Agenda, decisions and minutes

Venue: County Hall, Oxford OX1 1ND

Contact: Deborah Miller  Tel: (01865) 815384; E-Mail: deborah.miller@oxfordshire.gov.uk

Items
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1/16

Minutes pdf icon PDF 264 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 8 December 2015 (CC1) and to receive information arising from them.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting held on 8December 2015 were approved and signed, subject to the text ‘specific’ being inserted before the words ‘senior officer’ in the 2nd paragraph of Minute 88/15 (Appointment of Independent Person).

2/16

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

An apology for absence was received from Councillor Roz Smith.

3/16

Official Communications

Minutes:

The Chairman reported as follows:

 

Council paid tribute and held a minute’s silence to honour the memory of former County Councillor Don Seale, County Councillor from 1997- 2013 and former County Councillor Barbara Gatehouse, County Councillor from 2001 – 2009.

4/16

Petitions and Public Address

Minutes:

The Council received the following Petitions and Public Address:

 

Petitions

 

Ms Mary Stiles, Parish Transport Representative for Thame, presented a Petition calling on the County Council not to vote for the proposed Budget on 16th February 2016, which included the withdrawal of all bus subsidies, on the basis that the 120/121/123/124 in the Thame area was a lifeline to local people who could not get into the town by any other means, did not have their own transport and could not walk that far. She further made a plea to at least maintain a service 2 to 3 times a week.

 

Ms Lynne Keen presented a Petition urging the Council not to close the Children’s Centres, but instead to keep them open to all families as well as using them for the proposed 8 referral centres being opened to be accessed by referral for most vulnerable families.

 

Public Address

 

Ms Josephine French,  doctoral student outlined the results of a medical study (the adverse Childhood Experiences Study) and suggested that the Children’s centres and services provided protection against the risk factors set out in the study.  She urged Councillors to keep the centres open to protect against generational cycles of suffering and social and economic difficulty and warned that there would be an increase in welfare and support services if they were not kept open.

 

Mr Malcolm Leading spoke as parish transport representative against the withdrawal of bus subsidies on the basis of the detrimental effect it would have on many parishes, including access to health services, doctors, dentists, hospital, shops and increased cars on the roads.  He urged the Council to delay the decisions to allow for further talks between the parishes, County Council and Bus companies.

 

Ms Donna Crook spoke on behalf of ‘Save Our Henley Bus campaign’, urging the Council to keep the local bus service on the basis that it provided some of the most vulnerable people in the community with a lifeline to local services and enabled people to live independently without care or going into care homes.

 

Ms Claire Soper, outlined concerns about the Council's proposal to close Health and Wellbeing Centres in 2017 which  provided much needed support for the frail and vulnerable elderly, often with dementia, Parkinson’s and stroke who could not speak for themselves.  She urged the Council to reconsider the proposal to shut all 8 centres and give consideration to retaining 3 ‘hubs’ in the North, City and South.

 

Ms Clare Ellis and Ms Lesley Dewhurst spoke on behalf of the Homeless Voice Group urging the Council to protect the most vulnerable of Society not to withdraw the housing support budget.

 

Ms Suzy Imeson and Ms Esme Mutter spoke on behalf of the Stroke Association relating people’s experiences with Aspasia, particularly around communication on the telephone.  They urged the Council not to support proposals to end funding for the Stroke service.

 

Mr David Ricketts spoke on behalf of Unit, urging the Council not to cut early intervention Services in Oxfordshire.

 

Ms  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4/16

5/16

Questions with Notice from Members of the Public

Minutes:

The Council received 2 Questions on Notice to Members of the Council

 

Mr Thomas Grey to Councillor Judith Heathcoat

 

Following the Chipping Norton Hospital Action Group's survey, the results of which we would like to hand over to OCC for its own evaluation, will OCC now take the views expressed by over 1300 people in the community into account and give consideration to including Chipping Norton War Memorial Community Hospital in the countywide review to be conducted in 2016?

 

Answer

 

As with all consultations the Council undertakes, the views of all those in the community who respond will be conscientiously considered.

