Agenda, decisions and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber - County Hall, New Road, Oxford OX1 1ND. View directions

Contact: Colm Ó Caomhánaigh  Tel: 07393 001096; E-Mail:  colm.ocaomhanaigh@oxfordshire.gov.uk

Link: video link https://oxon.cc/Cabinet26042022

Items
No. Item

47/22

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillor Glynis Phillips.

Councillors Neil Fawcett and Calum Miller attended remotely.

 

48/22

Declarations of Interest

- guidance note opposite

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

 

49/22

Minutes pdf icon PDF 626 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 15 March 2022 (CA3) and to receive information arising from them.

 

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 15 March 2022 were approved and signed.

 

50/22

Questions from County Councillors pdf icon PDF 196 KB

Any county councillor may, by giving notice to the Proper Officer by 9 am two working days before the meeting, ask a question on any matter in respect of the Cabinet’s delegated powers.

 

The number of questions which may be asked by any councillor at any one meeting is limited to two (or one question with notice and a supplementary question at the meeting) and the time for questions will be limited to 30 minutes in total. As with questions at Council, any questions which remain unanswered at the end of this item will receive a written response.

 

Questions submitted prior to the agenda being despatched are shown below and will be the subject of a response from the appropriate Cabinet Member or such other councillor or officer as is determined by the Cabinet Member, and shall not be the subject of further debate at this meeting. Questions received after the despatch of the agenda, but before the deadline, will be shown on the Schedule of Addenda circulated at the meeting, together with any written response which is available at that time.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The questions received from County Councillors and responses are set out in an Annex to these Minutes.

 

51/22

Petitions and Public Address pdf icon PDF 87 KB

Members of the public who wish to speak at this meeting can attend the meeting in person or ‘virtually’ through an online connection.  In line with current Government advice, those attending the meeting in person are asked to consider wearing a face-covering.

 

Normally requests to speak at this public meeting are required by 9 am on the day preceding the published date of the meeting. However, during the current situation and to facilitate ‘hybrid’ meetings we are asking that requests to speak are submitted by no later than 9am four working days before the meeting i.e. 9 am on Wednesday 20 April 2022.  Requests to speak should be sent to colm.ocaomhanaigh@oxfordshire.gov.uk .

 

If you are speaking ‘virtually’, you may submit a written statement of your presentation to ensure that if the technology fails, then your views can still be taken into account. A written copy of your statement can be provided no later than 9 am 2 working days before the meeting. Written submissions should be no longer than 1 A4 sheet.

 

Minutes:

The Chair agreed to the following requests to speak:

 

Item 7: A40 HIF2 Smart Corridor

Graham Smith

Ian Leggett

Councillor Dan Levy

 

52/22

Tree Policy for Oxfordshire pdf icon PDF 252 KB

Cabinet Member: Climate Change Delivery & Environment

Forward Plan Ref: 2022/014

Contact: Paul Fermer, Assistant Director Operations Tel: 07825 273984 / Andy Lederer, Principal Officer – Arboriculture Tel: 07860 453603

 

Report by Corporate Director Environment & Place (CA6).

 

This new Tree Policy puts the emphasis on ‘Presumption in favour of trees’ to maximise canopy cover opportunities and address the Climate Emergency across the Oxfordshire Landscape and Streetscape.

 

The Cabinet is RECOMMENDED to:

 

a)               Approve the updated Tree Policy as at ANNEX 1;

 

b)              Approve the inclusion of related matters into the Street Design Guidance;

 

c)               Support the additonal information provided as ‘Application of Tree Policy Guidance’ as set out at ANNEX 2.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a new Tree Policy putting the emphasis on ‘Presumption in favour of trees’ to maximise canopy cover opportunities and address the Climate Emergency across the Oxfordshire Landscape and Streetscape.  Cabinet was recommended to approve the policy and related guidance.

 

Councillor Pete Sudbury, Cabinet Member for Climate Change Delivery & Environment introduced the policy.  He described it as part of a much-needed strategic shift.  The old policy viewed trees as something nice to have but saw them largely in terms of costs and risks rather than as assets and something that helps us reduce risks.  Under the new policy trees were regarded as critical climate infrastructure.  It sets out the need to expand the supply chain for locally grown trees.

 

The Climate Change Committee outlined 10 principles for successful adaptation.  He emphasised four of them: a clear vision, clarity of targets, impact of unpredictable extremes and threshold effects – triggered by particular levels of climate heating.  There were two pillars: people and the natural world.  The latter will survive no matter what, the question was whether we can accompany it.

 

There was a broader strategy being worked on but the Climate Change Committee recommended acting quickly on measures such as those in this policy - recognising that tree planting had multiple benefits.  He thanked officers for their work on the policy, especially Andy Lederer and Nick Mottram, and also acknowledged the work done by a former Labour councillor for Hackney, John Burke, who led that council’s very innovative tree strategy.  Many of his ideas informed this policy.

