Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

Speaking at a Council or Committee meeting

Venue: Council Chamber - Oxford Town Hall. View directions

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

Items
No. Item

The film of the Council meeting is here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3xUrGey0Js4

95.

Declarations of interest

Minutes:

Minute 109a: Councillor Simmons declared in the interests of transparency that he was a contractor and small shareholder in Anthesis, who had a contract for a small amount of work supporting the City Council with its climate change strategy; but this did not qualify as a disclosable pecuniary interest. He would therefore remain in the chamber and take part in the debate.

 

 

96.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 151 KB

Minutes of the ordinary meeting of Council held on 28 January 2019 and of the budget meeting of Council held on 12 February 2019.

Council is asked to approve the minutes as a correct record.

 

Note: Questions on Notice, public addresses, and the responses to these are included in the full minute pack of the previous meeting, from page 17 onwards, and available from the links here

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council agreed to approve

·         the minutes of the ordinary meeting held on 29 January 2019 and

·         the minutes of the budget meeting on 13 February 2019

as true and correct records.

 

 

97.

Appointment to Committees

The Head of Law and Governance has not been notified of changes of membership requested by group leaders.

Any proposed changes will be circulated with the briefing note or notified at the meeting.

 

Minutes:

There were no changes to committee memberships.

 

98.

Announcements

Announcements by:

1.    The Lord Mayor

2.    The Sheriff

3.    The Leader of the Council (who may with the permission of the Lord Mayor invite other councillors to make announcements)

4.    The Chief Executive, Chief Finance Officer, Monitoring Officer

 

Minutes:

The Lord Mayor announced;

-       His visit to Padova to sign the twinning agreement

-       The annual Oxford Bonn Link week visit to Bonn

-       His charity dinner had raised over £2000 for Nightline and the Samaritans

 

 

The Leader of the Council announced new champions

-       Cllr Munkonge as Champion for small businesses

-       Cllr Humberstone as armed forces and veterans’ Champion

 

 

99.

Public addresses and questions that relate to matters for decision at this meeting

Public addresses and questions to the Leader or other Board member received in accordance with Council Procedure Rules 11.12, 11.13, and 11.14 relating to matters for decision in Part 1 of 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 23 April 2019

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

A total of 45 minutes is available for both public speaking items. Responses are included in this time. Up to five minutes is available for each public address and up to three minutes for each question.

 

Minutes:

There were no addresses or questions.

 

100.

Summertown and St. Margaret’s Neighbourhood Plan pdf icon PDF 327 KB

The Acting Head of Planning Services submitted a report to the City Executive Board on 10 April asking the Board to recommend Council that the Summertown and St. Margaret’s Neighbourhood Plan be “made”.

 

The minutes of this meeting are available at Item 11 of this agenda.

 

Councillor Hollingsworth, the Board Member for Planning and Transport, will present the report.

 

Recommendation: the City Executive Board recommends to Council that the Summertown and St. Margaret’s Neighbourhood Plan be “made”.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council considered a report of the Acting Head of Planning Services submitted to the City Executive Board on 10 April. The City Executive Board recommended to Council that the Summertown and St. Margaret’s Neighbourhood Plan be “made” (formally adopted).

 

Councillor Hollingsworth, the Board Member for Planning and Transport presented the report and moved the recommendations, which were adopted on being seconded and put to the vote.

 

Council resolved that the Summertown and St. Margaret’s Neighbourhood Plan be “made”.

 

 

101.

Project Approval and Delegated Authority for Spend for the development of a Homeless Shelter and Assessment Hub pdf icon PDF 190 KB

The Head of Housing submitted a report to the City Executive Board on 10 April 2019 to seek Project Approval for the development of a new homeless shelter and assessment hub at Floyds Row to further develop services focusing on the prevention and relief of rough sleeping, including winter shelter provision; to request further capital funding from Council; and to delegate authority to enter into construction contracts accordingly.

 

The Minutes of this meeting are available at Item 11 of this agenda.

 

Councillor Linda Smith, the Board Member for Leisure and Housing, will present the report.

 

Recommendations: the City Executive Board recommends to Council:

 

that, subject to the outcome of the forthcoming architectural feasibility work being affordable and within the proposed budget envelope, that a  revised capital scheme now totalling £458k (an additional £274k up from an original £184k) relating to Option C is included in the Council’s 2019/20 capital programme (the funding of which is achievable albeit potentially from a variety of sources the ranking of which is still as yet to be finalised);

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillors Djafari-Marbini, and McManners arrived during the debate.

