Top

Top

 

COMMUNITY LIAISON COMMITTEE

 

Minutes of a meeting held on 4th July, 2017.

 

Present:  Councillor Mrs. J.E. Charles (Chairman); Councillor Mrs. C.A. Cave (Vice-Chairman); Councillors Ms. J. Aviet, G.D.D. Carroll, S.T. Edwards, Mrs. S.M. Hanks, N.P. Hodges, P.G. King, Mrs. K.F. McCaffer, M.J.G. Morgan, Mrs. S.D. Perkes, A.R. Robertson and M.R. Wilson.

 

Representing Town and Community Councils: S. Hodges (Barry Town Council), G. Morgan (Llantwit Major Town Council), Councillor M. Cuddy (Penarth Town Council), C. Roach (Colwinston Community Council), S. Griffiths (Dinas Powys Community Council), H.L. Baker (Ewenny Community Council), Dr. A. Rees (Llancarfan Community Council), P. Carreyett (Llandough Community Council), R. Thomas (Llandow Community Council), J. Teague (Llanfair Community Council), G. Smith (Llanmaes Community Council), S. Parnell (Pendoylan Community Council), D. Moody-Jones (Peterston Super Ely Community Council), S. Edwards (St. Brides Major Community Council), J. Powell (St. Georges and St. Brides Super Ely Community Council), G. Rawson (St. Nicholas and Bonvilston); C. Thomas (Wenvoe Community Council).

 

 

100     APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE –

 

These were received from Cowbridge Town Council, Llangan Community Council, St. Athan Community Council, St. Donats Community Council, Sully Community Council and Welsh St. Donats Community Council.

 

 

101     MINUTES –

 

AGREED – T H A T the minutes of the meeting held on 22nd March, 2017 be accepted as a correct record.

 

 

102     DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST –

 

The following Members declared an interest in Agenda Item No. 5 in that they had received a dispensation from the Standards Committee to speak and vote on matters relating to Reshaping Services and would therefore remain in the meeting:

 

Councillor Mrs. J.E. Charles

Councillor J. Aviet  

Councillor S.J. Griffiths

Councillor Mrs. S.M. Hanks

Councillor N.P. Hodges

Councillor Mrs. K.F. McCaffer

Councillors Mrs. S.D. Perkes

Councillor A.R. Robertson and

Councillor M.R. Wilson.

 

Councillor P. King declared a personal and prejudicial interest in Agenda Item 5 as a “dual hatted” Councillor on both Llandough Community Council and the Vale of Glamorgan Council and would leave the room when the matter was due to be discussed as he did not have a dispensation.

 

 

103     POLICE MATTERS –

 

In commencing his update to the Committee, Inspector Smart also conveyed Inspector Gore’s apologies for not being able to attend the meeting, advising that it had been a very busy spring for the Force particularly on a national level and he referred to the number of parking obstruction calls being made to the Force in the main around schools.  A pilot initiative was to be trialled with Fairfield Primary School and further updates would be provided to future meetings.  Involved in the pilot would be the Head, Governors, parent volunteers, the students as Junior PCSOs, Fire and Ambulance as the parking often prevented access by emergency services, the CSP, the Highways Department of the Local Authority and CEOs.  The plan was to start with some education of parents and students, followed by the introduction of the Green Cone Scheme, the introduction of a “walking bus” where children could be dropped off / collected from a safe location a short walk from the school, Junior PCSOs issuing “parking tickets” and giving parking advice, and finally joint enforcement campaigns with the PCSOs and CEOs.  The pilot complemented the Public Services Board objectives as it would give children the skills to be more resilient and encourage them to be more active. The key to the success of this was the identification of sites suitable for the walking bus to stop and Inspector Smart would greatly appreciate the input of the local Councillors in identifying these sites.

 

Following the last Community Liaison Committee meeting, Chief Inspector Lisa Gore had met with Phillip Angel who managed the Civil Enforcement Officers (CEOs) in the Vale.  The Local Authority had paid for five full time CEOs, as they covered seven days a week there were normally three on duty on any given day.  CEOs dealt with parking and the Police dealt with parking that caused an obstruction.  It was clear that some people who rang 101 about “parking” were being referred to the CEOs when it was actually an obstruction.  CEO parking issues could be emailed to parking@valeofglamorgan.gov.uk or phone 01446 700111.  Illegally or inappropriately parked vehicles could be reported direct to the Parking Manager on 01656 643643. Inspector Smart encouraged everyone to get involved with the PARK TIDY campaign in the Vale of Glamorgan.

