Agenda and draft minutes

Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, Town Hall. View directions

Contact: Jennifer Thompson, Committee and Members Services Officer  email:  democraticservices@oxford.gov.uk tel: 01865 252275

Note: Members of the public wishing to address Council must register by 5pm on 13 February and may only speak on items on the agenda. The full text of the speech must be sent by the registration deadline. 

Items
No. Item

90.

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies are noted in the attendance.

 

Councillor Humberstone submitted apologies for lateness.

91.

Declarations of interest

Minutes:

On Minute 98, Councillor Abbasi declared that the taxi licensing fees and charges related to his disclosable pecuniary interests (employment and holding of licences). He left the room for the duration of that debate and decision then re-joined the meeting and took part in the debate at Minute 99.

 

92.

Announcements relating to items on this agenda

Announcements about matters relating to items on this agenda and urgent matters from:

(1)          The Lord Mayor

(2)          The Leader of the Council

(3)          The Chief Executive, Chief Finance Officer, Monitoring Officer

Minutes:

There were no announcements from the Lord Mayor, Leader or senior officers.

93.

Agreement of procedure for debate on the medium term financial strategy and budget pdf icon PDF 56 KB

The procedure for the debate on the Medium Term Financial Strategy and the Budget is set out in the Council’s Constitution at 11.3.

 

Any amendments to the procedure must be agreed by majority vote and will only apply to this meeting.

 

Amendments to the budget published in this agenda must be received by Committee and Member Services by 1.00pm one working day before the meeting (Friday 16 February).

 

Recommendations: Council is recommended to agree the times permitted for each stage in the procedure as detailed in the constitution and set out below: 

 

The total time for this item is limited to 1 hour 25 minutes excluding: the debates at (b); voting; and adjournments.

 

All speakers have 3 minutes unless otherwise stated.

 

(a)    Proposal of the Executive Board budget by the Leader of the Council (15 minutes)

 

(b)   Amendments/ alternative budgets submitted by opposition groups (proposal and debate 30 minutes for each group’s amendments including voting: proposer may speak for up to 10 minutes).

 

Opposition groups will present their budgets for debate as amendments to the recommendations. 

 

The proposals will be voted on as one amendment for each group.

 

Break

 

(c)    Individual amendments will be presented (maximum 40 minutes in total including voting)

 

Individual amendments must be submitted in writing on the form provided to the clerk in advance of the meeting or at least 15 minutes before the start of this item at the meeting on the form provided. These will be circulated to members.

 

Amendments will be taken in the order submitted and will be “taken as read”. A proposer and seconder are required. Should the proposer and seconder agree amendments can be taken in groups.  Any amendments not taken within the time fall.

 

(d)   Debate the budget (as amended) (30 minutes or the remaining time overall whichever is the longer)

 

(e)    Recorded vote

 

(f)     Adjournment for 10 minutes if necessary to allow the Leader to consider any implications of the decision.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council agreed for Minute 99 the stages of debate and the times permitted for each of these in the procedure as detailed in the constitution and set out in the agenda. 

94.

Public addresses and questions that relate to matters for decision at this meeting pdf icon PDF 83 KB

Public addresses and questions to the Leader or other Board member received in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 11.11 and 11.12 relating to matters for decision on this agenda.

 

The request to speak accompanied by the full text of the address or question must be received by the Head of Law and Governance by 5.00 pm on Tuesday 14 February.

 

The briefing note will contain the text of addresses and questions submitted by the deadline, and written responses where available.

 

A total of 30 minutes is available for this item. Responses are included in this time. Up to five minutes is available for each public address and three minutes for each question.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council heard an address opposing the extension of the Seacourt Park and Ride from Barbara Witkowski, Oxfordshire Badger Group.

Council had before them an address opposing car park charges in Headington submitted by Elaine Bellenger from Monaco in Headington who was unable to attend.

The text of both submitted speeches is available in the briefing note.

Councillor Turner, Board Member for Finance and Asset Management, thanked the speaker and responded to both submitted addresses.

In summary, he said that the issues raised about Seacourt Park and Ride were more relevant to planning than to the allocation of a budget for proposed work. The charges for Headington and St Leonard’s’ car parks had been changed as a result of the consultation responses. However the points raised in both addresses would be borne in mind during the debate.

95.

Report of the Independent Remuneration Panel pdf icon PDF 124 KB

The Head of Law and Governance has submitted a report presenting the recommendations of the Council’s Independent Remuneration Panel (IRP). The IRP’s report contains proposed amendments for the Oxford City Council Members’ Allowances Scheme which will expire on 31 March 2019.

