Agenda and minutes

Council
Tuesday 17 April 2018 7:30 pm

You can view the individual reports for this meeting by selecting the headings from the numbered list of items at the bottom of this page. Alternatively you can view the entire agenda by selecting 'Agenda Reports Pack' below.

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Venue: The Guildhall, Kingston upon Thames, KT1 1EU

Contact: Jean Cousens tel. 020 8547 5023  e-mail:  jean.cousens@kingston.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

97.

Apologies

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were submitted on behalf of Councillors Geoff Austin, John Ayles, David Fraser, Shiraz Mirza, Rebekah Moll, and Priyen Patel.

98.

Declarations of Interest

Members are invited to declare any disclosable pecuniary interests and any other non- pecuniary interests (personal interests) relevant to items on this agenda.

 

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

99.

Minutes

To confirm as a correct record the minutes of the meeting of the Council held on 27 February 2018.

Minutes:

Resolved that the minutes of the Budget Council meeting held on 27 February 2018 be confirmed as a correct record.

100.

Mayor's Announcements

Minutes:

(a)          Formation of a new Group

The Mayor reported on a newly formed Group on the Council called the Kingston Independent Residents Group (KIRG) of which Councillor Mary Clark is the Leader and Councillor David Fraser is Deputy.

 

(b)          Councillor Shiraz Mirza

On behalf of the Council, the Mayor extended best wishes to Councillor Shiraz Mirza for his full recovery from his forthcoming hospital operation.  The Mayor had visited Councillor Mirza in hospital who had sent his best wishes to the Council indicating he was sorry to miss his last Council meeting after having served on the Council for 20 years.

 

(c)          Councillor Rebekah Moll

The Mayor sent congratulations and best wishes to Councillor Rebekah Moll who had recently given birth to her third son.

 

(d)          Forthcoming Mayor’s Charity Events

-       The Mayor’s Charity Ball would take place at All Saints Church on Thursday (19 April)

-       The Mayor invited sponsors for her 5 mile Charity Walk for Peace raising funds for Love Kingston on 29 April in Windsor Great Park.

 

(e)          Last Council meeting of the electoral cycle 

This being the last Council meeting before the local Elections, the Mayor wished all Councillors well who would not be at the next Council meeting in May.  While 36 Councillors would be standing again at the election, 12 Councillors would not be standing as follows: Councillors Geoff Austin (12 years of service); John Ayles (7 years); Bill Brisbane (4 years); Clive Chase (4 years); Tom Davies (3 years); David Glasspool (8 years); Sheila Griffin (12 years); Eric Humphrey (24 years); Shiraz Mirza (20 years ); Priyen Patel (8 years); Rachel Reid (14 years); and Gaj Walloopillai (6 years).  Group Leaders spoke a few words about each Member, congratulating and thanking them for their service to the Council.

 

(f)           Retirement of the Head of Corporate Governance, Andrew Bessant

The Mayor read a citation for Andrew Bessant who would be retiring after the Elections after 34 years of service at the Royal Borough, including as Electoral Registration Officer and Returning Officer, Head of Democratic Services and Partnership, and latterly as Head of Corporate Governance.  The Mayor presented a small gift, Andrew responded and the Council gave Andrew a standing ovation.

 

101.

Petitions

To receive any petitions – members of the Council or a member of the public may present a petition to the Council on a matter in relation to which the Council has powers, duties or which affects the Royal Borough.  (The person presenting the petition may speak for up to 5 minutes, but there will be no debate on the petition at the meeting.)

 

[In accordance with restrictions during the Pre-Election period, debate on any petitions with over 500 signatures will not be considered at this meeting but be deferred to the Council meeting on 17 July 2018.]

 

 

Minutes:

The Council received the following petitions presented by a member of the Council or members of the public:

 

California Road traffic management

 

(1)          Councillor Terry Paton submitted a petition (on behalf of the petition organiser, Ms Mary Stark)  signed by  8 residents, which requested:

 

“We the residents of California Road and other nearby Roads, petition the Council to look at our road and surrounding roads and consider a traffic management assessment.  Our road leads to a series of 'No Through' roads, parking is difficult especially with events at Kings Meadow Stadium, there are often speeding drivers with poor vision particularly at the Willow Road junction.  We have witnessed several accidents, we had had two such accidents in the last couple of weeks!”

