governors which had acknowledged the challenges faced by the school and which also referred to the progress that had been made on many fronts in 2012/13 together with the current arrangements that had been put in place for a newly established Governor Monitoring Group to monitor performance.

 

A further meeting of the Panel was therefore held in January 2014 with the Headteacher reporting to Members the commitment of the school to take action and the positive initiatives that had been introduced to date.  The Governing Body of the school had also established a Governor Monitoring Group which reported to the Curriculum Committee and ultimately to the Full Governing Body in order to develop expertise and encourage improvement within the school.  At this time Members noted that Key Stage 4 improvement had been secured in every area and the significant improvement that had taken place following the implementation of various initiatives but that further improvements were still required. 

 

In referring to initiatives and strategies that had been identified, the Headteacher advised that new schemes of work across the school had been implemented, extra lessons across the school introduced, including two extra one hour lessons per fortnight in both Years 10 and 11, early mocks with mock moderation ensured standards were secure and allowed for discussion for the impact of teaching.  Post analysis of mocks was also being undertaken with feedback sessions being held with every member of the department. Discussion also took place on the impact on teaching strategies which identified target groups for January examinations and any amendments to entries.  There were team teaching and support groups and revision sessions for language examinations from September 2013 with close liaison to improve attendance and focus on key target pupils.  Notwithstanding these there were also revision sessions, PSE days and carousel teaching of exam skills.  A Sunday revision session had also reported an attendance of 92 pupils. 

 

The strategies implemented for Maths were similar to those reported for English, but also included: the use of Year 11 form time for additional Maths delivery, after school and lunch time and Sunday revision sessions, pre-examination revision days and half days, half termly whole year past paper assessments, parental revision support workshop, new assessment sheets in books to give additional information to parents, improved website resources and additional teaching staff to target Year 11 small target groups.  The target groups also received extra interventions from Education London, small group provision mentoring and additional revision. 

 

For level 2+ (inclusive English and Maths) a target group consisting of 24 students had also been set up which had received extra interventions from Education London, small group provision mentoring and additional revision.  The school had also taken measures to improve Key Stage 3 performance, levels 5+, 6+ and 7+ and FFT.  A number of initiatives had also been secured by the school from the Central South Consortium. 

 

The Chairman in referring to paragraphs 15 and 16 of the report highlighted that the Panel’s overall conclusion was that they welcomed the measures that the school had taken to improve performance, including robust data collection, interrogation analysis and had been pleased to note that leadership across all departments had been strengthened and that this would be continued.  The Panel however encouraged the school to develop resilience and succession planning within the leadership team and looked forward to seeing that all the initiatives for improvement were fully implemented and thoroughly evaluated.  The role of Governors in the challenge and accountability process and the setting up of a Governor Task Group to challenge performance was welcomed, and were aware that the March examination results were due and would continue to monitor progress by requesting details of the results in due course. 

 

The Committee, aware of the recent English language examination results in Wales that had received substantial press coverage, were advised by the Head of Service that the WJEC and Welsh Government would be conducting a full review of the recent examination process with the intention that a report be published at the end of March 2014.  Headteachers had made their representations in respect of these examinations with it being noted that the examination paper and specification had changed and that there had been an increased focus on technical ability. 

 

The Chairman took the opportunity to thank the officers, the Panel Members and the schools for their involvement and support in the work of the Performance Panels, advising that two other schools had also recently been visited with the intention being that the reports of those visits progress be reported to the Committee as appropriate.

 

Following the discussion it was

 

RECOMMENDED –

 

(1)       T H A T the Scrutiny Panel findings as detailed in paragraphs 15 and 16 of the report be accepted.

 

(2)       T H A T it be noted that the Panel had requested details of the March examination results in order to continue to monitor progress.

 

(3)       T H A T a follow up visit to the school takes place later in the year by the Panel, if appropriate, following the GCSE results in August 2014.

 

(4)       T H A T the report be referred to Cabinet for consideration and or approval.

 

Reasons for recommendations

 

(1)       To apprise Committee of the findings of the Scrutiny Panel.

 

(2)       In recognition of the Scrutiny Panel's intention to monitor progress.

 

(3)       To monitor and undertake a follow up visit if appropriate.

 

(4)       For Cabinet consideration.â€

 

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Cabinet, having considered the recommendations of the Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning)

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the report be noted and the Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning) be formally thanked for their continued hard work on the Individual Schools Progress meeting panels.

 

Reason for decision

 

To  acknowledge the hard work of the Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning)

 

C2287                        SUMMARY OF SCHOOL INSPECTION REPORTS FOR THE AUTUMN TERM 2013 (REF) -

 

The Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning) on 17 March, 2014 considered the above report of the Chief Learning and Skills Officer.

 

Cowbridge Comprehensive School had been inspected during the Autumn term 2013 and a summary of the inspection findings was appended to the report.  During Autumn 2013 the judgements that had been made in respect of Cowbridge Comprehensive School were reported as both good for current performance and good for prospects for improvement.  In noting that the report was essentially a good report it was accepted that there were some aspects that needed improvement. 

 

The Chairman stated that, on the whole, it was a very pleasing report and although there were recommendations for improvement he considered that the school should be congratulated on the report, following which it was subsequently

 

RECOMMENDED –

 

(1)       T H A T the inspection judgements about the school be noted.

 

(2)       T H A T a letter be sent to the school congratulating them on the overall judgements following the inspection.

 

(3)       T H A T the inspection report be forwarded to Cabinet for consideration.

 

Reasons for recommendations

 

(1)       To apprise Members.

 

(2)       To congratulate the school.          

 

(3)       To apprise Cabinet.â€

 

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Cabinet having considered the recommendations of the Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning)

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the contents of the report be noted and the Cabinet Member for Childrens Services formally write to Cowbridge Comprehensive School to congratulate the School on recieveing a good outcome from their inspection

 

Reason for decision

 

To note the contents of the report and acknowledge the hard work undertaken at Cowbridge Comprehensive School on the outcome of their inspection.

 

 

C2288                        THE PLANNING (WALES) BILL 2014 – PLACE PLANS (REF) –

 

During consideration of this item the Cabinet Member for Adult Services left the room and took no part in any discussions that took place.

                       

The Community Liaison Committee on 19 March, 2014 considered the above report of the Director of Development Services.

 

The Committee received a report which dealt with a Request for Consideration from Penarth Town Council in respect of the Draft Planning (Wales) Bill 2014 as it affected Town and Community Councils.

 

Penarth Town Council advised that the reason for the request was that Town and Community Councils were well placed to work with Local Planning Authorities to produce locally relevant Supplementary Planning Guidance (SPG) or Place Plans.  Furthermore, Penarth Town Council requested that the Vale of Glamorgan Council indicate how it intended to work with Town and Community Councils to produce the locally relevant SPG.  Correspondence had also been received from Barry Town Council in relation to the potential for running a pilot Place Plan within the Barry area.

 

The Committee was informed that the report should be read in conjunction with the report of the Director of Development Services submitted to Planning Committee from 13th February, 2014 and that the Council’s response to the consultation on the Draft Plan (Wales) Bill 2014 should also be noted.

 

The background to the Draft Planning (Wales) Bill 2014 was included in the attached report to the Planning Committee of 13th February 2014.  The role of Community and Town Councils with regard to consultation was detailed in the Consultation document entitled "Positive Planning - Proposals to Reform the Planning System in Wales" and referred to community engagement and dealt with the case for change and Welsh Government's (WG) proposals.

 

The case for change advised that Local Planning Authorities already had to prepare Community Involvement Schemes when they prepared Local Development Plans (LDPs).  The case for change also advised that in Wales there was a history of "bottom up" plans as well as Design Statements and that this "history" should be built upon to ensure that local communities had a greater say in local specific policies.

 

In terms of Welsh Government (WG) proposals, the document clarified that new structures or organisations were not the intention.  The document also indicated that Place Plans could fulfil a number of roles including:

 

·                Specifying the finer grain detail for development sites.

·                Ensuring development respects local distinctiveness.

·                Identifying priorities for investment in community infrastructure.

·                Ensuring best use is made of Community Infrastructure Levy receipts.

 

The consultation paper set out the intention to establish pilot projects which would draw on assistance from the Design Commissioner for Wales and Planning Aid Wales, with expressions of interest being sought from Local Planning Authorities and Town and Community Councils.  The document also set out that any Place Plan or SPG would have to be in conformity with the Adopted LDP.