 

The report of the IRP is attached.

 

Councillor Brown, Leader of the Council, will speak to the recommendations.

 

Recommendations of the IRP: that Council resolves to

1.     agree that the non-statutory Deputy Leader should receive a Special Responsibility Allowance (SRA) from 1 January 2018 at the rate of one full SRA (1 x Basic Allowance) in accordance with paragraphs 17-23 of the report from the IRP;

2.     agree that if a qualifying member in receipt of an SRA wishes to take a leave of absence from the duties for which they receive the SRA due to maternity or adoption leave they will continue to receive half of the SRA to which they are entitled for a period of up to six months in accordance with paragraphs 26-31 of the report from the IRP;

3.     delegate to the Committee and Member Services Manager authority to pay the costs of making reasonable adjustments for any Councillor with a disability who makes an application to him up to £1,000 in any one year (1 April – 31 March) in accordance with paragraphs 24-25 of the report from the IRP;

4.     delegate authority to the Head of Law & Governance to exercise her discretion if a member with a disability requires reasonable adjustments in excess of £1,000 in any year;

5.     authorise the Head of Law and Governance to amend the existing Members’ Allowances scheme in accordance with the above recommendations and to incorporate it into the Council’s Constitution; and

6.     thank the Independent Remuneration Panel for its work.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council considered the report of the Head of Law and Governance and the report of the Independent Remuneration Panel.

 

Councillor Brown, Leader of the Council, proposed and Councillor Price, Board Member, seconded the recommendations.

 

Council accepted recommendations 2-6 below but debated the justification and appropriateness of the additional payment to the non-statutory Deputy Leader.

 

On being put to the vote, voting separately on recommendation 1 and then recommendations 2-6:

 

Council resolved to

1.     agree that the non-statutory Deputy Leader should receive a Special Responsibility Allowance (SRA) from 1 January 2018 at the rate of one full SRA (1 x Basic Allowance) in accordance with paragraphs 17-23 of the report from the IRP;

2.     agree that if a qualifying member in receipt of an SRA wishes to take a leave of absence from the duties for which they receive the SRA due to maternity or adoption leave they will continue to receive half of the SRA to which they are entitled for a period of up to six months in accordance with paragraphs 26-31 of the report from the IRP;

3.     delegate to the Committee and Member Services Manager authority to pay the costs of making reasonable adjustments for any Councillor with a disability who makes an application to him up to £1,000 in any one year (1 April – 31 March) in accordance with paragraphs 24-25 of the report from the IRP;

4.     delegate authority to the Head of Law & Governance to exercise her discretion if a member with a disability requires reasonable adjustments in excess of £1,000 in any year;

5.     authorise the Head of Law and Governance to amend the existing Members’ Allowances scheme in accordance with the above recommendations and to incorporate it into the Council’s Constitution; and

6.     thank the Independent Remuneration Panel for its work.

 

96.

Report of the Council’s Chief Finance Officer on the robustness of the budget pdf icon PDF 171 KB

Report of the Head of Financial Services on the soundness of the financial proposals before Council

 

The Head of Financial Services will present the report and recommendations.

 

Recommendations: That Council notes this report in setting its budget for 2018/19 and the indicative budgets for 2019/20 – 2021/22.

Minutes:

Council considered a report from the Head of Financial Services on the soundness of the financial proposals before Council. The Head of Financial Services drew attention to the key points including risks and to the levels of the Council’s reserves and balances and contingencies.

Council resolved to note the report and its implications.

97.

Scrutiny Response: Budget 2018/2019 pdf icon PDF 170 KB

The report and recommendations of the Finance Panel of the Scrutiny Committee to the City Executive Board meeting on 13 February are attached.

 

The Board’s response will be published in minutes of that meeting.

 

The Chair of the Finance Panel will present the report and the recommendations.

 

Recommendation: Council is asked to note the report and the City Executive Board’s response which will be published in the minutes of the meeting of 13 February.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council considered the report and recommendations of the Finance Panel of the Scrutiny Committee to the City Executive Board meeting on 13 February and the Board’s response. Councillor Simmons, Finance Panel member, explained the Panels’ approach to scrutinising the budget and formulating their recommendations, the majority of which were accepted by the Board. He thanked panel members and the Chair, Councillor Fry, for their work.

Council resolved to note the report and the response.

98.

Licensing and Gambling Acts and General Purposes Licensing Committees recommendations on fees and charges pdf icon PDF 98 KB

The Licensing and Gambling Acts and General Purposes Licensing Committees considered reports on fees and charges for the licensing functions dealt with at their meetings on 24 January.