 

Body Worn Video would also be coming soon to Police Constables and PCSOs in the Vale of Glamorgan.  Body Worn Video could be used in court as evidence and for investigative purposes, including complaints against police or as a training material for Police.  The technology he advised was very exciting and would assist officers and staff in doing their jobs, it would ensure that the Police were more accountable to the public that they serve and in turn build trust within communities.

 

The range of benefits seen by other forces using Body Worn Video to support their general patrolling and investigative tasks  included: 

  • Gathering and presentation of evidence
  • Changing the behaviour of offenders
  • Lower incidence or escalation of violence
  • Increased guilty pleas by defendants
  • Increased time on patrol and less time spent on paperwork
  • Improved public co-operation and interactions with police
  • Improved transparency and accountability
  • Professionalising police interaction. 

Officers would wear the camera on their body being clearly visible to the public and it would only record when an officer activated the record function on the camera.  A red flashing light would indicate that the camera was recording.  Prior to police recording a conversation, where practicable, officers would advise the person they were speaking with that they were being recorded.

 

With regard to recent events, he advised that the Cowbridge Food Festival had gone well this year, with there being nothing to report.  

 

In responding to a Request for Consideration of Matter from St. Nicholas and Bonvilston Community Council “Are any Community Council’s having problems with the Police attending Council meetings and receiving reports on Police matters and crimes in their area”,  the Inspector apologised for the lack of attendance and stated that he would be more than happy for Town and Community Councils (TCCs) to have his contact details (gary.smart@south-wales.pnn.police.uk) should they wish to discuss any issues in their area. If they could also let him have the dates of their meetings he would ensure that these were noted in the Force’s calendar.  All TCCs he advised had a PCSO assigned to their area but there had been some resourcing and staffing issues of late.   Inspector Smart advised that the Police would very much like to have a presence at Community Council meetings, however under the terms and conditions of employment of PCSOs in the Police Staff handbook, staff have to have 12 months advance notice of shifts. These could only be changed in exceptional circumstances with the request that please could the PCSOs’ shift pattern be considered in advance of any arrangements for the meetings to enable the Police to attend.

 

AGREED – T H A T Inspector Smart be thanked for his comprehensive and informative report and that his contact details be forwarded to all Town and Community Council Clerks for their information..

 

 

104     APPOINTMENT OF REPRESENTATIVES FROM TOWN AND COMMUNITY COUNCILS TO SIT ON THE PUBLIC SERVICES BOARD, RESHAPING SERVICES PROGRAMME BOARD, THE RESHAPING SERVICES PROJECT TEAM AND THE STRONG COMMUNITIES FUND EVALUATION PANEL (MD) –

 

The Head of Performance and Development stated that the Committee was invited to nominate a Town and Community Council (TCC) representative to join the Public Services Board in line with statutory guidance in the Wellbeing of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015.  The Committee was also being requested to nominate a representative of TCCs to sit on the Council’s Reshaping Services Programme Board and the associated TCCs and Voluntary Sector Project Team and to nominate Town Council representative and a Community Council to be a member of the Strong Communities Fund Evaluation Panel.

 

Public Services Board

 

The Well-being of Future Generations Act came into force on 1st April, 2015 and required that all public bodies considered the economic, social, environmental and cultural aspects of all decisions they made.  The Act formally established statutory boards, to be called Public Services Boards (PSBs), in each Local Authority area in Wales and specified that the PSB must include four statutory members namely: the Local Authority, the Local Health Board, the Welsh Fire and Rescue Authority, and the Natural Resources Body for Wales.  

 

A copy of the terms of reference listing all the members of the PSB was attached at Appendix A to the report.