 

The Committee was advised that when considering the request for consideration it should bear in mind that the proposals were draft at this juncture and it was envisaged that the Bill would be progressed over the next eighteen months and that the Vale of Glamorgan Council's LDP was unlikely to be adopted until 2017.  Any proposal or suggestion that Place Plans could be in place before the adoption of the LDP would not be feasible.

 

In principle, it was difficult to argue against any proposal which saw Town and Community Councils and the Local Planning Authority working in partnership to produce Place Plans or SPG.  SPG had traditionally been produced by the Council in support of Development Plan Policy and development briefs and master plans had also been progressed to support and provide guidance in respect of major allocations.  Good examples included development briefs for Barry Waterfront, land at Rhoose and the recent proposals for a Training College at St. Athan.  Members were informed that it had become increasingly common for such development briefs to be produced in partnership with developers, given the limited resources available to the Council to produce a suite of such documents in respect of all development sites.

 

With regard to the issue of resources, the document was silent on resourcing the desire to see a series of Place Plans produced across Wales.  At the time of writing, there were significant budget pressures and the capacity of the Local Planning Authority to progress Place Plans or a suite of SPG was not clear at present, particularly given that the emphasis would also be placed on keeping under review the LDP and working towards the evidence base for new LDPs, as well as the added emphasis being placed on Strategic Development Plans at the regional level.

 

In terms of the role of Place Plans and locally produced SPG, the position and status of such plans needed to be considered when assessing their value and purpose.  In the Vale of Glamorgan, the Bill proposed a tier of plan making, at national level a National Development Framework was proposed.  This would be a Statutory Plan which would need to be considered when producing LDPs.  In addition, and in the Cardiff City Region, it was proposed to prepare and adopt a Strategic Development Plan to look at Strategic and cross boundary issues.  This would, it was envisaged, seek consensus and provide a policy framework in respect of housing, transport, employment and key infrastructure.  At local level, LDPs in areas where a Strategic Development Plan existed might be "light touch" given the new tier of Plan at the regional level, LDPs would therefore have to be in conformity with Strategic Development Plans.  The role of SPG or Place Plans would therefore sit firmly at a local level which would have to conform to the suite of other higher level plans.  The need for conformity results in Place Plans looking at finer detail and those plans would by definition have to work within set parameters, such as local land allocations.  Whilst this did not question their value, it merely sought to clarify that Place Plans or SPG would not formulate policy, they would work within policy.

 

In addition to Place Plans and SPG there were other initiatives and proposals that might impact or be of interest to Town and Community Councils, in summary:

 

·                Proposed pre-application engagement in respect of major proposals.

·                Establishment of a national protocol for Planning Committee with set procedures (a report on this went to Cabinet on 27th January 2014).

·                A national programme of member training.

·                A national scheme of delegation.

·                A prescribed size of Planning Committee.

·                The power to refuse to determine retrospective applications and changes to appeal procedures relating to enforcement cases.

 

The Operational Manager informed the Committee that the report, at this stage, was just for noting as it was still in draft format and the LDP had not been adopted as yet.   The representative from Penarth Town Council informed the Committee that the report raised the same issues as had been raised by Welsh Government i.e. lack of capacity and resource issues, etc.  He advised the Committee that it provided opportunities for both Town and Community Councils to take advantage of Place Plans which were not the same as Neighbourhood Development Plans (NDPs) and could give local communities the opportunity to be more dynamic and positive with regards to Planning in their local area.  In addition, it could also provide impetus to encourage the Town and Community Councils to group together for joint working.  He also informed the Committee that the draft Planning Bill required positive engagement however a fresh set of regulations would be required in order to provide clarity for all the Town and Community Councils.  In response the Operational Manager advised that the main issue lay with the LDP which needed to be adopted first.  She informed the Committee that the preparation of LDPs needed to be carried out more swiftly.  The Vale of Glamorgan LDP would hopefully be adopted as scheduled but this would not be until late 2016 early 2017.

 

The representative from Barry Town Council stated that they agreed with the representative from Penarth Town Council and that they had written to the Vale of Glamorgan Council with regards to piloting a Place Plan in Barry; therefore he had been disappointed that the report was just for noting but understood that there were resource issues.  He proposed that the Council should write to Welsh Government to advise that the Vale of Glamorgan has interested parties that would be willing to take part in pilot Place Plans.  He stated that the pilots were about learning lessons as to what was suitable for the Vale of Glamorgan.  The Operational Manager stated that pilot money was likely to go to Councils with an adopted LDP, however, the Council was unable to provide assurance with regards to resourcing a Place Plan Pilots at this stage, however they would be happy to look at this again once the LDP had been adopted.  

 

A Member from the Vale of Glamorgan Council made reference to the size of the Vale of Glamorgan Planning Committee and stated that a membership of 21 out of 47 Councillors represented an even spread of membership.  In addition, he asked the Operational Manager whether they had to wait for the Planning Act to be passed before third party speaking rights were introduced.  The Principal Democratic and Scrutiny Services Officer, who was present at the meeting, informed the Committee that a new Model Constitution was currently being drafted and that another officer Working Party had met as well as a Member Working Group in order to consider related issues including public speaking.  A draft protocol had been prepared for consideration which set out draft proposals for public speaking at meetings of the Planning Committee et al.  Such meetings would be considered over the next few months by the Member Working Group and subject to that Group’s consent, would then need to be considered by the cabinet and Council for final approval. 

 

Another Member of the Vale of Glamorgan Council echoed these sentiments and stated that third party speaking rights were very important and they should not be delayed and any issues could be dealt with once they had been implemented. 

 

The Chairman informed the Committee that he was a Member of the Working Group and that he would relay the Committee’s concerns to the Group and advised that he agreed with the urgency of the matter.

 

The representative from Penarth Town Council referred to his recent attendance on behalf of OneVoice Wales at a Welsh Government pre-scrutiny hearing where the matter had been discussed, particularly the advantages of Place Plans and the potential opportunities which flowed from the same which could afford local communities, particularly in rural areas, to be more dynamic in shaping their future. 

 

Following consideration of the report the Committee

 

AGREED -

 

(1)       T H A T the Cabinet on behalf of the Council write to the Welsh Government to express an interest in Barry / Penarth Towns being considered as pilots for Place Plans and seeking appropriate resources to enable the pilots to be undertaken.

 

(2)       T H A T the content of the report be noted.

 

Reasons for recommendations

 

(1)       To propose that Barry and Penarth Town Councils be put forward for possible Place Plan pilots with regard to the draft Planning (Wales) Bill 2014.

 

(2)       To fully apprise the Committee of the content of the draft Planning (Wales) Bill 2014 and the Council’s response to the same.â€

 

 ----------------------------------------------

 

Cabinet having considered the recommendations of the Community Liaison Committee.

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the Director of Development Services on behalf of the Council write to the Welsh Government to express an interest in Barry / Penarth Towns being considered as pilots for Place Plans and seek appropriate resources to enable the pilots to be undertaken.

 

Reason for decision

 

To propose that Barry and Penarth Town Councils be put forward for possible Place Plan pilots with regard to the draft Planning (Wales) Bill 2014.

 

C2289                        CHARTER BETWEEN THE VALE OF GLAMORGAN COUNCIL AND TOWN AND COMMUNITY COUNCILS (REF) –

 

The Community Liaison Committee on 19 March, 2014 considered the above report of the Managing Director.

The Chairman asked Members of the Committee whether they had any questions with regards to the Charter Action Plan.  In response a Member from the Vale of Glamorgan Council sought clarification as to whether meetings with Town and Community Council Clerks would be three per year or every three years.  It was confirmed that meetings would take place up to three times per year and be arranged by the Democratic and Scrutiny Services Officer with a view to sharing ideas and keeping Town and Community Council Clerks updated and informed about countywide and local issues. 

 

In addition, the Member also raised the issue of consultation and public engagement and was advised by the Chairman that a Working Group had been established and that he would ask for clarity on this issue and report back to the Committee.  Furthermore, the Member also reiterated the issue of making representations at Planning Committee meetings with the end date in the Action Plan being June 2015, which, in view of his earlier representations was not soon enough. 

 

A representative from Penarth Town Council advised that he understood that the Operational Manager for Corporate Policy and Communications had presented a Memorandum of Understanding to One Voice Wales with regards to capacity issues and the idea of “grouping†Town and Community Councils together in order to share resources. 

