Venue: Rosetor Room, Riviera International Conference Centre, Chestnut Avenue, Torquay, TQ2 5LZ
Contact: June Gurry
Opening of meeting
The meeting was opened with a prayer.
Apologies for absence
Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Mandy Darling, Heyse, Stockman, David Thomas and Jacqueline Thomas.
The Monitoring Officer advised that Councillors Barrand and Sykes had indicated they would be leaving the meeting early.
To confirm as a correct record the minutes of the meeting of the Council held on 18 July 2019.
The Minutes of the Extraordinary meeting of the Council held on 22 August 2019 were confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Worshipful the Mayor of Torbay.
Declarations of interests
Councillor Loxton declared a non-pecuniary interest in respect of Minute 65 as he was associated with a tenant at the site.
Councillor O’Dwyer declared a pecuniary interest in respect of Minute 65.
To receive any communications or announcements from the:
a) Civic Mayor – this will include a presentation from Healthwatch Torbay on ‘What does it feel like to be a young person living in Torbay?’ (Summary report attached and the full report can be found at www.healthwatchtorbay.org.uk/about-us/meetings-reports)
b) Leader of the Council;
c) Overview and Scrutiny Co-ordinator;
d) Council’s representative on the Heart of the South West Joint Committee; and
e) Chief Executive.
The Worshipful the Mayor of Torbay welcomed Pat Teague, Trustee of Healthwatch Torbay to the meeting. Members then received a presentation from Mrs Teague on the results of Healthwatch Torbay’s survey work on ‘What does it feel like to be a young person living in Torbay?’.
The Worshipful the Mayor of Torbay further announced that her Civic Lunch held on 9 August 2019 at the Riviera International Conference Centre was a success and thanked those who attended. The event raised over £200 towards the Worshipful the Mayor of Torbay’s charities, Torquay Museum and the RNLI.
The Leader of the Council:
a) thanked Healthwatch Torbay for their work on ‘What does it feel like to be a young person living in Torbay?’ and advised that he was keen to involve the young people of Torbay in the development of the Council’s vision for Torbay;
b) welcomed the fact that Torbay had achieved Future High Street funds for Paignton and had been invited to develop proposals for the Government’s multi-million pound Towns Fund Scheme for Torquay; and
c) thanked all those who participated in the Council’s first Community Conference, particularly members of the community, and advised the Council would be changing the way it engaged with the community.
The Overview and Scrutiny Co-ordinator:
a) thanked Councillor Kennedy for her work on reviewing the Land Release Fund which was presented to the Overview and Scrutiny Board on 19 September 2019; and
b) advised that the Turning the Tide on Poverty and Climate Change Task and Finish Groups were due to commence and encouraged members’ participation and involvement.
To respond to the submitted questions asked under Standing Order A13.
Members received a paper detailing questions, notice of which had been given in accordance with Standing Order A13. The paper also contained the answers to the questions which had been prepared by Councillors Carter, Cowell, Steve Darling and Morey, and was circulated prior to the meeting.
Supplementary questions were put and answered by Councillors Carter, Cowell, Steve Darling and Morey, arising from their responses to the questions.
To consider the above proposal and the recommendations of the Cabinet.
The Council considered the recommendation of the Cabinet on a proposal for the disposal of the freehold interest of the Echo Building, Torquay, under the Council’s Asset of Community Value Policy (as set out in the submitted report). It was noted the offer received for the building was below market value, but the purchaser had evidenced significant added benefit for the community through the projects and initiatives intended to be implemented at the property.
Councillor Long proposed and Councillor Law seconded a motion, which was agreed (unanimously) by the Council as set out below:
that the Interim Director of Place, in consultation with the Chief Executive, be authorised to dispose of the freehold interest of land and building known as the Echo Building, St James Road, Torquay, as shown on Plan EM3127 set out at Appendix 1 to the submitted report, at below market value to the King’s Arms Church Charity. The disposal will include a first refusal buy back provision in favour of the Council and a suitable provision that will enable the Council to recover any uplift in value should the community group dispose of the building at a future point for any alternative use.
(Note: Councillor Barrand left the meeting after this item.)
To consider a report that seeks additional funding to further support compliance with the Special Educational Needs and Disability Code.
Members considered the submitted report on proposals to extend funding to ensure the Council was meeting its statutory obligations under the Special Educational Needs and Disability Code (SEND). It was noted the SEND aimed to integrate education, social care and health support to improve outcomes for children and families. A revised officer recommendation was circulated prior to the meeting.