 

The Chair put the recommendations.

 

RESOLVED to:

 

a)              Approve the updated Tree Policy as at ANNEX 1;

 

b)              Approve the inclusion of related matters into the Street Design Guidance;

 

c)              Support the additional information provided as ‘Application of Tree Policy Guidance’ as set out at ANNEX 2.

 

53/22

A40 HIF2 Smart Corridor - Compulsory Purchase and Side Road Orders pdf icon PDF 295 KB

Cabinet Member: Travel & Development Strategy

Forward Plan Ref: 2022/044

Contact: Arjen Bouwmeester, Programme Lead (A40), arjen.bouwmeester@oxfordshire.gov.uk  

 

Report by Corporate Director Environment & Place (CA7).

 

To seek approval of the Statement of Reasons and Orders Plans and approval to make the Compulsory Purchase and Side Road Orders.

 

NB: Annexes A and B are published as Supplementary Documents due to their number and size.

 

The Cabinet is RECOMMENDED to:

 

a)            Confirm that the acquisition of the land identified on the map attached to this report (Annex B) (“the Order Map”) being the map accompanying The Oxfordshire County Council (Highways Infrastructure - A40 HIF2 Smart Corridor (Hill Farm to Dukes Cut)) Compulsory Purchase Order 2022 (“the CPO”) is necessary for highway purposes;

 

b)           Approve the Joint Statement of Reasons (Annex A) for the CPO and The Oxfordshire County Council (Highways Infrastructure – A40 HIF2 Smart Corridor (Hill Farm to Dukes Cut)) (Side Roads) Order 2022 (“the SRO”), together with approving the CPO, the Order Map, the SRO and the plans accompanying the SRO (“SRO Plans”) all substantially in the form annexed to this report but to delegate to the Corporate Director Environment & Place following consultation with the Director of Law & Governance, authority to modify them as necessary;

 

c)            Authorise the Director of Law & Governanceto make The Oxfordshire County Council (Highways Infrastructure – A40 HIF2 Smart Corridor (Hill Farm to Dukes Cut)) (Side Roads) Order 2022 (“the SRO”) to enable the stopping-up, diversion, alteration, improvement and creation of new lengths of highway or reclassification of existing highways, and giving authority to the acquisition of necessary land pursuant to the CPO and that the Common Seal of the Council be affixed to the SRO and to the SRO Plans. The SRO also enables the stopping up of private means of access as necessary where the scheme design necessitates and re-provision of private means of access;

 

d)           Authorise the Director of Law & Governanceto make The Oxfordshire County Council (Highways Infrastructure - A40 HIF2 Smart Corridor (Hill Farm to Dukes Cut)) Compulsory Purchase Order 2022 pursuant to Sections 239, 240, 246, 250 and 260 of the Highways Act 1980 (as amended) and Part II and III to Schedule 2, and Schedule 3 to the Acquisition of Land Act 1981 for the purpose of acquiring the land and interests shown on the Order Map and described in the Schedules to the CPO (or such lesser area of land should this in his opinion be appropriate) to facilitate the construction of new highway on such land and that the Common Seal of the Council be affixed to the CPO and to the Order Map;

 

e)            Authorise the Director of Law & Governance to advertise the making of the CPO and the SRO and to submit the CPO and SRO to the Secretary of State for Transport for confirmation, together with authorising the Director of Law & Governance to take all other relevant action thereon to promote the confirmation of the CPO and the SRO;

 

f)  ...  view the full agenda text for item 53/22

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cabinet’s approval was sought for the Statement of Reasons and Orders Plans and approval to make the Compulsory Purchase and Side Road Orders in relation to the A40 HIF2 Smart Corridor Scheme, a Housing Infrastructure Fund funded highway and transport improvement scheme.

 

Before considering the report, Cabinet heard three speakers:

 

Graham Smith stated that from 2017 they had objected to the design of the Eynsham Roundabout and were told at the time that any alternative designs were not possible because: “we don't own the land”. This opportunity can be taken now to solve it.

 

Two distinct westbound exit lanes have been newly defined which are very dangerous and limiting to active travel.  The consultants were using the DRMB manual which was not appropriate, being for motorways and roads such as the A34 and A40.  Since January 2022 he has been awaiting receipt of Road Safety Audits which were promised.

 

In the designs there was no apparent consideration of the likely trajectories from the new development at Salts Cross and Eynsham.  He asked that the officers address redesign of significant parts of this project and urged them not to use AECOM consultants.

 

Ian Leggett stated that the A40 corridor had been conceived as a programme with two major components: building a dual carriageway and improving public transport.  Active travel was seen as disposable and the only new segregated cycle path in the scheme - the B4044 path - was removed.