 

Following discussion of the Charter Action Plan the Committee

 

AGREED - T H A T the proposed Action Plan be noted and be referred to Cabinet for consideration and adoption.

 

Reason for recommendation

 

To work towards the implementation of the principles agreed in the Charter and to allow the Action Plan to be adopted.â€

 

----------------------------------------------

 

Cabinet having considered the recommendation of the Community Liaison Committee

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the proposed Charter Action Plan between the Vale of Glamorgan Council and Town and Community Councils be formally adopted.

 

Reason for decision

 

To adopt the proposed Charter Action Plan between the Vale of Glamorgan Council and Town and Community Councils.

 

C2290            FEES AND CHARGES COUNTRYSIDE SERVICE (REF) –

 

The Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment) on 1 April, 2014 considered the above report.

 

Cabinet had, on 24th March 2014, considered a report in respect of changes to charges levied at Cosmeston Lakes and Porthkerry Country Park, the Glamorgan Heritage Coast Centre and in respect of the making of specific Public Path Orders.  The charges were contained in Appendices A, B, C and D to the report with the implementation date of April 2014.  The charges agreed by Cabinet were with the view that they be the maximum with the Director of Development Services having delegated authority to vary for promotions.  The Director of Development Services had also received the authority to waive charges for Public Path Orders where a substantive public interest existed. 

 

The report had been referred to the Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment) for information.  In respect of car parking charging at Porthkerry Country Park, the Operational Manager for Countryside and Economic Projects stated that, following a review in 2013 as requested by the  Committee, Cabinet had agreed to continue with the current arrangements particularly for weekend and Bank Holiday charges as this was considered to be a flexible approach dependent upon weather conditions.  Mr. Guy explained the charges were levied only in order to provide staff to monitor car parking as a result of historic safety issues.  After breaking even in 2012, in 2013 the Council had made a £5,000 surplus due to increased visitor numbers following a better summer than in previous years.  For the current year it had therefore been proposed to adopt the same charges as 2013. 

 

The Operational Manager stated that he would be undertaking a review prior to April 2015 in respect of charges at Cosmeston Country Park.  In response to a query regarding Porthkerry Park and its and staffing arrangements, it was confirmed that employees worked a minimum number of hours which were flexible. The view had been taken that if for example if it was anticipated that weather conditions would be bad staff would not be required. However, if visitor numbers were likely to increase due to good weather staff could be called in to work at short notice.

 

Some Members from the Barry area were disappointed that the Council was continuing to charge at Porthkerry and  in their view there was inconsistency in the charging policy. They considered that if one area was being looked at all sites should be considered at the same time. However, Members were reminded of the differences between Porthkerry and Cosmeston in that a presence was required at Porthkerry Park in order to manage car parking arrangements. Members however, accepted that the suggestion of placing yellow lines in the Country Park would not be appropriate and that it would be a considerable cost with the road also requiring attention and traffic regulation orders being made at a cost of £24,000.  Although some Members empathised with the Operational Manager regarding the car parking issues at Porthkerry they however felt that a further review should be undertaken.  

 

The Cabinet Member for Leisure, Parks, Culture and Sport Development, with permission to speak, advised that there needed to be some management at Porthkerry and the Council had extremely tight budgets and, in his view, the issue of Cosmeston had to be considered in some depth.

 

During the discussion a  Member also took the opportunity to congratulate officers in relation to the charges for filming within the Vale, as they considered that these were more competitive rates.

 

Following the discussion, it was subsequently

 

RECOMMENDED – T H A T Cabinet be requested to agree that a fundamental review be undertaken of car parking charging for Countryside Services in light of the comments above, and that this be reported to the Committee in due course.

 

Reason for recommendation

 

The Committee considered that a fundamental review was essential in view of the different charges within the Countryside service.â€

 

----------------------------------------------

 

Cabinet having considered the recommendation of the Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment)

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the contents of the report be noted and that the review of car parking charging for Countryside Services not be undertaken.

 

Reason for decision

 

In order for car parking fees to remain unchanged.

 

C2291            CALL-IN: VISIBLE SERVICES – PROPOSED FEES AND CHARGES FOR 2014 / 15 (REF) -

 

The Scrutiny Committee (Economy and Environment) on 1 April, 2014 considered the Call in of the above report.

 

The report to Cabinet had sought approval for the increases in service charges for functions managed by Visible Services for the financial year 2014/15.  The report proposed to uplift the majority of services by 3% with higher increases proposed for commercial residual waste collection and seasonal car park charges.  The proposed charges for services were also set out in the appendices attached to the Cabinet report as below:

 

            Appendix 1 – Waste Management and Cleansing

            Appendix 2 – Highways and Engineering

            Appendix 3 – Parks and Grounds Maintenance

            Appendix 4 – Parks and Grounds Maintenance – VoG Football League

            Appendix 5 – Parks and Grounds Maintenance and Porthkerry Cemetery.

 

The call-in referred to Appendix 2 – Highways and Engineering. The Chairman outlined her reason for calling-in the matter to Committee, advising that with regard to the coastal car parking charges it was her view that a rate of £2.00 for up to 2 hours would be far more equitable, particularly for residents of the Vale of Glamorgan, who just wanted to visit for a short time.  It was also her view in particular referring to Barry Island that if a visitor parked in one of the car parks and wanted to visit an attraction it was not possible to do so within an hour.  She stated that her proposal would not affect the income generation but would merely extend the time period to two hours. 

 

In consideration of the report and the call –in it was the consensus of the Committee that the suggestion was a reasonable suggestion and, in their view, it would be more equitable for people living within the Vale of Glamorgan, with the suggestion that this  also be considered throughout the Vale.  It was subsequently and unanimously

 

RECOMMENDED – T H A T Cabinet be requested to agree that a rate of £2.00 for up to two hours be accepted for car parking charges for Ogmore, Southerndown and Barry Island.

 

Reason for recommendation

 

The Committee considered that this would be a more equitable charge.â€

 

----------------------------------------------

 

 

Cabinet having considered the recommendation of the above report

 

RESOLVED – T H A T a rate of £2.00 for up to two hours be accepted for car parking charges for Ogmore, Southerndown and Barry Island.

 

Reason for decision

 

To agree car parking charges for Ogmore, Southerndown and Barry Island.

 

C2292            LOCAL AVERAGE INTEREST RATES (L) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – CORPORATE RESOURCES) –

 

The report sought to recommend the rate of interest to be charged on Council mortgages. The rate of interest currently charged on Council mortgages was 5.83%.  The local average interest rate had been calculated at 5.83%.  The Standard National Rate of interest was 3.13%.

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED – T H A T an unchanged rate of interest be declared on all new and existing variable housing loans including the sale of Council dwellings of 5.83% with effect from 1 April, 2014.

 

Reason for decision

 

To calculate the Councils Interest rate in accordance with statutory requirements.

 

C2293            EXTERNAL FUNDING APPLICATION -  HEALTH, TECHNOLOGY AND TELEHEALTH FUND (L) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – SOCIAL CARE AND HEALTH) -

 

Members were informed of an application submitted to Welsh Government on behalf of the Cardiff & Vale University Health Board, for capital funding to improve capacity and efficiency of the partnership working model in the Joint Customer Contact Centre. The bid application invitation was attatched at Appendix A to the report.

Cardiff and Vale UHB had endorsed the Council to act as funding applicant and had agreed that capital assets purchased through the funding would be owned by the Council. Welsh Government had confirmed there were no plans to impose specific claw back conditions in respect of the fund.

The funding would provide new technology to enable the Centre to be capable of expandind to take on additional health and social services through a single access point. The technology would provide the required changes to conform to Public Sector Network (PSN) compliance which would provide business continuity and resilience to the Centre and its partner organisations.

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)          T H A T the submission of the capital application of £270,000 to Welsh Government to further develop the partnership working model with Cardiff & Vale University Health Board (C&VUHB) in the Customer Contact Centre be endorsed.

(2)          T H A T it be noted that the bid was unsuccessful.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)          To enable submission of the grant to fund capital assets required to improve and expand partnership working and operational efficiency at the Joint Customer Contact Centre.

 

(2)          To note bid was unsuccessful.

 

C2294            FINAL OUTCOME AGREEMENT 2013/14 – 2015/2016 (L) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – CORPORATE RESOURCES) –

 

Members were informed of the Final Outcome Agreement negotiated between the Vale of Glamorgan Council and Welsh Government covering the period 2013/14 - 2015/16.

