Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

Venue: Town Hall, Watford

Contact: Caroline Harris 

Items
No. Item

21.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Bolton, Collett and Taylor.

 

22.

Disclosure of Interests

Minutes:

There were no disclosures of interest.

 

23.

Minutes

The minutes of the meeting held on 11 June 2014 to be submitted and signed.  (All minutes are published on the Council’s website.)

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 11 June 2014 were submitted and signed.

 

24.

Official Announcements

Minutes:

Audentior Awards

 

The Chairman reported that the nomination period for the Audentior Awards was open.  It would close on 8 August.  He reminded Members that they had been given a nomination form and that additional forms were available from Democratic Services.  It was also possible to nominate online through the Council’s website.

 

Bruce McMillan

 

The Chairman informed Council that Bruce McMillan, who had been Chief Executive and Town Clerk from 1974 to 1990 had died on 9 July 2014.  Condolences had been sent to Mr McMillan’s family on behalf of the Council.

 

World War One Centenary

 

The Chairman advised Council that commemorations would be taking place in Watford at the weekend to mark 100 years since the start of World War One.  He reminded Members that they had been invited to attend a service at St Mary’s Church and the launch of the Watford Museum’s exhibition ‘The Great War: Watford 1914’ on Sunday.  The Museum exhibition, which had been funded by the Heritage Lottery, would be open to the public from 7 August to 27 September..

 

The Chairman informed Council that there would be a ‘Lights Out’ event on Monday 4 August, when nationally people would be invited to turn out their lights between 10.00 pm and 11.00 pm.  In Watford there would be church services taking place during this time and there would be a vigil at the Peace Memorial outside the Town Hall.

 

World’s Biggest Coffee Morning

 

The Chairman informed Council that a Coffee Morning in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support would be held on Saturday 27 September between 10.30 am and 1.00 pm at Cheslyn Gardens.  It was being held in memory of Terri Martins, the wife of Councillor Martins.

 

25.

Mayor's Report pdf icon PDF 64 KB

    Minutes:

    A report of the Mayor had been circulated with the agenda.

     

    a)         Councillor Brandon noted that Cabinet had confirmed the proposal to introduce Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ) in Callowland would not be going ahead.  He said that he was pleased to see the Council had listened to residents, but it did not remove the problem.  He hoped that ideas for any small restrictions in the area were from residents.  He asked the Council to look at the matter more holistically, including the reduction in the number of flat conversions and ensuring sufficient parking spaces were available in new developments.  In addition the Council needed to look at wider issues, for example Park and Ride schemes.  He requested that discussions were held before any further decisions were made.

     

                The Mayor said that she understood the concerns for his residents.  Residents had identified that there were too many residents’ cars and not sufficient road space for them.  It had been recognised that a CPZ would not resolve the issues.  Those residents in two or three roads closer to Watford Junction had some desire for a scheme due to commuter parking, but the displaced cars would move on to the next roads.  She explained that the suggestions within the Cabinet report had come through the consultation process with residents.  She agreed that there would have to be discussions about any further proposals and there would be a formal consultation.  She suggested that the Callowland Ward Councillors should appraise themselves of the proposals and ensure that the residents had their voices heard and submitted their suggestions.

     

                The Mayor referred to Councillor Brandon’s comments about flat conversions, she explained that the Council inherited planning policies from the previous Government which had set out maximum parking standards.  The Council had been unable to reject a planning application on the grounds of parking provision.  The planning committee had tried on a number of occasions but the decision was always turned over on appeal.  The current Government had changed the rules and the Council could now insist on minimum parking standards.  The Council’s policies would be changing to reflect this.  The planning committee had already used this as a reason for refusing an application in Diamond Road.

     

    b)         Councillor McLeod referred to a tweet the Mayor had made about the allotment improvement programme.  She asked if the Mayor could explain what was happening. 

     

                The Mayor responded that whilst a lot of attention was quite rightly on Farm Terrace allotments, it was important not to forget that the Council had committed £800,000 for improvements to all allotments across the whole town.  She explained some of the improvements that would be taking place, including new toilet facilities, footpaths and access to water.  Discussions took place with each allotment site and detailed proposals were produced for each site.  She understood that the site hut had already appeared at Callowland and that works would be commencing soon. 

     

    c)         Councillor S Williams commented that the Mayor’s report mentioned plans to upgrade the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 25.

26.

Questions by Members of the Council under Council Procedure Rule 10.0 pdf icon PDF 32 KB

    Minutes:

    The Chairman reported that a question had been received from Councillor S Williams.

     

    The question and response were circulated at the meeting and are attached as Appendix 1 to these minutes.

     

27.

Questions by Members of the Public under Council Procedure Rule 11.0

    Minutes:

    No questions had been received.

     

28.

Petitions presented under Council Procedure Rule 12.0

    Minutes:

    No petitions had been received.

     

29.

Business especially brought forward by the Chairman or the Head of Paid Service which in the opinion of the Chairman should be considered as a matter of urgency.

    Minutes:

    There was no urgent business.

     

30.

Motions submitted under Council Procedure Rule 13.0

    (1)               The following motion is being moved by Councillor Iain Sharpe and seconded by Councillor Kareen Hastrick

    “Council notes that:

    According to information made available to Hertfordshire County Council’s Highways and Waste Panel, the county council is intent on reducing support for bus routes so that it only supports bus services starting before 6.30 pm and withdraws funding for non-commercial Sunday services

     

    Such a reduction would affect 39 services across the county, including several directly serving Watford, and approximately 200,000 passenger trips.