 

The draft minutes of the Committees and the reports accompanying the three sets of fees and charges are attached. These fees and charges are also included in the report at Item 10.

 

The Committee Chairs may wish to present the recommendations.

 

Recommendations: Council is recommended to agree the licence fees and charges for 2018/19 as set out in 9a, 9b and 9c and in Item 10 Appendix 7 (relevant Community Services Fees and Charges and relevant Planning and Regulatory Fees and Charges).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillors Abbasi, having declared this item related to his disclosable pecuniary interests, withdrew from the council chamber for the duration of this item.

Council considered the recommendations of the Licensing and Gambling Acts and General Purposes Licensing Committees on fees and charges included in the budget before Council as part of appendix 7, and a change to the recommendations proposed by officer in light of an impending review of charges for licensing sex establishment.

Councillor Cook proposed the recommendations from the Licensing and Gambling Acts Committee and Councillor Clarkson proposed the recommendations from the General Purposes Licensing Committee with amendments.

 

Council resolved to:

1.    agree the licence fees and charges for 2018/19 as set out in 9a, 9b and 9c and in Item 10 Appendix 7, and in the corrections to the budget published at 10d (relating to specific Community Services Fees and Charges),

2.    and to delegate the setting of fees and charges for sex establishments to the Head of Law and Governance and the Head of Financial Services on conclusion of the review into these charges.

99.

Budget: Medium Term Financial Strategy 2019-20 to 2021-22 and 2018-19 Budget pdf icon PDF 1 MB

The Head of Financial Services submitted a report to the City Executive Board on 13 February which presents the outcome of the budget consultation and seeks agreement of the Council’s Medium Term Financial Strategy for 2019-20 to 2021-22 and 2018-19 Budget for recommendation to Council.

 

The Head of Housing submitted a report to the City Executive Board on 13 February recommending that full Council include an additional budget in the HRA capital programme of £1,035,000 for the acquisition of social housing properties from the open market, funded by the receipt from the sale of 156 Walton Street listed as social rented housing acquisitions in Appendix 6 (Capital Budget).

 

The minutes of that meeting will be available in the briefing note.

 

The Board Member for Finance and Asset Management will move the City Executive Board’s recommendations.

 

Amendments to the budget submitted by opposition groups or individual councillors will be circulated with the briefing note.

 

The procedure for this item is at Agenda Item 4.

 

Recommendations:  Council is recommended to:

 

a.    note the City Executive Board recommendations to Council including the budget published as part of the agenda for the meeting on 13 February with any amendments as set out in the minutes of that meeting;

b.    consider the recommendations of the City Executive Board including any amendments;

c.    consider the substantive amendments proposed by the opposition groups; and published with the briefing note;

d.    consider individual amendments; and

e.    agree the recommendations from the City Executive Board as presented below or with further amendments.

 

The City Executive Board will be asked to recommend subject to decisions taken at its meeting on 13 February that Council resolves to:

 

1)    Approve the 2018-19 General Fund and Housing Revenue Account budgets and the General Fund and Housing Revenue Account Medium Term Financial Plan as set out in Appendices 1-10, noting:

a)    the Council’s General Fund Budget Requirement of £23.369 million for 2018/19 and an increase in the Band D Council Tax of 2.99% or £8.67 per annum representing a Band D Council Tax of £298.86 per annum

b)    the Housing Revenue Account budget for 2018/19 of £43.241 million and a reduction of 1% (£0.85/wk) in social dwelling rents from April 2018 giving a revised weekly average social rent of £104.58 as set out in Appendix 4

c)    the General Fund and Housing Revenue Account Capital Programme as shown in Appendix 6

 

2)    Agree the fees and charges shown in Appendix 7 (noting the decision taken separately at Item 9)

 

3)    Delegate authority to the Section 151 Officer in consultation with the Board Member for Finance and Assets the decision to determine whether it is financially advantageous for the Council to enter into a Business Rates Distribution Agreement as referred to in paragraphs 12-14 below.

 

4)    Agree to increase the long term empty property premium from 50% to 100% at the earliest opportunity so as to encourage long term empty properties back into use.

 

A recorded vote must be taken at stage  ...  view the full agenda text for item 99.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillors Goddard and Humberstone arrived shortly before the start of this item and Councillor Abbasi re-joined the meeting for this item.

