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Agenda and minutes

Venue: The Lansdown Hall - Civic Centre, St Stephens Place, Trowbridge, BA14 8AH. View directions

Contact: Tara Shannon  Email: tara.shannon@wiltshire.gov.uk

Note: Budget and Council Tax Setting Meeting 

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies

To receive any apologies for absence.

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillors Caroline Corbin, Sarah Gibson, Jon Hubbard, Tony Jackson, Jacqui Lay, Ashley O’Neill, Rich Rogers, Derek Walters, and Mary Webb.

2.

Minutes of Previous Meeting

To approve as a correct record and sign the minutes of the last meeting of Council held on 19 October 2021.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 19 October 2021 were presented for consideration, and it was,

 

Resolved:

 

That the minutes of the meeting held on 19 October 2021 be approved and signed as a true and correct record.

 

3.

Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of disclosable interests or dispensations granted by the Standards Committee.

 

Minutes:

Councillor Brian Dalton declared a disclosable pecuniary interest in Minute 8 – Wiltshire Council’s Financial Plan Update and Budget 2022/23, and Medium Term Financial Strategy 2022/3 to 2024/25 - in relation to the housing revenue account, as he held a garage tenancy with the Council. Councillor Dalton stated he would withdraw from the meeting when a vote was taken on the housing revenue account details.

4.

Announcements by the Chairman

To receive any announcements through the Chairman.

 

Minutes:

The Chairman made the following announcements:

 

a)   Kevin Wren

On behalf of Wiltshire Council, the Chairman expressed condolences to the family and friends of Kevin Wren, former Chairman of Wiltshire County Council 2006-07, following his death in November 2021. He stated that everyone was saddened to hear of his death and that thoughts and prayers remained with everyone who knew and had worked with him.

 

b)    Chairman’s Engagements

A list of some recent engagements attended by the Chairman from 19 October 2021 to 14 February 2022 were detailed as below:

 

·       21 October 2021 - WRFCA Lord-Lieutenant Cadet Awards Presentation Evening, Cricklade House Hotel, Swindon. ?

·       24 October 2021 - Mayor of Westbury’s Civic Service, All Saint’s Church, Westbury.?

·       1 November 2021 - Tree planting Ceremony in honour of HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, Corsham’s Garden of Remembrance.?

·       1 November 2021 - OBE/BEM Medal Presentation Ceremony, hosted by the Lord-Lieutenant, first floor ceremony room, County Hall, Trowbridge.

·       11 November 2021 - Chippenham Town Council Armistice Day Commemoration, Town Hall, Chippenham. 

·       13 November 2021 - Imber Service of Remembrance, St. Giles’ Church, Imber. 

·       14 November 2021 - ? Trowbridge Service of Remembrance, St. James’ Church and the War Memorial in the Park.?

·       2 December 2021 - Royal visit of HRH The Duchess of Cornwall to the rededication of the War Memorial, Church of the Holy Cross, Seend?.

·       10 December 2021 - South Wilts Grammar School Speech Day, Stratford Road, Salisbury?.

·       13 December 2021 - County of Wiltshire Carol Service, Chapel of All Saint’s, Wardour Castle, Tisbury. 

·       6 February 2022 - Salisbury City Council Annual Charter Service, The Parish Church of St. Thomas and St. Edmund’s Salisbury.?

A list of some recent engagements attended by the Vice-Chairman from 19 October 2021 to 14 February 2022 were detailed as below:

 

·       24 October 2021 - Mayor of Royal Wootton Bassett’s Civic Service, St. Bartholomew’s and All Angels Church, High Street, RWB.?

·       14 November 2021 - Chippenham Service of Remembrance, St. Andrew’s Church, Chippenham.

 ?

c)     New Year’s Honours List

The Chairman announced that a number of Wiltshire residents had received national recognition in Her Majesty’s New Year’s Honours’ list in January, as follows:

 

OBE

Sharon Blyfield

Veronica Bowman

Zoe Keeton

Adrian Smith

 

MBE

Katherine French

Denise O’Leary

Joy Tubbs

Jonathan Turner

 

BEM

Ellen Blacker

Jane Boulton

Paul Bromage

Simon Coombe

Peter Deck

Edward Evans

Thomas Kimnell

Amanda Mathews

Tina May

David Rowe

Timothy Swinyard

Sarah Williams-Martin

 

d)    Agenda Order

The Chairman highlighted Agenda Item 16, Adoption of the Green and Blue Infrastructure Strategy, and with consent of the meeting noted that it would be moved forward and considered after Agenda Item 12, Climate Strategy and Update on the Council’s Response to the Climate Emergency.

