Agenda and minutes

Venue: Assembly Room, Town Hall, Saturday Market Place, King's Lynn PE30 5DQ. View directions

Contact: Wendy Vincent, Democratic Services Officer, 01553 616377, email:  wendy.vincent@west-norfolk.gov.uk 

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Items
No. Item

CP112

Apologies

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors J Collop and S Patel.

 

CP113

Minutes pdf icon PDF 345 KB

To approve the minutes from the Corporate Performance Panel held on

Minutes:

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The minutes of the Corporate Performance Panel held on 3 March 2022 were agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

 

CP114

Declarations of Interest

Please indicate if there are any interests which should be declared.  A declaration of an interest should indicate the nature of the interest (if not already declared on the Register of Interests) and the agenda item to which it relates.  If a disclosable pecuniary interest is declared, the Member should withdraw from the room whilst the matter is discussed.

 

These declarations apply to all Members present, whether the Member is part of the meeting, attending to speak as a local Member on any item or simply observing the meeting from the public seating area.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

 

CP115

Urgent Business Under Standing Order 7

To consider any business which, by reason of special circumstances, the Chairman proposed to accept as urgent under Section 100(b)(4)(b) of the Local Government Act 1972.

Minutes:

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Officer Delegated Decision – Council Tax Rebate Discretionary Scheme

 

The Chair explained that he had received a request from Councillor Joyce for the above item to be discussed under urgent business which he had not accepted.  However, the Chair invited Councillor Joyce to address the Panel.

 

Councillor Joyce outlined his reasons why he thought the item should be considered under urgent business.

 

CP116

Members Present Pursuant to Standing Order 34

Members wishing to speak pursuant to Standing Order 34 should inform the Chair of their intention to do so and on what items they wish to be heard before a decision on that item is taken.

 

Minutes:

Councillor C Joyce (Zoom) and Councillor M de Whalley.

 

CP117

Chair's Correspondence

Minutes:

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The Chair circulated the following documents to the Panel.

 

Terms of Reference for the Guildhall and Creative Hub Task Group

 

The Chair explained that Group Leaders had been email invited nominations to be put forward for a politically balanced Task Group.

 

Article published in Lynn News by James Wild MP – Select Committees

 

The Chair informed the Panel the information had been circulated for information.

 

CP118

Call in (if any)

Minutes:

There were no call-ins.

 

CP119

Hunstanton Tourist Information Centre - Perception from Portfolio Holder following meeting with Businesses

Minutes:

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The Portfolio, Business, Culture and Heritage provided background information on the position with regard to the provision of a Tourist Information Centre (TIC) both on a temporary and permanent basis.

 

As Portfolio Holder he had listened to both local residents and businesses regarding the location of the TIC to be closer to the town centre and explained that no issues had been raised with the previous Portfolio Holder.

 

The Panel was informed that the TIC would be based in the new library at the Bus and would therefore be closer to the town to provide a service to visitors.

 

The Chair thanked the Portfolio Holder for attending and addressing the Panel.

 

 

 

 

CP120

RIPA/Non-RIPA Policy pdf icon PDF 147 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

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The Senior Internal Auditor presented the report and explained that the Council was governed by the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act in respect of surveillance and other related activities.

 

Members were informed that the Council was inspected on these matters (usually every 3 years) and had been recently inspected on 17 December 2021 by IPCO (the Investigatory Powers Commissioner’s Office).

 

The Senior Internal Auditor explained that even if the Council does not necessarily use the powers available, it must ensure that the Council’s policies and procedures were fit for purpose and robust to assist in remaining compliant with the legislation and furthermore to enable the Council to demonstrate this to IPCO.

 

The key issues were outlined as set out in the report.

 

The Senior Internal Auditor explained that any incidents of non-compliance would need to be fed into the Annual Governance Survey and this in turn was reported to the Audit Committee.

 

The Panel was advised that the item was currently on the Cabinet Forward Decisions List for 21 June 2022.

 

Councillor Devereux commented that it was a new policy and asked if there were any additional resources requirements than previously.  In response, the Senior Internal  Auditor explained that some were some areas of the authority that may use the activities and that he suggested each individual service area would have to monitor the situation going forward to see if it did impact on resources.

 

In response to a question from the Chair on the requirement for a delegated decision, the Senior Internal Auditor explained that he would take advice on the best way to take this forward.