 

Council considered a report of the Head of Housing submitted to the City Executive Board on 10 April 2019 to seek Project Approval for the development of a new homeless shelter and assessment hub at Floyds Row to further develop services focusing on the prevention and relief of rough sleeping, including winter shelter provision; to request further capital funding from Council; and to delegate authority to enter into construction contracts accordingly.

 

Councillor Linda Smith, the Board Member for Leisure and Housing presented the report and moved the recommendations, which were adopted on being seconded and put to the vote.

 

 

Council resolved:

 

that, subject to the outcome of the forthcoming architectural feasibility work being affordable and within the proposed budget envelope, that a revised capital scheme now totalling £458k (an additional £274k up from an original £184k) relating to Option C as set out in the officer’s report is included in the Council’s 2019/20 capital programme (the funding of which is achievable albeit potentially from a variety of sources the ranking of which is still as yet to be finalised).

 

 

102.

Update of the 2016-2020 Corporate Plan (2019) pdf icon PDF 165 KB

The Assistant Chief Executive submitted a report to the City Executive Board on 13 March 2019 to seek approval for the 2018-19 Annual Update on the Corporate Plan 2016-20. The City Executive Board resolved to approve the Annual Update as set out in Annex 1.

 

The Minutes of the meeting are attached at Item 11.

 

The Leader of the Council, Councillor Brown, will present the report.

 

Recommendation: Council is recommended to note the Annual Update to the Corporate Plan.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor Bely-Summers and Corais arrived during the debate.

 

Council considered a report of the Assistant Chief Executive submitted to the City Executive Board on 13 March 2019 to seek approval for the 2018-19 Annual Update on the Corporate Plan 2016-20. The City Executive Board had resolved to approve the Annual Update as set out in Annex 1 of that report

 

The Leader of the Council, Councillor Brown presented the report and answered questions.

 

Council noted the Annual Update to the Corporate Plan.

 

 

103.

Complaints handling arrangements and assessment criteria for code of conduct complaints against councillors pdf icon PDF 341 KB

The Monitoring Officer submitted a report to the Standards Committee on 25 February recommending changes to the “complaints handling arrangements” documentation including the introduction of formal assessment criteria for code of conduct complaints.

 

The Standards Committee resolved to recommend these to Council.

 

The Chair of the Standards Committee, Councillor Aziz, will present the report.

 

Recommendation: the Standards Committee recommends Council to:

1.            Approve the proposed changes to the “complaints handling arrangements” documentation as detailed in the report;

2.            Delegate authority to the Monitoring Officer to amend and agree the final text and design of the draft “Arrangements for dealing with code of conduct complaints against councillors” documentation (as set out in Appendix 1).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council considered a report of the Monitoring Officer submitted to the Standards Committee on 25 February 2019. The Standards Committee resolved to recommend Council to approve the changes to the “complaints handling arrangements” documentation including the introduction of assessment criteria for code of conduct complaints set out in the report and appendices.

 

The Chair of the Standards Committee, Councillor Aziz presented the report and appendices and moved the recommendations, which were adopted on being seconded and put to the vote.

 

Council resolved to:

1.            approve the proposed changes to the “complaints handling arrangements” documentation as detailed in the report and the appendices; and

 

2.            delegate authority to the Monitoring Officer to amend and agree the final text and design of the draft “Arrangements for dealing with code of conduct complaints against councillors” documentation (as set out in Appendix 1 of the report).

 

 

104.

City Executive Board Minutes

This item has a time limit of 15 minutes.

Councillors may ask the Board Members questions about matters in these minutes:

Minutes:

Council had before it the minutes of the last five City Executive Board meetings.

 

 

104a

Minutes of meeting Tuesday 22 January 2019 of City Executive Board pdf icon PDF 311 KB

Minutes:

Councillors Goddard and Iley Williamson arrived during this item.

 

Minutes 125 and 126 (JSSP Regulation 18 Consultation Document)

Councillor Simmons asked why non-minor amendments were made to the text of the Oxfordshire 2050 Plan (JSSP) consultation document between its approval at each authority and its publication; given that the Scrutiny Committee was advised it could not recommend changes. He also asked how many responses were received.

