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Agenda, decisions and minutes

Venue: Shekinah Room, Jubilee Church Life Centre, 5 London Road, Grantham, NG31 6EY

Contact: Jo Toomey 

Items
No. Item

45.

Public Open Forum

The public open forum will commence at 2.00 p.m. and the following formal business of the Council will commence at 2.30 p.m. or whenever the public open forum ends, if earlier.

Minutes:

Question 1

 

From: Katie Burris, Grantham

 

To: Councillor Matthew Lee, the Leader of the Council

 

SKDC have a policy and procedure for events taking place on SKDC land, on which the Boxing Day event takes place. Why have the Belvoir Hunt Plc not completed the SKDC ‘Events Application Pack’  which includes a risk assessment and liability insurance; as per your own guidelines?

 

In his response the Leader explained that while the event took place on land owned by SKDC the event was managed by the Belvoir Hunt. The document transferring the land to the SKDC predecessor (the Mayor Alderman and Burgesses of Grantham) included a right to use the land for horse sports. He added that the organisers were in the process of submitting the event application form to SKDC, which would include a risk assessment. It was also the responsibility of the organisers to ensure that they had the necessary public liability insurance in place and to ensure the health, safety and welfare of all involved including participants and members of the public.

 

Supplementary question:

 

On Boxing Day 2016 one of the hounds was hit by a taxi on the road. This could have been a disaster if the car had swerved into the crowd. Is this not reason enough to ensure the roads are closed and thorough risk assessment is completed? Why isn’t the road being closed?

 

The Leader explained that South Kesteven District Council did not have responsibility for road closures. It was the responsibility of the event organiser to apply for a road closure, which would then be determined by Lincolnshire County Council.

 

Question 2

 

From: Katie Burris, Grantham

 

To: Councillor Matthew Lee, the Leader of the Council

 

SKDC is supporting this event at the request of the Charter Trustees as SKDC is providing the land, barriers and SKDC equipment and staff to clean up after the event. Do the Charter Trustees have their own liability insurance or is this covered by SKDC liability insurance?

 

The Leader confirmed that the Council had its own public liability insurance which would respond if a claim was made against the Council as the land and property owner however it could not be held liable for the actions of others. It was a question for the Charter Trustees whether they had their own public liability insurance.

 

Question 3

 

From: Nicholas Bradley, Foston

 

To: Councillor Matthew Lee, the Leader of the Council

 

The Dogs (Fouling of Land) Act 1996 and the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 create an offence of the failure to pick up dog mess because of the risk to public health. Who is responsible for this legal requirement and has this been addressed in the planning of the event [the meeting of the Belvoir hunt]?

 

In his response, the Leader stated that it was a requirement for dog owners to clean up after their dogs. Arrangements would need to be made by dog owners to pick up any fouling otherwise the owners would be liable  ...  view the full minutes text for item 45.

46.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Benn, Coutts, Evans, Forman, Kaberry-Brown, Manterfield, Mapp, Morgan, Sampson, Turner, Ward and Wilkins.

47.

Disclosure of Interests

Members are asked to disclose any interests in matters for consideration at the meeting.

Minutes:

No interests were disclosed.

48.

Minutes of the meeting held on 27 September 2018 pdf icon PDF 206 KB

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 27 September 2018 were proposed, seconded and agreed as a correct record.

49.

Communications (including Chairman's Announcements) pdf icon PDF 45 KB

An overview of the Chairman’s engagements.

Minutes:

The Council noted the Chairman’s engagements.

49a

South Kesteven - best kept village

Presentation to the winners of the best kept village in South Kesteven competition.

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member for Environment referred to a South Kesteven best kept village competition, which the Council had run with the Council for Protection of Rural England alongside a countywide competition. The adjudication criteria considered village appearance and condition, green spaces, public premises, private premises, religious buildings and memorials, business premises and overall community effort.

 

Two of the winners and two of the runners up had also won their categories in the Lincolnshire event, which had been run by the Campaign for the Protection of Rural England.

