Agenda and minutes

Community Safety and Environment Policy and Accountability Committee - Tuesday, 28th January, 2020 7.00 pm

Venue: Meeting Room 2 (2nd Floor) - 3 Shortlands, Hammersmith, W6 8DA. View directions

Contact: Amrita Gill  Tel: 07776672845

Items
No. Item

1.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 344 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 09 September 2019.

 

Minutes:

Safer Cycle Pathway and A4 Cycle Highway

Councillor Victoria Brocklebank-Fowler noted that the cost figures for the engagement process had not been circulated and requested that this action be followed up.

 

Councillor Victoria Brocklebank-Fowler requested that it be made clear in the minutes that Officers said that there wasn’t an option for the scheme to not be implemented, if residents didn’t support the proposals.

 

RESOLVED

That the, subject to the above the minutes of the meeting held on 9 September 2019 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

 

 

 

2.

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

3.

Declarations of interest

If a Councillor has a disclosable pecuniary interest in a particular item, whether or not it is entered in the Authority’s register of interests, or any other significant interest which they consider should be declared in the public interest, they should declare the existence and, unless it is a sensitive interest as defined in the Member Code of Conduct, the nature of the interest at the commencement of the consideration of that item or as soon as it becomes apparent.

 

At meetings where members of the public are allowed to be in attendance and speak, any Councillor with a disclosable pecuniary interest or other significant interest may also make representations, give evidence or answer questions about the matter. The Councillor must then withdraw immediately from the meeting before the matter is discussed and any vote taken.

 

Where Members of the public are not allowed to be in attendance and speak, then the Councillor with a disclosable pecuniary interest should withdraw from the meeting whilst the matter is under consideration. Councillors who have declared other significant interests should also withdraw from the meeting if they consider their continued participation in the matter would not be reasonable in the circumstances and may give rise to a perception of a conflict of interest.

 

Councillors are not obliged to withdraw from the meeting where a dispensation to that effect has been obtained from the Audit, Pensions and Standards Committee.

 

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

4.

2020 Medium Term Financial Strategy (MTFS) pdf icon PDF 606 KB

This report sets out the budget proposals for the services covered by this Policy and Accountability Committee (PAC). An update is also provided on any proposed changes in fees and charges.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Corporate Budget Context

Emily Hill (Assistant Director of Finance), gave a presentation outlining the Council’s budget proposals and noted the scale of challenges facing local government in recent years. She showed slides that outlined the funding reductions across local government and the Council.

 

It was noted that the gross General Fund budget was £525m, of which the net budget requirement of £154.3mwas funded from Council resources (such as council tax and business rates) and general Government grant. In addition, Government grant funding would increase by £3.6m from 2019/20 to 2020/21 as a result of the Government’s pre-election spending round in September 2019. This increase followed a decade of grant cuts with overall funding reducing by £68m from 2010/11 to 2020/21 which was a real terms funding cut of 54%.

 

The Council continued to face challenges to manage any additional costs that might arise outside of the budget forecast. The budget recommended a 1.99% increase in Council Tax and 2% adult social care precept levy. Each would raise £4.8m over 4 years and £1.2 in the first year. This would support investment in key services for residents and future financial resilience. Additionally, it was noted that the business rates system was changing for a fourth successive year.

 

It was assumed that the budget gap would increase in each of the next three years if no action was taken to reduce overall expenditure. The Government will undertake a ‘fair funding review’ in 2020/21. This had the remit of reconsidering how grant was distributed between authorities.

 

Departmental Budget

Kellie Gooch (Head of Finance - Environment) and Gary Hannaway (Head of Finance - Parking) gave a presentation of the Environment revenue budget for 2020/21, highlighting the following key points:

  • The Department managed a controllable expenditure budget of £70m, with a targeted income of £23m.
  • The service collected income for Council tax, business rates, land charges and also secured external grant funding from TfL.
  • The savings plan for 2020/21 aimed to reduce the existing £1.5m budget pressures, deliver new sovereign services within budget and provide £1m of new budgetary savings for the Council.

