To consider the Call In on the King’s Lynn Transport Study.
The Chair outlined the background to the call-in by Councillor Moriarty and drew the Panel’s attention to the ruling made by the Chief Executive as set out below:
“The call-in is valid in respect of Standing order 12.4(d):
Recommendations 2 and 3 to Cabinet 4 February 2020 from the Regeneration and Development Panel meeting held on 28 January 2020 as published as the supplementary item to the Cabinet agenda were not taken into account in making the decision:
The Chair explained that the debate on the call-in would only focus on Recommendations 2 and 3 and not the Transport document and wider issues.
The Chair then outlined the procedure that would be followed set out at section 5 of the report and advised Members that if any Councillor deviated from the specific reason for the call-in, then he would reserve the right to bring the meeting back to order.
The Chair invited Councillor Moriarty to present the call in of Cabinet Decision on the King’s Lynn Transport Study.
Councillor Moriarty addressed the Panel and outlined the reasons for the call in of the Cabinet Decision, welcomed the King’s Lynn Transport document and congratulated the Leader and Portfolio Holder for the work undertaken in collaboration with Norfolk County Council. Councillor Moriarty stated that the recommendations from the Regeneration and Development Panel were not read out in the Cabinet meeting.
Councillor Moriarty commented that in his view, the Transport Strategy itself had never been voted on, and the Cabinet only voted on how some steps might be implemented, not on the strategy itself.
The Chair invited Councillor de Whalley to address the Panel.
Councillor de Whalley addressed the Panel and outlined four reasons why he had supported the call-in. The reasons outlined by Councillor de Whalley were not specific to the recommendations to Cabinet from the Regeneration and Development Panel.
The Chair stated that the comments made by Councillor de Whalley did not address the specific reasons for the call-in.
The Chair invited Councillor Kemp to address the Panel.
Councillor Kemp addressed the Panel and provided an overview why she had supported the call-in. The reasons outlined by Councillor Kemp were not specific to the call-in.
The Chair commented that two out of the four supporters of the call-in had not specifically addressed the reasons for the call in and drew Members’ attention to the two recommendations of the call-in and requested that the other supporters keep to recommendations 2 and 3 from the Regeneration and Development Panel.
The Chair invited Councillor Parish to address the Panel.
Councillor Parish addressed the Panel and explained that as Vice-Chair of the Regeneration and Development Panel he attended the Cabinet Meeting on 4 February and presented the comments from the Panel. Councillor Parish made reference to the Regeneration and Development Panel Minutes of 28 January 2020 drawing attention to the three recommendations and highlighted that the Panel felt that the Strategy was not clearly defined and required further work.
Under Standing Order, Councillor Morley explained that he had attended the Regeneration and Development Panel and Cabinet and had highlighted that the Strategy had not been clearly defined and added that neither the climate change strategy nor the local plan had been taken into account. Councillor Morley commented that Cabinet should state that they recognised the document was not the full strategy, but set out short and medium term actions.
The Chair invited the Portfolio Holder for Development, Councillor Blunt to address the Panel.
Councillor Blunt asked the Chair if the comments made by made by Councillors Kemp and de Whalley could be disregarded as they were not relevant to the call-in.
In response, the Chair explained that he had asked Councillors to address the specific reasons for the call-in.
Councillor Blunt explained that he had attended the Regeneration and Development Panel and had referred to the background papers listed in the report which included the full King’s Lynn Transport Strategy Stage 3 report which contained consultation responses and he wider context, including a vision and objectives.
Councillor Blunt advised that he had listened to the Regeneration and Development Panel’s views and that he had explained that the recommendation was for the Panel to agree the Implementation Plan attached to the document.
Councillor Blunt commented that he had held discussions with the Leader and Councillor Parish in relation to the recommendations from the Regeneration and Development Panel. Cabinet had recognised the recommendations from the Panel, but that they had not been included in the minutes.
Councillor Blunt outlined the stages which had been required to show a clear process of how the 33 options had been identified. He explained that the strategy would be monitored and that changes may be needed in the future and had agreed with the Leader that an ongoing Task Group would be set up in the next two to three months to develop and monitor the strategy.
At the invitation of the Chair, the Environmental Health Manager provided clarification on the strategy. It was explained that a consultation exercise had been undertaken on the objectives and vision strategy in the summer of 2018, 115 ideas had been received. Stage 1 of the document was published on the Council’s website, see link below:
The Panel was advised that the consultants had now produced the report which had reviewed all the proposals and took into consideration comments made following the consultation exercise. There were 33 schemes contained in the Implementation Plan, which were prioritised into short, medium and long term.
The Environmental Health Manager informed the Panel that the Stage 2 Options Appraisal Report was also published on the Council’s website, see link below:
The Environmental Health Manager outlined the reasons why there appeared to be confusion and explained that Cabinet were being asked to:
1) Note the consultation responses received as part of the consultation process and note that these were recognised in the proposal.
2) Cabinet adopt the King’s Lynn Transport Strategy Implementation Plan
Cabinet was not being asked to adopt the Strategy.
The Chair invited questions from the Panel.
Councillor Humphrey commented that he had considered the reason for the call-in and looked at the Cabinet Minutes and explained that Councillor Parish had attended the Cabinet Meeting on 4 February 2020 under Standing Order 34 and presented the comments of the Regeneration and Development Panel. Therefore in his view, the Panel’s views were considered when Cabinet were debating the King’s Lynn Transport Strategy. For the reasons outlined above, Councillor Humphrey did not support the call-in.
The Chair invited Councillor Moriarty to sum up in relation to the original reason for the call-in.
Councillor Moriarty stated that he understood the comments made by Councillor Humphrey in that the Vice-Chair of the Regeneration and Development had presented the Panel’s views to Cabinet, but that it had not been recorded in the minutes. Councillor Moriarty advised that he had attended and recorded the Cabinet meeting on 4 February 2020. In conclusion, Councillor Moriarty encouraged the Portfolio Holder for Development to set up the task group as soon as possible.
The Chair commented that the Panel had heard the reasons for the call in from Councillor Moriarty and supporters.
The Panel voted on whether to uphold or not uphold the call-in.
RESOLVED: The Panel did not uphold the call-in, but supported the proposal from the Portfolio Holder to set up a Task Group in the next two to three months to develop and monitor the strategy.