 

Members of the Council were invited to congratulate the winners and runners up across each of the different categories as they were presented with their certificates both for the South Kesteven and Lincolnshire competitions:

 

·         Class 1 (villages with a population between 100 and 1,000) winner: Harlaxton (also the winner of the Lincolnshire award for the same category)

·         Class1 runner up: Denton (also the runner-up for the Lincolnshire award for the same category)

·         Class 2 (villages with a population between 1,001 and 2,500) winner: Claypole (also the winner of the Lincolnshire award for the same category)

·         Class 2 runner up: Great Gonerby (also the runner-up for the Lincolnshire award for the same category)

·         Large village/small town winner: Market Deeping

49b

Apportionment of seats on committees

Decision:

Decision:

 

That the Council makes the following appointments to the membership of its Committees:

 

1.    Councillor Broughton to fill the Conservative seat on the Licensing Committee and the Alcohol, Entertainment and Late Night Refreshment Committee

 

2.    Councillor Dilks to fill the Independent Group seat on the Licensing Committee and the Alcohol, Entertainment and Late Night Refreshment Licensing Committee (this seat was gifted)

 

3.    Councillor Sampson to remain on the Constitution Committee

 

4.    Councillor Craft to replace Councillor Baxter on the Shareholder Committee

 

5.    The Conservatives to continue to gift one seat on the Chief Executive’s Appeal panel to the Independent Group


Minutes:

The Leader stated that there was urgent business to be considered at the meeting and requested a recess so that he could speak to the other Group Leaders about the item. The adjournment would also allow Members time to read report number LDS332, which was circulated at the meeting.

 

14:30 to 14:42 the meeting adjourned.

 

When the meeting reconvened the Leader explained that report LDS332 had been brought before the Council because Councillor Broughton had given written notification that he was moving from the Independent Group to the Conservative Group. This change affected the Council’s political balance; consequential adjustments had to be made so that membership of the Council’s committees complied with political balance rules.

 

It was proposed, seconded and on being put to the vote, AGREED that the following appointments are made to the membership of the Council’s

Committees:

 

1.    Councillor Broughton to fill the Conservative seat on the Licensing Committee and the Alcohol, Entertainment and Late Night Refreshment Committee

 

2.    Councillor Dilks to fill the Independent Group seat on the Licensing Committee and the Alcohol, Entertainment and Late Night Refreshment Licensing Committee (this seat was gifted)

 

3.    Councillor Sampson to remain on the Constitution Committee

 

4.    Councillor Craft to replace Councillor Baxter on the Shareholder Committee

 

5.    The Conservatives to continue to gift one seat on the Chief Executive’s Appeal panel to the Independent Group

49c

Budget Council meeting - 2019

Decision:

Decision:

 

To move the Council meeting scheduled for Thursday 28 February 2019 to Friday 1 March 2019.

Minutes:

The Chairman stated that he had received a request to change the date of the Budget Council meeting from Thursday 28 February 2019 to Friday 1 March 2019 to ensure that information from all precepting authorities was available when the Council agreed its Budget. The proposed change of date was to prevent calling an additional meeting in the event that not all precept information had been received by the date on which the Council was due to determine its Budget.

 

Consequently it was proposed, seconded and, on being put to the vote, AGREED that the Council meeting scheduled for Thursday 28 February 2019 be moved to Friday 1 March 2019.

50.

Review of polling districts and polling places pdf icon PDF 133 KB

Report number LDS329 of the Returning Officer.                         

Additional documents:

Decision:

Decision:

 

1.    Council approves the proposals setting out changes to polling places as detailed in paragraph 2.2 of report LDS329.

 

2.    Council approves the proposals setting out changes to polling districts as detailed in paragraph 2.3 of report LDS329.

 

3.    Council approves the revised polling districts for the Stamford St. Mary’s Ward and delegates authority to the Chief Executive as the Returning Officer to approve any additional polling station in consultation with the Ward Members.

 

4.    That the approved revised polling districts and polling places take effect from the publication of the Electoral Register on 1 December 2018.

Minutes:

The Chief Executive presented report number LDS329 in his capacity as Returning Officer. He explained that the Council was required to carry out compulsory reviews of polling arrangements every five years. He added that while the current review was required to be completed by January 2020 it had been conducted at this time so that changes could be implemented prior to the district and parish council elections in May 2019. He gave an overview of the consultation process that was followed.

 

While the review indicated that most polling arrangements worked well, the Chief Executive highlighted that seven changes to polling places had been proposed in response to feedback that had arisen at recent elections or where other venues were no longer available. Changes were also proposed in respect of three polling district boundaries. Consultation had indicated a need for an additional polling station in Stamford St. Mary’s Ward, which would continue to be explored. In conclusion the Chief Executive stated that, if approved, the changes would take effect from 1 December 2018.

 

In proposing the recommendations in report LDS329, reference was made to the extent of the consultation that had been undertaken. Members also noted that there were some instances where proposals included moving some polling stations away from schools. The recommendation was seconded. Both the proposer and the seconder expressed their thanks to the team for their work in conducting the review.