Council had before it and considered:

  • The report  of the Head of Finance and the budget and medium term financial strategy submitted to the City Executive Board for consideration on 13 February 2018;
  • The minutes of that meeting;
  • The Liberal Democrat group’s submitted amendments published with the briefing note;
  • The Green group’s submitted amendments published with the briefing note;
  • The Head of Finance’s comments on the amendments circulated at the meeting;
  • An additional recommendation from the Executive Board published with the briefing note;
  • Technical corrections to the budget made after the publication of the agenda published with the briefing note;
  • Three individual amendments submitted and circulated  at the meeting;

 

Councillor Turner, seconded by Councillor Brown, moved the City Executive Board recommendations.

 

a)    Opposition Group amendments to the budget

Councillor Gant, seconded by Councillor Wade, moved and seconded the Liberal Democrat group amendments.

After debate these were put to the vote.

With more councillors voting against than for, the Liberal Democrat amendments were not carried.

 

Councillor Simmons, seconded by Councillor Thomas, moved and seconded the Green group amendments.

After debate these were put to the vote.

With more councillors voting against than for, the Green group amendments were not carried.

 

b)   Further individual amendments to the City Executive Board budget as proposed

1.    Councillor Wilkinson, seconded by Councillor Altaf Khan, moved an amendment: mitigate Headington and St Leonards car park increase to 0-1 hour £1.70 and 1-2 hours £2.20 for one year (2018-19), thus stepping the increase in charges to bring these into line with other suburban car parks in order to mitigate resistance and collate usage data, consult and carry out business impact assessments.

To be funded by reducing the car park resurfacing budget by £52k.

The S151 officer confirmed this was feasible although reducing the resurfacing programme may result in problems requiring a higher future expenditure.

After debate this was put to the vote.

With more councillors voting against than for, the amendment was not carried.

 

2.    Councillor Thomas, seconded by Councillor Simmons, moved an amendment: allocate funds for a trial in 2018/19 to open up SWEP (severe weather emergency protocol) any night when the temperature drops below zero rather than just when the forecast is below zero for 3 nights, to avoid the need for rough sleepers to sleep on the streets in sub-zero conditions, the trial will be reviewed prior to the 2019/20 budget to see if the initiative needs to be made permanent.

To be funded by £75,000 from homelessness reserves.

The S151 officer confirmed this was feasible, subject to verification of the cost and having regard to pressures on homelessness service provision.

Councillor Turner said in response that the additional funding in the homelessness reserve (resolution 5 below) would be used to support and extend services and the City Executive Board would consider options in more detail including the need to extend winter provision.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 99.

100.

Council Tax 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 163 KB

The Head of Financial Services has submitted a report which sets out the necessary calculation to enable Council to set the 2018/19 Council Tax for Oxford City.

 

The Board Member for Finance and Asset Management will move the recommendations and the Head of Financial Services will be available to answer questions.

 

Recommendations: Council is asked to approve for 2018/19:

 

1.    The City Council’s precept and Council Tax requirement of £13,556,751 including Parish precepts and £13,336,276 excluding Parish precepts.

 

2.    The average Band D Council Tax figure (excluding Parish Precepts) of £298.86 a 2.99% increase on the 2017/18 figure of £290.19. Including Parish Precepts the figure is £303.80, a 2.98% increase (see paragraphs 2 to 6).

 

3.    A contribution of £10,000 to Old Marston Parish Council in recognition of the additional expenditure that the Parish incurs as a consequence of maintaining the cemetery (see paragraphs 12 and 13). 

 

4.    The amount of £577,644 to be treated as Special Expenses (see paragraph 16).

 

5.    The Band D Council Taxes for the various areas of the City (excluding the Police and County Council’s precepts) as follows:

 

Littlemore                                                   £336.08

Old Marston                                               £329.75

Risinghurst and Sandhills                     £318.77

Blackbird Leys                                          £297.30

Unparished Area                                      £301.32

 

These figures include Parish Precepts and special expensing amounts as appropriate; in addition to the City-wide Council Tax of £285.92.

 

The Council is also asked to note:

           

6.    Oxfordshire County Council’s precept and Band D Council Tax as set out in paragraph 19 in the report.

 

7.    The Police and Crime Commissioner for the Thames Valley’s precept and Band D Council Tax as set out in paragraph 20 in the report, and

 

8.    The overall average Band D equivalent Council Tax of £1,912.27 including Parish Precepts (subject to confirmation of the Band D figures for the County Council and Police and Crime Commissioner).

 

A recorded vote will be taken.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council considered a report setting out the necessary calculation to enable Council to set the 2018/19 Council Tax for Oxford City. As there were no changes to the budget requirements as a result of the decision above these were unchanged from those in the report.

Councillor Turner proposed and Councillor Brown seconded the recommendations.

