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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Committee Room 1 & 2, The Guildhall, Market Square, Cambridge, CB2 3QJ. View directions

Contact: Democratic Services  Committee Manager

Items
No. Item

18/1/Comm

Apologies

Minutes:

No apologies were received.

18/2/Comm

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

Name

Item

Interest

Councillor O’Connell, Ratcliffe and Smith

18/5/Comm

Personal: Member of CAMRA.

Councillor Barnett

18/7/Comm

Personal: Works at Addenbrooke’s Hospital. Addenbrookes currently pays fees for infant/child burial.

Councillor Bird

18/10/Comm

Personal: Supports a disability group that receives grant funding.

Councillor O’Connell

18/10/Comm

Personal: Partner is the trustee of The Kite Trust (formally SexYOUality).

 

18/3/Comm

Minutes pdf icon PDF 235 KB

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 5 October 2017 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.

18/4/Comm

Public Questions

Minutes:

1.  Mrs Stubbs raised the following points:

  i.  Welcomed the ‘Policy for Use of Events on Parks and Open Space’ report as Chair of Friends of Midsummer Common.

  ii.  Asked for clarification on 3 points:

a.  (P27) Queried if the Council could follow up on its good intentions to seek accountability and money for repairs from people who damaged Midsummer Common.

b.  (P34) There was no mention of cattle in the principles of general use, these could impact on event organisation.

c.  (P39) Queried if Cambridge Live were included in the (maximum) number of events allowed on open spaces as they were the greatest user.

 

The Senior Asset Development Officer responded:

  i.  Robust enforcement occurred through the terms of hire for events. Officers carried out inspections before and after large events. Repair costs were recovered in full. Income from events contributed to provision/maintenance of open spaces in the city.

  ii.  Grazing was an important issue for Midsummer Common. Events were timetabled to avoid taking cattle on/off the common too often.

  iii.  Cambridge Live were included in the (maximum) number of events allowed on open spaces.

18/5/Comm

Policy for Use of Events on Parks and Open Space pdf icon PDF 989 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Public Question

A Ward Councillor asked a question as set out below.

 

Councillor Bick raised the following points:

  i.  Welcomed the report and involvement of the community in events.

  ii.  Wished to avoid damage to open spaces and use by unplanned events.

  iii.  Queried changes to the table in Appendix 1:

a.  Were these maximum figures or targets?

b.  What was the current usage?

c.  Residents had some concerns about the number of events taking place.

  iv.  Experienced difficulty accessing on-line consultation reports referenced in the Officer’s report.

  v.  Event organisers should pay for damage to the surface of open spaces. Prevention was better than cure. This may require more supervision during set up and clear away.

  vi.  Asked Officers/Executive Councillor to review the maximum number of people allowable on Parker’s Piece events with a view to reducing it from 5,000.

 vii.  Asked the Executive Councilor to clarify which events she would not allow to use open spaces eg business promotion corporate events. The intention was to be clear upfront that open spaces were for residents’ use.

 

The Chair clarified to the Committee that Cambridge Live provided events on behalf of the City Council.

 

The Streets and Open Spaces Development Manager responded:

  i.  (P39 / addendum sheet) Appendix 1 - Event Number and Limits by location. The table did not list 2011 figures (to give a benchmark), but figures in the proposed 2018 policy should be the same except for ‘Neighbourhood Parks’ which had an allowance for 2 medium sized events.

  ii.  Consultation papers were listed as background documents in the Officer’s report and therefore accessible upon request. The documents would be put on the City Council’s event page in future as another point of access.

  iii.  Officers were already using their discretion to reject most of corporate events if they were likely to be of limited or no public interest, and that ward councillors often challenged any the officers didn't reject out of hand.

  iv.  Three out of a possible five events had been hosted on Christs Pieces. These had been small although larger ones were possible.

  v.  It was intended to modify the job descriptions for Streets and Open Spaces Officers to allow on-site supervision of events.

 

The Executive Councillor referred to P29.

  i.  Medium sized events of 500-5,000 attendees could be hosted on open spaces. The figures were guiding criteria for event size (not targets), the land area would limit how many people could attend.

  ii.  Appropriate sized events would be held in appropriate places with appropriate footfall.