The council entered into four previous agreements with the Welsh Government (Policy Agreements in 2001-04 and 2004-07, an Improvement Agreement in 2008-2010 and an Outcome Agreement in 2010-2013). These agreements were based on the premise that the Council and the Welsh Government shared common objectives and that agreements could be entered into to assist in achieving these objectives.

Welsh Government paid a grant to the council to incentivise achievement of targets, to the value of £1.2 million annually. If successful in achieving its targets and avoiding statutory intervention, the council could expect to receive £1.2 million per year of the term of the agreement.

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)          T H A T the Outcome Agreement 2013 /14 – 2015 /16 as attached at Appendix 1 to the report be noted.

(2)          T H A T a further report be presented to Cabinet in July 2014 highlighting progress in achievement of targets for the period April 2013 to March 2014.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)          To agree mutually beneficial targets that would secure the incentive grant from Welsh Government.

 

(2)          To ensure regular scrutiny of progress of the actions and targets to be undertaken.

 

C2295            IMPROVEMENT PLAN PART 1 (IMPROVEMENT OBJECTIVES 2014/15) (L) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – ALL) –

 

Endorsement was sought of the Improvement Plan Part 1 that outlined the Councils proposed improvement objectives for 2014/15.

 

The Corporate Plan 2013-2017 was approved by Cabinet on 25th February 2013 following extensive consultation with key stakeholders and partners.  The Plan set out a four year vision for the Council, structured around eight priority outcomes which reflected the priority outcomes in the Community Strategy 2011-2021.

 

All scrutiny committees considered the proposed improvement objectives during March 2014. The views of key stakeholders including the Local Service Board, neighbouring council's, town and community councils, chambers of commerce, and voluntary sector organisations, were also sought over a period of 6 weeks (25th February to 4th April 2014).  In addition, public views had been sought via an online survey, local media advertisements and social media in line with the requirement to consult on our improvement objectives.

 

Eight improvement objectives were proposed for 2014/15 including four carried forward from 2013/14, which had been amended to reflect the areas of focus for further improvement work in 2014/15. These were:

·               To increase sustainability and stability of looked after children and young people's placements. (Objective 2)

·               To reduce the number of young people who were not in employment, education or training (NEETs). (Objective 5)

·               To reduce the time taken to deliver disabled facilities grants to children and young people and to adults. (Objective 6)

·               To support and challenge schools in order to improve pupil attainment levels at Key Stages 2, 3 and 4. (Objective 7)

Appendix 1 attached to the report contained the original Improvement Plan Part 1 that outlined the proposed objectives for 2014/15 and provided a rationale (pages 10-34). The measures to be undertaken to make a difference were indentified including a lead at chief officer level with responsibility for ensuring the achievement of key outcomes.

This was a matter for Executive and Council decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)          T H A T following the consultation on the proposed improvement objectives 2014/15, the recommendations from all Scrutiny Committees as outlined in Appendix 2 attached to the report be noted.

(2)          T H A T the comments from other key stakeholders in response to consultation on the proposed improvement objectives be noted.

(3)          T H A T the proposals for amendments to the Improvement Plan Part 1 as outlined in parapraphs 11 and 13 of the report be approved.

(4)          T H A T the Improvement Plan Part 1 containing the amendments outlined in the resoultions above be endorsed and be referred to Council for approval on 7th May 2014.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)          To ensure the Council identified key annual improvement priorities for 2014/15 in line with requirements of the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2009.

(2)          To ensure the Council fulfiled its duty to consult on its annual improvement objectives.

(3)          To ensure that improvement objectives focused specifically on those areas where there was a need for improvement, reflecting the work being undertaken across the council to improve the quality of life for Vale residents.

(4)          To enable the Council to demonstrate achievement of its priorities.

 

C2296            THE FUTURE USE OF GARDENHURST (AS) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – SOCIAL CARE AND HEALTH) –

 

Members were informed about the outcome of the in-depth building survey in respect of Gardenhurst and approval was sought to declare the property surplus to the Council's requirements and to seek consent to dispose of the property at the earliest opportunity.

In 2011 Cabinet authorised the closure of the Woodlands Day Centre in Barry because it was in a very poor state of repair and the relocation of the service was to the Gardenhurst site in Penarth.

However, a subsequent condition survey report for Gardenhurst identified that significant repairs and maintenance would be required to bring the property up to current building standards.  The same report also highlighted the need to examine more fully the condition of the entire building, especially in respect of its structural integrity.

The new in-depth building survey highlighted that further work would be required to restore, upgrade and maintain the building to an appropriate level,  the estimated cost for these repairs was at least £330k, even without further investigations.

 

The report also outlined that In addition to the repair costs, it was evident that on-going maintenance costs for the building would be significant.

 

 This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)          T H A T the relocation of the Woodlands day services to Hen Goleg on a long-term basis be approved.

(2)          T H A T the Gardenhurst site be declared surplus to the Council's requirements and that any surplus income from the sale of the site be ring fenced for Adult Social Care.

(3)          T H A T the Director of Resources be granted delegated authority to appoint marketing agents (to advise on the best method of disposal and to assist with marketing) and to dispose of the Gardenhurst site (subject to statutory planning and Asset Management processes) in consultation with the Leader, Cabinet Member for Adult Services and Head of Legal Services.

(4)          T H A T the Director of Resources be granted delegated authority to accept the best offer received for the property at the appropriate time.

(5)          T H A T the Head of Legal Services be authorised to prepare, complete and execute the appropriate legal documentation required to dispose of the Gardenhurst site.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)          To allow day service users who were using Woodlands day care service to remain in Hen Goleg as a longer-term arrangement.

(2-5)    To ensure that the Council disposes of the Gardenhurst site in a timely fashion and in order to secure best consideration from its sale.

 

C2297            MOBILE LIBRARY POP UP SERVICE (AS) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – LIFELONG LEARNING) –

 

Members were informed on the progress made with Barry Town Council to re-establish a mobile library service for Barry.

The original mobile service, that operated throughout the Vale, was withdrawn in 2011/2012 in order to achieve budgetary savings.  In the last full year of operation over 40,000 books and talking books were loaned from the two vehicles and the mobile was used by nearly 900 active users. The withdrawal of the service was felt keenly by many people, especially those who could not get to an alternative library. 

Since 2013 the Vale Library Service had met with Barry Town Council several times and, after discussing various options, an agreement was made to provide a service to residential homes and community centres in Barry for a one year trial period. The expectation was that this would be renewed on an annual basis if the service was successful.

The purpose of the new service was to address the needs of care home residents for a service which was taken directly to their home. The service would also be available to deliver to day centres and groups who met at community centres, particularly groups of people who did not use their local library because of issues to do with mobility and access.

The report outlined that Barry Town Council would cover the staffing cost of a library assistant to deliver the service, cover part of the management costs and the cost of leasing and running the vehicle. The responsibility for the day to day management of the service, including route planning, hire of vehicle, staffing and promotion would rest with a library manager. The Library Service would operate the service with a volunteer driver accompanied by a fully trained library assistant.

 

During consideration of this matter the Cabinet Member for Housing Building Maintenance and Community Safety and the Cabinet Member for  the Environment and Visible Services left the room and took no part in any discussion that took place.

 

In presenting this report the Cabinet Member for Adult Services commented that he was pleased with the support from Barry Town Council to enter into a 12 month trial of a mobile library pop up service and he hoped that this would be successful and a catalyst for other Town and Community Councils.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the establishment of a targeted mobile library service for Barry in partnership with Barry Town Council to be launched on 2nd June 2014 be approved.

 

Reason for decision

 

To establish a targeted mobile library service for Barry in partnership with Barry Town Council.

 

C2298            SETTING A STANDARD CONTRACTING RATE FOR PLACES IN INDEPENDENT RESIDENTIAL CARE HOMES FOR OLDER PEOPLE (AS) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – SOCIAL CARE AND HEALTH) -

 Approval was sought for the final fee the Council intended to set for 2013/2014 and for the period 2014/2015 to 2016/2017.

 

 In the 2013/14 financial year, all care homes in the Vale of Glamorgan were requested to provide the Council with up-to-date financial information.  The purpose of the exercise was to determine the cost of providing care homes services locally and then to use the information as the basis for a potential three-year agreement on fees. 