In accordance with legislative requirements, a recorded vote was then taken:

For the recommendations to Council  – Councillors Abbasi, Altaf-Khan, Azad, Brandt, Brown, Chapman, Clarkson, Cook, Fooks, Gant, Goddard, Goff, Haines, Hayes, Henwood, Hollingsworth, Humberstone, Iley-Williamson, Kennedy, Ladbrooke, Lloyd-Shogbesan, Lygo, Munkonge, Paule, Pressel, Price, Rowley, Sanders, Simmons, Sinclair, Smith, Tanner, Tarver, Taylor, Thomas, Tidball, Turner, Upton, Wade, Wilkinson, Wolff (41)

Against the recommendations and abstentions - none.

 

Council resolved to approve for 2018/19:

 

1.    The City Council’s precept and Council Tax requirement of £13,556,751 including Parish precepts and £13,336,276 excluding Parish precepts.

 

2.    The average Band D Council Tax figure (excluding Parish Precepts) of £298.86 a 2.99% increase on the 2017/18 figure of £290.19. Including Parish Precepts the figure is £303.80, a 2.98% increase (see paragraphs 2 to 6).

 

3.    A contribution of £10,000 to Old Marston Parish Council in recognition of the additional expenditure that the Parish incurs as a consequence of maintaining the cemetery (see paragraphs 12 and 13). 

 

4.    The amount of £577,644 to be treated as Special Expenses (see paragraph 16).

 

5.    The Band D Council Taxes for the various areas of the City (excluding the Police and County Council’s precepts) as follows:

 

Littlemore                                                   £336.08

Old Marston                                               £329.75

Risinghurst and Sandhills                     £318.77

Blackbird Leys                                          £297.30

Unparished Area                                      £301.32

 

These figures include Parish Precepts and special expensing amounts as appropriate; in addition to the City-wide Council Tax of £285.92.

 

Council resolved to note:

 

6.    Oxfordshire County Council’s precept and Band D Council Tax as set out in paragraph 19 in the report.

 

7.    The Police and Crime Commissioner for the Thames Valley’s precept and Band D Council Tax as set out in paragraph 20 in the report, and

 

8.    The overall average Band D equivalent Council Tax of £1,912.27 including Parish Precepts (subject to confirmation of the Band D figures for the County Council and Police and Crime Commissioner).

 

101.

Treasury Management Strategy 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 144 KB

The Head of Financial Services submitted a report to the City Executive Board on 13 February which presents the Treasury Management Strategy 2018/19 together with the Prudential Indicators for 2018/19 to 2021/22 for referral to Council.

 

The Board Member for Finance and Asset Management will move the recommendations and the Head of Financial Services will be available to answer questions.

 

Recommendations: the City Executive Board recommends that Council approves:

1.    The Treasury Management Strategy 2018/19 as set out in paragraphs 7 to 43 and the Prudential Indicators for 2018/19 – 2021/22 as set out in Appendix 2 of the report;

2.    The Borrowing Strategy at paragraphs 12 to 22 of the report;

3.    The Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP) Statement at paragraphs 23 to 24 of the report  which sets out the Council’s policy on charging borrowing to the revenue account; and

4.    The Investment Strategy for 2018/19 and investment criteria as set out in paragraphs 25 to 39 and Appendix 1 of the report.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council considered a report submitted to the City Executive Board on 13 February setting out the Council’s Treasury Management Strategy together with the Prudential Indicators.

Councillor Turner moved and Councillor Brown seconded the recommendations.

 

Council resolved to:

1.    approve the Treasury Management Strategy 2018/19 as set out in paragraphs 7 to 43 and the Prudential Indicators for 2018/19 – 2021/22 as set out in Appendix 2 of the report;

2.    approve the Borrowing Strategy at paragraphs 12 to 22 of the report;

3.    approve the Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP) Statement at paragraphs 23 to 24 of the report  which sets out the Council’s policy on charging borrowing to the revenue account; and

4.    approve the Investment Strategy for 2018/19 and investment criteria as set out in paragraphs 25 to 39 and Appendix 1 of the report.

 

102.

Annual update on the Corporate Plan 2018 pdf icon PDF 120 KB

The Assistant Chief Executive submitted a report to the City Executive Board on 13 February asking for the Board’s approval of the annual update report of the Corporate Plan 2016-20.

 

Recommendations: Council is asked to note the annual update of the Corporate Plan 2016-20, subject to any amendments agreed at the City Executive Board meeting on 13 February.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council considered a report submitted to the City Executive Board on 13 February which seeks approval of the annual update report on the Corporate Plan 2016-20.

Council resolved to note the annual update of the Corporate Plan 2016-20.