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Agenda Item No

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Cabinet Meeting: 28 July, 2014

 

Report of the Cabinet Member for Leisure, Parks, Culture and Sport Development

 

Rhoose Point Public Open Space - Proposed Introduction of Bye-laws

 

Purpose of the Report

1.         To inform Cabinet of the outcome of a public Consultation exercise on the possible introduction of bye-laws for the public open space and lagoon areas at Rhoose Point.

2.         To propose a form of bye-laws for the area for consideration and approval by Full Council, prior to the matter being progressed to Welsh Government. 

Recommendations

1.         That Cabinet note the outcome of the public consultation exercise in respect to the possible introduction of bye-laws at Rhoose Point.

2.         That Cabinet approve the submission of a report to Full Council seeking authority to progress a bye-law application to Welsh Government as detailed at Appendix B to this report.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1.         To advise Cabinet of the consultation outcomes.

2.         To agree the details of a bye-law application to Full Council and then Welsh Government for Rhoose Point. 

Background

3.         There has been growing concern over recent years amongst certain Rhoose Point residents of various forms of anti-social behaviour on the development, particularly associated with the lagoons and Nature Reserve areas.

4.         Residents have asked that consideration be given to the introduction of a range of local bye-laws for the area, with fines able to be levied for certain levels of inappropriate or otherwise unacceptable behaviour.

5.         Cabinet, at its meeting of 9th September 2013 (Minute C2017 refers) approved a public consultation exercise to seek views on the introduction of bye-laws at Rhoose Point.  This consultation was undertaken between 27th January 2014 and 1st March 2014.

Relevant Issues and Options

6.         A report detailing the outcome of the consultation exercise is attached at Appendix A.  The results of the exercise suggest a number of conclusions:

·               There have been regular occurrences of antisocial behaviour at the open space at Rhoose Point in the past twelve months which have had a negative impact on residents that live locally.

·               Residents that have been affected by antisocial behaviour feel there are three common causes: fishing, swimming and camping.

·               Residents that have been affected by antisocial behaviour feel that these activities attract individuals whose antisocial behaviour manifests through four common forms: littering, inconsiderate and illegal parking, threatening and abusive behaviour and harm to wildlife.

·               A number of Vale residents that use the area for leisure activities feel that some local residents are also guilty of antisocial actions, most commonly threatening and abusive behaviour.

·               There is clearly a tempestuous relationship between some local residents and some individuals who fish at Rhoose Point.

·               There is strong support for the introduction of bye-laws to prevent all forms of antisocial behaviour at Rhoose Point.

·               Regulating fishing, and so the behaviour of those that fish, at Rhoose Point would appear to be a palatable solution to many respondents.

7.         The introduction and adoption of new bye-laws will allow the designated Council officers to work with the Police and local community to deal with those people who persist with certain prohibited activities.

8.         The proposed bye-laws are attached as Appendix B

9.         The proposed new bye-laws cover, regulate, control and / or prohibit such activities as:-

·               Swimming;

·               Fishing;

·               Metal detecting;.

·               Overnight parking and camping;

·               Fires and unauthorised barbecues;

·               Protection of wildlife.

10.      The process for making bye-laws is briefly as follows:-

·               Consultation with interested groups and representatives;

·               Form of bye-laws approved by Full Council;

·               Notice in newspaper;

·               Bye-laws submitted to Welsh Government for confirmation;

·               Bye-laws come into effect on the date fixed by the Welsh Government when they are confirmed.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

11.      The administrative cost of implementing the bye-laws will be in the order of £2,000.  Provision has been made for this within the existing Parks budget.

12.      In addition to these costs the installation of the necessary signage will be approximately £5,000.   This will again be funded from the Parks and Grounds Maintenance revenue budget.

13.      Following on from this there is the ongoing cost of an enforcement mechanism.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

14.      The introduction of certain bye-laws could assist in protecting the natural environment at Rhoose Point.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

15.      Section164 of the Public Health Act 1875 is the principal legislation permitting a local authority to make bye-laws for the management of public parks and open spaces.

16.      Section 236 of the Local Government Act 1972 sets out the current procedure for making bye-laws.  Bye-laws must be made under the Council’s seal, but do not take effect until they are confirmed by the Welsh Government.  The appropriate Welsh Minister will fix a date, on which the any bye-laws come into effect,

17.      There are no Human Rights implications associated with this report, but bye-laws must not be inconsistent with National or European legislation

Crime and Disorder Implications

18.      The introduction of the bye-laws and the potential ability to enforce those bye-laws will have a positive impact on Crime and Disorder issues.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

19.      Any signage will be bi-lingual.

Corporate/Service Objectives

20.      The Corporate Priority and service aim is "To achieve a quality of the environment through the promotion and use of sustainable practices and by making the best use of current and future resources"

The Service Objective is "To provide, manage and maintain Parks, open spaces and play areas".

The provision of an agreement will improve the working with the Community, Stakeholders and the Voluntary Sector.

Policy Framework and Budget

21.      This report is a matter for Executive decision.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

22.      Local Ward Members have been consulted on this proposal.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

23.      Economy and Environment.

Background Papers

None

 

Contact Officer

Phil Beaman - Operational Manager, Parks and Grounds Maintenance

 

Tel. No:  01446 709 543

 

Officers Consulted

Group Estates Officer

Operational Manager, Legal Services

Accountant, Visible and Building Services

 

Responsible Officer:

Miles Punter - Director of Visible Services and Housing.