 

A working group consisting of officers and representatives from the independent sector worked on the data collected. The table below summarised the outcome of applying the Council's toolkit to the financial information supplied by the homeowners about the costs of providing independent sector placements;

 

Type of provision

Outcome of applying the toolkit  (including a profit margin)

Indicative increase in fees required

Residential Care for Frail Elderly

£539 per resident per week

         10.2 %

 Residential Care for Older People with dementia -incentivised

£574 per resident per week

          6%

    

The figures emerging from the toolkit about the costs of providing independent sector residential care for older people and the current financial situation within the Council were discussed at a meeting between the representatives from the sector and the Leader and Deputy Leader of the Council.  The following proposal was put forward by the Council in relation to care home fees as a means of bridging the perceived gap between current fees and the costs of service provision during the period of the agreement.

 

·           a further 1% uplift for 2013/2014

·           4% uplift for 2014/2015

·           3% uplift for 2015/2016

·           3% uplift for 2016/2017.

 

 On the basis of this proposal, the proposed standard fees for 2013/2014 to 2016/2017 were set out in Table 2 below. 

 

 

Type of Provision

 Fee for 2012/2013 per resident per week

Fee for 2013/2014 per resident per week

Fee for 2014/2015 per resident per week

Fee for 2015/2016 per resident per week

Fee for 2016/2017 per resident per week

Residential Care for Frail Elderly

 £489

 £504

£524

£540

£556

Residential Care for Older People with dementia – incentivised

 £542

£558

£580

£597

£615

 

In presenting this item the Cabinet Member for Adult Services thanked  the local care home providers for the very constructive meetings they had with the Council and he commented that they recognised the difficulties the Council faced with funding in these times of austerity.

 

He further commented that the Council was committed to all care home providers and stressed that if any care home provider found themselves in difficulty the Council would want to enter into early discussions in order to discuss possible solutions.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)        T H A T the proposed Care Home fees as set out in the report for 2013/2014 be agreed.

 

(2)        T H A T the three-year funding proposal as set out in the report be agreed.

 

(3)        T H A T delegated authority be granted to the Director of Social Services, in consultation with the Leader, the Cabinet Member for Adult Services and the Managing Director, to vary fee levels in appropriate circumstances.

 

(4)        T H A T the Leader and the Cabinet Member for Adult Services, with relevant officers, continue discussions with representatives of the independent sector and return to Cabinet with a further report should this agreement require updating before the end of the three-year period.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)          To establish the final Care Home fees for 2013/2014.

 

(2)          To establish Care Home fees for the period 2014/2015 to 2016/2017.

 

(3)          To deal with exceptional circumstances where use of the agreed contract rates operates against the interests of individual service users or the Council.

 

(4)          To facilitate appropriate decisions about future fee levels.

 

 

C2299            COGAN SCHOOL NURSERY PENARTH – ENCLOSURE OF ADJACENT LAND INTO SCHOOL SITE (CS) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – LIFELONG LEARNING) –

 

Approval was sought to increase the external learning areas of the Cogan Nursery School.

Cogan Nursery School currently had limited outdoor play areas consisting of tarmac playgrounds and limited grassed areas, which hindered the full implementation of the Foundation Phase.  Incorporating part of the grassed area from the Cogan recreation field into the school site would improve the provision of the Foundation Phase and provide improved external areas for all pupils attending the school.

The proposal was to incorporate approximately 500m2 of land shown on Appendix A attached to the report into the school site to increase the external learning areas at the school. This would allow for a 1m zone between the proposed extended boundary fence and cycle path through Cogan playing fields to ensure a safe route. 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)          T H A T the Head of Legal Services be authorised to give notice of the Council's intention to enclose an area of the playing fields adjacent to Cogan Nursery School for the purpose of extending the play area at the school.

(2)          T H A T subject to no objections being received, the Chief / Director of Learning and Skills Officer be authorised to enclose the land identified in Appendix A as attached to the report into the Cogan Nursery School site.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)          Despite the land in question being within the remit of Learning and Skills, it was currently used as open space by local residents.

(2)          To increase external learning provision for Cogan Nursery School.

 

C2300            OUTCOME OF THE STATUTORY NOTICE ON THE PROPOSED EXPANSION OF YSGOL GWAUN Y NANT FROM A 210 PLACE TO 420 PLACE SCHOOL TO MEET THE GROWING DEMAND FOR WELSH MEDIUM EDUCATION IN THE BARRY AREA (CS) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – LIFELONG LEARNING) –

 

Members were advised of the conclusion of the Statutory Notice to expand Ysgol Gwaun y Nant from a 210 place to 420 place school.

There had been a significant increase in demand for Welsh medium places across the Vale since 2009 that led to the opening of two new Welsh medium schools in September 2011 in Llantwit Major and Barry. 

Following consultation with all relevant stakeholders, on 24 February 2014 Cabinet approved the publication of a statutory notice to expand Ysgol Gwaun y Nant from a 210 place to a 420 place school.

A statutory notice was published on the 5th March 2014 for a period of 28 days to allow for objections as required by the requirements of the School Standards and Organisation (Wales) Act 2013 and the School Organisation Code 2013. The statutory notice period of 28 days expired on 2 April 2014.

During the statutory notice period no objections to the proposal to expand Ysgol Gwaun y Nant to a 420 place school were received by the Vale of Glamorgan Council. Therefore there was no requirement to publish an objection report as part of the proposal.

 

In accordance with the School Standards and Organisation (Wales) Act 2013 and subsequent School Organisation Code 2013, the Vale of Glamorgan Council was required to determine the proposal within 16 weeks of the end of the objection period.

The report outlined that 50% of the funding for the proposal was expected to be provided through Band A of the Welsh Government's 21st Century Schools Programme. The funding was subject to final approval by the Welsh Government Capital Investment Panel which met on the 22 April 2014 to consider the Business Justification Case for the proposal.

(36)       The proposal would meet the increased demand for Welsh medium provision in the Barry area in future and ensure statutory requirements are met. The proposal would involve the building of a new pattern book design school for Oak Field Primary and remodel the school building currently occupied by both Gwaun y Nant and Oak Field schools to increase capacity to 420 places for Ysgol Gwaun y Nant.

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)          T H A T it be noted that no objections had been received to the published Statutory Notice to expand Ysgol Gwaun y Nant.

 

(2)          T H A T subject to Welsh Government grant funding being awarded from the 21st Century Schools Programme, the proposal to expand Ysgol Gwaun y Nant from a 210 place to 420 place school be approved.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)          The Local Authority was required to determine its own proposals under the school standards and Organisation (Wales) Act 2013 and Subsequent Organisational Code 2013.

 

(2)          To approve the expansion of Ysgol Gwaun y Nant from a 210 place to 420 place school to meet parental demand for Welsh medium education in the Barry area subject to Welsh Government grant funding being awarded from the 21st Century Schools Programme.

 

C2301            SALE OF LAND SURPLUS TO REQUIREMENTS FOR THE PENARTH LEARNING COMMUNITY (CS) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – LIFELONG LEARNING) –

 

Approval was sought to declare land to the north of Wayside, Sully Road, Penarth surplus to requirements and approve the sale of this land to the adjacent occupiers.

On 4 February 2013 Cabinet approved the disposal of surplus land to the rear of Erw'r Delyn Close and Wayside, arising from the PLC development, to the adjoining owners (Minute No C1206). Following the completion of further detailed landscaping and site design, an additional area of land measuring 233m2 to the north of Wayside had been determined not to be required for the development of the Penarth Learning Community. The location of this land was shown on Appendix A attached to the report.

The occupant of Wayside had contacted the Council to enquire that if the land was not required for the new school then could it be sold to extend their garden and increase the buffer zone between the resident and the new school.

The adjoining owners would be responsible for erecting and maintaining secure fencing to the new boundary within an agreed timescale and specification.

The report outlined that the land would be sold at market value in the area and a suitable restrictive covenant would be imposed on the sale in order that the land could not be used or developed for any other purpose, other than garden use only.

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)          T H A T the land to the north of Wayside, Sully Road, Penarth be declared surplus to requirements.

(2)          T H A T the Director of Resources be authorised to negotiate and undertake the disposal of the surplus land subject to the confirmation and registration of the title and that the Head of Legal Services be authorised to prepare, complete and execute the necessary legal documentation.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)          To allow the disposal of the land.

(2)          To allow the sale of the land to be completed.

