Agenda item

Cabinet Decision Call-in - Public Realm Improvements, St Peter's Hill, Grantham

Following the Call-in of the Cabinet decision taken at its meeting held on 1 December 2020, this reports invites Cabinet to consider the recommendations made by the Culture and Visitor Economy Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

Decision:

Decision:

 

1.    That Cabinet notes the content of the report from the Director of Law and Governance (Monitoring Officer).

2.    That Cabinet considered the request from the Culture and Visitor Economy Overview and Scrutiny Committee: that the Committee be updated on the progress of the organisation of the event and fundraising as per the recommendation at 2.2 of the report from the Director of Law and Governance (Monitoring Officer).

3.    That Cabinet reaffirms the recommendation made on 1 December 2020, to approve a budget allocation from the local priorities reserve and authorises expenditure of up to £100,000 to underwrite the statue unveiling event and any consequential works and that any fund raising from the public, businesses and others would go towards this budget allocation.

 

 

Considerations/reasons for decision:

 

·         Report from the Director of Law and Governance (Monitoring Officer) following the call-in of the Cabinet decision made on 1 December 2020 in respect of Public Realm Improvements, St Peter’s Hill, Grantham.

·         Recommendations made by the Culture and Visitor Economy Overview and Scrutiny Committee at the meeting held on 5 January 2021 in respect of the financial breakdown of the £100k in relation to fundraising and anticipated on-going costs.

 

 

 

 

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council introduced the item which concerned recommendations from the Culture and Visitor Economy Overview and Scrutiny Committee (OSC) held on 5 January 2021, following the call-in of the decision made by Cabinet on 1 December 2020.  The OSC referred back to Cabinet the decision to underwrite the event by up to £100,000, and requested that the Culture and Visitor Economy OSC be kept updated on the organisation of the event and fundraising.

 

The report gave a breakdown of costs for the budget up to £100,000 at Appendix D.  The Leader stated that no details of the unveiling event had been finalised and stressed that the event would not be taking place until the end of the Covid-19 pandemic. He also stated that the expected cost of the event would be below £100,000. Details of the fundraising appeal were still to be finalised and were subject to agreement by the external events management organisation. Commissioning and contracting arrangements had been on hold pending the call-in. The current fundraising criteria was shown at Appendix C. The fundraising would also contribute to the Baroness Thatcher’s exhibition at the Grantham Museum as well as ongoing security and maintenance costs of the statue.  

 

The Leader proposed a further recommendation to those within the report; to reaffirm the recommendation made on 1 December 2020, to approve a budget allocation from the local priorities reserve and authorise expenditure of up to £100,000 to underwrite the statue unveiling event and any consequential works and that any fund raising from the public, businesses and others would go towards this budget allocation.  The proposal was seconded.

 

Cabinet Members supported the proposals. It was stated that the event was to celebrate and promote inspirational achievements by women. Baroness Thatcher was the country’s first woman Prime Minister, who was born in Grantham and the town and district should promote this achievement, regardless of any political position. 

 

Non-Cabinet Members at the meeting raised the following concerns:

 

·       The appointment of an external management organisation to organise the event and deal with the event communications, especially as the Council had its own communication team.

·       The cost of the event and the underwriting by the Council of £100,000 of public money. Particularly due to the current climate and people’s uncertainty from the impact of the pandemic on their work and lives.

·       The money for the event should be entirely raised by private means.

·       Reference to the inclusion of Lady Charlotte Bertie who was born in Uffington.

·       The process for awarding the contract for the external management of the event.

 

The Leader stated that he would be happy to attend a meeting of the Culture and Visitor Economy Overview and Scrutiny Committee to answer questions from Non-Cabinet Members regarding the event.

 

On being put to the vote, it was AGREED:

 

1.     To note the content of the report from the Director of Law and Governance (Monitoring Officer).

2.     That consideration be given to the request from the Culture and Visitor Economy Overview and Scrutiny Committee: that the Committee be updated on the progress of the organisation of the event and fundraising as per the recommendation at 2.2 of the report from the Director of Law and Governance (Monitoring Officer).

3.     To reaffirm the recommendation made on 1 December 2020, to approve a budget allocation from the local priorities reserve and authorises expenditure of up to £100,000 to underwrite the statue unveiling event and any consequential works and that any fund raising from the public, businesses and others would go towards this budget allocation.

 

 

 

 

 

Supporting documents: