Decisions

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Decisions published

03/03/2020 - Council Tax 2020/21 - Tax Setting Formal Resolution ref: 1348    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Council

Made at meeting: 03/03/2020 - Council

Decision published: 13/03/2020

Effective from: 03/03/2020

Decision:

Members considered a report on proposals to set Council Tax for 2020/21. 

 

Councillor Williamson said the report included the Council Tax resolution, which referred to the calculations prescribed by the Local Government Finance Act 1992 as amended, and the Localism Act 2011.  The Council had no discretion in undertaking these calculations beyond determining any special expenses, and had not made any such determinations.  He proposed a motion to support the recommendations, which required a recorded vote. 

 

Councillor E Buckmaster seconded the motion. 

 

A recorded vote was taken, the result being:

 

FOR

 

Councillors Alder, Andrews, Beckett, Bell, Bolton, Boylan, Brady, E Buckmaster, R Buckmaster, Bull, Corpe, Crystall, Crofton, Cutting, Deering, Devonshire, Drake, Dumont, Fernando, Frecknall, Goldspink, Goodeve, Hall, Hollebon, Jones, Kaye, Kemp, McAndrew, McMullen, Newton, Page, Pope, Redfern, Reed, Ruffles, Rutland-Barsby, Snowdon, Stowe, Symonds, Ward-Booth, Williamson, Wilson and Wyllie.

 

For:  43

Against:  0

Abstain: 0

 

RESOLVED – (a) that the Council Tax resolution, as now submitted, be approved;

 

(b)     that the local precepts as set out at Appendix ‘A’ be noted; and

 

that the Hertfordshire County Council and Hertfordshire Police Authority precepts be noted.

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Bob Palmer


03/03/2020 - Health and Safety Core Policy, Statement of Intent, and Organisation and Responsibilities ref: 1350    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Council

Made at meeting: 03/03/2020 - Council

Decision published: 13/03/2020

Effective from: 03/03/2020

Decision:

Members considered a report on the Health and Safety Core Policy, Statement of Intent and Organisation and Responsibilities, submitted by the Executive Member for Corporate Services. 

 

Councillor Cutting said the statement was a requirement of the Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.  It was an overarching policy, and set out how the Council would comply with this legislation to protect all its people and stakeholders from risks of occupational injury or ill health.  The policy had been reviewed and updated to reflect organisational changes and to the separate quarterly Health and Safety report now being produced for the Human Resources Committee.  The policy demonstrated the Council’s commitment to Health and Safety.  He proposed a motion supporting the recommendation to approve the policy.

 

Councillor R Buckmaster seconded the motion. 

 

The motion being put to the meeting, and a vote taken, it was declared CARRIED. 

 

RESOLVED – that the Health and Safety Core Policy Statement of Intent and the Health and Safety Core Policy Organisation and Responsibilities section be approved and adopted.   

Lead officer: Simon O'Hear


03/03/2020 - Pay Policy Statement 2020-21 ref: 1349    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Council

Made at meeting: 03/03/2020 - Council

Decision published: 13/03/2020

Effective from: 03/03/2020

Decision:

Members considered a report submitted by the Executive Member for Corporate Services recommending the Pay Policy Statement 2020/21 for approval. 

 

Councillor Cutting said the pay policy had been updated and approved for submission to the Council, by the Human Resources Committee on 12 February 2020.  The Pay Policy set out the remuneration for all officers, including basic salary, pensions and all allowances arising from employment.  It was a requirement for this policy to be published annually, and he therefore proposed a motion to support the recommendation in the report to approve the policy. 

 

Councillor Boylan seconded the motion.

 

Councillor Redfern expressed concern that the lowest level of pay of £19,370 per annum was £10K below the average wage in 2019.  She said most of the lowest paid workers were likely to be women, and in view of International Women’s Day this week, she wished to raise awareness of this low level of pay.  She was disappointed that the pay policy statement simply stated that the council would not pay less than the amount applicable to the bottom point of the national pay scales. 

 

The motion being put to the meeting and a vote taken, it was declared CARRIED. 

 

Resolved – to approve the pay policy statement 2020/21.

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Simon O'Hear


03/03/2020 - Motions on Notice ref: 1351    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Council

Made at meeting: 03/03/2020 - Council

Decision published: 13/03/2020

Effective from: 03/03/2020

Decision:

Councillor Dumont proposed a motion on notice relating to European Union settled status for EU citizens living in the East Hertfordshire district following Brexit. 

 

Councillor Dumont referred to the preamble to his motion on notice, as set out in the supplementary agenda papers.  He said settled status meant people did not lose their status and entitlements in the UK.  He was concerned that some EU citizens might be unaware of the need to apply for settled status or have difficulty in doing so.  He referred to the House of Commons briefing paper regarding Citizens’ rights provisions in the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill 2019 – 20 which had been issued on 3 January 2020, and which indicated that about 30% of EU citizens might struggle with the EUSS application process.  The motion he had proposed aimed to help those who might struggle.  Whilst he acknowledged the commendable work the council had undertaken so far, including information on its website, the deadline for applications was approaching.  The council now had the opportunity to ensure that EU citizens knew they remained welcome in the district and to improve information for residents.  He proposed the motion on notice as follows: 

 

In relation to Part 3 of the Withdrawal Agreement Bill and the requirement for EU citizens to apply for EU Settled Status this Council:

 

1.                     declares that EU citizens are welcome in the District of East Hertfordshire; and 

2.                     will undertake an urgent review of the information it provides on its website and elsewhere to ensure that all EU citizens, including vulnerable groups and those with impairments have easy access to information regarding how to apply for EU Settled Status. 