 

C2302            EDUCATION ASSET RENEWAL BUILDING PROGRAMME 2014/15 (CS) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – LIFELONG LEARNING) –

 

Approval was sought for the allocation of the 2014/15 Education Asset Renewal budget.

Council, on 5th March 2014, also approved that the Director of Resources, in consultation with the Cabinet Member responsible for Finance, be given delegated authority to make additions, deletions or transfers to or from the 2014/15 to 2018/19 Asset Renewal budgets as appropriate.

It was necessary to draw up a programme of schemes to be funded from the Education Asset Renewal budget.  A prioritised list of schemes had been developed by the School Organisation and Buildings Manager, in consultation with the various departments. The proposed programme was shown in Appendix 1, attached to the report.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –  T H A T the funding of the proposed schemes, as detailed in Appendix 1 attached to the report, from the 2014/15 Education Asset Renewal budget be approved.

 

Reason for decision

 

To allocate the 2014/15 Education Asset Renewal budget and enable procurement to commence.

 

C2303            PROPOSAL TO AMALGAMATE DINAS POWYS INFANT AND MURCH JUNIOR SCHOOLS (CS) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE - LIFELONG LEARNING) –

 

Approval was sought to consult stakeholders on a proposal to create a new 420 place primary school through the amalgamation of Dinas Powys Infant and Murch Junior schools.

Following a programme of amalgamating infant and junior schools, the most recent of which were Cadoxton Primary School in 2002 and Romilly Primary School in 2008, the infant and junior schools in Dinas Powys were the last remaining single phase Maintained Community schools in the Vale.

The report outlined that there were two options for amalgamating the schools. One option was to close both schools and open a new school which was the approach taken in relation to the proposal to amalgamate Llanilltud Fawr and Eagleswell Primary schools in Llantwit Major. A governing body for the new school would be established which would decide the staffing structure for the new school including appointment to the post of Headteacher.

An alternative option would be to discontinue one of the schools and change the age range of the other. For example, Murch Junior School could be discontinued and the age range of Dinas Powys Infant School changed. The substantive headteacher of Dinas Powys Infant School would become the Headteacher of the new amalgamated school and the governing body of the infant school would become the governing body of the new school and would be expanded from its current number of 14 up to a maximum of 18. This approach was adopted for the amalgamation of Romilly Infant and Junior Schools in 2008.

Following careful consideration of the two options it was proposed to follow the alternative option described above which would provide more continuity of leadership. Care would be given in the consultation and amalgamation process to ensuring the ethos and traditions of Murch Junior School were fully recognised within new school.

In order to amalgamate the two schools the Council would need to comply with the statutory process detailed in the School Standards and Organisation (Wales) Act 2013. Appendix A attached to the report set out the anticipated timescale for the process.

In presenting this item the Cabinet Member for Childrens Services highlighted that there was no plan to sell off any land in Dinas Powys connected to either school. He made clear that the plan was to simply consult on the almalgamation of the two schools.

 

He further commented that he would be Chairing a Joint Meeting of the two Governing bodies.

 

The Leader clarified that Appendix A of the report should be ammended to read as follows; that the date of the Objection Report to Cabinet on 1 December 2014 be amended to read on or after 1 December, 2014 to allow for flexibility, and the Decision Notification date of 12 December, 2014 be amended to read on or after 12 December 2014 to allow for flexibility.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)          T H A T consultation from 2 June 2014 for a period of 8 weeks on a proposal to create a new 420 place primary school through the amalgamation of Dinas Powys Infant and Murch Junior schools by discontinuing Murch Junior School and changing the age range of Dinas Powys infant school to admit children up to the age of 11 be approved.

 

(2)          T H A T the report be referred to the Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning) for information.

 

(3)          T H A T the amendments to Appendix A of the report as referred to above be agreed.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)          To assess the level of support for the proposal to amalgamate Dinas Powys Infant and Murch Junior school into a single Primary school on the existing two sites.

 

(2)          To ensure Members of the Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning) were aware of progress with school reorganisation.

 

(3)          To allow felexibility.

 

 

C2304            PROPOSAL TO CREATE A NEW 420 PLACE PRIMARY SCHOOL AS PART OF THE LLANTWIT LEARNING COMMUNITY BY AMALGAMATING EAGLESWELL AND LLANILITUD FAWR PRIMARY SCHOOLS (CS) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – LIFELONG LEARNING) –

 

Members were informed of the outcome of the consultation exercise undertaken to create a new 420 place primary school as part of the Llantwit Learning Community by amalgamating Eagleswell and Llanilltud Fawr Primary Schools and to decide whether or not to publish a statutory public notice to this effect.

 

A report on the Llantwit Learning Community and a proposal to invest in New Primary Provision was presented to Cabinet on the 18 November 2013. A number of options were considered to progress the Lantwit Learning Community scheme and to address building issues at Eagleswell and Llanilltud Fawr primary schools and Llantwit Major School.

Cabinet approved a proposal to create a new 420 place primary school as part of the Llantwit Learning Community by amalgamating Eagleswell and Llanilltud Fawr primary schools and to carry out a consultation exercise on the proposal from 16th December 2013 for a period of 8 weeks. The consultation exercise would follow the requirements of the School Standards and Organisation (Wales) Act 2013 and School Organisation Code 2013. The report was also referred to the Scrutiny Committees (Corporate Resources and Lifelong Learning) for consideration as part of the consultation process.

 

Section 48 of the School Standards and Organisation (Wales) Act 2013 Act required that before school organisation proposals were published they must first be subject to consultation. A consultation document must be published and provided to prescribed consultees and Welsh Ministers. The consultation document was attached at Appendix A to the report.

 

Consultation was undertaken between the 16th December 2013 and 10th February 2014. Consultees were issued with a hard copy of the document which was also published on the Council’s website. The consultation period was extended to the 17th February 2014 at the request of parents. Meetings with staff and governors of Eagleswell and Llanilltud Fawr Primary Schools were held on the 14th January and the 24th January 2014 respectively. Drop in sessions for parents were held on the 4th February 2014 for Llanilltud Fawr parents and the 7th February 2014 for Eagleswell parents. Both school councils were consulted on the 24th January 2014.

 

The details of the consultation were attached at Appendix B to the report. The Authority received 161 individual responses to the consultation exercise by the consultation closing date and a petition containing 289 signatures from staff and pupils at Llantwit Major School in favour of the proposal.  Of the 161 individual responses 71 (44%) were in favour of the proposal, and 56 were opposed (35%).

 

A summary of the key themes and issues raised by respondents and the Council's response were attached in the consultation report at Appendix C attached to the report.

 

The proposal would meet the aims of the 21st century schools programme to transform educational opportunities in Llantwit Major that would enable the schools and community to access a wide range of new facilities.

To progress the proposal a statutory notice must be published providing 28 days for objections. The notice must be published on a school day and with 15 school days included within the notice period. It was proposed to issue a statutory notice for the amalgamation to run from the 6th May to 3rd June 2014 if approval to proceed is granted.

Following the publication of a statutory notice and objection period, a further report to Cabinet would be issued on the outcome of the statutory notice period.

 

In presenting this report the Cabinet Member for Children’s Services highlighted paragraphs 20-21 of the report outlining that a petition against the proposed closure was received after the deadline however, it was still considered. He understood that around 1200 people had signed the petition although the online petition part received did not provide information of the addresses of signatories. The concerns raised from the objectors were similar to that of those received by the time the consultation closed and were answered in paragraph 17 of the report.

 

It was noted that the number of responses seemed low in comparison to the total pupil numbers in the two schools although it was noted that the majoirty of respondents were in favour of the proposals.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)          T H A T the findings of the consultation exercise on the proposal attached at Appendix A to the report be noted.

 

(2)          T H A T the publication of a consultation report on the proposal as required by the School Standards and organisation Code 2013 be approved.

 

(3)          T H A T the publication of a statutory public notice required to amalgamate Eagleswell and Llanilltud Fawr Primary Schools as part of the Llantwit Learning Community be approved.

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)          To ensure the views of prescribed consultees are taken into account in the decision making process.

 

(2)          To ensure the Local Authority meets the legal requirements of the School Standards and Organisation (Wales) Act 2013 and School Organisation Code 2013.

 

(3)          To progress the Llantwit Learning Community and establish in a timely manner a new 420 place primary school formed from the amalgamation of Eagleswell and Llanilltud Fawr Primary Schools.

 

At the meeting the Leader brought forward the following Urgent Item as it related to the previous item on the agenda in relation to Eagleswells School.