 

Ms Suzy Imeson to Councillor Judith Heathcoat

 

The rationale for the proposed cut to the “SCS15 Intervention and preventative services – aphasia” states that this is to remove duplication and streamline stroke services. What current duplication and lack of streamlined services does this refer to, how has this been assessed and has this been corroborated by service users?

 

Answer

 

The aphasia service predominantly supports people who are being discharged from hospital following a stroke, and helps people to regain independence. In this way, it provides similar functions to a range of short-term support (also called intermediate care) services that are typically used to support people following a period of illness or an event which has made them less able to get by in their day to day lives, for example, after a stay in hospital or an injury.

 

A detailed review of these short-term support services undertaken jointly with NHS partners has identified that there is a significant amount of overlap and duplication between them. As agreed by Cabinet on 26th January 2016, these services will now be replaced with two services: a single Urgent Response & Telecare Service, and a single Hospital Discharge & Reablement Service. It is this duplication and streamlining that was referred to in the rationale, and applies to a wide range of services including aphasia. The rationale was not intended to indicate duplication within stroke services in particular, and I apologise if this was not clear.

 

I absolutely acknowledge the good work that the service does as part of the wider support provided by the Stroke Association, and appreciate the proposal to stop funding this service is unwelcome news. However, the scale of the budget reductions the council faces are significant and will require some very difficult decisions to ensure we can set a balanced budget from April 2016 onwards.

 

We will continue to ensure that people with eligible needs for care and support receive the support they need. Oxfordshire County Council is committed to working with Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group to ensure that appropriate support for people who have had a stroke is in place. If this budget proposal is agreed, we will engage with current users of the service to help ensure that future support for people with aphasia is integrated into the Council’s core adult social services, including the new short-term services referred to above. This would include an emphasis on ensuring  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5/16

6/16

Pay Policy Statement - Remuneration Committee Report to Council on 16 February 2016 pdf icon PDF 590 KB

Report by the Chief Human Resources Officer (CC8)

 

The Remuneration Committee is required to report annually to Council on the Pay Policy Statement. The report updates the pay policy statement and indicates the future proposals of the Remuneration Committee

 

The Council is RECOMMENDED to:

 

(a)          receive the report of the Remuneration Committee;

 

(b)         approve the revised Pay Policy Statement at Annex 2 to this report.

Minutes:

The Council had before them the report of the Remuneration Committee (CC8) which updated the Council’s Pay Policy Statement and set out future proposals of the Remuneration Committee in relation to this area.

 

RESOLVED: (on a Motion by Councillor Webber, seconded by Councillor Fawcett and carried nem con) to:

 

(a)        receive the report of the Remuneration Committee;

(b)          approve the revised Pay Policy Statement at Annex 2 to this report.

7/16

Service & Resource Planning 2016/17 - 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 97 KB

Report by the Chief Finance Officer (CC9).

 

This report is the culmination of the service & resource planning process for 2016/17 to 2019/20. It sets out the Cabinet’s proposed budget for 2016/17, medium term financial plan and capital programme, together with a number of statements/policies that the Council is required to approve for the 2016/17 financial year. The report also includes the Corporate Plan to 2020.

 

The report is divided into four main sections which are outlined below:

 

Section 1 – Leader of the Council’s overview

Section 2 – Corporate Plan

Section 3 – Chief Finance Officer’s statutory report

Section 4 – Budget Strategy and Capital Programme

 

The Council is RECOMMENDED to:

(a)          approve the Corporate Plan 2016/17 – 2019/20 as set out in section 2.0;

(b)          have regard to the Chief Finance Officer’s report (at Section 3) in approving recommendations c to f below;

(c)          (in respect of revenue) approve:

(1)          the council tax and precept calculations for 2016/17 set out in section 4.3 and in particular:

(i)            a precept of £305,896,875;

(ii)          a council tax for band D equivalent properties of £1,281.64;

(2)          a budget for 2016/17 as set out in section 4.4;

(3)          a medium term plan for 2016/17 to 2019/20 as set out in section 4.1 (which incorporates changes to the existing medium term financial plan as set out in section 4.2);

(4)          the use of Dedicated Schools Grant (provisional allocation) for 2016/17 as set out in section 4.7;

(5)          virement arrangements to operate within the approved budget for 2016/17 as set out in section 4.8;