 

The Chair stated that it there were changes to the Appendix for the Panel to note, could they be forwarded to the next Corporate Performance Panel meeting prior to the Cabinet on 21 June 2022.

 

The Chair referred to the letter from the Investigatory Powers Commissioner’s Officer (IPCO) dated 20 December 2021 and asked if permission was required to make the contents public.  The Senior Internal Auditor explained that this was a highly complex area for which a consultant was used to develop the policy and advised that he would review the letter and respond direct to the Panel.

 

Councillor Joyce addressed the Panel under Standing Order 34 and highlighted the importance the Borough Council being a public authority and the erection of signs advising that CCTV was in operation.  Councillor Joyce emphasised that it should not be used for private purposes.

 

The Chair thanked the Senior Internal Auditor for the thorough report.

 

RECOMMENDATION:  1) The Panel are invited to comment on the proposed RIPA Policy to be put forward for formal adoption via the Corporate Performance Panel, Cabinet and Council as per the time frame stated above.  Minor changes to these policies, thereafter, can be Member Delegated Decision in discussion with legal or others.  Appendix A (which is still to be produced) (to be noted at the next  ...  view the full minutes text for item CP120

CP121

Planning Enforcement Update pdf icon PDF 473 KB

Minutes:

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The Assistant Director, Environment and Planning and the Enforcement Team Leader presented the report which gave background to the planning enforcement function and set out the current status and the past four years performance.

 

Councillor de Whalley referred to a  number of retrospective applications, some of which had gone to appeal, taken over a year for enforcement action to be taken and asked how the Council could ensure residents were not at dis-amenity for a considerable amount of time.  In response the Enforcement Team Leader provided an overview of the process involved could take a considerable length of time for enforcement action, where appropriate, to be taken.

 

Councillor Morley was interest how long longest case has lasted and asked if it was possible to present the figures on how many cases had been open and closed on a time and number basis.  In response, the Enforcement Team Leader explained that colleagues could work to provide that information and undertook to forward the information to the Panel.

 

Councillor Mrs Spikings added that she was aware of question asked by Councillor Morley and explained that prior to Covid, the Planning Committee received a quarterly enforcement report, following Covid the Planning Committee would be presented with a report on a six monthly basis and that the information contained in the report was open to the public. The Planning Enforcement Team Leader explained that report contained information on a case by case basis and a breakdown of types of cases closed in that period.

 

In response to question from Councillor Devereux about process and how many enforcement actions arose from work of the team, how many raised by ward councillors or public, the Enforcement Team Leader explained that the majority were raised by members of the public.

 

The Portfolio Holder for Development commented that this was a tricky one because of resources in the various departments,  the monitoring of conditions in some way were left to parishes and to the public so the council do tend to respond in that way. The Portfolio Holder added that the Borough Council served a greater number of enforcement notices than any other local authority in Norfolk and that the Council was effective in undertaking its enforcement duties with the resource available.

 

The Chair referred to a planning application in general which had been granted permission and then conditions breached and highlighted the importance of morally communicating with objectors to inform them on how any appropriate action was being progressed when a complaint was made

 

Councillor Morley commented that the Borough Council issued more enforcement notices than other local council and asked if any analysis had been undertaken to determine if there was a generic cause.

 

Councillor Spikings commented that she had known the enforcement team for a considerable time  and was aware of the myriad of complaints and issues staff had to deal with and how difficult it was to resolve in a timely  ...  view the full minutes text for item CP121

CP122

Council Meeting Arrangements - Informal Working Group pdf icon PDF 203 KB

Minutes:

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The Chief Executive presented the report and responded to questions and comments, a summary of which is set out below.

 

In response to questions from Councillor Morley on the list of the bullet points set out in the recommendations, the Chief Executive explained that the bullet points were not in any particular order and equal weight would be given as there were a number of issues to take into account to carry out an effective democratic process.  The Chief Executive highlighted that any resource implications would need to be taken into account during the deliberations of the Informal Working Group.

 

Under Standing Order 34, Councillor Joyce stated that he had listened to the comments made by Councillor Morley but added that it was not within the Council’s power to improve gender, race or ethnicity of representatives, this was down to either the political parties or individuals themselves.