 

C2305                        MATTER WHICH THE CHAIRMAN HAD DECIDED WAS URGENT

RESOLVED - T H A T the following matter, which the Chairman had decided was urgent for the reason given beneath the minute heading be considered.

 

C2306             EALESWELL PRIMARY SCHOOL INSPECTION REPORT (CS) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE (LIFELONG LEARNING)

 

MATTER FOR WHICH THE CHAIRMAN HAD DECIDED WAS URGENT BY REASON OF THE NEED TO MAKE A DECISION TO AVOID UNDUE DELAY IN IMPLEMENTING IMPROVEMENT PROCESSES IN THE SCHOOL.

 

At the meeting the Cabinet Member for Leisure, Parks, Culture and Sports Development commented  that he was disappointed to see this report on the agenda and the comments made by Estyn. He further commented that he hoped that the school could move on and make the necessary improvements required that would be in the best interest of the children who attended the School.

 

Members were informed of the outcome of the recent inspection of Eagleswell Primary School, the options for local authority intervention and to invite the Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning) to set up an individual school progress meeting.

 

The school was inspected by Estyn in February 2014 and was placed in a follow-up category, as requiring 'significant improvement'.  The details of the inspection were attached at Appendix 1 to the report.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)       T H A T Eagleswell Primary School Inspection Report attached to the report be noted.

 

(2)       T H A T the powers of intervention available to the Council in relation to a school subject to significant improvement be noted, and  the Chief  / Director of Learning and Skills Officer in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Childrens Services be authorised to intervene if appropriate in accordance with the legislation and guidance.

 

(3)       T H A T the Scrutiny (Lifelong Learning) Committee be invited to arrange an individual school progress meeting with the school.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)        To make members aware of Estyn's judgements about the Eagleswell Primary School.

 

(2)        To secure the necessary improvements within the required timescale, as set out in the inspection report and using the statutory powers of intervention if appropriate.

 

(3)        To enable members to review the quality of the school's plans, arrangements for monitoring and evaluation and to review progress.

 

C2307            WELSH GOVERNMENT CONSULTATION: DRAFT CIRCULAR - THE USE OF CONDITIONS IN DEVELOPMENT MANAGEMENT (RIPT) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT) –

 

Approval was sought for the response to the Welsh Government Consultation: ‘Draft Circular - The Use of Conditions in Development Management’.

 

The consultation related to a draft circular that was proposed to replace Circular 35/95.  It sought to provide contemporary guidance with regard to the effective implementation of planning conditions, as well as provide an updated list of model conditions to promote best practice in the use of conditions in Wales.

 

The consultation paper included a set of specific questions to which the Welsh Government was requesting views.  The closing date for replies was 25 April, 2014.  The response had been issued with a caveat that the matter would be reported to Cabinet on 28 April, 2014 with any additional comments to follow.

 

The draft circular, attached at Appendix A to the report intended to provide contemporary guidance with regard to the effective implementation of planning conditions, as well as an updated list of model conditions to promote best practice in Wales, whilst retaining the elements of Circular 35/95 which remained relevant. However, much of the information contained in Circular 35/95 remained useful and so had been retained where that was the case.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)       T H A T the content of the report be noted and the response to the consultation, as attached at Appendix A to the report be agreed.

 

(2)       T H A T the matter be referred to Planning Committee for information.

 

  Reasons for decisions

 

(1)             To endorse the response to the consultation.

 

(2)       To inform Planning Committee of the response.

 

C2308            EXTENSION OF SCHOOL BUS CONTRACTS (RIPT) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT) –

 

Approval was sought for the extension of 22 existing school transport contracts as allowed by the current agreement.

 

There were 29 existing school transport contracts that would continue due to contractual obligations as outlined in Appendix B attached to the report, 22 contracts that were proposed for extension and 51 contracts that would be tendered to start at the beginning of the 2014/15 academic year as outlined in  Appendix C to the report.

 

The school contracts proposed for extension, as attached at Appendix B to the report were awarded via previous tender submissions where they were weighted in line with the criteria reflecting an emphasis on price (70%) and then quality (30%) (Quality - 60% vehicle age and 40% whether the vehicles would be equipped with CCTV systems.). All vehicles were fitted with seatbelts.

 

It was considered that continuing these contracts for a further two years would offer excellent value for the Council.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)       T H A T the extension of contracts for School Bus Services to July 2016, numbered P115, P132, P138, P139, S17, S3/P125, S35, S36/P104, S38, S40/351, S44, S45, S47, S50, S53, S55, S56, S57, S58, S59, S74 and S76 as identified in Appendix A as attached to the report, be approved.

 

(2)       T H A T any contract identified under resolution 1 above be retendered should the current operator decline the extension of contract.

 

(3)       T H A T Cabinet receive a further report in June 2014 outlining the results of the tender exercise for the contracts identified in Appendix C, as attached to the report.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)          To ensure ongoing school bus provision from September 2014 which the Council had a statutory / discretionary obligation to provide. The extensions were recommended due to on-going good service and competitive pricing.

 

(2)       To ensure continued service provision for September 2014.

 

(3)       To seek Cabinet approval for the award of school contracts commencing September 2014.

 

C2309            LOCAL TRANSPORT FUND AWARD 2014 / 15 (RIPT) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT) –

 

Members were apprised of the funding awarded by the Welsh Government (WG) to the Council from the Local Transport Fund (LTF) Grant for 2014/15.

 

Welsh Government this year invited local authorities to submit bids for Local Transport Fund grant in February 2014 There were four schemes submitted and agreed by Cabinet on 24 February, 2014 (Minute No. C2218).

 

The terms and conditions of the Grant meant that the works would need to be completed by 31 March, 2015.

 

Following the bidding process, the Council had been offered funding to the value of £181,749 for 2014/15. This funding was to deliver the following schemes:

 

Active Travel Mapping                    £14,000

NCN88 Porthkerry Phase 2           £167,749 (Priority 3 above)

 

A copy of the award letter and the terms and conditions of the Grant were attached at Appendix A to the report.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)       T H A T the contents of the report be noted.

 

(2)       T H A T the acceptance of the Grant by the Director of Development Services and Head of Finance be endorsed.

 

(3)       T H A T the Local Transport Fund Grant be included in the Council's Capital Programme for 2014/15.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)       To advise Members of the procedures, terms and conditions of the Local Transport Fund Grant funding.

 

(2)       To endorse the acceptance of the Grant by the Director of Development Services and Head of Finance to meet the Welsh Governments deadline.

 

(3)       To enable the Council's Capital Programme to reflect the Grant awarded to the Council from the Welsh Government.

 

C2310            SAFE ROUTES IN COMMUNITIES (SRIC) GRANT AWARD 2014 /15 (RIPT) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT) –

 

Members were apprised of the funding awarded by the Welsh Government (WG) to the Council from the Safe Routes in Communities (SRIC) Grant for 2014/15.

 

Welsh Government invited local authorities to submit bids for Safe Routes in Communities (formerly Safe Routes to Schools) funding in December 2013 (Minute No. C2179) to enable the delivery of local road safety projects that encouraged sustainable travel to various key locations.

 

Although in previous years the Council had been very successful in securing funding through the grant, in 2013/14, the Council received no award at all. However, after taking on board WG's feedback regarding evidencing public support for the schemes, this year, and following consultation through local Pact Groups and schools, the Council had been offered funding to the value of £444,599 for 2014/15. The funding was to deliver the following schemes:

 

  • Extension of the cycle/footway from Barry Comprehensive to Waycock Cross roundabout (element 1)
  • Zebra to Puffin crossing - Ysgol Sant Curig and 20mph zone; and
  • Upgrade Zebra crossing to Puffin Crossing on Barry Road (near Hannah Street).

 

The terms and conditions of the Grant meant that the works needed to be completed by 31st March 2015.

 

A copy of the award letter and the terms and conditions of the grant were attached at Appendix A to the report.

 

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)       T H A T the contents of the report be noted.

 

(2)       T H A T the acceptance of the Safe Routes in Communities (SRIC)  grant by the Director of Development Services and Head of Finance be endorsed.

 

(3)       T H A T the Safe Routes in Communities (SRIC) Grant be included in the Council's Capital Programme for 2014/15.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)       To advise of the procedures, terms and conditions of the Safe Routes in Communities (SRIC) grant funding.