 

On being put to the vote, it was AGREED:

 

1.    To approve the proposals setting out changes to polling places as detailed in paragraph 2.2 of report LDS329.

 

2.    To approve the proposals setting out changes to polling districts as detailed in paragraph 2.3 of report LDS329.

 

3.    To approve the revised polling districts for the Stamford St. Mary’s Ward and delegates authority to the Chief Executive as the Returning Officer to approve any additional polling station in consultation with the Ward Members.

 

4.    That the approved revised polling districts and polling places take effect from the publication of the Electoral Register on 1 December 2018.

51.

Community Governance Review - Corby Glen Parish Council pdf icon PDF 118 KB

Report number LDS328 of the Deputy Leader of the Council and the Cabinet Member for Communities, Health, Wellbeing and Skills.                                                             

Additional documents:

Decision:

Decision:

 

1.    Council approves the increase in membership of Corby Glen Parish Council from seven to nine members.

 

2.    Council agrees that the draft Reorganisation Order, as set out at Appendix 1 to report number LDS328, is made in accordance with the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007.

Minutes:

The recommendations in report LDS328 were proposed and seconded. Reference was made to the feedback that had been received from local residents and the projected increase in electorate. Support was also expressed from the local Ward Member. On being put to the vote, the proposition was approved and Council AGREED:

 

1.    That the number of members on Corby Glen Parish Council is increased from seven to nine.

 

2.    To the making of the draft Reorganisation Order, as set out at Appendix 1 to report number LDS328, in accordance with the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007.

52.

Establishment of a Working Group to undertake a review of Council Committees in preparation for the municipal year from May 2019 pdf icon PDF 116 KB

Report number LDS331 of the Deputy Leader of the Council.    

Decision:

Decision:

 

1.    That a working group of nine Members of the Council, consisting of:

 

·         Councillor Kelham Cooke, the Deputy Leader of the Council (Cabinet Member with responsibility for governance)

·         Councillor  Robert Reid, the Chairman of the Growth Overview and Scrutiny Committee

·         Councillor Martin Wilkins, the Chairman of the Development Management Committee

·         Councillor Barry Dobson, the Chairman of the Shareholder Committee

·         Councillor Ray Wootten, the Chairman of the Communities and Wellbeing Overview and Scrutiny Committee

·         Councillor Ian Stokes, the Chairman of the Governance and Audit Committee

·         Councillor Phil Dilks, the leader of the Labour Group

·         Councillor Paul Wood, the leader of the Independent Group

·         Councillor Nick Craft, the leader of the SK Independent Group

 

be appointed to undertake a review of the committees of the Council in preparation for the municipal year from May 2019.

 

2.    That the findings and recommendations of the working group be reported to Council on 1 March 2019.

Minutes:

In proposing the recommendations in report number LDS331, the Deputy Leader referred to the scrutiny arrangements that had been introduced in April 2017 and the timing of the review of the way all of the Council’s committees operated to ensure any revisions were in place in time for the 2019/20 municipal year. As part of his proposition the Deputy Leader announced those Committee Chairmen who would sit on the working group: the Chairmen of the Growth and Communities and Wellbeing Overview and Scrutiny Committees, the Development Management Committee, the Shareholder Committee and the Governance and Audit Committee. He added that the working group would also consider any changes in respect of other committees, including the Development Management Committee. The proposition was seconded.

 

During debate on the item, clarification was sought about whether it was still the intention that Opposition Group Leaders would sit on the working group, as only Committee Chairmen were named during the proposer’s speech. It was confirmed that Group Leaders would still form part of the working group; specific reference had been made by the proposer to the Committee Chairmen as they were not listed within the report.

 

A number of Members stated that they welcomed the review and looked forward to improving the way in which the Council’s committees operated. One Member asked whether the review could look at how unaligned Members might be granted a seat on the Council’s committees. Speakers highlighted the value of both pre- and post-decision scrutiny, while reference was made to scrutiny of the draft Budget for 2018/19 where it was considered the current arrangements had worked well. Comments were also made about the value of independent chairmanship of scrutiny.

 

In summing up, the Deputy Leader stated that any Member who wished to feed any items into the review could contact him.