 

Matter for Decision

The hosting of events on city parks and open spaces had become increasingly popular with both local and national event providers.  The Council received around 300 enquiries for events every year, hosting between 80 and 100 with a range of individual and very different activities.

 

The proposed new policy aimed to manage the expectations of those seeking to host events in our parks and open spaces, as well as establishing, from the outset, a greater understanding of the constraints, within which event organisers must operate.

 

Decision of Executive Councillor for Streets and Open Spaces

  i.  Approved and adopt the policy for the management and use of our parks and open spaces for events, as set out in appendix A;

  ii.  Approved the proposed new fees and charges pricing structure for events on our parks and open spaces, as set out in appendix B;

  iii.  Instructed Officers to pursue the use of information technology to bring efficiencies to the event application process; and

  iv.  Instructed officers to seek and profile funding to make improvements to utility infrastructure to reduce the environmental impact of events, and training/ advice to local community groups to support improvements in the management of events.

 

Reason for the Decision

As set out in the Officer’s report.

 

Any Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

Not applicable.

 

Scrutiny Considerations

The Committee received a report from the Streets and Open Spaces Development Manager.

 

The Committee made the following comments in response to the report:

  i.  Honeycomb surfaces at public events were welcomed by people with disabilities.

  ii.  Open spaces needed some maintenance work to repair damage after events.

  iii.  Suggested people were less likely to ‘make good’ if public spaces were affected by deterioration in quality caused by cumulative impact from events.

  iv.  Proactive management by event managers during events could reduce their environmental impact and reduce the need to tidy up afterwards. For example planning to cook less food to reduce waste, and avoiding single use trays.

  v.  Expressed concern about noise from events on Christs Pieces impacting on neighbouring residents.

  vi.  There appeared to be no charge to event organisers for the loss of community public space whilst repairs were being undertaken.

 

The Streets and Open Spaces Development Manager said the following in response to Members’ questions:

  i.  Sustainability/waste management was covered in event terms and conditions to minimise waste and maximise recycling.

  ii.  The use of non-domestic animals was a reason to refuse permission for events. The use of animals was of concern to the public. The City Council followed guidance set out in legislation eg the prohibition of dangerous animals in public spaces. Falconry was not covered in the scope of the Officer’s report to committee, a separate one could be brought back in future.

 

The Senior Asset Development Officer said management plans were being worked up for Jesus Green and Christ Pieces. Biodiversity was an important consideration. There was an option to hold medium sized events (up to 4,999 people) on these open spaces, but the space available would determine which events were authorised. The focus was more on 500-1,000 people events.

 

The Executive Councillor said officers used City Council policy criteria to judge the appropriateness of proposed events. Officers consulted councillors on events in public spaces and gave recommendations to approve them or not.

 

  iii.  Officers were confident they had the ability to take a measured view to allow events of various sizes on public open spaces. Events were timetabled to alternate the use of spaces between public and commercials event usage where possible to avoid two back to back bookings. Councillor input was sought pre-event and residents’ feedback after large events.

  iv.  Cattle grazed on Coldhams Common from 1 April to 1 November. They could be moved on/off the common for events, but this was kept to a minimum.

  v.  Undertook to investigate concerns about people driving on the grass in Christ Pieces and Jesus Green. Unauthorised access was suspected to be the cause.

  vi.  The condition of open spaces was monitored pre/post-event and the organiser billed to make up the difference between the two.

 vii.  A stand pipe for drinking water was provided at events. There was a risk this could not always be provided. Suggested investigating the possibility of putting in more stand pipes in future.

viii.  Charity or commercial rates could be charged for events. The charity rate applied to volunteer and not for profit events. Events that charged a fee would incur the commercial rate.

 

The Senior Asset Development Officer said an administration application fee was charged to discourage spurious applications. He recommended event organisers made an application for multiple events in one go to reduce their administration charge.

 

Councillors O’Connell and Sinnott requested a change to the text setting out reasons to refuse events 6.2e (agenda P34).

 

It was agreed nem con to use equality statement terms. Amendments to Policy text discussed at Committee to be agreed by Officers, Chair, Opposition Spokes and Executive Councillor.

 

The Committee resolved by 7 votes to 0 to endorse the recommendations.

 

The Executive Councillor approved the recommendations.

 

Conflicts of Interest Declared by the Executive Councillor (and any Dispensations Granted)

No conflicts of interest were declared by the Executive Councillor.