 

(2)       To endorse the acceptance of the Grant by the Director of Development Services and Head of Finance to meet the Welsh Governments's deadline.

 

(3)       To enable the Council's Capital Programme for 2014/15 to reflect the Safe Routes in Communities (SRIC) Grant awarded to the Council from the Welsh Government.

 

C2311            ROAD SAFETY GRANT AWARD 2014/15 (RIPT) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT) –

 

Members were apprised of the funding awarded by the Welsh Government (WG) to the Council from the Road Safety Grant for 2014/15.

 

Welsh Government invited local authorities to submit bids for revenue and capital funding through the Road Safety Grant process. The Councils bid were reported to Cabinet on 24 February, 2014 (Minute No. C2220). 

 

The capital scheme that was successful in being awarded for funding through the Road Safety Grant was as follows:

  • Priority 4: Bonvilston A48 Vehicle Activated Speed Signs

In terms of revenue funding, the Vale of Glamorgan was given an indicative allocation of £70,000, a reduction of approximately £20,000 from funding received in 2013/14.   The revenue funding had now been awarded to deliver the following schemes in the Vale of Glamorgan as directed by the Welsh Government.  However, the Vale of Glamorgan had some unique road safety issues that unfortunately were not covered by revenue funding.  The issues included road casualties of all age groups and not just young people.  The Road Safety team therefore needed to consider additional measures to deliver reduced road traffic collisions in the areas outlines below.

 

  • Kerbcraft: £26 000
  • National Standards of Cycle Training: £34 000
  •  Motorcyclists: £4 000
  • Pass Plus Cymru (PPC): £6 000 (funding to go direct to Rhondda Cynon Taf Council (RCT) to deliver on our behalf).

 

The terms and conditions of the Grant meant that the works would need to be completed by 31 March, 2015.

 

A copy of the award letter and terms and conditions of the grant were attached at Appendix A to the report.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)       T H A T the contents of the report be noted.

 

(2)       T H A T the acceptance of the Road Safety Grant by the Director of Development Services and the Head of Finance be endorsed.

 

(3)       T H A T the Road Safety Capital Grant be included in the Council's Capital Programme for 2014/15.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)       To advise of the procedures, terms and conditions of the Road Safety Grant funding.

 

(2)       To endorse the acceptance of the revenue and capital Grants by the Director of Development Services and Head of Finance to meet the WG's deadline

 

(3)       To enable the Council's Capital Programme for 2014/15 to reflect the Grant awarded to the Council from the WG.

 

C2312            LOCAL TRANSPORT PLAN CONSULTATION GUIDANCE (RIPT) ( SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT) –

 

Approval was sought for the Councils response to the Welsh Government Consultation seeking Local Authority views on amending the Regional Transport Planning (Wales) Order 2006 and on the guidance used to assist local transport authorities to prepare their Local Transport Plan.

 

The Transport Act 2000, as amended by the Transport (Wales) Act 2006, made it statutory for local transport authorities to produce a Local Transport Plan (LTP) every five years. 

 

The responses to the consultation were required to be received by the Welsh Government no later than 30 April, 2014 and responses should take the form of the completion of questionnaires on the Regional Transport Planning (Wales) 2006 Act and Guidance to Local Transport Authorities - Local Transport Plan 2015. The completed questionnaire offered as a suggested Council response to the consultation was attached at Appendix 1 to the report. 

 

The Welsh Government believed that this Order was part of a range of activities that would strengthen and co-ordinate transport planning arrangements for Wales. It formed part of the work stream to re-define the National Transport Plan to include regional priorities and set the framework for Wales as a whole.

 

In addition, the Welsh Government had provided some additional guidance on what they wanted to see within the local transport plans.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)       T H A T the contents of the proposed amendments to the current Regional Transport Planning (Wales) 2006 Act and Guidance to Local Transport Authorities - Local Transport Plan 2015 be noted.

 

(2)       T H A T the Council's response to the Consultation Questions as outlined at Appendix 1 as attached to the report be endorsed and that these be sent to the Welsh Government by the closing date of 30 April, 2014.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)       To advise Members of the Consultation.

 

(2)       To allow the Council to issue a Consultation response and to ensure the responses are received by the closing date of 30th April 2014.

 

C2313            LOCAL FLOOD RISK MANAGEMENT STRATEGY (VS) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT) –

 

Approval was sought for the Council’s Local Flood Risk Management Strategy (LFRMS). Members were also apprised of recent developments and future activities regarding the implementation in Wales of the Flood and Water Management Act 2010 and the Flood Risk Regulations 2009.

 

The general requirements and responsibilities of the Flood and Water Management Act 2010 and the Flood Risk Regulations 2009 were detailed in the Cabinet Report of 8 June, 2011 (Minute No C1336). The Flood and Water Management Act 2010 placed a responsibility upon the Council, as a Lead Local Flood Authority, to develop, maintain, apply and monitor a strategy for local flood risk management.

 

The LFRMS formed the framework within which communities had a greater say in local risk management decisions.  In combination with the National Flood and Coastal Risk Management Strategy, the LFRMS would encourage more effective risk management by enabling people, communities, business and the public sector to work together.

 

The draft LFRMS, including integral consultation questions, was made available for a 6 week consultation period which concluded on 13 May, 2013.

 

The final LFRMS was revised in response to the consultation responses, and these changes were identified in Appendix B as attached to the report.

 

The production of Flood Risk Management Plans was being promoted by Welsh Government to complement the LFRMS and provide a more complete framework for the management of flood risk at a local level.

 

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED –

 

(1)       T H A T the Local Flood Risk Management Strategy (LFRMS) attached at Appendix A to the report be adopted as the Council policy.

 

(2)       T H A T the Local Flood Risk Management Strategy (LFRMS) be submitted to Welsh Government for review and Ministerial approval under Section 10 of the Flood and Water Management Act 2010.

 

(3)       T H A T a Flood Risk Management Plan (FRMP) be produced for the Vale of Glamorgan, subject to suitable funding being made available by Welsh Government.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

(1)       To accept the Local Flood Risk Management Strategy (LFRMS) as Council policy.

 

(2)       To gain Ministerial approval of the Local Flood Risk Management Strategy (LFRMS) under Section 10 of the Flood and Water Management Act 2010.

 

(3)       To inform Cabinet of a request by Welsh Government for all Welsh Lead Local Flood Authorities (LLFAs) to produce a FRMP and gain approval to produce such a plan, subject to Welsh Government funding.

 

C2314            HOME TO WORK TRANSPORT (VS) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – ECONOMY AND ENVIRONMENT) -

 

Approval was sought to introduce a corporate policy to control and manage the use of Council vehicles for home to work purposes.

The Councils existing provision of ‘home to work’ transport for employees was largely historic, and for a range of reasons, some of which provided tangible service benefits.  However the current arrangements in almost all cases lacked sufficient controls for a business case to be made with any certainty and the evidence required to be put forward to prove any such case was not always available due, in part, to the absence of real time recording data for the vehicles concerned.

 

The Council's audit section were requested to undertake a review of the vehicles that were being taken home to establish the extent of the arrangement and to estimate the savings that could be realised by ceasing the provision.  A briefing note on this prepared by the audit team was attached at Appendix A.to the report

The proposal to introduce a new policy to manage home to work transport was one of a number of fleet management improvements that would be considered by Cabinet within the next 12 months and was part of a Council wide review of transportation and fleet management that was currently being undertaken. Cabinet considered a report on vehicle based Telemetry at its meeting of 18th November 2013 (Minute C2094 refers). Telemetry units, that provide real time data for vehicle location, speed, fuel consumption and driver ID etc, are now being fitted to all vehicles in the Council's fleet.

 

The introduction of the new policy was based on three guiding principles; the establishment of an appropriate home to work policy based upon business need, the cessation of non-essential transport and a reduction in overall transport spend.  Establishment of a robust policy to achieve a corporate "baseline" is critical to ensure that the council can effectively manage the use of its vehicles in future.

 

The 'Home to Work Transport Policy' proposed was attached at Appendix B to the report. The policy provided a framework for consistent and fair practice for employees using Council vehicles back and for to work.

This was a matter for Executive decision.

 

RESOLVED – T H A T the new 'Home to Work Transport Policy' attached at Appendix B to the report for implementation from 1st May 2014 be approved.

 

Reasons for decisions

 

To provide a consistent approach to home to work transport across all Council Departments and to ensure that there is a robust business case arrangement in place for any such use in future. 

 

 

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