 

Reshaping Services Strategy and Programme Board

 

In response to the challenging financial climate, the Council had developed a strategy for transformational change called Reshaping Services.  The strategy had been approved in 2014 and was a proactive strategy seeking to reshape the way in which the Council worked in order to mitigate the impact of cuts and assist in continuing to provide priority services.  The Reshaping Services Strategy provided a framework for the Council to work with over the next three to five years and aligns to its duties under the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015 and in particular the five ways of working, involvement, integration, prevention, looking to the long term and collaboration.

 

In recognition of the important role that Town and Community Councils had in representing local communities, the Council believed that they could play a key role in informing the development of the Reshaping Services agenda with regard to concepts such as demand management and the way services are delivered at a very "local" level.  TCCs could also assist with communication and engagement activities, for example raising awareness of changes being made to public services.

 

In nominating a representative from the sector, it was proposed that the criteria attached at Appendix B to the report be used by the Community Liaison Committee as was the case previously.

 

Strong Communities Fund

 

The purpose of the Strong Communities Fund was to enable community groups, the Voluntary Sector and TCCs to apply for revenue and capital funding that promoted initiatives within the Vale of Glamorgan consistent with the Council's vision of “Strong Communities with a bright future”.  The new approach would streamline the way in which community grant funding was managed by the Council.  Eligible schemes would include those which were seeking funding to: 

  • Improve the resilience of organisations / groups or their activities by funding activities which added value to their current work and reduced their reliance on grant funding in the future;
  • Provide seed corn funding towards initiatives that could demonstrate longer term sustainability;
  • Undertake consultation, feasibility, design and other specialist work to develop proposals for future activity and funding bids;
  • Meet the capital costs of schemes by purchasing plant, machinery, equipment or other assets or undertaking maintenance work that would enable viable services to be provided, for example, through increased income generation potential. 

The Committee noted that under the previous scheme a threshold was previously applied to the Community Action Self Help Scheme for TCCs relating to their level of precept which restricted the availability of funding available for larger TCCs.  The new scheme would mean that in the future there would be no threshold on the level of TCC precept applied to the Strong Communities Grant Fund.  In some communities where there were limited numbers of appropriate community groups, TCCs would have the opportunity to bid for revenue funding.  However, bids would only be accepted where they could demonstrate that the application was a collaborative one, whereby that TCC was working in partnership with a community / voluntary group.  In addition, all applications received to the Fund would be considered in terms of the level of resources the bidding organisation had access to, as well as the need to ensure equitable distribution across all appropriate applications from TCCs.

 

The Evaluation Panel would comprise of: 

  • Leader of the Council
  • Cabinet Member with responsibility for Regeneration
  • One representative from a Town Council
  • One representative from a Community Council
  • One representative from each of any donors of recurring third party funding
  • One representative from the Voluntary Sector
  • One representative from a member organisation of the Public Services Board. 

During consideration of the report, it was suggested that as a number of TCC representatives were new to the Committee, further consideration was necessary regarding the required commitment to such appointments and that the appointments be deferred to the next meeting of the Community Liaison Committee in October in order that further detail on the role and required commitment could be provided. During the discussion Councillor Cuddy advised that he would be happy to remain as the representative on the PSB and Reshaping Services Programme Board and Project Team until the October meeting to ensure TCCs had a voice on all and representation could continue.

 

In referring to the Terms of Reference of the Community Liaison Committee, the Democratic and Scrutiny Services Officer advised that although the information was available on the Council’s website, she would also email a copy all Clerks of the TCCs in the Vale which could be forwarded to the relevant Member representative.

 

Having considered the report it was subsequently

 

AGREED –

 

(1)       T H A T Councillor M. Cuddy, be appointed as the Committee’s Town and Community Councillor representative on the Public Services Board, Reshaping Services Programme Board and Reshaping Services Project Team until the date of the next meeting of the Committee.

 

(2)       T H A T the appointment in relation to the representation on the Strong Communities Fund Evaluation Panel be deferred for consideration to the next meeting of the Committee.

 

Reasons for recommendations

 

(1)       In order that representation on the bodies can continue until further information is provided at the next meeting of the Committee.

 

(2)       In order that further detail on the role and commitment required can be presented.