 

(d)          (in respect of treasury management) approve:

(1)          the Treasury Management Strategy Statement and Annual Investment Strategy for 2016/17 as set out in section 4.5;

(2)          the continued delegation of authority to withdraw or advance additional funds to/from external fund managers to the Treasury Management Strategy Team;

(3)          that any further changes required to the 2016/17 strategy be delegated to the Chief Finance Officer in consultation with the Leader of the Council and the Cabinet Member for Finance;

(4)          the Prudential Indicators as set out in Appendix A of section 4.5

(5)          the Minimum Revenue Provision Methodology Statement as set out in Appendix B of section 4.5;

(6)          the Specified Investment and Non Specified Investment Instruments as set out in Appendix C and D of section 4.5;

(7)          the Treasury Management Policy Statement as set out at Appendix E of section 4.5;

 

(e)          (in respect of balances and reserves) approve:

(1)          the Chief Finance Officer’s recommended level of balances for 2016/17 as set out in section 4.6.1

(2)          the planned level of reserves for 2016/17 to 2019/20 as set out in section 4.6.2;

 

(f)           (in respect of capital) approve:

(1)          a Capital Programme for 2015/16 to 2019/20 as set out in section 4.9 including the Highways Structural Maintenance Programme 2016/17 and 2017/18 in section 4.9.1;

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Council had before it the report by the Chief Finance Officer (CC8) which outlined the service & resource planning process for 2016/17 to 2019/20 including the Leader of the Council’s overview (Section 1, published on the day), Corporate Plan (Section 2), Chief Finance Officer’s statutory report (Section 3) and Budget Strategy and Capital Programme (Section 4), together with a number of statements/policies that the Council was required to approve for the 2016/17financial year.

 

Under Section 25 of the Local Government Act 2003, the Chief Finance Officer was required to report on the robustness of the estimates made in determining the council tax requirement and on the adequacy of the proposed financial reserves.  The assessment was set out in section 3 of the report. Council was required to have regard to this report in making their decisions on the budget.

 

The Council also had before it budget proposals in the form of: Amendments by the Labour Group to the Cabinet’s Revenue Budget (CC9 Labour) and Amendments by the Green Group to the Cabinet’s Revenue Budget (CC9 Green), and a statement by the Liberal Democrat Group (CC9 Liberal Democrat), together with a revised Section 4.3 – Council Tax Precepts. (Additional Papers).

 

Councillor Hudspeth moved and Councillor Brighouse seconded a motion which sought Council’s approval for an adjournment to allow discussion between the Leader of the Council and the Leader of the Labour Group to see if they could agree on a proposal to put before Council.

 

The motion was put to the vote and was carried nem con.  Accordingly, Council was adjourned at 11.00 am for 3 hours and 35 minutes.

 

Council reconvened at 2.35 pm.

 

With the consent of Council, Councillor Hudspeth moved and Councillor Brighouse seconded an amendment to his original motion as shown at Annex 2 to these minutes.  In moving the motion, Councillor Hudspeth and Brighouse paid tribute to Lorna Baxter and Katy Jurczyszyn for all their work in preparing the budget.

 

With the consent of Council, Councillor Brighouse withdrew her amendment.

 

With the consent of Council, Councillor Williams moved and Councillor Coates seconded an amended version of his amendment to the Cabinet’s budget as set out in the Annex 1 to these minutes. In moving his motion, Councillor Williams paid tribute to Lorna Baxter and her team for their help and support.

 

Following debate, the amendment was put to the vote and was lost by 59 votes to 2, with 1 abstention.

 

Following a lengthy debate, the substantive motion was then put to the vote and it was carried by 60 votes to 2 (details of amended 4.2.2. shown at Annex 2)

 

RESOLVED: (by 60 votes to 2) to:

 

(a)          approve the Corporate Plan 2016/17 – 2019/20 as set out in section 2.0;

(b)          have regard to the Chief Finance Officer’s report (at Section 3) in approving recommendations c to f below;

(c)          (in respect of revenue) approve:

(1)          the council tax and precept calculations for 2016/17 set out in section 4.3 and in particular:

(i)            a  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7/16