 

On being put to the vote, the proposition was AGREED:

 

1.    That a working group of nine Members of the Council, consisting of:

 

·         Councillor Kelham Cooke, the Deputy Leader of the Council (Cabinet Member with responsibility for governance)

·         Councillor  Robert Reid, the Chairman of the Growth Overview and Scrutiny Committee

·         Councillor Martin Wilkins, the Chairman of the Development Management Committee

·         Councillor Barry Dobson, the Chairman of the Shareholder Committee

·         Councillor Ray Wootten, the Chairman of the Communities and Wellbeing Overview and Scrutiny Committee

·         Councillor Ian Stokes, the Chairman of the Governance and Audit Committee

·         Councillor Phil Dilks, the leader of the Labour Group

·         Councillor Paul Wood, the leader of the Independent Group

·         Councillor Nick Craft, the leader of the SK Independent Group

 

be appointed to undertake a review of the committees of the Council in preparation for the municipal year from May 2019.

 

2.    That the findings and recommendations of the working group be reported to Council on 1 March 2019.

53.

Article 4 Direction - Stamford pdf icon PDF 471 KB

Report number DM16 of the Cabinet Member for Growth and Communications.

Decision:

Decision:

 

Council confirms the designation of an Article 4 Direction for Stamford Conservation Area as attached at Appendix 1 to report DM16 and cancellation of the existing Warrenne Keep Article 4 Direction, both effective from 1 December 2018, together with the introduction of a fee of £206 for each planning application arising from the Direction and with any income surplus generated from the Article 4 Direction ring-fenced for future investment on the area covered by the Direction.

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member for Growth and Communication presented report number DM16 which proposed an Article 4 Direction covering Stamford Conservation Area to protect its appearance. The introduction of an Article 4 Direction had been subject to public consultation, with the comments being considered by the Growth Overview and Scrutiny Committee, which had made recommendations in support of the Article 4 Direction to Cabinet, which in turn also endorsed the introduction of a Direction. The recommendation in the report was proposed and seconded.

 

Support was expressed by several Members who represented Wards in Stamford, recognising the significance of its heritage. The measure was considered to be proportionate; providing protection without stifling growth. A comment was made that following the implementation of the Direction in Stamford any lessons learned could be applied to other towns and villages where similar protections may be beneficial.

 

In response to a question, the Cabinet Member for Growth and Communications stated that there had been no single occurrence that had been the catalyst for the Article 4 Direction.

 

A vote was taken and the proposition was carried. Council AGREED to confirm the designation of an Article 4 Direction for Stamford Conservation Area as attached at Appendix 1 to report DM16 and the cancellation of the existing Warrenne Keep Article 4 Direction, both effective from 1 December 2018, together with the introduction of a fee of £206 for each planning application arising from the Direction and with any income surplus generated from the Article 4 Direction ring-fenced for future investment on the area covered by the Direction.

 

54.

Meetings of the Cabinet pdf icon PDF 91 KB

Report number LDS330 of the Leader of the Council.                  

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members noted the minutes of the Cabinet meetings held on 6 September 2018 and 4 October 2018 as appended to report number LDS330.

 

At the Cabinet meeting held on 6 September 2018, a question had been asked about the introduction of a Saturday market in Market Deeping. The Cabinet Member for Visitor and Retail Economy updated Members stating that the County Council consultation on the Road Closure Order was underway and confirmed that arrangements were on track for the market to be delivered by Easter 2019.

 

A question was also asked about whether, following the Cabinet’s decision to form a grounds maintenance company, a non-executive director had been appointed and if so, who they were and whether they were remunerated. The Cabinet Member for Environment responded that as yet no one had been appointed and no decisions had been made about how the non-executive directorship would work.

55.

Members' Open Questions

A 45-minute period in which members may ask questions of the Leader, Cabinet Members, the Chairmen and Vice-Chairmen of the Overview and Scrutiny Committees and opposition group leaders excluding the Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Development Management Committee, Licensing and Alcohol, Entertainment and Late Night Refreshment Licensing Committees and Governance and Audit Committee.

Minutes:

Question 1

 

Councillor Wood referred to a question that had been put to the Cabinet Member for Housing at the last meeting of Council. The question related to the fitting of gas boilers that had subsequently been found to have a design fault. Councillor Wood asked the Cabinet Member for Housing what action had been taken since the last meeting of Council.

 

The Cabinet Member for Housing stated that enquiries were progressing and that the Council had written to the manufacturer and other stakeholders; a response was still awaited. The Cabinet Member for Housing agreed to forward to Councillor Wood the information that had been shared with Councillor Dilks following his question at the last meeting of Council.