 

The Chair commented that Councillors could inform the public what the Council was doing and he in fact did himself at a recent Parish Council meeting.  The  response received was that the  timing of meetings ruled out working parents and that he would feedback the information from residents to the Informal Working Group to taken into consideration.

 

Councillor Mrs Spikings added that those people with elderly parents with caring responsibilities should also be treated with equal rights.

 

The Chair explained that the Informal Working Group did not need to be politically proportionate and  invited the Panel to forward nominations to himself.

 

The Chief Executive advised that the Informal Working Group should comprise Members of the Corporate Performance Panel and once membership had been determined the first meeting could be scheduled.  The Chief Executive added that the process could be commenced and progress reported to the June meeting of the Panel then to Cabinet and Council.

 

RESOLVED:  1) That the informal working group terms of reference to be evidence gathering and provide preliminary analysis of:

 

           The issues identified in the Notice of Motion.

           The views of various council panels and committees.

           The staffing resource implications.

           Continuation of the arrangements for live streaming.

           Continuation of the arrangements for hybrid meeting arrangements.

           Capturing the environmental benefits of hybrid meetings.

           Continuation of the interim Member enquiries email arrangements.

 

2) The Informal Working Group to comprise of five Members (nominations to be forwarded the Chair of the Corporate Performance Panel ) and be supported by the Chief Executive.

 

3) The Informal Working Group to hold their first meeting as soon as possible, elect a Chair and Vice-Chair, agree the required actions to fulfil the group’s Terms of Reference and decide on the ongoing regularity of future meetings of the group.

 

4) Once the Terms of Reference are complete, decide on final conclusions and findings to be included within the report back to the Corporate Performance Panel, Cabinet and Council meetings.

CP123

How the Portfolio Objectives meet the Corporate Business Plan/Review of the Council's working structure to support to Corporate Business Plan pdf icon PDF 404 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

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The Assistant Director, Central Services/Assistant to the Chief Executive gave a presentation in response to a request from Councillor Morley.

 

Councillor Morley outlined the rationale as to why he had requested the item be brought to the Panel.

 

Following comments made by the Panel regarding Councillors being able to access InSite on their IPads, the Chief Executive undertook to raise the issue with IT.

 

RESOLVED:  1) The Panel noted the content of the presentation.

 

2) The information presented be included within the Member Induction Programme following the Election 2023 to provide an overview of how the Council operated.

 

3) The presentations be uploaded on the Mod Gov Library for information.

 

CP124

Portfolio Holder Question and Answer Session

Panel Members are invited to submit questions in advance of the meeting.

 

Minutes:

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The Chair advised that he would invite the Leader to the next meeting of the Panel to provide an update on the devolution/mayoralty issue.

 

CP125

Cabinet Forward Decisions List pdf icon PDF 165 KB

Minutes:

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In response to a question from Councillor Morley relating to the definition of a key and non-key decision, the Chair advised that he suspected this was set out in the Council’s Constitution.

 

The Chair invited Members to email any items for consideration by the Panel.

 

The Panel noted the Cabinet Forward Decisions List.

 

CP126

Panel Work Programme 2022/2023 pdf icon PDF 330 KB

To note the Panel work programme for 2022/2023.

 

Minutes:

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In response to a question from Councillor Spikings on the impact of empty boarded up houses and blight of Freebridge Community Housing.   The Chief Executive undertook to discuss the issue with the Chief Executive of Freebridge Housing and respond to the Panel.

 

The Panel noted the work programme.

 

 

CP127

Date of Next Meeting

To note that the date of the next meeting of the Audit Committee will take place on 20 June 2022.

 

Minutes:

20 June 2022 in the Assembly Room, Town Hall, Saturday Market Place, King’s Lynn, time to be confirmed.

 

CP128

Exclusion of Press and Public

To consider passing the following resolution:

 

“That under Section 100(A)(4) 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 in paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Act”.

Minutes:

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RESOLVED:  That under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act, 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Act”.

 

CP129

Exempt Report: Borough Council Vehicles - Types, Age Asset, etc

Minutes:

The Panel received a presentation from the Public Open Spaces Manager.

 

The Public Open Spaces Manager responded to questions and comments from the Panel.

 

CP130

Exempt Cabinet Report: Resourcing - Forward Plan

Minutes:

The Chief Executive presented the report and responded to comments and questions from the Panel.

 

RESOLVED:  The Panel supported the recommendations to Council as set out in the report.