Councillor Law proposed and Councillor Steve Darling seconded a motion, which was agreed (unanimously) by the Council as set out below:
that the Education budget is allocated up to an additional £200,000 to support Special Educational Needs and Disabilities from the Comprehensive Spending Review Reserve in 2019/2020. The Education budget is rebased as part of the 2020/2021 budget proposals with an additional maximum investment up to £650,000.
To consider a report that seeks approval for the recruitment and appointment of an Independent Person for Audit Committee.
The Council considered the proposal of the Audit Committee to appoint and co-opt an Independent Person on the Audit Committee as recommended by CIPFA’s ‘Audit Committees: Practical Guidance for Local Authorities and Police’ 2018 edition. A revised officer recommendation was circulated prior to the meeting.
Councillor Carter proposed and Councillor Loxton seconded a motion, which was agreed (unanimously) by the Council as set out below:
(i) that the advert and role profile as set out in Appendix 1 to the submitted report be approved;
(ii) that authority be delegated to the Employment Committee to appoint an Independent Person for the Audit Committee for an initial term of 5 years, in accordance with the role profile set out in Appendix1 to the submitted report; and
(iii) that the Monitoring Officer updates the Constitution to reflect the appointment of an Independent Person to the Audit Committee and Employment Committee’s role in the appointment process.
To note the schedule of Cabinet decisions to which the call-in procedure does not apply and to consider the proposed amendment to the Constitution in respect of investment decisions.
Members noted the submitted report setting out three executive decisions taken by the Cabinet (namely Investment Opportunities referenced 1/7/19, 2/7/19, 3/7/19, 5/6/19 and 6/7/19) to which the call-in procedure did not apply.
To consider a report on the above.
(Note: This report contains exempt appendices which will be circulated separately.)
The Council considered a proposal to progress the acquisition/compulsory purchase of land at Crossways, Paignton, to facilitate regeneration of the site for mixed use with retail units and extra-care residential accommodation, as set out in the submitted report.
Councillor Long proposed and Councillor Chris Lewis seconded a motion, which was agreed (unanimously) by the Council as set out below:
(i) that delegated authority be given to the Chief Executive to continue negotiations with Gaeilic Investment and their tenants, to acquire by agreement the land at Crossways identified red and blue on the plans attached at exempt Appendix 2 to the submitted report, and any other land, interests or rights subsequently required in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Economic Development, Tourism and Housing and Section 151 Officer on any Heads of Terms;
(ii) that, having taken into account the options to acquire the Crossways Shopping Centre, Paignton, the making of the Compulsory Purchase Order for the site be approved under section 226(1)(a) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, as outlined below, for land (as shown edged in red and blue on the plans attached at exempt Appendix 2 to the submitted report) and any other land, interests or rights subsequently required to deliver the redevelopment. The Chief Executive be given delegated authority to give effect to this decision, including:
(a) the taking of all necessary steps required to secure the making of the CPO and for the subsequent confirmation and implementation of the CPO including the publication and service of all notices, statement of reasons and presentation of the Council's case at public inquiry, if necessary, to secure confirmation of the Compulsory Purchase Order by the Secretary of State;
(b) to carry out any surveys on the Order Land and enter as may be required in order to deliver the proposed development by Compulsory Purchase Order(s) which the Council is authorised to carry out either by consent of the relevant landowner or under section 172 to 179 of the Housing and Planning Act 2016;
(c) to enter into agreement(s) with any person or body to secure the withdrawal of objections to the Compulsory Purchase Order(s) and/or to negotiate and agree terms for the acquisition by agreement of any land, interests or rights as may be required for the scheme; and
(d) to pay all necessary compensation either as agreed or as determined by the Lands Chamber of the Upper Tribunal in relation to the acquisition of land and other interests or for the overriding or acquisition of rights.
(iii) that Council delegate to the Chief Finance Officer the approval of the expenditure of monies (including by prudential borrowing if necessary) required to cover the acquisition of the land at Crossways identified red and blue on the plan attached at exempt Appendix 2 to the submitted report, and any land, interests or rights as may be required for the scheme, either by agreement or by CPO, on the basis that there continues to be a clear business ... view the full minutes text for item 65.
Cabinet Recommendation - Investment Opportunity
To consider any recommendations from the Cabinet on investment opportunities.
The Worshipful the Mayor of Torbay advised that there were no recommendations from the Cabinet and therefore this item was withdrawn from the agenda.
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