Agenda and decisions

Venue: Virtual

Contact: Deborah Miller  Tel: 07920 084239; E-Mail: deborah.miller@oxfordshire.gov.uk

Link: videolink to the meeting

Items
No. Item

1.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 413 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 14 July 2020 (CC1) and to receive information arising from them.

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

The Minutes of the Meeting held on 14 July 2020 were approved and signed as an accurate record.

3.

Declarations of Interest

Members are reminded that they must declare their interests orally at the meeting and specify (a) the nature of the interest and (b) which items on the agenda are the relevant items. This applies also to items where members have interests by virtue of their membership of a district council in Oxfordshire.

4.

Official Communications

Decision:

Council paid tribute and held a minute’s silence in Memory of former Leader of Council Keith Mitchell and former County Councillor Maureen Hastings.

 

Council received an update from the Chairman on COVID19. It congratulated and paid tribute to staff and the community on their tremendous efforts and response during the Coronavirus pandemic.

 

 

6.

Petitions and Public Address

This Council meeting will be held virtually in order to conform with current guidelines regarding social distancing. 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 these new arrangements 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 2 September 2020. Requests to speak should be sent to Deborah.miller@oxfordshire.gov.uk together with 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.

 

Where a meeting is held virtually and the addressee is unable to participate virtually their written submission will be accepted.

 

Written submissions should be no longer than 1 A4 sheet.

Decision:

Councillor received a public Address from Mr Ashley Smith on behalf of Windrush Against Sewage Pollution in support of the Motion by Councillor Nicholas Field-Johnson.

8.

Questions with Notice from Members of the Council pdf icon PDF 638 KB

Additional documents:

Decision:

34 questions with Notice were asked.  Details of the questions and answers and supplementary questions and answers will be set out in the Annex to the minutes.

 

In relation to Question 2, Councillor Heathcoat undertook to provide Councillor Emily Smith with a written answer clarifying whether over half of the money had been paid into the scheme has gone back to be Treasury and therefore had not been spent on training and education in Oxfordshire.

 

In relation to question 6, Councillor Walker invited Councillor Webber to email him with any particular concerns regarding the linking up of reporting tools.

 

In relation to question 7, Councillor Lindsay-Gale undertook to provide Councillor Hanna with a full written response, which had been omitted to her original question.

 

In relation to question 10, Councillor Lindsay-Gale undertook to provide Councillor Buckley with a written response detailing what was going to happen to the additional grant from government to compensate for additional costs from Covid.

 

In relation to Question 12, Councillor Constance undertook to provide Councillor Emily Smith with a written answer to explain why Bicester and Whitney scored higher than Abington or any other market town, together with the lists of projects that missed out on inclusion in the Tranche 2 bid, to help Seek alternative funding.

 

In relation to Question 18, Councillor Stratford undertook to provide Councillor Hannaby with a copy of the plans referred to in the answer, together with an explanation as to what monitoring would be taking place in relation supporting the vulnerable.

 

In relation to Question 20, Councillor Constance undertook to provide Councillor Phillips with a written answer detailing what the section 106 monies received from the Neilson site had been used on.

 

In relation to Question 2, Councillor Lindsay-Gale undertook to provide Councillor Turnbull with a written answer detailing school attendance figures for the first week of September in Oxfordshire.

 

In relation to question 24, Councillor Constance undertook to provide Councillor Sudbury with a written response detailing the projected emissions cuts in this decade and if they did not meet the 45% target, some detail about how and what the council and its partners were going to do to meet it.

 

In relation to question 25, Councillor Constance undertook to provide Councillor Pressel with a written answer to the question of when the Thames towpath was to be prioritised and by whom.

 

In relation to Question 27, Councillor Lindsay-Gale undertook to ask the Regional Schools Commissioner to provide Councillor Pressel with the answer she required.

 

In relation to Question 29, Councillor Constance undertook to provide Councillor Fawcett with a written answer detailing whether there was any evidence to suggest that repainting the cycle lanes improved safety or encouraged more cycling.

 

In relation to Question 31, Councillor Constance undertook to provide Councillor Leffman with a written response detailing how much of the emitted carbon at Ardley was recycled and how much ended up in the atmosphere.

 

In relation to Question 32, Counsellor Constance undertook to meet with Councillor Roberts, Councillor  ...  view the full decision text for item 8.

9.

Report of the Cabinet pdf icon PDF 297 KB

Report of the Cabinet Meetings held on 21 July 2020 and 18 August 2020 (CC9).

 

Decision:

Council received the report of the Cabinet.

10.

Update report from the Leader of the Council following a meeting of Oxfordshire Local Authority leaders and the Chair of Oxfordshire LEP with Simon Clarke MP (Minister of state -Housing, Communities and Local Government) on the 7th September.