 

 

105     STRONG COMMUNITIES GRANT FUND (REF) –

 

Cabinet had referred the report on 3rd April, 2017 to the Community Liaison Committee to inform all Town and Community Councils of the proposals.  The Head of Performance and Development, in referring to the report, advised that Cabinet had, in October 2016, approved a series of recommendations regarding grants to community and voluntary organisations and agreed that as a basis for consultation and further development, the Small Community Grants and Voluntary Action Scheme Grants be replaced with a new Community Grants Scheme from 2017/18.  Cabinet had also agreed that proposals should be developed with regard to ways of operating the Community Grant scheme and that the Voluntary Sector Joint Liaison Committee should consider options ahead of a further report being brought to Cabinet for consideration in due course. 

 

The report in October 2016 had set out a series of criteria by which to evaluate the operation of any future Community Grant scheme to enable it to be consistent with the Council’s Reshaping Services programme and associated Effectiveness of Spend project, the criteria being: 

  • to ensure any schemes funded from the Council’s grant allocations contributed to the Council’s priorities, as set out in the Corporate Plan including linkages with the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act and the Council’s transformational Reshaping Services change programme;
  • ensure the maximum value was derived from this (and other sources of) funding and decisions were made in a consistent and informed way (i.e. the way the Council’s grant funding was approved, administered and spent);
  • to ensure that grant funding could be co-ordinated with other sources of funding in order to make best use of available funding within the context of decreasing Council finances; and
  • to leverage alternative sources of supplementary funding, including how the third sector, other partners and Council departments could work together. 

Proposals for the way in which the Strong Communities Grant Fund could operate were referred to the Voluntary Sector Joint Liaison Committee in February 2017 and the report to the Committee was referenced in the Background Papers to the report.  The minutes from the Committee’s meeting being attached at Appendix A to the report.

 

The Head of Performance and Development stated that the views of the Committee had been considered and reflected in the proposals for the Strong Communities Grant Fund . The purpose of the Strong Communities Fund was to enable community groups, the voluntary sector and Town and Community Councils to apply for revenue and capital funding that promoted initiatives within the Vale of Glamorgan which were consistent with the Council’s vision of “Strong communities with a bright future”.

 

Eligible schemes would include those which were seeking funding to: 

  • improve the resilience of organisations / groups or their activities by funding activities which added value to their current work and reduced their reliance on grant funding in the future;
  • provide seed corn funding towards initiatives that could demonstrate longer term sustainability;
  • undertake consultation, feasibility, design and other specialist work to develop proposals for future activity and funding bids;
  • meet the capital costs of schemes by purchasing plant, machinery, equipment or other assets or undertaking maintenance work that would enable viable services to be provided, for example, through increased income generation potential. 

Applications solely for the funding of core costs of an organisation would not be eligible.  Funding towards activities that generated funding to cover these costs would be considered.

 

Applications from Town and Community Councils for revenue funding would only be considered where these demonstrated that they were a joint bid with a voluntary / community group.  The eligibility criteria would be developed by the Evaluation Panel and publicised to prospective applicants.

 

A Vale of Glamorgan Councillor of the Community Liaison Committee said that they welcomed the report and asked that all Clerks of Town and Community Councils be informed of the Fund and the application process as soon as possible.  The Head of Service stated that it was anticipated that the necessary advertising and forms would be available on the Council’s website by mid to end July.  A Member also reiterated the need to ensure that there was a good line of communication between the Section 106 Officer and the voluntary groups and that the messages be also communicated to all the voluntary organisations throughout the Vale.

 

Having considered the report, it was subsequently

 

RECOMMENDED – T H A T the content of the report be noted and all Town and Community Council Clerks be informed of the mechanism by which they can apply for such funding as soon as it becomes available.

 

Reason for recommendation

 

In view of the contents contained therein.

 

 

106     PRESENTATION: INFORMATION ON CARE FIRST FOR TOWN AND COMMUNITY COUNCILS –

 

Due to a technical issue the presentation which included a number of animated videos was unable to be played with it subsequently being

 

AGREED – T H A T the presentation be deferred for consideration to the next meeting of the Community Liaison Committee.

 

 

107     ACTIVE TRAVEL (DEH) –

 

The report provided the Committee with progress that had been made in implementing the Direction from Welsh Government which placed duties upon the Council to follow specific processes and procedures to deliver the requirements of the Active Travel (Wales) Act 2013.  The Committee was also apprised of the process approved by Cabinet on 5th June, 2017 to deliver the requirements of the Act and to consult on the proposed maps and routes identified to be included in the final Integrated Network Maps.