 

There was now a growing recognition that active travel provision was critically important if the scheme was to contribute to broader council policies.  After two years of discussions there was the potential to create a continuous and integrated network providing safe and segregated active travel linking Witney and Eynsham, Salt Cross and parts of Long Hanborough, Farmoor, Botley, North Oxford and Summertown.

 

An additional crossing near the A40 Eynsham roundabout was needed. Without it the lives of cyclists and pedestrians and mobility aid users were at risk.  The stakeholder group was waiting to hear whether this Cabinet was prepared to get behind the proposal for an additional crossing creating a coherent, safe and continuous active travel network.

 

Councillor Dan Levy, Eynsham, welcomed improvements made to the scheme which should make cycling facilities better – though there will not be one extra metre of cycle lane created.  Bus times should be improved a bit.  Eynsham was already well connected by bus and used as a park and ride.  There will also be improvement to the traffic lights at Cassington.

 

However, he believed there were still a lot of flaws and that the problem with peak time congestion had not been solved.  Extra traffic lights and more development will make the problems worse.  The only solution was to get people out of their cars. 

 

He believed that the new roundabout at Barnard’s Gate will replicate the problems already seen at other roundabouts on dual carriageways.  The road would become a barrier between old Eynsham and new Eynsham with crossing required  ...  view the full minutes text for item 53/22

54/22

Highway Works Bond for Development with Public Bodies pdf icon PDF 219 KB

Cabinet Member: Travel and Development Strategy

Forward Plan Ref: 2021/233

Contact: Julian Richardson, Senior Engineer (Road Agreements Team C&W) Tel: 07825 052736

 

Report by Corporate Director Environment & Place (CA8).

 

To seek approval for delegated powers to negotiate alternative Section 278 bond solutions with recognised Public Bodies to the Corporate Director for Environment & Place.

 

The Cabinet is RECOMMENDED to delegate powers to negotiate and put in place alternative solutions to a conventional Section 278 Agreement Bond with Public Bodies to the Corporate Director for Environment and Place in consultation with the Director of Finance.

Minutes:

Cabinet had before it a report seeking approval for delegated powers to negotiate alternative Section 278 bond solutions with recognised Public Bodies to the Corporate Director for Environment & Place.

 

Councillor Duncan Enright, Cabinet Member for Travel & Development Strategy, introduced the report and invited Bill Cotton, Corporate Director Environment & Place, to describe the details.

 

Bill Cotton stated that it was normal to seek a bond from third party partners involved in public highway works to give assurance that work will be done to a high enough standard.  If it was not, then the money from the bond was there to rectify the matter.  It has been the practice to seek the same from public sector partners such as Network Rail or the Department of Education but this gave rise to budget problems for them as they had to find extra funding.

 

It would be much more efficient for the tax payer if we do not take those bonds from trusted public sector partners.  It is proposed that he, as Corporate Director Environment Place, in consultation with the Cabinet Member and the Director of Finance, could agree those exceptions and that any over £5m would be reported to Cabinet.

 

Councillor Enright added that this should reduce administration costs and it was important to note that public bodies were not going to go bankrupt and different remedies could be sought should there be problems.

 

The Chair put the recommendations which were agreed.

 

RESOLVED: to delegate powers to negotiate and put in place alternative solutions to a conventional Section 278 Agreement Bond with Public Bodies to the Corporate Director for Environment and Place in consultation with the Director of Finance.

 

55/22

Delegated Powers - April 2022

Cabinet Member: Leader

Forward Plan Ref: 2021/201

Contact: Colm Ó Caomhánaigh, Committee Officer Tel: 07393 001096

 

Report by Director of Law & Governance

 

There were no delegated decisions taken during the period January to March 2022.

 

Minutes:

It was noted that there were no delegated decisions taken by the Chief Executive during the period January to March 2022.

 

56/22

Forward Plan and Future Business pdf icon PDF 238 KB

Cabinet Member: All

Contact Officer: Colm Ó Caomhánaigh, Committee Officer Tel: 07393 001096

 

The Cabinet Procedure Rules provide that the business of each meeting at the Cabinet is to include “updating of the Forward Plan and proposals for business to be conducted at the following meeting”.   Items from the Forward Plan for the immediately forthcoming meetings of the Cabinet appear in the Schedule at CA10.  This includes any updated information relating to the business for those meetings that has already been identified for inclusion in the next Forward Plan update.

 

The Schedule is for noting, but Cabinet Members may also wish to take this opportunity to identify any further changes they would wish to be incorporated in the next Forward Plan update.

 

The Cabinet is RECOMMENDED to note the items currently identified for forthcoming meetings.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Cabinet considered a list of items (CA10) for the immediately forthcoming meetings of the Cabinet together with changes and additions set out in the schedule of addenda.

 

RESOLVED:to note the items currently identified for forthcoming meetings.