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Agenda Item No

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

Cabinet Meeting: 23 March, 2015

Report of the Cabinet Member for Housing, Building Maintenance and Community Safety

Public Protection - Proposed Fees and Charges 2015/16

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.

Recommendations

1. That the schedule of fees and charges in Appendix 1 to 4 to this report are approved to become effective from 1st April 2015.

 

2. That Cabinet authorises the use of article 13.09 of the Council's Constitution (urgent decision procedure) to enable the increases in fees and charges to be implemented from 1st April 2015.

Reasons for the Recommendations

1. To ensure fees are increased in line with inflation and statutory requirements and reflect more accurately the actual cost of providing services.

 

2. In order to implement charges in a timely manner.

Background

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 4.

Relevant Issues and Options

3. It is proposed that the fees set by the Local Authority for Public Protection Services are increased in line with budgetary inflation increases of 2%.  The charges are set out in Appendix 1.  Increased costs have been rounded to the nearest pound or 50p, to assist with administration.  The officer hourly rate has decreased slightly, due to a reduction in direct and indirect costs as a result of approved budget savings.

 

4. The charges for the Council's Pest Control service need to cover the cost of the service.  They also need to be competitive within the market to ensure the service is used and that income is achieved.  Pest Control fees have been increased to reflect these conflicting demands.  The Pest Control fees are in Appendix 2.

 

5. Trading Standards charges under the Weights and Measures Act 1985 are set regionally and have been increased by 1.2% in line with the Consumer Price Index (CPI) in September 2014. These fees are set out in Appendix 3.

 

6. The Council issues Ship Sanitation Certificates upon request.  There is a standard charging policy across the UK for the cost of these certificates, agreed by the Association of Port Health Authorities (APHA). From 1st January 2008, APHA recommended that UK local/port health authorities adopt the charges agreed by the APHA Executive Board.  This Board has recommended the adoption of new fees from 1st April 2015, as detailed in Appendix 4, which represents a 1.5% increase on 2014 charges.

 

7. The fee for the Council's Renewal Area Agency service will increase from 12% to 15% to reflect the increase in costs of delivering the service provided.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

8. 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

9. The provision of appropriate fees is essential to ensure the sustainability of the service.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

10. 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

11. There are no crime and disorder implications as a direct result of this report.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

12. There are no implications as a result of this report.  

Corporate/Service Objectives

13. Fees are generally set on a cost recovery basis and income generated directly supports service provision.

 

14. 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

15. This is a matter for Executive decision. 

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

16. This report relates to all wards in the Vale of Glamorgan.  There is no requirement to consult on these proposals.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

17. Housing and Public Protection.

Background Papers

None.

Contact Officer

Alun Billinghurst, Head of Service Public Protection - Tel. 01446 709720

Officers Consulted

Richard Price, Principal Lawyer, Legal Services

Laura Davis, Finance Support Manager, Development Services

Responsible Officer:

Rob Thomas, Director of Development Services