 

The draft Active Travel Maps were available on the Council’s website at http://www.valeofglamorgan.gov.uk/en/our_council/consultation/Active-Travel.aspx  and had been placed on display in the Council Chamber for those present to consider. 

 

In September 2014, Welsh Government had introduced the Active Travel (Wales) Act 2013 (hereafter the "Act") which was reported to Cabinet on 3rd November, 2014 (Minute C2516 refers).  The Act made it a legal requirement for Local Authorities in Wales to map and plan for suitable routes for Active Travel within certain settlements as specified by Welsh Government.  The Existing Route Maps being approved by Welsh Government on 12th August, 2016.

 

The next stage of the Active Travel process was to produce Integrated Network Maps in accordance with Welsh Government's specific Guidance.  The Integrated Network Map stages to be followed included the following: 

  • Gather Information
  • Journey Mapping
  • Route Assessment
  • Draft Integrated Network Maps and Scheme Identification
  • Validation
  • Final Plan and Prioritisation
  • Submission deadline for Integrated Network Maps and revised Existing Route Maps: 3rd November, 2017. 

The settlements identified in the Vale of Glamorgan Active Travel area by Welsh Government included Barry, Cowbridge, Llantwit Major, Penarth, Dinas Powys and Rhoose. The Act required two maps to be produced, the Existing Route Maps and the Integrated Network Maps.  The Existing Route Maps show the routes within the designated areas that were suitable and appropriate for making Active Travel journeys, these routes could be on road, shared, segregated, or traffic-free and they could be for walkers or cyclists, or both.  They would also show crossing points and the facilities that existed to support Active Travel on these routes, including cycle shelters / parking / storage and public toilets.  The Existing Route Maps needed to be accompanied by a statement of the extent to which routes did not meet the standards set out in the Design Guidance.

 

The routes were assessed using a scoring mechanism and there may be exception statements that could be used to allow a route to be an Active Travel route without it meeting all of the criteria in the Guidance.  Each route had to be assessed separately, which was a long and resource intensive process.  The scoring pass rate to enable a route to be considered an Active Travel route for both walking and cycling was 70%.

 

To enable the Council to deliver the requirements of the Act, the Council commissioned Sustrans to assist with undertaking route assessment work required. They have carried out assessments on all proposed routes on the draft Integrated Network Maps.

 

Pre-consultation had been carried out at various locations during February / March and many schools had been consulted as part of the process to enable officers to compile maps to include potential routes for consideration during the consultation http://www.valeofglamorgan.gov.uk/activetravel

 

Committee was advised that further routes may be considered as part of the consultation process for both walking and cycling which could be determined at a future date.

 

In conclusion, the Principal Transport and Road Safety Officer advised all present that should they have any queries or comments, to contact her directly.

 

It was subsequently

 

AGREED  – T H A T the contents of the report be noted with any comments to be made to the relevant officer.

 

Reason for recommendation

 

Having considered the update on the progress made in accordance with the criteria for Active Travel walking and cycling routes and in recognition of the consultation process that was to take place from 12th June to 15th September, 2017.

 

 

108     PRESENTATION: HIGHWAYS RESURFACING STRATEGY AND THREE YEAR PLAN – 

 

The Operational Manager for Highways and Engineering commenced the presentation by referring to the background and context to the Plan, advising that the local highway network was a significant Council asset used by the public, businesses and visitors and was vital to economic and transportation needs of the Vale.  A copy of the presentation was tabled at the meeting for Members information. In total the Council had some 1,607 kms of road comprising A, B and C class roads as well as unclassified roads.  The highway maintenance responsibility centred around the statutory function to maintain the highway under Section 41 of the Highways Act 1980, it was reactive maintenance in accordance with the Code of Practice for Highway Maintenance Management and the Council’s Highways Safety Inspection Manual and planned maintenance under the planned maintenance programme derived from a three year plan, which was an essential part to maintaining the Council’s road network for longer.

