Agenda Item No
The Vale of Glamorgan Council
Cabinet Meeting: 24 March, 2014
Report of the Leader
Public Protection - Proposed Fees and Charges 2014
Purpose of the Report
1. This report sets out proposals for increases in fees and charges in respect of those functions managed by Public Protection which are the responsibility of the Council’s Executive.
1. THAT the report be referred to Housing and Public Protection Scrutiny for information.
2. THAT the schedule of fees and charges in Appendix 1 to 3 to this report are approved to become effective from 1st April 2014.
Reasons for the Recommendations
1. To ensure fees are increased in line with inflation, statutory requirements and reflect more accurately the actual cost of providing services.
2. To allow Housing and Public Protection Scrutiny opportunity to consider the increases.
2. The Council delivers a number of chargeable services through the Public Protection service. This report sets out proposals for fees and charges as included in Appendices 1 to 3.
Relevant Issues and Options
3. It is proposed that the fees set by the local authority for Public Protection Services set out in Appendix 1 be increased by 1.9% in line with the published Consumer Price Indices (CPI) in February 2014. Increased costs have been rounded to the nearest pound or 50p to assist with administration and are shown in Appendix 1.
4. Whilst the charges for the Council's Pest Control need to cover the cost of the service, they also need to be competitive within the market. It is not proposed therefore to increase the majority of the costs for this service as demand has dropped in the last 6 months and increasing the fee in April could have a negative impact on the income generated, which supports the revenue costs of the service. The demand for this service will be reviewed over the next 6 months to ascertain whether the recent reduction is a temporary or more permanent change. However, the fee for the treatment of rats outside is proposed to be increased for non-benefit claimants from £34.00 to £40 and for benefit claimants from a free service to £20. Rats outside need to be controlled but the costs need to better reflect the cost of this treatment and brings the payment by residents on housing and council tax benefit in line with other pest control charges. Pest Control fees are laid out in Appendix 2.
5. Trading Standards charges under the Weights and Measures Act 1985 are set regionally and have been increased by 2.7% in line with Retail Price Index (RPI) in September 2013. These fees are set out in Appendix 3.
Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)
6. The charges proposed reflect increases in the costs of delivering services and the requirement to obtain income where possible to assist in delivering a balanced budget.
Sustainability and Climate Change Implications
7. There are no direct sustainability or climate change implications from this reports as the report deals solely with fees and charges.
Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)
8. Under relevant legislation the Council is allowed to charge for certain services it provides. Where actual fees and charges are specified in legislation this is indicated as such in the appendices.
Crime and Disorder Implications
9. There are no crime and disorder implications as a direct result of this report.
Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)
10. There are no implications as a result of this report.
11. Fees are generally set on a cost recovery basis and income generated directly supports service provision.
12. It is a corporate priority to manage the Council's workforce, money and assets efficiently and effectively in order to maximise its ability to achieve its aims in a sustainable manner.
Policy Framework and Budget
13. This is a matter for Executive decision.
Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)
14. This report relates to all wards in the Vale of Glamorgan. There is no requirement to consult on these proposals.
Relevant Scrutiny Committee
15. Housing and Public Protection.
Alun Billinghurst, Head of Service Public Protection - Tel. 01446 709720
Richard Price, Principal Lawyer, Legal Services
Laura Davis Finance Support Manager, Development Services
Rob Thomas, Director of Development Services