Full Council - 17 July 2018
Penn Chamber, Three Rivers House16th July 2018
To: ALL MEMBERS OF THE THREE RIVERS DISTRICT COUNCIL
You are hereby summoned to attend an ordinary meeting of the Council to be held in the Penn Chamber, Three Rivers House, Rickmansworth, on Tuesday 17 July 2018 at 7.30pm for the purpose of transacting the under mentioned business:-
1. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
To confirm as a correct record the Minutes of the Annual Council meeting held on 22 May 2018 (pages 1 to 15).
3. RECOMMENDATION FROM THE POLICY AND RESOURCES COMMITTEE
To receive the recommendation from the Policy and Resources Committee meeting held on 18 June 2018 on Minute PR08/18 Summary of the Financial Outturn for 2017/18:
- That the favourable revenue outturn variance of (£995,883) be noted;
- That the capital outturn as summarised in paragraph 2.6 and Appendix 3 be noted;
- That the unspent service budgets from 2017/18 to 2018/19 which total £460,560 as detailed at Appendix 2 be carried forward; and
- That the re-phasing on capital projects from 2017/18 to 2018/19 which total £2,961,040 as detailed at Appendix 4 be approved.
4. AMENDMENTS TO THE SCHEME OF DELEGATION IN THE COUNCIL CONSTITUTION
5. UPDATE ON PROPERTY INVESTMENT ACTIVITY
6. TO RECEIVE ANY PETITIONS UNDER PROCEDURE RULE 19 (none received)
7. QUESTIONS FROM THE PUBLIC UNDER PROCEDURE RULE 15
1. Question received from Ms Kesteven
“William Penn sports hall is currently a fully inclusive and versatile space which accommodates team sports, racquet sports, and the widest range of physical exercise and activities for all ages and all levels of ability, as demonstrated by the current wide range of existing user groups."
Dividing the hall in half will severely reduce and limit access to the sporting activities available to existing users and will turn half the space into a restricted area that can only be used by a very limited demographic of young children and those who are sufficiently agile and wish to use a clip and climb wall.
How does this fit in with the policy objective included in TRDC’s Strategic Plan for 2018/21 to: “Improve and facilitate access to leisure and recreational activities for adults”?
2. Question from Mr Lee
“In the minutes of the Leisure, Wellbeing and Health Committee meeting on 6 September 2017 it is reported that 'A Member said that while all sports should be supported the money should not be spent if there is no demand.'
"What level of demand have TRDC established for a Clip and Climb Wall, a Soft play area and a larger crèche within the confines of the William Penn sports hall?”
3. Question from Mr O’Grady
"Were TRDC aware of the soft play schemes in Garston (Gambado), Watford (Parent’s Paradise) and Intu shopping centre Watford and the climbing walls at Hemel Hempstead, Amersham and Intu shopping centre Watford and how they would affect the usage and profitability of the same facilities proposed at William Penn Leisure Centre before deciding to go ahead with this scheme?"
4. Question from Alex Cutmore
"At the Leisure, Environment and Community Committee meeting on 6 September 2017, minutes show that 'The Chairman advised that the contract with the preferred bidder would be much more financially sound than the current arrangement and asked the Committee to focus on the finances rather than the leisure provision, which could be explored in more detailed discussion with the preferred bidder in due course.' Everyone Active weren't the preferred bidder, they were the only bidder. Why were you prepared to give away half the sports hall, for their payment of £63,000 a year, displacing hundreds of current hall users?"
5. Question from Mrs O’Grady
“The plan to halve the sports hall at William Penn Leisure Centre and replace it with a soft play area will force many hall users out. These include the Active life group, netball players and numerous clubs that run in the evenings. What steps did officers take before this contract was signed to engage with users and ensure appropriate alternative accommodation was available?”
6. Question from Sayjel Patel
“Your proposals set out for William Penn Leisure Centre include a 3G pitch, where you state netball can be played. Sport England and all sources indicate this is an unsuitable surface to play netball and therefore netball cannot be played at William Penn Leisure Centre if the current proposals go ahead. Can the Council clarify how this was overlooked and why this misinformation is still being sent out to the public?”
7. Question from Ms Venn
"These plans have been conducted in complete secrecy. £8.6m was allocated to the project in September 2017 but by March 2018 after Everyone Active had been appointed the allocation had gone up to £10.073m, an increase of £1.473m, with exactly £1m assigned to Fairway Inn, Golf and William Penn. In the contract Everyone Active has agreed to pay £63,000 per annum to Three Rivers Council for half the hall, £1.26m over 20 years yet you have given them an extra £1.473m on the contract. They are £213,000 up on that deal and are getting the hall for nothing. In what way is this deal good value for money for the residents of Three Rivers and the users of William Penn Leisure Centre?"
8. Question from Ms Jenkins
“The Sport England website says that leisure centres which offer both dry and wet facilities specifically both a sports court and a swimming pool-- are more likely to generate a surplus and be financially sustainable. Has TRDC conducted any research into current usage and future sustainability of our leisure centre following the end of its contract with Everyone Active, and is the Council knowingly selling off half the 4 court sports hall at market price at £1.26million, and with it the future option of a sustainable Council-managed community leisure centre?”
8. CHAIRMAN’S ANNOUNCEMENTS
9. REPORTS AND QUESTIONS TO THE LEADER AND LEAD MEMBERS
- LEADER OF THE COUNCIL
Question from Cllr Alex Hayward to the Leader of the Council.
What is the Administration doing to address the recent feedback in the Omnibus Survey where:
2.10 - 52% said can’t influence decisions in own area.