 

The petition would be referred to the relevant department to be dealt with in accordance with the Council’s Petitions Scheme.

 

Blagdon Road controlled parking request

 

(2)          Councillor Terry Paton submitted a petition (on behalf of the petition organiser, Ms Petra Mimnagh)  signed by  62 residents, which requested:

 

Blagdon Road residents suffer daily from intense traffic congestion, safety issues and associated health risks from car exhaust fumes which are proven detrimental to health. Blagdon Road is constantly blocked with traffic caused by motorists commuting to work, using The Malden Centre, Lidl and adjacent gym as a free alternative to the car park.  This combined with Residential parking which has been approved in some nearby roads has exacerbated the problem for Blagdon Road.

 

Following increased concerns regarding pollution levels, safety and parking issues on Blagdon Road, we the undersigned residents of Lower Blagdon Road request for consideration the introduction of residents parking permit controlled area along Blagdon Road from the fire barrier outside no. 24 Blagdon Road to the corner of Blagdon Road and Alverstone Road.”

 

The petition would be referred to the relevant department to be dealt with in accordance with the Council’s Petitions Scheme.

 

 

Brine Court, Surbiton entryphone petition

 

(3)          Councillor Yogan Yoganathan submitted a petition (on behalf of petition organiser, Ms Sharron Sumner) signed by 17 residents, which requested 'I am in favour of an entry phone system.' 

 

The petition would be referred to the relevant department to be dealt with in accordance with the Council’s Petitions Scheme.

 

‘Cambridge Road Estate Homes for the Many’ petition

 

(4)          A member of the public, Mr Phil Bevin, presented a petition signed by over 500 signatories, which requested:

 

“We the undersigned petition the Council to confirm to the residents of Cambridge Road Estate that the estate regeneration proposals will include:

      an increase in the number of council homes to 1000 from the 653 (originally 832) currently planned for;

      a residents’ ballot on the final regeneration proposal;

      an increase in social housing to 50% of the whole of the regenerated development;

      keeping tenants’ rents at the basic government-set rent level; and

      building new resident facilities at the heart of the estate including a community centre, GP surgery and local shops."

 

The Mayor indicated that  ...  view the full minutes text for item 101.

102.

Motion

In accordance with Standing Order No 8(A)(5), the Council will debate a motion which has been submitted by Members of the Council.

 

This will alternate, from meeting to meeting, between a motion submitted on behalf of the Administration and a motion submitted on behalf of Opposition Members of the Council. (At least one of the Opposition Motions per municipal year will be a motion submitted by the minority Opposition Group, should it so wish.)

 

The following Motion has been received from the Labour Group:

 

‘Labour Motion: Council Homes for the Many’

 

Proposed by: Cllr Linsey Cottington

Seconded by: Cllr Sheila Griffin

 

The Council notes that:

 

           As a landlord with retained stock, we are in desperate need of more council housing to reduce the number of households on the borough-wide housing register currently standing at about 3500 households. 

 

           CRE residents were asked in an estate-wide survey in 2016 to express their preference for one of three regeneration options for their estate. 54% of residents were in favour of regeneration and the preferred option was for the largest total number of homes to be built.

 

           Given that the total number of existing residential units is 832, the implied target of the project is at least this number.

 

           We can carry out our own resident ballot. The Mayor of London has already handed £46.2M to the CRE regeneration programme so is unlikely to attract any more mayoral funding and will fall outside of any future rules the Mayor may introduce as part of his Better Homes for Local People good practice guide.

 

The Council believes that the overriding purpose of regenerating CRE is to:

 

           Provide existing residents with homes at council rents and with lifetime tenancies within a thriving community;

           Build the largest possible number of council homes, which is what residents want and is in line with Council policy of 50% affordable housing on new developments over 10 units;

           Reduce the number of households on the housing register;

           Ensure residents are at the heart of decision-making, rather than on the sidelines observing and believing their voice is not heard.

 

The Council notes the above aspirations and resolves to ask the project team to undertake an options appraisal and to report back to a future council meeting.