18/6/Comm

S106 Public Art and Public Realm Issues pdf icon PDF 543 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Public Question

A member of the public asked a question as set out below.

 

Mrs Stubbs raised the following points:

  i.  Other countries were better at public art.

  ii.  Asked the Council to be more open about public art criteria and who made decisions about it (ie how public art was selected). Requested the Council reviewed this as s106 funding was coming to an end.

 

The Streets and Open Spaces Development Manager responded, the Public Art Advisory Group met every eight weeks to give advice on public art to the Executive Councillor.

 

Matter for Decision

One of the ways in which the Council has mitigated the impact of development in Cambridge is through public art and the wider benefits that it brought to the city. However, changes to the national planning system and planning regulations meant that (similar to other S106 contribution types) the scope for doing this was becoming ever more challenging. Officers were exploring options for enabling new public art in future.

 

The report focused on making good use of the off-site public art S106 contributions that the Council used to be able to collect for public art projects beyond the developments themselves.

 

Decision of Executive Councillor for Streets and Open Spaces

  i.  Noted the changing context for securing public art and the steps being taken to develop new planning policy guidance and a strategy for new public art in Cambridge, in order to set the future direction for enabling high quality public art (see paragraphs 3.4-3.5 in the Officer’s report);

  ii.  Noted the off-site S106 funding availability for public art in Cambridge and the approach to making good use of it through small-scale and larger public art grants and Council-commissioned public art (see section 4);

  iii.  Agreed the arrangements for the 2018 small-scale public art S106 grant funding round (see section 5), including:

·  The timetable for seeking public art grant applications between late January and mid-March 2018, with a priority-setting report back to Community Services Scrutiny Committee in June 2018, and

·  The selection criteria for public art S106 grant applications in 2018;

  iv.  Approved the use of up to £120,000 (from the £450,000 allocated to the River Cam public art programme) for the River Cam public art residency, delegating authority to the Head of Environmental Services, in consultation with the Executive Councillor, Opposition Spokes and Community Services Scrutiny Committee Chair, to appoint the artist and finalise with the artist the nature of the public art outcomes of the residency (see section 6);

  v.  De-allocated the current £75,000 allocated to public realm improvements on Cherry Hinton Road between Hills Road and Rock Road (see section 7).

 

Reason for the Decision

As set out in the Officer’s report.

 

Any Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

Not applicable.

 

Scrutiny Considerations

The Committee received a report from the Streets and Open Spaces Development Manager.

 

The Committee made the following comments in response to the report:

  i.  Referred to section 4.6 of the Officer’s report. Expressed concern that it may be premature to suggest that 2018 small-scale public art grant round could be the last of its kind.

  ii.  Having an artist in residence could be an opportunity to engage children in public art.

  iii.  Asked if the Council could undertake a review of public art already in place to see if it was still wanted by the public.

  iv.  Due to the development area in Trumpington funding should be forthcoming there.

 

The Streets and Open Spaces Development Manager and Urban Growth Project Manager said the following in response to Members’ questions:

  i.  As off-site S106 funding was running down, the report aimed to manage expectations about reducing opportunities in future.

  ii.  The Cambridge southern fringe had its own public art programme.

  iii.  The table on page 62 of the Officer’s report estimated the availability of public art S106 funding by ward – further checks were being made in order to update the analysis of S106 funding availability.

  iv.  Funding from the Trumpington development area would go towards on-site delivery rather than off-site contributions. 

 

The Committee unanimously resolved to endorse the recommendations.

 

The Executive Councillor approved the recommendations.

 

Conflicts of Interest Declared by the Executive Councillor (and any Dispensations Granted)

No conflicts of interest were declared by the Executive Councillor.

18/7/Comm

Streets and Open Spaces Portfolio Revenue and Capital Budget Proposals for 2018/19 to 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 661 KB

Minutes:

Matter for Decision

The report detailed the budget proposals relating to the Streets and Opens Spaces portfolio that are included in the Budget-Setting Report (BSR) 2018/19.

 

Decision of Executive Councillor for Streets and Open Spaces

Review of Charges:

  i.  Approved the proposed charges for this portfolio’s services and facilities, as shown in Appendix A to the Officer’s report.