2.15 - Satisfaction with sport down from 92 – 84%, lowest in 7 years
- INFRASTRUCTURE, HOUSING AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Reports from the Lead Member for Economic Development (Cllr Stephen Giles-Medhurst), Lead Member for Infrastructure and Planning Policy (Cllr Martin Trevett), Lead Member for Housing (Cllr Andrew Scarth).
Question from Cllr David Sansom to Cllr Stephen Giles-Medhurst, Lead Member for Economic Development
How much money is being lost by the parking meter in the lower Northway car park not working for a month? How are these losses going to be made up?
- LEISURE, ENVIRONMENT AND COMMUNITY
Reports from the Lead Member for Leisure (Cllr Chris Lloyd), Lead Member for Environmental Services (Cllr Alex Michaels), Lead Member for Community Safety and Partnerships (Cllr Roger Seabourne) and questions.
Question from Cllr Paula Hiscocks to Cllr Chris Lloyd, Lead Member for Leisure
Do Three Rivers District Council charge for parking for leisure facilities?
- RESOURCES AND SHARED SERVICES
Report from the Lead Member for Resources and Shared Services (Cllr Matthew Bedford) and questions.
Question from Cllr Alex Hayward to Cllr Matthew Bedford, Lead Member for Resources and Shared Services
How can Watersmeet be a special expense charged to Batchworth Community Council for the residents to pay for in their precept when it is not a community hall, it is not hired out at community hall rates, and it is actually registered on the GOV.UK Valuation Office Agency as a Theatre and not a Hall?
Question from Cllr David Sansom to Cllr Matthew Bedford, Lead Member for Resources and Shared Services
Is it Council policy that the Prince2 project management system is used for all projects and yet it appears that the Temporary Housing at WRVS project is not using this system?
How is the project being managed?
What are the current financial projections for the project?
10. REPORTS AND QUESTIONS TO THE CHAIRMEN OF THE AUDIT, PLANNING, LICENSING AND REGULATORY SERVICES COMMITTEES (RULE 14)
- AUDIT COMMITTEE
Report from and questions to the Chairman of the Audit Committee (Cllr Keith Martin).
- PLANNING COMMITTEE
Report from and questions to the Chairman of the Planning Committee (Cllr Sarah Nelmes).
Report from and questions to the Chairman of the Licensing Committee (Cllr Steve Drury).
Question from Cllr David Sansom to Cllr Steve Drury, Chairman of the Licensing Committee
Why is Three Rivers District Council not informing any neighbours of Public House Licensing applications?
- REGULATORY SERVICES
Report from and questions to the Chairman of the Regulatory Services Committee (Cllr Steve Drury).
11. MOTIONS UNDER PROCEDURE RULE 11
1. Councillors Stephen Giles-Medhurst, seconded by Councillor Roger Seabourne, to move under Notice duly given as follows:
Fire and Rescue Service
Council reaffirms its view that the Fire and Rescue Service should remain under the control and democratic accountability of Hertfordshire County Council, rather than being taken over by the Police & Crime Commissioner.
Council therefore fully supports the view taken by the County Council in this regard, and its Leader’s submission to the Home Office.
Council instructs the Chief Executive to write to the Home Office in a similar vein.
2. Councillor Alex Michaels, seconded by Councillor Sara Bedford, to move under Notice duly given as follows:
Single Use Plastics
Council notes that 300 million tons of new plastic is made each year - half of which is used just once before being thrown away, but can last for 600 years.
Council further notes that the Government has refused to commit to eliminating avoidable plastic waste until 2042.
Council recognises the success of the plastic bag levy which has led to an 85% drop in disposable bag usage.
Council therefore commits to:
- a) replace single-use plastics with sustainable or reusable alternatives where possible;
- b) inform the public about plastic waste through local campaigns;
- c) encourage local businesses to reduce the amount of plastic waste they produce;
- d) support shops and supermarkets that introduce ‘plastic-free aisles’;
- e) champion re-usable water bottles and places to re-fill for free;
- f) where reduction and re-use isn’t possible, reduce the amount of plastic that enters the residual waste stream by increasing the options for plastic recycling.
3. Councillor Stephen Giles-Medhurst, seconded by Councillor Sara Bedford to move under Notice duly given as follows:
Cycle Hire Scheme
Council recognises the benefits of cycling, both to health and well-being and in reducing congestion and air pollution.
Council agrees to support exploration without any commitment at this stage into a joint bike hire scheme with Watford Borough Council, Hertfordshire County Council and others on such a scheme, with a report being brought to the IHED Committee by the end of 2018.
4. Councillor Chris Lloyd, seconded by Councillor Sara Bedford to move under Notice duly given as follows:
- The concerns expressed by some residents regarding the leisure facilities available at William Penn Leisure Centre (WPLC) under the new leisure contract.
- That the motions to accept the new contract were discussed and agreed through the Council’s democratic decision-making structure, with no Councillor objecting to this part of the contract at any stage, nor to the final contract.
- Government imposed cuts of £4 million per annum to the Council’s budget, together with underfunded new legal obligations, and a cap on Council Tax increases.
Council resolves to:
- Place a moratorium on changes to the existing sports hall at WPLC for a 12 month period.
- Re-examine the current and future user profile of WPLC, and other sports and leisure venues in the area.
- Speak with a cross-section of residents across the District to discuss future leisure needs.
- Look for further sources of income which could be used to increase spending on Council services.
- Fund the additional spending during the 12 month moratorium period by releasing the sum from general reserves.
12. EXCLUSION OF PRESS AND PUBLIC
If Council wishes to consider the remaining item in private, it will be appropriate for a resolution to be passed in the following terms:-
“that under Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972 the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined under paragraph (3) of Part I of Schedule 12A to the Act. It has been decided by the Council that in all the circumstances, the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information.”
- PROPERTY INVESTMENT BOARD – FINANCIAL INVESTMENTS
9 July 2018