Minutes:

(1)          In accordance with Standing Order No 8(A)(5), with reference to Background Briefing Notes which had been circulated prior to the meeting, the Council debated the following motion submitted by the Labour Group (minority Opposition Group) :

 

‘Labour Motion: Council Homes for the Many’

 

Proposed by: Councillor Linsey Cottington

Seconded by: Councillor Sheila Griffin

 

‘The Council notes that:

 

              as a landlord with retained stock, we are in desperate need of more council housing to reduce the number of households on the borough-wide housing register currently standing at about 3500 households. 

 

              CRE residents were asked in an estate-wide survey in 2016 to express their preference for one of three regeneration options for their estate. 54% of residents were in favour of regeneration and the preferred option was for the largest total number of homes to be built.

 

              given that the total number of existing residential units is 832, the implied target of the project is at least this number.

 

              we can carry out our own resident ballot.  The Mayor of London has already handed £46.2M to the CRE regeneration programme so is unlikely to attract any more mayoral funding and will fall outside of any future rules the Mayor may introduce as part of his Better Homes for Local People good practice guide.

 

‘The Council believes that the overriding purpose of regenerating CRE is to:

 

·         provide existing residents with homes at council rents and with lifetime tenancies within a thriving community;

·         build the largest possible number of council homes, which is what residents want and is in line with Council policy of 50% affordable housing on new developments over 10 units;

·         reduce the number of households on the housing register;

·         ensure residents are at the heart of decision-making, rather than on the sidelines observing and believing their voice is not heard.

 

‘The Council notes the above aspirations and resolves to ask the project team to undertake an options appraisal and to report back to a future council meeting.’

(2)          The Leader of the Opposition, Councillor Liz Green, seconded by Councillor Malcolm Self, proposed amendments, as set out in Annex 1 to these Minutes.  After debate, and on being put to the vote, the amendments were not carried.

 

Voting:

 

For:16 Members of the Council (Councillors Sushila Abraham, Patricia Bamford, Bill Brisbane, Clive Chase, Mary Clark, Tom Davies, Lorraine Dunstone, Hilary Gander, Liz Green, Rachel Reid, Malcolm Self, Thay Thayalan, Margaret Thompson, Jon Tolley, Diane White, and Yogan Yoganathan)

 

Against: 24 Members of the Council (The Mayor, Councillor Julie Pickering, the Deputy Mayor, Councillor Mike Head, and Councillors Roy Arora, Rowena Bass, Paul Bedforth, Jack Cheetham, Andrea Craig, David Cunningham, Kevin Davis, Andrew Day, Phil Doyle, Ian George, David Glasspool, Chris Hayes, Richard Hudson, Eric Humphrey, Andy Johnson-Creek, Maria Netley, Raju Pandya, Terry Paton, Cathy Roberts, Hugh Scantlebury, Ken Smith and Gaj Wallooppillai)

 

Abstaining: 2 Members of the Council (Councillors Linsey Cottington and Sheila Griffin)

 

(3)               After  ...  view the full minutes text for item 102.

103.

Questions

(a)          In accordance with Standing Order No. 6 (8), a Member from each political party group represented on the Council may ask the Leader one question for which no notice is required.

 

(b)          In accordance with Standing Order 6 (1&2) replies will be given to questions of which notice has been given  which may be addressed to the Mayor, the Leader of the Council, Portfolio Holders,  the Leader of the Opposition, Chairs of the Standing and Neighbourhood Committees and Members representing the Council on Outside Bodies.

 

 

 

 

Minutes:

103.1       In accordance with Standing Order No. 6 (8) the following questions (of which no notice had been given) were asked of the Leader of the Council):

 

By Councillor Linsey Cottington:

 

The European Convention of Human Rights for Disabilities includes Article 24 gives a right to an inclusive education.  This guarantees all statemented pupils and students a right to participate in all forms of mainstream education with the appropriate support. When Article 24 was ratified by the UK Government it placed two restrictions on its obligations: the first changes the UK’s definition of ‘general education system’ to include segregated education. The second preserves the UK’s right to place SEND children in special schools outside their local area.  In August 2017 the UN scrutinised the UK’s implementation of this Convention and highlighted its failings including in the implementation of Article 24.  Could Councillor Davis give us a view of whether he thinks these restrictions have led to (i) children with special educational needs or disabilities who cannot get a place at their local school and often have to go out of the borough   and (ii) contributed to the deficit in the High Needs Block in the School Grant?