Report by the Leader of the Council (CC10). - REPORT TO FOLLOW

Decision:

The business included at Item 10 of the agenda had been added to update Members on the outcome of a meeting due to be held 7 September 2020 with the Minister of Housing, Communities and Local Government. That meeting had been postponed due to a clash of urgent parliamentary business and therefore there was no update to give. The Chairman therefore, in the interests of the efficiency of Council business, exercised his powers as Chairman under Article 1, paragraph 4.2 of the Constitution having consulted the Monitoring Officer to postpone the item until a meeting with the Minister had occurred.  

 

11.

Appointment of Monitoring Officer pdf icon PDF 226 KB

Report by the Chief Executive (CC11). 

 

Following the appointment in May of Steve Jorden as the Interim Monitoring Officer it is necessary for the Council to make a permanent appointment to this statutory role. The report sets out the procedural requirements in making such an appointment.

 

Decision:

The Recommendations were agreed nem con.

12.

Revised Budget 2020/2021 pdf icon PDF 371 KB

Report by Director of Finance (CC12).

 

The Revised Budget 2020/21 Report to Cabinet on 18 August 2020 sets out the financial impact of the Council’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the additional funding that has been received from central government. 

 

Councils have a legal duty to balance their budgets each year and act to avoid the possibility that expenditure might exceed available income in any year. This means that Oxfordshire County Council, like other councils across the country, has no option but to take significant cost-saving measures to address this unavoidable funding shortfall.  The report sets out the actions required to address the risk of overspend and reflects the additional costs incurred by the Council in the response phase.

 

The revised budget will provide a balanced budget for 2020/21 that includes budgets to meet the additional costs of COVID-19 to enable effective budget management. 

 

UndertheCouncil’sFinancialRegulations, Councilapprovalisrequiredfor any virement greater than £1m that involves a major change in policy (as assessed by the Section 151 officer) requires Council approval.  The virements required as part of the Revised Budget 2020/21 fall within this definition. However, the Revised Budget for 2020/21 does not change the calculation of the Council Tax Requirement or Basic Amount of Council Tax for 2020/21 approved by Council in February 2020 as required under the Local Government Finance Act 1992. 

Council is RECOMMENDED to:

(a)           approve the savings set out in Annex 1;

(b)           approve the revised revenue budget for 2020/21 set out in Annex          2.

 

Additional documents:

Decision:

Recommendations agreed by 31 votes to 30.

13.

Treasury Management 2019/20 Outturn pdf icon PDF 937 KB

Report by Director of Finance (CC13).

 

The report sets out the Treasury Management activity undertaken in the financial year 2019/20 in compliance with the CIPFA Code of Practice.  The report includes Debt and Investment activity, Prudential Indicator Outturn, Investment Strategy, and interest receivable and payable for the financial year.

 

Council is RECOMMENDED to note the Council’s Treasury Management Activity in 2019/20.

Decision:

Recommendations agreed nem con.

14.

Motion by Councillor Deborah Mcilveen

“This Council notes:

·            The disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic [BAME] communities, and the significant contribution of BAME individuals to the frontline COVID-19 response;

·            The increase in hate crime towards people from BAME communities in Oxfordshire in recent years;

·            The impact of the Hostile Environment on the ‘Windrush generation’ and others who have the right to live in this country;

·            Structural racism is still an everyday reality for people from Black, Asian and other minority and refugee communities. 

This Council also notes that:

·            BAME communities are underrepresented in Oxfordshire County Council’s workforce, and that the Council’s Equality Policy and Strategy 2018-22 identifies the need to address this; 

·            Thousands of local people have expressed concerns about the existence of structural racism as part of the Black Lives Matters protests, vigils and events that have taken place in recent weeks across the county;

·            Communities across Oxfordshire are united by a desire to live happy, healthy and productive lives, and recognise that reducing inequalities helps all communities to thrive;

·            The County Council Equalities Strategy for employment, service delivery and participation is being updated and this is integral to renewal and recovery for Oxfordshire. 

This Council therefore:

1.      Pledges to make Oxfordshire an Anti-racist County

2.      Will work with and listen to people experiencing racism;

3.      Develop and implement an anti-racist  strategy for employment, service delivery and participation; and

4.      Will work with local authorities, public bodies, employers, trade unions and community groups and any other stakeholders to achieve this.”

Decision:

Motion Carried by 51 votes to 0, with 10 abstnstions.

15.

Motion by Councillor Tim Bearder

“Council recognises the frustration and disappointment that residents in South Oxfordshire feel after their Local Plan was taken out of the district councils hands and forced through to the Examination in Public by the Secretary of State following the May 2019 elections .

 

Despite assurances from Mr Jenrick and the local MP, John Howell, that changes could be made during the Examination in Public, the Inspector has announced that he is minded to pass the plan largely as it is - even with STRAT13, which the County Council’s officers expressed concerns over in relation to transport impacts.

 

Given the Secretary of State said in a recent interview that he wants to introduce changes to the planning system that allow local people to protect environmentally sensitive land like Green Belt, and SSSI to "hand it onto the next generation", this council calls on the leader to write to the Secretary of State for Housing Communities and Local Government, to ask that he respects the outcome of any vote by SODC's elected Councillors on whether to adopt the plan.”