 

The Three Year Plan consisted of the carriageway surface prioritisation scoring system and the criteria were assessed to provide a weighted score out of 400 indicating the priority for capital expenditure.  The Plan targeted capital expenditure where it was most effective and needed to prolong an asset’s life.  Due to the fact that the Council did not have unlimited resources the prioritisation scoring system had had to be established. 

 

The prioritisation scoring system was reported as below:

 

Column

Description

Key

Data Factor

Maximum

Score

A

Road classification

A Road

30

 

 

 

B Road

25

 

 

 

C Road

20

 

 

 

Unclassified / Rural

15

30

 

 

 

 

 

B

Scanner Survey Data

Red

50

 

 

 

Yellow

30

 

 

 

Green

0

50

 

 

 

 

 

c

Visual Assessment

V1 - No defects

0

 

 

 

V2 - Cracking

10

 

 

 

V3 - Defects present

20

 

 

 

V4 - Multiple Defects

50

 

 

 

V5 –Unserviceable

80

80

 

 

 

 

 

D

Engineers’ Assessment

0 to 80

80

80

 

 

 

 

 

E

Third Party Claims

(last 3 years)

1

0

 

 

 

2

20

 

 

 

3 or more

30

30

 

 

 

 

 

F

ONE VALE complaints

1

10

 

 

 

2

20

 

 

 

3 or more

30

30

 

 

 

 

 

G

Bus routes

 

20

20

 

 

 

 

 

H

Maintenance Costs

(over one year)

Under £1,000

0

 

 

 

£1,000>£3,000

40

 

 

 

Over £3,000

80

80

 

                         

Theorectional Maximum is 400

 

Members were advised of the importance of asset management to select the right method at the right time to get best value for money. Resurfacing itself involved planing off all or some of the existing surface, adjusting manholes and gullies, applying tack coat and laying new surface course to line and level.  Resurfacing was used where the road surface profile or drainage was generally poor.  Various specifications were available depending on traffic flows and turning movements and a selection of aggregates, binders and PSV available were also highlighted.

 

In referring to surface dressing, Committee was advised that this was generally used on busy rural or urban roads (>40 mph) to provide more grip and seal surface from water ingress.  Potholes and other defects were fixed and the surface made level.  The existing road surface was sprayed with an adhesive layer of hot bitumen and chippings were rolled into the bitumen to form a water-resistant protective layer which made the road less slippery and extended its life.  Works were carried out in the summer months and vehicles using the new surface helped to embed the loose chippings.  The road was also swept to remove any chippings that had not been pressed into the bitumen and appropriate road markings added in.

 

For micro asphalt, this was a two coat process with the first being minor imperfections and undulations and the second coat providing a final surface.  This was generally used on urban roads and lasted up to ten years.  Any faults fixed, included potholes filled, and they comprised a mixture of bitumen, small aggregate and cement.  The first coat filled imperfections and undulations and the second coat provided a final sealed surface and texture of road.

 

For all three methods the officer provided Members with copies of examples of road surfacing before and after pictures to provide an idea of the work that had been undertaken.  Typical costs of such work on average for resurfacing was £16m², for micro asphalt approximately £4.10m², for surface dressing approximately £5.10m².  Surface dressing and micro asphalt were the most cost effective if they were carried out at the appropriate time.  The total budget available was £1.48m with resurfacing 25 roads at a cost of £1.1m, surface dressing of four roads at a cost of £160k and micro asphalt 31 roads at a cost of £220k.

 

In conclusion, the Operational Manager advised that effective asset management required lower cost preventative treatments.  It was important to maintain a steady state of road condition but that this required some £2.06m budget on an annual basis.  Reactive maintenance was essential to reduce the incidents of third party claims and the Council had a long term strategy for corrective treatments rather than patch repairs. 

 

All Members present echoed their appreciation for a detailed and comprehensive report on the subject.

 

The relevant Community Councils, Colwinston and Llangan, presented their Requests for Consideration to the Committee which had been included within the agenda.

 

On 24th April, 2017 Colwinston Community Council requested:

 

“The state of the rural Vale lanes.  These are going to get worse as larger farm machinery is having to be used and a large increase in delivery lorries etc.  Unfortunately, the lack of work to the lanes over many years has now meant there are a large number of miles that need to be dealt with.  With the increasing budget cuts, the Council fail to see how the VoG Council can possibly keep up with this work.  We understand that a 3 year plan has been developed and would be interested to see how this will improve the rural roads.