 

Reply:

 

I’m not necessarily aware of all the details of the European Convention off the top of my head but I’ll reply to the specific questions which relate to Kingston’s SEN budget.  The issue of mainstream as against special education schools education for children with SEN has been one of those issues which goes round and round again in circles.  So if you go back 20 years, to the early part of the New Labour government,  it was very much towards pushing mainstream education as being where SEND children should go.  That in itself has created a little issue for us here around some of the things that we’re now seeing from our Budget because as you know one of the significant areas of growth is the numbers of children with SEND particularly the numbers of children who are actually resident and in our mainstream schools.  So I am told that there are Primary Schools in the borough where a third of the class could have SEND and that’s a different structural issue that we are going to have to address.  I can’t specifically say that that’s related to Article 24 of the Convention of Human Rights but I can see that actually for us this is something for us which we are going to have to look at and plan for. 

 

It will always be the case, though, that a child with SEN may be placed in a special school, either because we don’t have the places that can be supported in that way or equally because for any school with a significant number of SEN children, it could very easily unbalance the education of that school for those children who don’t have SEND, something of which we have to be conscious and aware of.  So the issue of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 103.

104.

Report of the Armed Forces Community Covenant Member Officer Working Group pdf icon PDF 164 KB

To receive the report at Appendix A on the Member Officer Working Group and agree its recommendations

Minutes:

The Council considered a report on progress made in relation to the Armed Forces Community Covenant, signed in June 2013, which pledged civic support for armed forces personnel in the borough in areas such as work and training, housing, schools for service children and welfare, and pledged to promote public understanding and awareness of issues affecting the Armed Forces.  For the Armed Forces, the covenant encourages personnel and their families to do as much as they can to support the community and promote activity which integrates service and civilian life.  The Covenant complements, at a local level, the national Covenant which is a promise from the nation that those who serve or have served in the armed forces, and their families, will be treated fairly.

The Covenant has been championed by a Member Officer Group (MOG) led by Cllr Ken Smith with support from Cllr Margaret Thompson.  Annex 1 of the report summarises the work of the MOG over the past 4.5 years, including intelligence about what is available to current and ex-armed forces personnel and their families in Kingston.  Progress has been made in a number of areas, and in particular in housing, where a commitment to allocate up to two flats each year to single veterans has been made under the Housing Allocations Scheme 2017.

The future active commitment of the Council to the Covenant will be led by the Director of Communities, and a summary report on progress will be submitted to full Council annually.

Resolved that:

 

1.            a Councillor is appointed at Annual Council as an Armed Forces Champion along with an Assistant Armed Forces Champion (from different political groups);

2.            staff and elected Members are made aware of the Armed Forces Community Covenant for Kingston as part of their induction;

3.            the Council and its partners continue to develop an understanding of the needs of the local armed forces, including the new G (Guards) Company of the London Regiment, and of veterans, and respond in accordance with the Covenant; and

4.            a report summarising delivery of the Armed Forces Community Covenant be presented to Council annually.

Voting - unanimous

105.

Report of the Health and Wellbeing Board - 15 March 2018 pdf icon PDF 125 KB

To receive the report at Appendix B of the agenda.

Minutes:

The report of the Board was received.

 

Voting – unanimous

106.

Report of the Adults and Children's Committee - 22 March 2018 pdf icon PDF 52 KB

To receive the report at Appendix C of the agenda.

Minutes:

The report of the Committee was received.

 

Voting – unanimous

107.

Report of the Growth Committee - 27 March 2018 pdf icon PDF 111 KB

To receive the report at Appendix D of the agenda which includes recommendations to Council.

Minutes:

The report of the Committee was received and the recommendations of the Committee on the item set out below were agreed:

 

107a

Appropriation for planning purposes of Neville House Yard Car Park

Minutes:

The Growth Committee had recommended to Council the use of Council powers to appropriate land at Neville House Yard for planning purposes under section 122 of the Local Government Act 1972 in order to facilitate the construction of the Gough House part of the Kingston Town Centre Regeneration Scheme.