     

    While this council recognises the county’s need to make budget savings, it believes that such a blanket approach to cutting bus services is unacceptable, and will adversely affect local bus passengers.

     

    This council therefore resolves to request formally that the county not proceed with these cuts.”

     

    (2)               The following motion is proposed by Councillor Anne Joynes and seconded by Councillor Seamus Williams

    “This Council resolves to call on the County Council to withdraw their proposed cuts to bus services which would see funding withdrawn if the service starts after 6.30pm and the withdrawing of non-commercial Sunday services.

    This would severely affect Watford residents and their quality of life, when we should surely be trying to improve a vital public service and try to encourage non-car use in and out of Watford.”


    (3)               The following motion is proposed by Councillor Derek Scudder and seconded by Councillor Tim Williams

    “This council notes with concern the proposals outlined as part of Hertfordshire County Council’s current consultation on household waste sites.

    These include:

     - a 44% reduction in opening hours at Waterdale, including reduced hours at weekends and closure on Thursdays and Fridays

     - complete closure of the Elstree site

    This council notes that when the county council closed the Wiggenhall Road household waste site, its cabinet member for waste claimed that Watford would remain ‘well-provided for’ due to the facilities at Waterdale and Elstree.

    The proposed cuts and closure make a mockery of this assurance.

    The council notes the Mayor wrote to the leader of Herts County Council on 14th July expressing her concern over the changes.  Council endorses the mayor’s action and resolves to respond formally to the consultation, opposing these proposals.”


    (4)               The following is a motion proposed by Councillor Nigel Bell and seconded by Councillor Matt Turmaine

    “This Council resolves to write to the Coalition Government calling on them to repeal the ‘Bedroom Tax or spare room subsidy’ at the earliest opportunity.

    Last week the Department of Work and Pensions published a report revealing the Bedroom Tax has been a disaster.

    It found that half of affected tenants have cut back on essentials, that more than half have racked up debts, and that not much more than 1 in 20 have ‘downsized’ or moved into private accommodation.

    The DWPs own analysis showed only 19% of those affected had applied to move and even fewer were able to find a smaller property.

    Many disabled people and their families have had the stress of having to cope  ...  view the full agenda text for item 30.

    Minutes:

    Council was informed that four motions had been received.

     

    1)         At the meeting Motion 1 was amended and as a result of that amendment the Proposer of Motion 2 agreed to withdraw that motion.

     

                The following motion was proposed by Councillor Sharpe and seconded by Councillor S Williams –

     

                “Council notes that:

     

                According to information made available to Hertfordshire County Council’s Highways and Waste Panel, the county council is intent on reducing support for bus routes so that it only supports bus services starting before 6.30 pm and withdraws funding for non-commercial Sunday services.

     

                Such a reduction would affect 39 services across the county, including several directly serving Watford, and approximately 200,000 passenger trips.

     

                While this council recognises that the County Council faces budgetary pressures, it believes that such a blanket approach to cutting bus services is unacceptable, and will adversely affect local bus passengers.

     

                This Council believes the County Council should be showing support for a vital public service like the bus service, especially to encourage non car use to combat congestion in and around Watford to improve the quality of life and health of our residents.

     

                This council therefore resolves to request formally that the county not proceed with these cuts.”

     

                Members debated the motion.

     

                On being put to Council the motion was AGREED.

     

                RESOLVED –

     

                Council notes that:

     

                According to information made available to Hertfordshire County Council’s Highways and Waste Panel, the county council is intent on reducing support for bus routes so that it only supports bus services starting before 6.30 pm and withdraws funding for non-commercial Sunday services.

     

                Such a reduction would affect 39 services across the county, including several directly serving Watford, and approximately 200,000 passenger trips.

     

                While this council recognises that the County Council faces budgetary pressures, it believes that such a blanket approach to cutting bus services is unacceptable, and will adversely affect local bus passengers.

     

                This Council believes the County Council should be showing support for a vital public service like the bus service, especially to encourage non car use to combat congestion in and around Watford to improve the quality of life and health of our residents.

     

                This council therefore resolves to request formally that the county not proceed with these cuts.

     

     

    2)         The motion was withdrawn by the Proposer.

     

     

    3)         The following motion was moved by Councillor Scudder and seconded by Councillor T Williams –

     

                “This council notes with concern the proposals outlined as part of Hertfordshire County Council’s current consultation on household waste sites.

     

                These include:

     

                - a 44% reduction in opening hours at Waterdale, including reduced hours at weekends and closure on Thursdays and Fridays.

     

                - complete closure of the Elstree site.

     

                This council notes that when the county council closed the Wiggenhall Road household waste site, its cabinet member for waste claimed that Watford would remain ‘well-provided for’ due to the facilities at Waterdale and Elstree.

     

                The proposed cuts and closure make a mockery of this assurance.

     

                This council notes the Mayor wrote to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 30.

31.

Annual Scrutiny Report pdf icon PDF 30 KB

    Report of the Committee and Scrutiny Officer and Scrutiny Chairs

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Council received a report of the Committee and Scrutiny Officer and Scrutiny Chairs including the Annual Scrutiny Report for 2013/14. 

     

    RESOLVED –

     

    that the Annual Report of Overview and Scrutiny in Watford Borough Council 2013/14 be noted.

     

32.

Neighbourhood Forum Annual Report pdf icon PDF 32 KB

33.

ICT Roadmap pdf icon PDF 25 KB

34.

Municipal Bonds pdf icon PDF 27 KB

 

rating button