 

Question 2

 

Councillor Craft asked where he could find out which charities and good causes had benefited from LotterySK and how much they had been given.

 

The Deputy Leader stated that this information should be published on the charities and good causes page of the LotterySK website, committing to check and confirm directly to Councillor Craft.

 

Question 3

 

Councillor Baxter referred to a recent economic summit held at Grimsthorpe Castle. He stated that he had been advised that as the capacity at the summit was not sufficient to accommodate all Councillors, the Leader would speak to the Council about the event. Councillor Baxter enquired when information about the event would be shared with Councillors.

 

The Leader stated that he continued to talk about the summit and the Council’s growth ambitions at all sorts of meetings. He added that he would respond to requests from Councillors to address them about the summit. He said he had received positive feedback from the business community and expressed disappointment that the only negativity he had experienced in respect of the event had been from within the Council Chamber.

 

Question 4

 

Councillor Selby asked whether, given the strong feelings that Margaret Thatcher could provoke, the Leader agreed that there should be a local referendum on whether her statue should be brought to Grantham.

 

The Leader referred to Baroness Thatcher’s achievements as an international stateswoman and the longest-serving Prime Minister of the twentieth century. She was also the first woman and the first scientist to become Prime Minister. He related the link to her scientific work with what was emerging as the unique selling point for Grantham. He added that in his time, Sir Isaac Newton was equally as controversial.

 

The Leader concluded by saying that a commitment had been made that no public money would be spent on the erection of the statue, nor would he consider spending public money on a referendum.

 

Question 5

 

Councillor Peter Stephens referred to compensation that was being requested by Network Rail in respect of the Grantham Southern Relief Road and asked how negotiations were proceeding.

 

The Leader stated that he would be happy to write to all Councillors giving details of how matters were progressing, highlighting the importance of the Southern Relief Road for the delivery of other developments in  ...  view the full minutes text for item 55.

56.

Notices of Motion given under Article 4.9:

56a

Councillor Phil Dilks

This Council resolves that all current and future applications relating to major sites are referred to the Council’s Development Management Committee for determination.

Decision:

Decision:

 

The Council did not support the motion put by Councillor Dilks.

Minutes:

Councillor Dilks proposed his motion:

 

This Council resolves that all current and future applications relating to major sites are referred to the Council’s Development Management Committee for determination.

 

In presenting his motion, Councillor Dilks made reference to a recent major planning application that had been determined by officers under delegated authority. While this was acceptable under the Council’s Constitution he asked that whether, in the future, all major applications be brought before the Development Management Committee. He referred again to the recent application, which he felt would have benefitted from consideration by the Development Management Committee as it would have provided a forum for local interested parties to attend and put forward their views. He believed that this would have provided greater transparency and accountability of decision-making, and would help ensure the protection of the Council’s reputation.

 

The motion was seconded. The seconder referred to his experience of the Development Management Committee and how he had believed that all major applications were automatically considered by the Committee. He mentioned that some of the applications considered by the Committee were minor in scale when compared to the major application determined under delegated powers. He reiterated previous sentiments that had been expressed about transparency.

 

Those Members who spoke in favour of the motion further referred to the recent application determined under delegated authority; they referred to a pre-application briefing that had taken place between the developer and Committee Members, at which it was intimated that the application would be brought before the Committee. Members did not feel that it was appropriate for the Committee Chairman to decide which major applications should be considered by the Committee.

 

Members who spoke against the proposition referred to the Constitutional provision that allowed any Member to call-in any application for consideration by Committee. Frustration was expressed by some of the speakers who had had applications within their Ward about which there was no local concern, called to Committee by Councillors from other parts of the district. Reference was also made to the professional expertise of the Council’s planning officers. One Member stated the wording of any change to the scheme of delegation would need to be carefully considered to ensure that it was accurately defined, noting that the terminology used in the motion was it was proposed was “major sites”. It was suggested that any changes to the Committee’s responsibilities as set out in the Scheme of Delegation could be considered as part of the review of the Council’s Committees, which had been agreed at this meeting. This would provide a formal process could be followed to ensure clarity and accuracy and that all appropriate parties were consulted.

 

There was also some concern that taking all major applications to Committee may swamp it with unnecessary applications, particularly when considering the timescales within which major applications should be determined and within the context of the Council’s growth agenda. This was rebutted by supporters of the motion who used the St. Peter’s Hill public realm project as an  ...  view the full minutes text for item 56a

57.

Close of meeting

Minutes:

The meeting was closed at 16:04.