Venue: ZOOM MEETING - Virtual Meeting. View directions
Contact: Kimberly Soane Democratic Services Officer
To confirm the Minutes of the meeting held on 24th June 2020, which are published on the Council’s website.
The Minutes of the Meeting held on 26th June 2020, and published on the Council’s website were confirmed as a correct of the meeting.
APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND SUBSTITUTIONS
To receive apologies for absence and note substitutions.
Members who are unable to attend this meeting must submit apologies by the end of Tuesday 15th September to enable a substitute to be arranged, if applicable.
Apologies for absence were received from Cllr Michaela Martin
Cllr Jerry Hyman attended as a substitute.
DECLARATIONS OF INTERESTS
To receive from Members declarations of interests in relation to any items included on the agenda for this meeting, in accordance with Waverley’s Code of Local Government.
Cllr Jerry Hyman advised he was a member of ‘Friends of Farnham Park’ but this was a non-pecuniary interest.
The Chairman to respond to any questions submitted by members of the public in accordance with Procedure Rule 10.
The deadline for submission of written questions for this meeting is 5pm on Tuesday 15th September 2020.
Two questions were submitted by members of the public. The questions and answers had been attached to the website for information.
QUESTIONS FROM MEMBERS
The Chairman to respond to any questions received from Members in accordance with Procedure Rule 11.
The deadline for submission of written questions for this meeting is 5pm on Tuesday 15th September 2020.
There were no questions submitted by members.
The Environment Overview & Scrutiny Committee, along with the O&S Coordinating Board, is responsible for managing the Committee’s work programme.
The current work programme (attached) includes items agreed at the O&S Coordinating Board and takes account of items identified as due to come forward for decision.
Members are invited to consider their work programme and make any comments and/or amendments they consider necessary, including suggestions for any additional topics that the Committee may wish to add to its work programme.
The forward work programme was noted and the Chair asked that the committee make comments or recommendations off-line as the agenda was quite substantial.
This report gives the Environment Overview & Scrutiny (O&S) Committee the opportunity to scrutinise the policy development that has taken place to prepare in the Pre-Submission version of Local Plan Part 2 (LPP2). This report focuses on the areas that have generated a high degree of public interest as a result of the representations the Council received from the previous consultation on the Preferred Options version of LPP2 in May – July 2018. It also considers the feedback to the proposed Pre-Submission version of LPP2 that was considered by the Environment O&S in October 2018. In response to this, Officers have been able to make a number of changes to the draft Plan which address most of the concerns raised at that meeting. The report also considers changes to LPP2 made in response to the Council’s climate emergency declaration.
Subject to this pre-decision scrutiny by the Environment Overview & Scrutiny Committee, the intention is to seek the approval of the Executive on 6th October 2020 and Full Council on 20th October 2020 to publish this Pre-Submission Draft for formal consultation.
That the Overview and Scrutiny Committee considers the Pre-Submission version of Local Plan Part 2 and provides comments and observations to the Executive.
Zac Ellwood, Head of Planning and Economic Development, Graham Parrott, Planning Policy Manager and Matthew Ellis, Team Leader (Local Plans and Planning) outlined the draft Local Plan Part 2 and asked for comments to prepare in the Pre-Submission version of Local Plan Part 2 (LPP2). The report also considers changes to LPP2 made in response to the Council’s climate emergency declaration.
· The committee commended the officers as they considered this report to be clear and concise.
· Many members welcomed the addition of Secretts Garden Centre as a preferred area for allocations. Will provide focus to village.
· Report is misleading. Concerns regarding water supply in Haslemere (para 7.14). Supply is not connected to national network and demand is already higher than capacity without extra development. This is ignored in this report.
· Conflict in Haslemere as they have been developing NHP but due to COVID cannot adopt until March 2021. Need to protect our natural land.
· pg69 – Rural areas – lack of assessment and policies. Section is in adequate.
· Equestrian areas – provides employment in rural areas. No justification process to provide accommodation in these areas.
· Pg 87 – Local Green Spaces. No policies to protect these spaces, Dunsfold Park especially.
· Pg 18. Lack of affordable housing in Haslemere. Won’t reach target. 56% of Haslemere are elderly and need affordable to attract younger families.
· Habitats Regs (pg 47) Lack of appropriate assessments. Is there an update on the assessments of the mitigation which have been requested for? (was asked to take this offline)
· Haslemere sites – advised of a site that had been put forward but not progressed by planners! ZEllwood – gave update on this.
· Pg29 – LPP2 – Mentions corporate strategy link met. How much local engagement was there?
o NHP has to fit into Local Plan and lots of local engagement has been carried out.
· Concern about Ancient woodland and the amount of trees felled. Pg 73
Comments on specific Policies in the document:
· DM1 – Weak needs making more robust
· DM4 –
o Space around buildings needs to be considered.
o Space is critical especially with Covid.
o No reference to green infrastructure
· DM5 –
o Reference to allow wildlife travel
o preference for individual gardens rather than communal areas
· DM5 (and subsequent sections) – Use of ‘should’ too weak and needs changing to ‘must’.