 

Councillor Victoria Brocklebank-Fowler asked what the council tax collection rate was. In response Hitesh Jolapara (Strategic Director of Finance and Governance) explained that last year the base collection rate was 97.5% and the forecast for this year remained the same.

 

Councillor Victoria Brocklebank-Fowler queried whether the forecasted spending of the reserves was significantly different compared to last year. Emily Hill provided an overview of how the reserves were spent last year - i.e. moving to a new Council system and IT investment for agile working. It was noted that the Council was very conscious that the reserves played a crucial role in good public financial management and resilience. The reserves for the Council fell into the mid-range category compared to other London local authorities. The Council was in the process of reviewing its financial strategy and had forecasted an extra contribution of £7.2m to reserves this year. These reserves would also  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.

5.

Review of Council Response to Modern Slavery pdf icon PDF 328 KB

This report highlights the actions Hammersmith & Fulham Council is taking to respond to Modern Slavery & Exploitation (in line with the requirements as stated in the Modern Slavery Act 2015) and outlines the preparations the Community Safety Unit are making to further support staff and the community in this response.

 

Minutes:

6.

Parking Enforcement in the Borough pdf icon PDF 303 KB

This report provides an overview of parking enforcement in the Borough.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Osagie Ezekiel (Deputy Head of Parking) gave a presentation and provided an overview of parking within the borough and noted the following points:

  • The Parking & Transport Policy team monitored and reviewed parking policies to ensure that they met the needs of the local community.
  • The Council maintained a balance between the different demands from residents, businesses and visitors, whilst ensuring there was good access for pedestrians, cyclists, buses and other vehicles.
  • The Council now had 135 Source London charging points, 79 lamp column points and 5 rapid charge points for the use of electrical vehicles.
  • An outline of the different parking zone reviews was provided, highlighting that the Council was considering the concerns raised by local residents.
  • Cashless parking was on the rise, and 88% of all payments to park were via RingGo.

 

The Chair noted that the Council had received two deputations from the same group of residents. She outlined the procedure for the deputations and explained that they would be addressed separately, allowing a gap between the two for questions.

 

Deputation 1 – PCN moving traffic yellow box junction at Bagley’s Lane

 

James Spokoini, Resident, addressed the Committee on behalf of the deputation and the following points were noted:

  • The closure of Harwood Terrace had caused 1000’s of residents to pass through the yellow box junction at Bagley’s Lane which was felt to be an entrapment.
  • It was felt that road users were unfairly penalised as traffic was forced through the junction and this needed to be reviewed accordingly. Driver frustration was hugely increased as a result and traffic wasn’t ‘moving freely’ in advance of the junction.
  • He felt that the consultation process was flawed, and residents were not consulted properly.
  • 61 residents didn’t support the plan and felt that the Council didn’t take the feedback received from all residents into consideration.

 

A heat map was then circulated to Committee members which highlighted areas in the borough where residents were not in favour of the closure. Mr Spokoini felt that the lack of consultation with residents had a detrimental effect on residents. Feedback received from residents had suggested that the road closure had not improved traffic or reduced congestion. However, it had led to an increase in PCN’s issued as a result of stand-still traffic in the yellow box junction at Bagley’s Lane. He explained that the consultation only addressed residents on the road and felt that a wider consultation was necessary.

 

Questions from the Committee

 

Councillor Victoria Brocklebank-Fowler asked how the closure of Harwood Terrace had affected the day to day lives of local residents. In response James Spokoini explained that he had received a high volume of emails from local residents expressing their concerns around this matter on a daily basis. He referred to a resident who recently had a stem cell transplant, noting that since the closure her symptoms had deteriorated due to the rise of pollution in her area. In addition, he felt that a better approach could be achieved  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

Work Programme and Dates of Future Meetings pdf icon PDF 6 KB

This report sets out the work programme. The next meeting is due to take place on 31 March 2020.

Minutes:

The Chair noted that the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA) and Modern Slavery report would be brought to the meeting in March.

 

Councillor Victoria Brocklebank-Fowler requested that the Crime Commission report also be brought to the March meeting.

 

RESOLVED

That the Committee noted the work programme.