 

Councillor Hollingsworth replied that he could not confirm the reasons, but his understanding was that the changes were made to better reflect a correct interpretation of the law and clarify the proposals. A large number of responses were received: some from landowners offering sites and others covering a range of themes.  There was a common theme on housing people effectively in a way that was sustainable, low environmental impact, and reduced the impact on climate change. The Council had not responded to what was effectively its own consultation.

 

 

Minute 129 (Treasury management report)

Councillor Simmons welcomed the renegotiation and retention of the loan facility for the Low Carbon Hub.

 

 

104b

Minutes of meeting Tuesday 12 February 2019 of City Executive Board pdf icon PDF 331 KB

Minutes:

There were no questions on these minutes.

 

104c

Minutes of meeting Thursday 7 March 2019 of City Executive Board pdf icon PDF 311 KB

Minutes:

Minute 154 (Twinning links)

Councillor Wade asked how, given the relatively small budget, the Oxford International Links team would be able to organise and manage effective links with the eight twin cities: it was clear help was needed and would this be provided from voluntary community Link groups and the universities.

 

Councillor Clarkson replied that she was conscious of the limited budget. There were ongoing discussions with the Oxford International Links Team (who collaborated with the local voluntary twinning associations) about effective use of their resources and new initiatives including bringing several cities together for events.

 

 

104d

Minutes of meeting Wednesday 13 March 2019 of City Executive Board pdf icon PDF 352 KB

Minutes:

Minutes 159 and 170 (Review of civic flag flying arrangements)

Councillor Gant asked about cross-party involvement in one-off requests to fly particular flags, as this was a civic matter. Councillor Brown, Leader, replied that she would generally seek cross-party views before a decision was made, especially where a request might cause controversy.

 

 

Minute 162 (Securing Social Value through Procurement)

Councillor Simmons asked about the process to determine ‘social value’ when assessing contracts. Councillor Turner replied that the Scrutiny (or Finance Panel if they wished) may in due course ask for a report on the process, and an update report once the principle was better-established.

 

 

104e

Minutes of meeting Wednesday 10 April 2019 of City Executive Board pdf icon PDF 335 KB

Minutes:

There were no questions taken on these minutes as the time had elapsed.

 

 

105.

Questions on Notice from Members of Council pdf icon PDF 402 KB

Questions on notice from councillors received in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 11.11(b).

Questions on notice may be asked of the Lord Mayor, a Member of the City Executive Board or a Chair of a Committee. One supplementary question may be asked at the meeting.

The full text of questions must have been received by the Head of Law and Governance by no later than 1.00pm on Monday 15 April 2019

All questions submitted by the deadline are published as a supplement. This will be replaced by the full briefing note giving the questions and written responses where available.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

44 written questions were asked of the Board members and Leader, and written responses published.

 

These, written responses, and summaries of the 19 supplementary questions and responses are set out in the printed pack of these minutes.

 

 

106.

Outside organisation reports

1.    Each ordinary meeting of Council shall normally receive a written report concerning the work of one of the partnerships on which the Council is represented.

 

2.    The reports submitted to this meeting are:

a)    On behalf of the Leader of Council –the Oxfordshire Growth Board Partnership

b)      On behalf of the Board Member for Supporting Local Communities -  Oxfordshire Children’s Trust Board

3.    As set out in procedure rule 11.15, Members who are Council representatives on external bodies or Committees Chairs who consider that a significant decision or event has taken place, may notify the Head of Law and Governance by 1.00 pm on Thursday 25 April 2019 that they will present a written or oral report on the event or the significant decision and how it may influence future events. Written reports will be circulated with the briefing note.

106a

Oxfordshire Growth Board Partnership pdf icon PDF 395 KB

Minutes:

This item was taken before the public addresses.

 

Council had before it a report of the Assistant Chief Executive on the work of the Oxfordshire Growth Board.

 

Councillor Brown in her introduction and in answer to questions reported:

·         she would provide Council with updates on the Growth Board’s substantive business and on decisions affecting the city;

·         collaborative work on coherent development along the Oxford to Cambridge Arc was beginning: however formal meetings between local authorities along the Arc were not yet established, She would press for transparency and accountability in their set up and operation;

·         the Growth Board was of the view that good growth was clean/low carbon and sustainable, and were discussing how to secure this in across the county.

 

Council noted the report and the answers to questions.

 

 

106b

Oxfordshire Children's Trust Board pdf icon PDF 432 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

This item was taken before the public addresses.