 

By exercising its appropriation powers, the Council will be able to rely on its powers in section 203 of the Housing and Planning Act 2016 to override adverse rights, interests and restrictions on the Land, such as to ensure that the development of the Gough House part of the Scheme is developed further to the Gough House planning permission which is expected to be granted shortly.

 

The Council wishes to bring forward the regeneration of Kingston Town Centre as quickly as possible. The Scheme is considered to bring significant benefits in terms of housing, jobs and economic investment to Kingston.

 

Resolved that:

 

1.            Neville House Yard Car Park be appropriated for planning purposes in accordance with section 122 of the Local Government Act 1972; and

2.            powers under section 203 of the Housing and Planning Act 2016 be relied upon to override any claim for an injunction in respect of the rights or covenants adversely interfered with as a result of the Kingston Town Centre Regeneration Scheme.

Voting - unanimous

108.

Report of the Maldens and Coombe Neighbourhood Committee - 13 March 2018 pdf icon PDF 54 KB

To receive the report at Appendix E of the agenda.

Minutes:

The report of the Committee was received.

 

Voting – unanimous

109.

Report of the Surbiton Neighbourhood Committee - 13 March 2018 pdf icon PDF 46 KB

To receive the report at Appendix F of the agenda.

Minutes:

The report of the Committee was received.

 

Voting – unanimous

110.

Report of the South of the Borough Neighbourhood Committee - 14 March 2018 pdf icon PDF 54 KB

To receive the report at Appendix G of the agenda.

Minutes:

The report of the Committee was received.

 

Voting – unanimous

111.

Appointment of Honorary Tipstaff and Town Crier pdf icon PDF 73 KB

To make an appointment to the vacant position of Honorary Tipstaff and Town Crier.

Minutes:

The Council considered the appointment to the vacant position of Honorary Tipstaff and Town Crier for the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames, with reference to a report in agenda papers and to late material circulated prior to the meeting.

 

The position of Honorary Tipstaff and Town Crier (which is an honorary role) has been vacant since 2010, following the death of the previous incumbent, and the intention is for a new incumbent to take up the role from the date of the Annual Council meeting (22 May), for a period of three years until the Annual Council meeting in 2021.  During that period the person appointed will be working as part of the Mayoral team with a view to developing the role further.  At the end of the three years, the role will be open again, but the person appointed will be able to re-apply.

 

A shortlist of candidates for the role were interviewed by the Mayor, the Representative Deputy Lieutenant and the Honorary High Steward and as a result of that process Mr Michael Seigel was recommended to the Council for appointment to the position.

 

Mr Michael Seigel has been a Borough resident for 33 years with a background in the education sector in Kingston, including as Head Master of Rokeby School, and a record of community involvement within the Royal Borough over three decades, including chairing the Canbury Area Residents' Association (CARA) when it was first set up in 1991,   He is currently Chair of the Kingston Tour Guides and has a particular interest in history and promoting the Royal Borough.

 

Resolved that Mr Michael Seigel be appointed to the position of Honorary Tipstaff and Town Crier. with effect from the Annual Council meeting on 22 May for a period of three years to expire on the date of the Annual Council meeting in 2021.

 

Voting - unanimous

112.

Changes to Statutory and Proper Officers

In view of the departure from the Council of the Head of Corporate Governance following the Borough Council Elections, it is necessary to address the allocation of the constitutional functions undertaken by the post.

 

The post presently holds the statutory role of Scrutiny Officer and a variety of Proper Officer designations. S10 of the Local Authorities (Committee System) (England) Regulations 2012 requires that a Scrutiny Officer must be appointed if the authority maintains an Overview and Scrutiny Committee.  The function of the Scrutiny Officer is designed to promote the role of Scrutiny Committees (in the case of this Authority, the Health Overview Panel), provide support to the Committee(s) and their Members and to provide support and guidance to other Members and Officers in relation to the overview and scrutiny committee(s)’ functions. The role cannot be held by the Chief Executive, Chief Finance Officer or the Monitoring Officer. It is proposed that the function be allocated to the Democratic Services Team Leader. 