· DM6 – Include to preserve/increase biodiversity and wildlife corridors.
· DM8 – Masterplans – need to make robust.
· DM9 – Stress importance of minimising HGV movements in rural areas.
· DM9/10 – need mention of a compliant Air Quality Action Plan.
· DM11 –
o push for hedges rather than fences to allow wildlife movements and more aesthetically pleasing.
o again ‘ should’ too weak and be replaced with ‘must’ regarding mitigation.
o Policy is framed around new developments and needs to also include existing ancient woodland to protect that too.
· DM12 – enforcement is important and should not be discretionary but automatic.
· DM14 –
o concern regarding those with tiny ... view the full minutes text for item 19.
To present to the Environment Overview and Scrutiny Committee and to seek its comments and views on the latest version of the draft Climate Emergency Action Plan, the proposed Assessment Criteria for evaluating the viability of projects and current proposals for the use of the funding provided for responding to the Climate Emergency.
The Environment Overview and Scrutiny Committee notes the progress with the revised draft Action Plan and submits comments on it to the Executive; and supports or comments on the proposed assessment criteria for projects and the spending plan as set out in this report note and Annexes attached.
Richard Homewood outline progress on the Climate Emergency Action Plan the proposed Assessment Criteria for evaluating the viability of projects and the current proposals for the use of the funding provided for responding to the Climate Emergency. He highlighted that there was currently a survey running for residents to complete to ascertain their views on climate change, members were asked to encourage residents to complete it.
· The committee asked if the current Carbon Footprint had been defined and quantified.
· Concern was raised regarding the recruitment of a Sustainability officer in the current economic climate.
· The committee felt that in its current form it was not an action plan but a wish list. There were no measurable targets.
· It was felt that good communications and using the expertise within the borough would help to drive this forward.
· It was felt an informal zoom meeting should be held to go through the plan and make comment.
The committee commended the officers on the progress of this plan but asked that there was more structure with measurable targets.
The Corporate Performance Report, set out at Annexe 1, provides an analysis of the Council’s performance for the first quarter of 2020-21. The report is being presented to each of the Overview and Scrutiny Committees for comment and any recommendations they may wish to make to senior management or the Executive.
It is recommended that the Overview & Scrutiny Committee considers the performance of the service areas under its remit as set out in Annexe 1 to this report and makes any recommendations to senior management or the Executive as appropriate.
The committee were asked to note the areas of the Corporate Performance Report relating to their remit.
Planning and Economic Development
Zac Ellwood, Head of Planning and Economic Development , highlighted areas to note in the planning service area. He advised it had been a challenging time over the last quarter.
Income has dropped due to the current restrictions and economic circumstances. The KPI’s to note: P3 had gone into the green for the first quarter in some time this equated to 3 appeals allowed out of 13, L152 had stayed in the red but equated to 1 appeal being allowed out of 6.
Richard Homewood, Head of Environmental and Regulatory Services, highlighted areas of note from his service area.
Refuse collections over Covid had been kept going. E4 a/b showed red for missed bin collections but as well as Covid issues this quarter included rolling out a route optimisation and bringing in agency workers to cover for sickness.
Bring sites caused an issue with a large number of fly-tips caused by the closure of CRC’s over lockdown. Bring centres are now all closed which has reduced the fly-tipping.
Car Parks – there was no enforcement over lockdown as charges were suspended in council car parks. Charging has now recommenced and income is slowly recovering.
The committee asked for their thanks to be recorded to all the staff for their work over this period to keep services running.
This report is being presented to each of the Overview and Scrutiny Committees and its purpose is to seek the views of the Committee on the draft revised Corporate Strategy and to forward any comments and recommendations they may wish to make to the Executive.
It is recommended that the Overview & Scrutiny Committee considers the revised draft Corporate Strategy set out at Annexe 1 to this report and makes any recommendations to the Executive as appropriate.
Robin Taylor, Head of Policy and Governance, outlined the Draft Corporate Strategy. He advised that this was the committees first opportunity to comment on the strategy but would not be their last.
The committee were asked to consider the strategy and make comment.
The committee had previously attended workshops on this subject and therefore felt there was little extra to comment at this stage.
· Group into Portfolios to make scrutiny easier.
· It was felt point 23 was ageist and that there would be exceptions where hard copies would be necessary.
The committee commended officers on the progress of the strategy and asked for more structure.
EXCLUSION OF PRESS AND PUBLIC
To consider, if necessary, the following recommendation on the motion of the Chairman:
That pursuant to Procedure Rule 20 and in accordance with Section 100A (4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following items on the grounds that it is likely in view of the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the public were present during the items there would be disclosure to them of exempt information (as defined by Section 100I of the Act) to be identified at the meeting.
There were no items to discuss in exempt session.
ANY ISSUES TO BE CONSIDERED IN EXEMPT SESSION
To consider any matters relating to aspects of any reports on this agenda which it is felt need to be considered in Exempt session.