 

Council had before it a report of the Assistant Chief Executive on the work of the Children’s Trust Board, introduced by Councillor Tidball

 

Councillor Tidball in her introduction and in answer to questions reported:

·         the Oxfordshire Children and Young People’s plan was attached for information: the city council also had its own separate strategy focussed on the city’s needs;

·         she noted comments that there were good existing support services (carers’ groups and charities) available for the approximately 2000 young carers in the city;

·         the rise in mental ill-health among young people was discussed at the Board, and measures to tackle this would continue to be part of the City Council’s strategy and the work of the youth ambition team;

·         she had asked that assessment of the harm caused by, and work to stop, racist/ phobic behaviours be included in the action plans;

·         she had recommended to the Health Improvement Board that looked-after children were represented on the Board and its subsidiaries.

 

Council noted the report and the answers to questions.

 

 

107.

Public addresses and questions that do not relate to matters for decision at this Council meeting pdf icon PDF 453 KB

Public addresses and questions to the Leader or other Board member received in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 11.12, 11.13 and 11.14 and not related to matters for decision in Part 1 of 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 23 April 2019.

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

A total of 45 minutes is available for both public speaking items. Responses are included in this time. Up to five minutes is available for each public address and up to three minutes for each question.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillors Aziz, Pressel and Tidball left before the start of this item.

 

 There were five addresses to Council.

 

1.    Alistair Morris gave an address to ask for the planting thousands of trees in and around the city, as this improves the city and contributes to mitigating climate change.

2.    Dr Graham Jones gave an address asking for a review of the procedures for assessing minor planning and licensing applications to avoid the detrimental effects of many incremental changes.

3.    Izzy and Kamila gave an address asking for support to improve the standard of living and tackle the climate crisis via sustainability in education.

4.    Artwell gave an address asking the Council to rescind its adoption of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance policy as he considered it incompatible with the decision to be a twin city of Ramallah.

5.    Judith Harley gave an address asking for easier and on-line methods of viewing and responding to all city council consultations, including those proposing changes to charges in car parks such as the Cowley Marsh Car Park.

 

The full text of these speeches read as submitted; responses from the Board Members in writing before the meeting; and summaries of any verbal responses given at the meeting are set out in the printed pack of these minutes.

 

 

108.

Scrutiny Committee update report pdf icon PDF 157 KB

The Chair of the Scrutiny Committee has submitted a report which updates Council on the activities of scrutiny since the last meeting of Council.

Council is invited to comment on and note the report.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council had before it the report of the Scrutiny Committee Chair.

 

Councillor Gant introduced the report, thanking those councillors and officers who had contributed through the year, and noting that the committee would consider the long list of work plan suggestions at its June meeting.

 

Council noted the report.

 

 

109.

Motions on notice pdf icon PDF 558 KB

This item has a time limit of 60 minutes.

 

Motions received by the Head of Law and Governance in accordance with Council Procedure Rules by the deadline of 1.00pm on Monday 15 April 2019are listed below.

 

Motions will be taken in turn from the, Green, Labour, Liberal Democrat groups in that order.

 

Substantive amendments to these motions must be sent by councillors to the Head of Law and Governance by no later than 10.00am on Friday 26 April 2019so that they may be circulated with the briefing note.

 

Minor technical or limited wording amendments may be submitted during the meeting but must be written down and circulated.

 

Council is asked to consider the following motions:

 

a)    Acting on the Climate Emergency

b)    Council tax exemption for Care Leavers under 25 years old

c)    Homelessness - Six months to plan for Winter 2019/20

d)    Supporting the EU election process

e)    Nuclear disarmament

f)     Climate Emergency priorities in new builds

 

Minutes:

Council had before it six motions on notice and amendments submitted in accordance with Council procedure rules and reached decisions as set out below.

 

Council resolved to adopt the following motions as set out in these minutes:

 

a.    Acting on the Climate Emergency

b.    Council tax exemption for Care Leavers under 25 years old

 

The following motions were not taken as the time allocated for debate had elapsed:

 

c.    Homelessness - Six months to plan for Winter 2019/20

d.    Supporting the EU election process

e.    Nuclear disarmament

f.     Climate Emergency priorities in new builds

 

 

109a

Acting on the Climate Emergency

Proposed by Councillor Wolff, seconded by Councillor Simmons

 

Green member motion

 

On 28th January 2019, the Council passed an amended motion declaring a Climate Emergency.