 

Councillor Bell seconded the motion.

 

Councillor Andrews said he had been heartened by the concession that the Council had already undertaken good work in making EU citizens feel welcome, but he wished this sentiment had appeared earlier.  The council had been formed in 1972 and had joined the European Union shortly afterwards.  EU citizens had always been welcomed in East Hertfordshire.

 

Councillor Williamson said he was pleased that Councillor Dumont had acknowledged some of the work already carried out to support EU residents in the district in applying for settled status.  A campaign had been launched last year to help residents and the council had publicised this information.  In line with the recommendations of the Brexit Task and Finish Group, the council had commissioned the Citizens Advice Bureau in Hertford and Bishop’s Stortford to offer a face to face service.  This was the only district to have done so, and the council had been contacted by other local authorities for advice.  He proposed an amendment to the motion, to delete the word “are” in the first line of paragraph 1, and to add the wording “always have been” after the word “citizens” in that line, and then to add “and will continue to do so” at the end of that paragraph; and to add a further paragraph 3 “will ensure that information on applying for settled status continues to be promoted until the deadline for applications is reached”.

 

Councillor Boylan seconded the amendment.

 

Councillor Goldspink said she supported the amendment, and indeed supported the motion in its entirety.  The many European Union nationals in East Hertfordshire had contributed enormously to the district, including within the health system.  The council should show them it supported them in being able to stay in the UK. 

 

Councillor Andrews said his experience of the application process had shown it to be straightforward, although for those without the ability to use a smartphone it could be challenging. 

 

Councillor Dumont said in proposing the motion he had not intended any implication that the council had not been supportive of EU residents remaining in the district.  He thanked Councillor Andrews for his comments, and said he supported the amendment Councillor Williamson had proposed. 

 

The amendment was put to the meeting as follows: 

 

“This Council

 

1.    declares that EU citizens are have always been welcome in the District of East Herts and will continue to be so.

2.    will undertake an urgent review of the information it provides on its website and elsewhere to ensure that all EU citizens, including vulnerable groups and those with impairments have easy access to information regarding how to apply for EU Settled Status.

3.    Will ensure that information on applying for settled status continues to be promoted until the deadline for applications is reached.”

 

A vote being taken, the amendment was declared CARRIED. 

 

The amendment having then become the substantive motion, a vote was then taken on the motion, and declared CARRIED.

 

RESOLVED that this Council

 

1.    declares that EU citizens are have always been welcome in the District of East Herts and will continue to be so.

2.    will undertake an urgent review of the information it provides on its website and elsewhere to ensure that all EU citizens, including vulnerable groups and those with impairments have easy access to information regarding how to apply for EU Settled Status.

Will ensure that information on applying for settled status continues to be promoted until the deadline for applications is reached.


03/03/2020 - Petitions ref: 1352    Information Only

Decision Maker: Council

Made at meeting: 03/03/2020 - Council

Decision published: 13/03/2020

Effective from: 03/03/2020

Decision:

The Chairman invited the lead petitioner of a petition relating to the findings of the Overview and Scrutiny Parking Task and Finish Group) to present the petition. 

 

Sharon Griffin, on behalf of the 43 signatories to the petition, addressed Members.  She said the petition asked that the findings of the Parking Task and Finish Group be implemented with regard to the Resident Parking Scheme (RPZ).  Residents of the affected areas, that is, Woodlands and The Copse in Bishop’s Stortford, suffered a significant problem with parking by users of Stansted Airport.  Most houses in those streets had a drive and therefore the Residents’ Parking Zone policy did not currently provide residents with a remedy.  At any given time there were 10 to 15 non-residents’ cars parked in their roads.  Residents did not want yellow lines.  She implored Members to help address this problem.

 

Councillor McAndrew thanked Mrs Griffin and the 43 residents of Woodlands and The Copse, Bishop’s Stortford for their petition.

 

He said the Parking Task and Finish Group had considered the operational issues for residents, businesses and visitors of the district’s towns in terms of parking.  The findings of the Task and Finish Group had been considered by the Executive on 11 February 2020. 

 

There were a number of improvements to consider in the context of budgets, officer resources and the corporate plan including the aim to move towards a more sustainable district.

 

Delivery of the recommendations of the Task and Finish group in relation to RPZs would require funding and officer resources.  The Executive had asked the Head of Operations, acting in discussion with the Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee, the Chairman of the parking task and finish group and himself as the portfolio holder for environmental sustainability, to assess the full viability of the recommendations to inform a future decision.  The outcome of this assessment would be brought to the next meeting of the Executive on 21April 2020.

 

Mrs Griffin thanked Councillor McAndrew and presented the petition to him.  


24/03/2020 - National Non Domestic Rate Relief, The Richard Hale Association (RHA) (20/05E) ref: 1354    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Executive Member for Financial Sustainability

Decision published: 13/03/2020

Effective from: 01/04/2020

Wards affected: Ware Chadwell;

Lead officer: Marion Dix


17/03/2020 - East Herts Council’s response to Hertfordshire County Councils Draft Rail Strategy Consultation (NKD 20/04) ref: 1353    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Executive Member for Environment Sustainability

Decision published: 05/03/2020

Effective from: 25/03/2020

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Kay Mead