 

The relevant Proper Officer functions are set out below.  It is proposed that these now be exercised by the Assistant Director, Governance and Law:

·         Provision of an Internal Audit Service

·         Witnessing Declarations of Acceptance of Office by Councillors and the Mayor *

·         Receiving notice of resignation from the Council

·         Determination of exempt items under the Access to Information legislation

·         Preparing and publishing the Authority's Forward Plan and other matters related to the Forward Plan

·         Recording decisions

·         Placing an item on a Committee agenda at the request of any Member

·         Calling additional meetings of Committees

* Can also be undertaken by the Chief Executive

(Proper Officer functions in respect of Elections are the subject of a separate report on this agenda.)

For the avoidance of doubt it also proposed that all references in the Constitution to the Head of Corporate Governance, save for those relating to the election-related Proper Officer roles indicated above, be amended to the Assistant Director, Governance and Law with immediate effect.

The Council is asked to RESOLVE that the re-designation of roles and functions set out above be approved with immediate effect and the Interim Assistant Director, Governance and Law be authorised to make any necessary consequential adjustments to the Constitution.

 

 

 

Minutes:

The Council considered a report to appoint to a statutory Scrutiny Officer role and designate various Proper Officer functions (set out in the Council’s Constitution) which are currently held by the Head of Corporate Governance who will retire in May. 

 

The report also proposed that all references in the Constitution to the Head of Corporate Governance, save for those specifically designated otherwise (for example, relating to the election-related Proper Officer roles*) be amended to the Assistant Director, Governance and Law with immediate effect.

 

The Proper Officer functions to be exercised by the Assistant Director, Governance and Law are:

        Provision of an Internal Audit Service

        Witnessing Declarations of Acceptance of Office by Councillors and the Mayor (can also be undertaken by the Chief Executive)

        Receiving notice of resignation from the Council

        Determination of exempt items under the Access to Information legislation

        Preparing and publishing the Authority's Forward Plan and other matters related to the Forward Plan

        Recording decisions

        Placing an item on a Committee agenda at the request of any Member

        Calling additional meetings of Committees

 

(*Proper Officer functions in respect of Elections are the subject of a separate resolution of the Council - ref Minute 114 below.)

 

The function of the Scrutiny Officer is to promote the role of Scrutiny Committees (in the case of this Authority, the Health Overview Panel), provide support to the Committee(s) and their Members and to provide support and guidance to other Members and Officers in relation to the overview and scrutiny committee(s)’ functions. The role cannot be held by the Chief Executive, Chief Finance Officer or the Monitoring Officer. It was therefore proposed that this function be undertaken by the Democratic Services Team Leader.

 

Resolved that the re-designation of roles and functions as set out above be approved with immediate effect and that the Interim Assistant Director, Governance and Law be authorised to make any necessary consequential adjustments to the Constitution.

 

Voting - unanimous

 

113.

Returning Officer and Electoral Registration Officer

In view of the departure from the Council of the Head of Corporate Governance following the Borough Council Elections, it is necessary to address the allocation of the constitutional functions of the Returning Officer for Elections and Referenda, and the Electoral Registration Officer undertaken by the post, both immediately and in the short term.  Members will be aware of the report and item discussed earlier in relation to the changes to the Constitution in respect of the Proper Officer Functions/designations, and the Monitoring Officer’s report is duly noted for those purposes.

This report is presented to Full Council to consider the interim arrangements for the Returning Officer, and the Electoral Registration Officer, given the imminent departure of the Andrew Bessant, the Head of Corporate Governance, and specifically for the post - Local Government Elections on 3 May 2018 and any referenda during the interim period. Due to the impending Local Elections on 3 May 2018, it is imperative the Council has a Statutory Returning Officer during post Elections pending a permanent appointment to the role.

The appointment of the Returning Officer and Electoral Registration Officer will commence on 4 May 2018 until such time as permanent arrangements have been made for those roles.  It is proposed that Charlie Adan, the Chief Executive (Head of Paid Service) of the Council, should be appointed as Returning Officer, and Electoral Registration Officer, until a permanent appointment has been made, which appointment(s) will be the subject of a further report to Council for approval.