Since then, the County Council has followed suit, as have many Council’s nationwide, as part of the national movement – led by Extinction Rebellion, YouthStrike4Climate and others - to prioritise action on tackling the climate crisis.

The majority of Council’s, including Oxfordshire, have gone further than Oxford City Council by pledging to make their own operations, and their wider administrative area, carbon neutral by a specified date and putting in place a process to report back on progress.

This Council therefore wishes to align with the target set by Oxfordshire County Council, building on its previous unanimous declaration, and:

1.           Pledge to make Oxford City Council carbon neutral by 2030

2.           Continue to work with partners across the city to deliver this new goal across all sectors

3.           Call on Westminster to provide the powers and resources to make the 2030 target achievable

4.           Ensure, as far as possible, that this target is reflected in the Oxfordshire Plan 2050 and associated plans strategies including Oxford’s own Local Plan

5.           Do what it can to support those groups and organisations – such as YouthStrike4Climate – who are seeking to galvanise public action around climate change

6.           Report to Council within six months with the actions the Council will take to address this emergency.

7.           Asks Scrutiny to consider setting up a review group to help develop, scrutinise and support plans to deliver against this 2030 target.

 

Minutes:

Councillor Wolff, seconded by Councillor Simmons, proposed the submitted motion as set out in the agenda and briefing note.

Two amendments were set out in the briefing note. Councillor Wolff accepted the amendment from Councillor Harris, but not the amendment from Councillor Hayes.

 

Councilor Hayes proposed and Councillor Brown seconded his amendment.

After debate and on being put to the vote the amendment was declared carried.

 

Council then debated the amended motion, and on being put to the vote this was declared carried.

 

Council resolved to adopt the following motion, as amended:

On 28th January 2019, the Council unanimously passed an amended motion declaring a Climate Emergency. Since then, the County Council has followed suit to unanimously acknowledge the climate emergency facing the world.

The majority of Councils, including Oxfordshire, have pledged to make their own operations carbon neutral by a specified date and put in place a process to report back on progress.

This Council has gone further, by committing to involve a Citizens Assembly to make recommendations on the key decisions around both target deadlines to reach zero carbon and the types of costed measures required to meet those targets. We await the evidence-based recommendations of the Citizens Assembly in September 2019 in order to make decisions and set deadlines that reflect the support of a representation of the city.

 

Therefore, we will:

1.            Continue to call on the Government to provide the powers and resources to fully decarbonise Oxford City Council in the shortest timeframe working towards the vision of zero carbon by 2030 at the latest.

2.            Continue to work with partners across the city to deliver this new goal across all sectors and make further reductions in carbon emissions as the City Council is responsible for just 1% of Oxford’s carbon emissions.

3.            Ensure, as far as possible, that any new targets are reflected in the Oxfordshire Plan 2050 and associated plans and strategies.

4.            Report to Council within two months of the finalisation of the Citizens Assembly report with the actions the Council will take to address this emergency.

5.            After the Citizens Assembly has reported, encourage Scrutiny, as master of its own house, to consider setting up a review group to scrutinise and support plans to deliver against targets.

6.            Respect the process agreed to unanimously by all councillors on 28 January 2019 to approve a Citizens Assembly to ‘establish the facts and make recommendations’ for dealing with cli-mate change and discourage the submission of further motions to Full Council which may pre-empt the findings of the Citizens Assembly.

 

 

109b

Council tax exemption for Care Leavers under 25 years old

Proposed by Councillor Azad

 

Labour member motion

 

In Oxford we have a proud record of support for people who are struggling financially. Children in local authority care are particularly vulnerable as they move into independent accommodation and begin to manage their own budget fully for the first time. It can be extremely challenging. With no family to support them and insufficient financial education, some will fall into debt and financial difficulty.

The Children and Social Work Act 2017 places corporate parenting responsibilities on district councils for the first time, requiring them to have regards to children in care and care leavers when carrying out their functions.

This provides us with a fantastic opportunity to work together with Oxfordshire County Council and surrounding district colleagues for the benefit of approximately 800 young care leavers who are 16-25 years old across Oxfordshire.

The city council already has a good model of council tax reduction which supports many vulnerable people. All care leavers in financial need are covered by our existing policies. Oxford City Council also has policies of financial and social inclusion in many other areas such as access to our leisure services, advice support and access to housing services that are good models of financial and social inclusion that benefit care leavers among others.

