Agenda, decisions and draft minutes

Executive - Tuesday, 3rd May, 2022 6.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Council Offices, The Burys, Godalming

Contact: Louise Fleming  Democratic Services & Business Support Team Manager

Items
No. Item

EXE 120/21

MINUTES

To confirm the Minutes of the Meeting held on 5 April 2022.

Minutes:

The Minutes of the Meeting held on 5 April 2022 were confirmed and signed as a correct record.

EXE 121/21

DECLARATIONS OF INTERESTS

To receive from members, declarations of interest in relation to any items included on the agenda for this meeting, in accordance with the Waverley Code of Local Government Conduct.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest raised under this heading.

EXE 122/21

QUESTIONS FROM MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC

The Chairman to respond to any questions received from members of the public for which notice has been given in accordance with Procedure Rule 10.

 

The deadline for receipt of questions is 5pm on Tuesday 26 April 2022.

 

Minutes:

There were no questions received from members of the public.

EXE 123/21

QUESTIONS FROM MEMBERS OF THE COUNCIL

The Chairman to respond to any questions received from Members in accordance with Procedure Rule 11.

 

The deadline for receipt of questions is 5pm on Tuesday 26 April 2022.

Minutes:

The Executive received the following question(s) in accordance with Procedure Rule 11:

 

From Councillor Brian Edmonds, Farnham Wrecclesham and Rowledge ward:

 

“Considering the critical nature of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and the competence required why is EIA screening carried out under delegated Authority?

 

"The aim of Environmental Impact Assessment is to protect the environment by ensuring that a local planning authority when deciding whether to grant planning permission for a project, which is likely to have significant effects on the environment, does so in the full knowledge of the likely significant effects, and takes this into account in the decision-making process."

 

For transparency and public engagement, it is recommended that officer screening opinion recommendations should be considered by the Planning Committees.”

 

Reply from Councillor Liz Townsend, Portfolio Holder for Planning and Economic Development:

 

“I do not consider it would be appropriate or prudent for decisions on Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) screening to be taken by the Planning committee for the following reasons:

 

  1. Screening proposed developments as to whether they would have significant environmental impacts is a relatively complex and technical process that is currently undertaken by qualified planning officers, most of whom are Chartered Members of the Royal Town Planning Institute (MRPTI) and the decisions are then signed off by very experienced Development Leads on behalf of the Head of Planning & Economic Development.  These decisions are made on the basis of a professional judgement against the provisions of the Town and Country Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2017 and its various Schedules, and advice contained in National Planning Practice Guidance.  I consider it entirely appropriate and proper that decisions on such matters continue to be made by our experienced and suitably technically qualified, professional officers.
  1. Under the regulations, the Council is required to adopt a screening opinion within 3 weeks of receipt (unless a longer period is agreed in writing with the person making the request). This tight timescale would not allow sufficient scope for a screening request to be referred to a Committee for formal determination, even if this was deemed appropriate.

 

I should also mention that whilst, in the first instance, it will generally fall to local planning authorities to consider whether a proposed development requires an EIA, the Secretary of State is also empowered to make directions in relation to the need for an assessment. Such screening directions can be made of the Secretary of State’s own volition or following a request from any person.”

 

EXE 124/21

Leader's and Portfolio Holders' Updates

Minutes:

The Leader and Portfolio Holders gave brief updates on current issues not reported elsewhere on the agenda:

·         The Leader updated on the decisions taken by full Council the previous week, including the agreement of the Head of Terms for the Inter-Authority Agreement with Guildford Borough Council.  Godalming Town Council would be holding a meeting in the Council Chamber the following evening for Godalming residents who were hosting Ukrainian refugees and this meeting would also be available online.

·         Councillor Clark advised that training was being sourced for Councillors on use of Modern.gov as part of the paperless meeting project and Councillors would be contacted regarding their equipment requirements.

·         Councillor MacLeod updated on the progress with the Brightwells project and residents were moving into the first completed apartments.  The enforcement project would not be in place until the Council’s new joint management structure was in place.  New taxi fares would be brought to the Executive for consideration due to objections received as part of the consultation exercise.

·         Councillor Merryweather advised that the outturn position was close to original expectations and in respect of the 2022/23 budget position, inflation was already testing budget assumptions.

·         Councillor Palmer welcomed the adoption of the Affordable Homes Strategy at the last Council meeting.  The Public Space Protection Order which had been adopted for Godalming had not been extended to Milford.  Some serious recent incidents had arisen and therefore this would need to be reviewed.

·         Councillor Rivers updated on the work of the Landlord Services Advisory Board which had received presentations on housing maintenance and garages.

·         Councillor Townsend referred to recent press coverage on planning and housing in the borough and gave a detailed history of the development of the local plan in Waverley and the delays brought about by legal challenges.

·         Councillor Williams updated on the driver shortages which were impacting on refuse collection, although the delay was usually not more than a day.

 

EXE 125/21

EXCLUSION OF PRESS AND PUBLIC

To consider the following recommendation on the motion of the Chairman:-

 

Recommendation

 

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 item(s) on the grounds that it is likely, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the public were present during these items, there would be disclosure to them of exempt information (as defined by Section 100I of the Act) of the description specified at the meeting in the revised Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972.

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED 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 item(s) on the grounds that it is likely, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the public were present during these items, there would be disclosure to them of exempt information (as defined by Section 100I of the Act) of the description specified at the meeting in the revised Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972 namely: Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information).

PART I - RECOMMENDATIONS TO COUNCIL

There are no items under this heading.

PART II - MATTERS OF REPORT

The background papers relating to the following items are as specified in the reports included in the original agenda papers.

EXE 126/21

Broadwater Park Lease Agreement

The purpose of the report is set out in the exempt report.

 

Recommendation

 

The recommendation is set out in the exempt report.

Additional documents:

Decision:

RESOLVED

 

That the recommendation as set out in the exempt report be agreed.

 

Reason: The reasons are set out in the exempt report.

 

[Resources Overview and Scrutiny Committee]

Minutes:

RESOLVED

 

That the recommendation as set out in the exempt report be agreed.

 

Reason: The reasons are set out in the exempt report.

 

EXE 127/21

Brightwells Yard, Farnham - update

The purpose of the report is set out in the exempt report.

 

Recommendation

 

The recommendation is set out in the exempt report.

 

Decision:

RESOLVED

 

That the recommendation as set out in the exempt report be agreed.

 

Reason: The reasons are set out in the exempt report.

 

[Resources Overview and Scrutiny Committee]

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED

 

That the recommendation as set out in the exempt report be agreed.

 

Reason: The reasons are set out in the exempt report.