 

Revenue:

  ii.  Considered the revenue budget proposals as shown in Appendix B.

 

Capital:

  iii.  Considered the capital budget proposals as shown in Appendix C.

  iv.  Adjusted capital funding for item (iii).

 

Reason for the Decision

As set out in the Officer’s report.

 

Any Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

Not applicable.

 

Scrutiny Considerations

The Committee received a report from the Principal Accountant (Services).

 

In response to Members’ questions:

  i.  (P96) The Principal Accountant (Services) undertook to clarify post meeting where capital bid benefits would fall as they covered two portfolios.

  ii.  The Streets and Open Spaces Development Manager said Silver Street Toilets had an ageing infrastructure and there was a lot of demand for the facility. The intention was to improve capacity and facilities available. These would be appropriate for a sensitive area.

  iii.  The Executive Councillor said there was an allocation in the budget to provide funding for the ‘tree for a baby scheme’ and for the promotion of it to involve more people.

 

The Committee resolved by 5 votes to 0 to endorse the recommendations.

 

Councillor Barnett did not vote.

 

The Executive Councillor approved the recommendations.

 

Conflicts of Interest Declared by the Executive Councillor (and any Dispensations Granted)

No conflicts of interest were declared by the Executive Councillor.

18/8/Comm

Communities Portfolio Revenue and Capital Budget Proposals for 2018/19 to 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 311 KB

Minutes:

Matter for Decision

The report detailed the budget proposals relating to the Communities portfolio that were included in the Budget-Setting Report (BSR) 2018/19.

 

Decision of Executive Councillor for Communities

Review of Charges:

  i.  Approved the proposed charges for this portfolio’s services and facilities, as shown in Appendix A to the Officer’s report.

 

Revenue:

  ii.  Noted that there are no revenue bids or savings presented for this portfolio.

 

Capital:

  iii.  Noted that there are no capital bids or savings presented for this portfolio.

 

Reason for the Decision

As set out in the Officer’s report.

 

Any Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

Not applicable.

 

Scrutiny Considerations

The Committee received a report from the Principal Accountant (Services).

 

In response to Members’ questions the Sport & Recreation Manager said that GLL had charged the same (£10 card) fee for five years.

 

The Committee resolved by 6 votes to 0 to endorse the recommendations.

 

The Executive Councillor approved the recommendations.

 

Conflicts of Interest Declared by the Executive Councillor (and any Dispensations Granted)

No conflicts of interest were declared by the Executive Councillor.

18/9/Comm

S106 Community Facilities Funding: Update and Way Forward pdf icon PDF 144 KB

Minutes:

Matter for Decision

The Council secures S106 contributions to mitigate the impact of new development. Every ward has benefitted from new/improved community facilities as a result.

 

The Officer’s report set out community facility improvement projects, already allocated/earmarked S106 funding, and the next steps to move them forward. It then proposed the approach to the next ‘community facilities’ S106 funding round in the context of the remaining availability of S106 funding and the new Building Stronger Communities Strategy (BSCS).

 

Decision of Executive Councillor for Communities

The Executive Councillor agreed:

  i.  To combine all ‘community facilities’ S106 funding available to enable the Executive Councillor to make all future decisions on the use of these funds in the context of the official S106 regulations and any comments from local councillors on eligible local proposals (see report section 4);

  ii.  To confirm the existing community facilities S106 allocations for grants to Cambridgeshire County Council (see paragraphs 5.1 – 5.4), which are

·  £100,000 for additional community meeting space within the new Milton Road Library, subject to community use agreement, and

·  £255,000 for additional community meeting space within the new East Barnwell Community Centre, subject to planning permission, business case approval and community use agreement;

  iii.  To allocate to the Cherry Hinton Community Hub improvement project (see paragraphs 5.5–5.9), subject to planning and business case approvals:

·  All available generic ‘community facilities’ S106 contributions from Cherry Hinton ward and/or from developments in other wards within a 15 minute walking distance (around £163,700).

·  All available specific S106 contributions (around £37,600) for the Cherry Hinton Community Hub from nearby developments;

  iv.  The arrangements for the 2018 ‘community facilities’ S106 funding round (see section 6), including the timetable for seeking proposals and grant applications between late January and mid-March 2018, with a priority-setting report back to Community Services Scrutiny Committee in June 2018.