Council notes that many councils chose to end their council tax reduction schemes when the government ceased to provide financial support for these schemes centrally but that in Oxford we chose to retain our scheme to support households who were struggling financially, particularly in light of the government’s austerity programme.

 

Council therefore resolves to ask the Leader of the Council

·         to engage with the County Council to see how we can do more to ensure that care leavers, some of our most vulnerable citizens have the best possible start when they set up their own homes.

·         to work with other District Councils to share our expertise in implementing council tax reduction schemes, with a view to looking at broader general agreement on social and financial inclusion policies across the districts as soon as possible.

 

Minutes:

Councillor Azad, seconded by Councillor Lygo, proposed the submitted motion as set out in the agenda and briefing note.

Councillor Azad accepted the amendment proposed by Councillor Henwood as set out in the briefing note.

After debate and on being put to the vote the amended motion was agreed.

 

Council resolved to adopt the following motion:

 

In Oxford we have a proud record of support for people who are struggling financially. Children in local authority care are particularly vulnerable as they move into independent accommodation and begin to manage their own budget fully for the first time. It can be extremely challenging. With no family to support them and insufficient financial education, some will fall into debt and financial difficulty.

The Children and Social Work Act 2017 places corporate parenting responsibilities on district councils for the first time, requiring them to have regards to children in care and care leavers when carrying out their functions.

This provides us with a fantastic opportunity to work together with Oxfordshire County Council and surrounding district colleagues for the benefit of approximately 800 young care leavers who are 16-25 years old across Oxfordshire.

The city council already has a good model of council tax reduction which supports many vulnerable people. All care leavers in financial need are covered by our existing policies. Oxford City Council also has policies of financial and social inclusion in many other areas such as access to our leisure services, advice support and access to housing services that are good models of financial and social inclusion that benefit care leavers among others.

Council notes that many councils chose to end their council tax reduction schemes when the government ceased to provide financial support for these schemes centrally but that in Oxford we chose to retain our scheme to support households who were struggling financially, particularly in light of the government’s austerity programme.

 

Council therefore resolves to ask the Leader of the Council

·         to engage with the County Council to see how we can do more to ensure that care leavers and young people who are registered carers, some of our most vulnerable citizens, have the best possible start when they set up their own homes.

·         to work with other District Councils to share our expertise in implementing council tax reduction schemes, with a view to looking at broader general agreement on social and financial inclusion policies across the districts as soon as possible.

 

 

109c

Homelessness - Six months to plan for Winter 2019/20

Proposed by Councillor Wade

 

Liberal Democrat member motion

 

In November 2018, 119 people were estimated to be sleeping rough in this County, nearly 80% of them in Oxford city.

I understand Oxford is now providing 215 Beds (41 of them funded by £1m from the MHLCG Rough Sleepers' Initiative which only runs to 2019/20)

Walking through the city centre at night it seems to me we are in the grip of the homelessness epidemic.  This is a problem affecting the entire country.

 This Council gratefully recognises the valuable work done by our officers, in partnership with charities and volunteers, but much more remains to be done across the spectrum of our Oxford residents suffering homelessness - who range from individuals impacted by high and insecure rentals to rough sleepers who have normalised living on the street.

Progress over the next six months would require the Council to:

1.    make a formal pledge that no one should have to sleep rough in Oxfordshire;

2.    if SWEP provision continues, activate Severe Weather Protocol after 1 night predicted at 4 degrees Celsius (not after 3 nights predicted at zero degrees);

3.    seek increased support from Oxfordshire County and District Councils;

4.    look at increasing financial support to mental health services specifically geared to the needs of homeless people

5.    urgently seek expert advice now made available by Department of Health and Social Care under the HRA 2018 to mental health and drug related services (dependent on budgetary constraints);

6.    provide funding for existing and new social enterprises responding to homeless people who want to get back to life in the community (dependent on budgetary constraints);

7.    urgently explore: (1) an extension of RSI funding, or other Government finance; (2) Big Society Capital (£135m); (3) Flexible Homelessness Support Grant funding (£617m pledged).

Council therefore asks the City executive Board to ensure that these areas of work are pursued urgently.

 

Minutes:

This motion was not taken as the time allowed for debate had finished.