Legal Implications

Every district council in England is required by Section 35(1) of the Representation of the People Act 1983 (the 1983 Act) to appoint an officer of the council to be the Returning Officer (RO) for local elections.  Section 35(3) of the 1983 Act, provides that the RO at local government elections in London shall be the Proper Officer of the borough.  The Proper Officer of the Council is the person appointed for a particular purpose by that local authority under Section 270(3) of the Local Government Act 1972.

Section 8(2)(a) of the 1983 Act also requires the Council to appoint an officer to be the Electoral Registration Officer (ERO). The ERO is responsible for the preparation and maintenance of the registers of parliamentary electors for any parliamentary constituency or part of a constituency within its area, and of local government electors for its area.

At parliamentary elections, the Mayor of the Borough acts as Returning Officer.  However, Section 28(1) of the 1983 Act 1983 requires that the administration of any election be discharged by the Electoral Registration Officer, designated for the purpose as Acting Returning Officer.

The Council therefore has a legal duty to appoint certain designated statutory officers including an RO and ERO.

The designation of such officers will ensure that the Council continues to comply with its statutory duties set out in the Local Government Act 1972, the Local Government Finance Act 1988, the Representation of the People Act 1983 and the Electoral Administration  ...  view the full agenda text for item 113.

Minutes:

The statutory functions of Returning Officer (RO) for Elections and Referenda, and Electoral Registration Officer (ERO) are currently undertaken by the Head of Corporate Governance (who is designated as the Proper Officer for these functions in the Council’s Constitution) who will retire at the end of May.  The ERO is responsible for the preparation and maintenance of the registers of parliamentary electors for any parliamentary constituency (or part of a constituency) within its area, and of local government electors for its area. The RO holds personal statutory responsibility for the effective delivery of these elections. 

 

Resolved that:

 

1.            in accordance with the Representation of the People Act 1983 and all related legislation, Charlie Adan, the Chief Executive (Head of Paid Service) of the Council is appointed as:-

a.       Returning Officer, and designated the Proper Officer for the purposes of Elections and Referenda; and

b.       Electoral Registration Officer,

 

with effect from 1 June 2018 until a permanent appointment is made to those roles, following the retirement of the Head of Corporate Governance on 31 May 2018; and

 

2.            the Interim Assistant Director of Law and Governance be authorised to make the appropriate changes to the Constitution.

 

Voting - unanimous

114.

Urgent Items authorised by the Mayor

 

 

To consider any items which, in the view of the Mayor, should be dealt with as a matter of urgency because of special circumstances in accordance with S100B(4) of the Local Government Act 1972.

 

 

 

 

Background Papers  held by Democratic Support 020 8547 5023

 

  • Relevant Committee Agendas.

Minutes:

There was no urgent business authorised by the Mayor.

Annex 1 - Amendments to the Motion

Annex 1

For Minute item 103

 

Liberal Democrat Amendment to Labour Motion: Council Homes for the Many’ (NOT CARRIED)

 

Proposed by: Councillor Liz Green

Seconded by: Councillor Malcolm Self

 

‘The Council notes that:

Delete bullet points 2 and 3 and replace with

  • Whilst a survey was undertaken by Renaisi, reporting in December 2016, it only offered 3 options of completed demolition, retaining 2 tower blocks or retaining all 4 tower blocks, there was no option for rejecting any regeneration. A survey undertaken by resident groups in June 2017 did offer that as an option and the majority of respondents were completely opposed to regeneration. However both surveys had low response rates, so cannot be taken as an accurate view of residents opinions.
  • The total number of council tenant households on the CRE is currently 653, so to help reduce the housing waiting lists the Council should be aiming to increasing the number of council rented properties available.

 

Add a 5th bullet point

  • During this pre-election period of purdah, the Council is not permitted to commit to policy anything that a future administration would have to implement, such as committing to undertake a ballot of this regeneration project.