 

Reason for request

 

Directly affects all of VoG rural Community Councils.”

 

On 25th May, 2017 Llangan Community Council requested

 

“The signage in the rural vale needs a review.  We have numerous examples where the signage is not visible or additional signage would be valuable.  Many signs are dirty, covered by foliage etc.  Signs on the road of speed limits would often be helpful in areas of excess speeding.  There are also areas which have a lot of riders from nearby riding schools or residences where caution signs would be very helpful.

  

Reason for request

 

Directly affects all VoG rural Community Council areas.  Health and Safety issues.  Does not help with the inappropriate driving / speeding throughout the rural vale.”

 

In referring to a number of issues, the Operational Manager advised that the Council was committed to maintaining the highway in the best condition that it could and assured Members that from a safety perspective, inspections were undertaken on a regular basis and any defects noted.  However, he reaffirmed the Council’s position that there had to be a priority process in order to ensure that the priority roads in most need were addressed within the resources available. 

 

When considering such measures, the Council also had to take into account traffic flows but also tried to address problems in the rural Vale where it could. In referring to timescales, for example in relation to potholes, the Operational Manager advised that this would depend on the standard and / or emergency repair that would be needed. 

 

The Operational Manager urged all present that if they had any issues in their areas to contact him direct or to go through the Contact 1 Vale “Big Fill” process and he took the opportunity to reiterate that the information obtained from the public and Councillors alike,  supported the service operation.  The Operational Manager was also working with other colleagues in other Local Authorities in the County Surveyors Group to lobby Welsh Government for additional funding for the highway as the issue was not particular to the Vale it was an issue across Wales and England.  The previous Local Government Borrowing initiative scheme had allowed significant investment over a few years, but this no longer existed. 

 

A Member suggested that further research be undertaken to consider other technical solutions to repair the roads which would last longer.  The Operational Manager stated that the department together with other Local Authorities and like professionals were always looking for different methods and sharing best practice.

 

In referring to a list of priority roads, a Vale Councillor requested that this information be made available to all local Members and Town and Community Council representatives for information in their localities.  The Operational Manager stated that a report was due to be presented to the Environment and Regeneration Scrutiny Committee on the matter. The Democratic and Scrutiny Services Officer advised that she would forward a copy of the document, which would also be available on the website when the agenda was published but that she would also be happy to forward a copy via the link to all Clerks in the Vale. 

 

In referring specifically to signage and its visibility, the Operational Manager advised that there was no requirement for the Council to clean signs and there were limited resources.  However, he could advise that where any issues impacted on the highway, this would be seen as a priority and addressed.

 

Following a request to look at a number of sites within the Vale, the Operational Manager agreed that he would look into all the issues  raised at the meeting and outlined below and consider them :-

 

-           Lane by Pentre Meyrick – short cut to Colwinston from A48

-           Bakers Way Llantwit Major

-           Entrance to Recycling Centre at Llandow - although the land was privately owned a further update was requested on what could be done as the road was in severe disrepair

-           St. Mary Church and Cowbridge lanes frequent blockages on road with lorries not allowed to reverse.  The Head of Service asked that any persistent lorry firm offenders be reported to the Department as it was difficult to deal with one off incidents

-           Signage between Cowbridge and St. Mary Church – reassess re access  

-           Verges need clearing in a number of areas – Head of Service to provide schedule for forwarding to all Clerks

-           Wick Road to Ewenny classed as a single carriageway – consider redesignation

-           Issues raised by Llangan Council in request for consideration.

 

Following full discussion on the matter, a Vale of Glamorgan Member concluded by urging all parties to lobby Welsh Government through the AMs regarding the state of the roads, commenting that the Vale had had a raw deal following Local Government reorganisation in the share of the financial pot particularly in light of the significant amount of road it had to maintain within its boundaries.

 

Having considered the report, it was subsequently

 

AGREED  – T H A T the Operational Manager be thanked for a comprehensive and informative report and that copies of the Three Year Highways Plan be forwarded to all Town and Community Councils for their information.

 

Reason for recommendation

 

To apprise Members.