 

109d

Supporting the EU election process

Proposed by Councillor Simmons

 

Green member motion

Council notes that European Parliamentary elections have now been called for 23rd May.

Council believes that, though the circumstances are unusual, these elections form part of the democratic process and the Council should make every effort to ensure that participation rates are high and put in place the necessary resources to make this happen.

Council therefore asks the City Executive Board to work with officers to ensure that:

1.    The elections are widely promoted within the City with clear media communications and information on the website;

2.    Electors are encouraged to register before the 7th May cut-off;

3.    The Council makes every effort to accommodate organisations wishing to hold last minute hustings in our buildings;

4.    Any reasonable request by the Returning Officer for additional funding for the running of the elections is properly considered.

 

Minutes:

This motion was not taken as the time allowed for debate had finished.

 

109e

Nuclear disarmament

Proposed by Councillor Tanner

 

Labour member motion

 

Oxford City Council is a long-standing member of Nuclear Free Local Authorities (NFLA) which has been working for over three decades to promote multilateral nuclear disarmament.

Oxford City Council is particularly concerned about the huge cost to the taxpayer of nuclear weapons, the risk posed by other regular transport of nuclear weapons on Oxfordshire’s roads and the continued threat of nuclear war.

NFLA has worked to promote the International treaty to prohibit Nuclear Weapons (TPNW).  Over two thirds (122) of United Nations members states have agreed the TPNW. 

Council regrets that the governments of existing nuclear weapon states, including the United Kingdom, refuse to support the treaty.

Oxford City Council calls on the U.K. Government to lead a global effort prevent nuclear war by:

·         Renouncing the options of using nuclear weapons first;

·         Cancelling the replacement of the trident nuclear weapons with enhanced weapons;

·         Actively pursuing a verifiable agreement among nuclear-armed countries to reduce, and then eliminate, their nuclear arsenals.

Oxford City Council asks the Chief Executive to write to the UK Government and Oxford’s MPs to inform them of this resolution and urge them to take appropriate action.

 

Minutes:

This motion was not taken as the time allowed for debate had finished.

 

109f

Climate Emergency priorities in new builds

Proposed by Councillor Wolff, seconded by Councillor Simmons

 

Green member motion

 

Council :

1.         notes the officer’s report entitled Carbon-Related Issues (Climate Change and Fuel Poverty) which states that the Council is able to require all new homes to be zero carbon.  It reads :

It is Oxford City Council's view that the recently revised NPPF supports the ability of individual Councils to . . . [set] local targets that are in excess of national requirements. In the Oxford context . . . it is essential that such stretching targets are set and are supported by local policy.

2.         notes the Sustainability Appraisal of the Local Plan commissioned by the Council where it reads[1]  :

For a truly neutral impact on climate change, the housing would need to be built to standards that exceed the current Building Regulations, and would need to generate a significant amount of renewable energy

3.         notes with approval that in Policy RE1 of the draft Local Plan, we are ahead of the field in seizing the opportunity granted by government to require that new homes are, as a minimum, to be built significantly above the government minimum standard, but

4.         notes that we will not require them to be carbon neutral until 2030

5.         notes that zero carbon homes are possible, feasible and typically cost (according to one recent study[2] ) only 1-2% more to build, a cost which is paid back by lower energy bills within a few years;

6.         notes that under policy RE1, houses built from the date of the Local Plan adoption will, without expensive retrofitting which subsequent governments may require, continue to be carbon emitters to the end of the century and beyond;

7.         believes that the draft Local Plan to which we are now committed is inconsistent with the climate emergency declared by us on January 28th which recognised the need for early action.

Council therefore:

1.         asks those members and officers that are representing the Council in the developing of the Oxfordshire Plan (and our own five-year plan review) to give the highest priority to a drive for the earliest possible adoption of zero carbon building standards;

2.         asks those members and officers that are representing the Council in the Growth Board to adopt the same priority;

3.         asks the City Executive Board, as sole shareholder in our Housing Company, to give the highest priority to the construction of zero carbon social housing from now onwards;

4.         asks the City Executive Board, as sole shareholder in Oxford Direct Services, and recognising the national skill shortages in the building trades, to prioritise up-skilling of our workforce in zero carbon quality building and renewable energy systems.

 



[1] Oxford Local Plan 2036 : Sustainability Appraisal and Strategic Environmental Assessment

Minutes:

This motion was not taken as the time allowed for debate had finished.