 

Reason for the Decision

As set out in the Officer’s report.

 

Any Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

Not applicable.

 

Scrutiny Considerations

The Committee received a report from the Urban Growth Project Manager.

 

In response to Members’ questions the Urban Growth Project Manager referred to section 4 of his report and said local councillors would get the chance to comment on eligible, nearby project proposals, even if located in another ward.

 

The Committee unanimously resolved to endorse the recommendations.

 

The Executive Councillor approved the recommendations.

 

Conflicts of Interest Declared by the Executive Councillor (and any Dispensations Granted)

No conflicts of interest were declared by the Executive Councillor.

18/10/Comm

Community Grants 2018-19 pdf icon PDF 288 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Matter for Decision

The Committee received an annual report for the Community Grants fund for voluntary and community not-for-profit organisations.

 

Decision of Executive Councillor for Communities

  i.  Approved the Community Grants to voluntary and community organisations for 2018-19, as set out in Appendix 1 of the report, subject to the budget approval in February 2018 and any further satisfactory information required of applicant organisations.

  ii.  Noted the updates on Volunteer for Cambridge and the Compact.

  iii.  Noted the corporate review of grant funding to the voluntary sector to ensure transparent, accountable process are implemented.

 

Reason for the Decision

As set out in the Officer’s report.

 

Any Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

Not applicable.

 

Scrutiny Considerations

The Committee received a report from the Community Funding and Development Manager.

 

The Community Funding and Development Manager said the following in response to Members’ questions:

  i.  The discretionary rate relief available varied according to how well projects met eligibility criteria.

  ii.  Projects that did not meet eligibility criteria were signposted to other funds.

  iii.  Organisations could make multiple project funding applications, each project would be treated on its own merit. Officers reviewed and monitored to ensure appropriate funding was given to each organisation.

  iv.  Officers worked with various organisations who were undergoing staff changes. Projects needed to be viable in order to receive funding. All projects listed in the Officer’s report required further work so those with staffing issues would not be disadvantaged.

  v.  Funding could be given in full or part with further contributions in stages. Any unallocated funding would be put back into the pot for reallocation during the year.

  vi.  Officers worked alongside projects during the applicant process to provide support. Those who were unsuccessful were not encouraged to reapply unless support can be given to improve their re-application. Feedback was available and signposts to more appropriate funding.

 

The Committee unanimously resolved to endorse the recommendations.

 

The Executive Councillor approved the recommendations.

 

Conflicts of Interest Declared by the Executive Councillor (and any Dispensations Granted)

No conflicts of interest were declared by the Executive Councillor.

18/11/Comm

Building Stronger Communities pdf icon PDF 397 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Matter for Decision

As part of the approval of the Council’s Building Stronger Communities strategy (BSCS) in June 2017, officers were asked to feedback in January 2018 on progress with delivering the strategy; also to review the future approach to community development work and in particular Neighbourhood Community Partnerships & Projects (NCPs).

 

The Officer’s report also provided an update on the Community Centres Strategy work plan.

 

Decision of Executive Councillor for Communities

  i.  Approved the revised approach and resourcing of the Council’s outreach community development work as outlined in section 4 of the Officer’s report.

  ii.  Approved the approach to the funding and support for NCPs from 2018/19 as outlined in section 5 of the Officer’s report.

 

Reason for the Decision

As set out in the Officer’s report.

 

Any Alternative Options Considered and Rejected

Not applicable.

 

Scrutiny Considerations

The Committee received a report from the Community Funding and Development Manager.

 

In response to Members’ questions:

  i.  The Community Funding and Development Manager said detailed feasibility work regarding the Meadows & Buchan Street Community Centres would be reported back to committee in June 2018.

  ii.  The Head of Community Services said Storey’s Field Community Centre was overseen by Storey’s Field Trust, established by the University of Cambridge and the Council. It was due to open in February 2018.

 

The City Council had a meeting planned with Clay Farm construction contract administrators (ADP) on 19 January 2018. Ward Councillors would be updated post meeting. The Community Centre was expected to open in the near future.

 

The Committee unanimously resolved to endorse the recommendations.

 

The Executive Councillor approved the recommendations.

 

Conflicts of Interest Declared by the Executive Councillor (and any Dispensations Granted)

No conflicts of interest were declared by the Executive Councillor.