 

‘The Council believes that the overriding purpose of regenerating CRE is to:

Alter bullet point 1 to the following:

·         All existing tenants, all current leaseholders and freeholders who wish to be rehoused on the regenerated estate should be offered like for like accommodation and tenure, within a thriving community.  Secure tenants remaining lifetime secure tenants

Remove “which is what residents want” from bullet point 2

Add bullet points 5 and 6

  • A suitably large proportion of the new units to be made available as social housing should be larger  3+ bed units

·         There should be no “poor doors “ separating privately owned accommodation from social housing and that all communal amenity space should be open to all residents

Change final paragraph to read:

The Council notes the above aspirations and resolves that, subject to receipt of advice, every possible support should be given to the Residents Steering Group and the three residents’ representatives on the procurement selection panel. Furthermore, significant weight will be given to the views expressed by the residents’ representatives in the appraisal of the merits of alternative options and that appraisals of these options are reported back to future council meetings.


 

 

Full text of Liberal Democrat amended motion for ease of reading:

‘The Council notes that:

  • As a landlord with retained stock, we are in desperate need of more council housing to reduce the number of households on the borough-wide housing register currently standing at about 3500 households.
  • Whilst a survey was undertaken by Renaisi, reporting in December 2016, it only offered 3 options of completed demolition, retaining 2 tower blocks or retaining all 4 tower blocks, there was no option for rejecting any regeneration. A survey undertaken by resident groups in June 2017 did offer that as an option and the majority of respondents were completely opposed to regeneration. However both surveys had low response rates, so cannot be taken as an accurate view of residents opinions.
  • The total number of council tenant households on the CRE is currently 653, so to help reduce the housing waiting lists the Council should be aiming to increasing the number of council rented properties available.
  • We can carry out our own resident ballot. The Mayor of London has already handed £46.2M to the CRE regeneration programme so is unlikely to attract any more mayoral funding and will fall outside of any future rules the Mayor may introduce as part of his Better Homes for Local People good practice guide.
  • During this pre-election period of purdah, the Council is not permitted to commit to policy anything that a future administration would have to implement, such as committing to undertake a ballot of this regeneration project.

 

‘The Council believes that the overriding purpose of regenerating CRE is to:

  • All existing tenants, all current leaseholders and freeholders who wish to be rehoused on the regenerated estate should be offered like for like accommodation and tenure, within a thriving community.  Secure tenants remaining lifetime secure tenants
  • Build the largest possible number of council homes and in is line with Council policy of 50% affordable housing on new developments over 10 units;
  • Reduce the number of households on the housing register;
  •  Ensure residents are at the heart of decision-making, rather than on the sidelines observing and believing their voice is not heard.
  • A suitably large proportion of the new units to be made available as social housing should be larger  3+ bed units

·         There should be no “poor doors” separating privately owned accommodation from social housing and that all communal amenity space should be open to all residents.

The Council notes the above aspirations and resolves that, subject to receipt of advice, every possible support should be given to the Residents Steering Group and the three residents’ representatives on the procurement selection panel.  Furthermore, significant weight will be given to the views expressed by the residents’ representatives in the appraisal of the merits of alternative options and that appraisals of these options are reported back to future council meetings.

 

Annex 2 - Written reply to Council Question

Annex 2

Written reply to Council Question

 

By:      Councillor Geoff Austin

 

To:       Councillor Richard Hudson, Portfolio Holder for Children’s Social Care and Health

 

Question:

 

Can the portfolio holder update us on the successful working relationship with the DfE and the tremendous news that Kingston has secured £3m more funding for Kingston young people?

 

Written reply:

 

I’m sure that all Members will be extremely pleased that the Department for Education have granted Kingston an advance of £3m towards the special educational needs services next year.  This means that special educational needs service will receive a total of £24.9m.  An increase of £4.3m on 2017/18.

 

We have to submit an improvement plan.  This is already underway as a consequence of the work of the recovery board which has been established by Kingston’s Chief Executive. The DfE have also asked us to review financial control and already we have taken a number of steps as part of this process, including:

·         changing the sign off of funds to Achieving for Children (AFC) to the Section 151 Officer of Kingston Council.

·         making a clear statement of the council’s policy towards the council’s funding of educational needs in the budget report approved by Borough Council on 27 February.

·         reviewing the Kingston representation on the AFC Board.

·         additionally, as Members will know, we are establishing a high level expert Commission to discuss all issues associated with Special Education Needs in Kingston.

 

In the development of all these initiatives, the Council are in close contact with the Department for Education and working with them.  Through the operation of this partnership we will ensure that the requirements for children in Kingston will continue to be met within the financial allocation provided.