Decision:

Motion lost by 34 votes to 25, with 2 abstentions.

16.

Motion by Councillor Nicholas Field Johnston

“We need to end sewage pollution and make our rivers clean and fit for recreation once again.  We have in this Country a "clean beach policy" - we now need a clean river policy (such as a Blue Flag approach for our rivers so that they can again become clean and healthy).”

 

Oxfordshire County Council therefore requests the Leader of the Council to write to Oxfordshire MPs and the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, to ask that HM Government takes urgent action to ban the dumping of raw and untreated sewage into our rivers and to support a clean river policy including the reintroduction of quality status in order to re-establish the high quality of water in our rivers.”

Decision:

The amendment by Councillor Tim Bearder was lost by 38 votes to 28.

 

The Substantive Motion was carried nem con.

17.

Motion by Councillor Charles Mathew

“The decision, last autumn now, by the Oxfordshire LEP to withdraw the funding from the Loop Farm project (Duke’s Cut to Loop Farm Roundabout), a long-promised relief road to the A40 round Oxford, undermines sensible solutions to the endless traffic jams on the A40 between Witney and Oxford roundabouts. Given that the use of public money should be productive.

 

Council asks Cabinet to review the plans presently being offered and adopt a long-term strategy that will meet the public’s needs for the next twenty years at least and should include serious consideration of a rail link from Carterton, Witney and Eynsham to Oxford.”

 

Decision:

The time being 4.05 pm, this Motion was considered dropped in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 15.1.

 

18.

Motion by Councillor Jane Hanna

“Buckingham, Oxfordshire and West Integrated Care System (BOB) is an exemplar. A local pilot for an Oxfordshire Population Health and Care Needs Framework has stalled since February and during the NHS Level 4 and now 3 (Pandemic response) awaiting a decision by BOB under national instruction. It marks an early test case of the value placed on local communities across Oxfordshire by non-elected agencies. 

The pilot in OX12 targeted a population of over 27,000. The local community endured the loss of a GP practice, a vibrant community hospital, with no delivery of infrastructure needed for 1000 new houses. A further 50% increase in housing  is planned. There have been many excess deaths in recent months disproportionately impacting care homes. A starting point for recovery would be a clear commitment to completing the population-based pilot with a plan acceptable locally. A successful completion of this pilot would ensure consideration of local communities by people making decisions who do not know our local communities, who are less effective in securing confidence, and are not accountable to the public.   

Council calls on the leader to influence a positive commitment now within BOB to the OX12 pilot. In addition, we request that he send an open letter to the Prime Minister, the Select Committees for Health and Social Care, Housing, Communities and Local Government to urge the vital importance of safeguarding local democracy and scrutiny as non-elected decision-makers implement policy across Oxfordshire.”

Decision:

The time being 4.05 pm, this Motion was considered dropped in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 15.1.

 

19.

Motion by Councillor Bob Johnston

“Council asks the Cabinet Member for Environment that full consideration be given to cyclists and pedestrians when future schedules are drawn up for grass cutting and vegetation management.

 

Along with vision splays, verges next to footpaths and cycle tracks must be given greater priority and cut earlier and more frequently than at present.

 

Other flower-rich highway verges where these priorities do not apply must be cut only once a year at the end of October when insects and birds have finished breeding.  This will both maximise the potential for the County’s wildlife to thrive and prevent footways and cycle tracks becoming unpleasant to use, especially in wet weather.”

 

Decision:

The time being 4.05 pm, this Motion was considered dropped in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 15.1.

 

20.

Motion by Councillor Liz Brighouse pdf icon PDF 103 KB

“The impact of COVID 19 has exposed the enormous inequalities in our County and the senseless death of George Floyd followed by demonstrations across our County have highlighted the injustices and in equalities experienced by many.  In particular, there have been calls for changes to the National Curriculum which reflects our past rather than our present or future needs.

 

Until 1988 Oxfordshire, as the Local Education Authority was responsible for what was taught in Oxfordshire Schools. When that ended, the responsibility went to the Secretary of State for Education advised by a National Curriculum Council, this was revised by Labour. In 2010 Michael Gove, as Secretary of State for a Education in the Coalition Government, abolished it completely and took power to himself advised by Dominic Cummings.

 

Now is the time to consider whether this is the most inclusive or effective way of determining what our children learn. The CBI and the TUC think that the National Curriculum is inappropriate for the needs of industry and the life chances of future employees. We see cries from those demonstrating in the streets that it is not inclusive and diverse. Now is the time for change.

 

This Council asks the Leader of the Council to seek support from the LGA and the CCN to lobby Central Government to bring forward proposals to devolve responsibility for the Curriculum to Local Government within a framework agreed by an Advisory Council made up of Local Authorities CBI, TUC, Teachers, Faith Groups, EHRC.”

 

 

Decision:

The time being 4.05 pm, this Motion was considered dropped in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 15.1.