 

e)    Recorded Votes

On the proposal of the Charman, seconded by the Vice-Chairman, it was,

 

Resolved:

 

To suspend Paragraphs 22.6.2 - 22.6.4 of Part 4 of the Constitution to remove the requirement for automatic recorded votes on non-budgetary agenda Items.

5.

Petitions

a)    To receive presentation of petitions submitted for the meeting.

 

b)    To receive an update on petitions received by the council.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The Chairman stated that five petitions had been formally received by the Council since the last ordinary meeting held on 19 October 2021, as detailed within the council summons. Two petitions had met the threshold and had been requested for presentation to the meeting.

 

The first petition was presented by Harriet James representing Sustainable Warminster, calling for Wiltshire Council to develop an urgent pollinator action plan. Councillor Nick Botterill, Cabinet Member for Development Management, Strategic Planning and Climate Change, thanked the petitioners and noted the points and issues raised, recognising the importance of ecological connectivity to the movement of different species. It was explained that this issue was being considered by the Council and that actions such as identifying strategic corridors to help nature recovery, would be included within the Wiltshire Local Nature Recovery Strategy.

 

The second petition was also presented by Harriet James representing Sustainable Warminster, calling for Wiltshire Council to double tree cover in Wiltshire by 2045. Councillor Nick Botterill, Cabinet Member for Development Management, Strategic Planning and Climate Change, noted the points and issues raised by the petition and highlighted that there would be a focus on tree planting over the next few years with emphasis placed on planting the right trees in the right places.

 

Following which, it was,

 

Resolved:

 

1)    That Council notes the update on petitions in the report.

 

2)    That Council receives the petitions presented to the meeting.

 

6.

Public Participation

The Council welcomes contributions from members of the public, however due to Covid-19 public health advice, physical attendance at this meeting may be limited. Those wishing to attend are requested to notify the officer named on this agenda no later than 5pm on 11 February 2022.

 

Statements

Members of the public who wish to make a statement in relation to an item on this agenda are requested to contact the officer named on this agenda no later than 5pm on 11 February 2022. Up to three speakers are allowed for each item.

 

Each statement must:

·       State whom the statement is from (including if representing another person or organisation);

·       state points clearly, and;

·       be readable aloud in approximately 3 minutes.

 

Questions

To receive any questions from members of the public received in accordance with the constitution. Those wishing to ask questions are required to give notice of any such questions in writing to the officer named above (acting on behalf of the Corporate Director) no later than 5pm on Tuesday 8 February 2022 to receive a written response, or 5pm on Thursday 10 February 2022 to receive a verbal response at the meeting. Please contact the officer named on the first page of this agenda for further advice. Questions may be asked without notice if the Chairman decides that the matter is urgent.

 

Details of any questions received will be circulated to Councillors prior to the meeting and made available at the meeting and on the Council’s website.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The Chairman explained the procedure that would be followed for public participation at the meeting in accordance with the constitution.

 

Although statements and questions would normally be considered during the relevant agenda item, as it was likely to be a very lengthy meeting the Chairman offered the opportunity for questions and statements to be received under Item 6 instead.


Details of questions received during the item are detailed below. Other questions together with responses were set out in the agenda supplement.

 

Question P22-01 - Adam Walton - Item 12 – A written response was provided as detailed in the agenda supplement. A supplementary question was asked relating to calculating and publishing impact of carbon emissions from major decisions and how the council would counteract where this led to an increase.

Councillor Nick Botterill, Cabinet Member for Development Management, Strategic Planning and Climate Change, noted how emissions from particular decisions were calculated was being discussed, but that proper data assessment to achieve that calculation was ongoing.

 

P22-04 and P22-05 - Keith Freegard - Item 12 - Written responses were provided as detailed in the agenda supplement. A supplementary question was asked relating to how the council planned to engage with businesses operating in the county, in a measurable and quantifiable way, within specific timescales to meet the urgency of the problem. Also, whether the council would collaborate with groups such as the Wiltshire Climate Alliance to work with businesses. Councillor Botterill as the relevant Cabinet Member stated the Climate Strategy represented the top level document, and that delivery plans would set specific numbers. The significance of businesses was noted and that the council would engage with them as much as it could to persuade them to take actions and provide educational opportunities, focusing on efforts likely to be effective.

 

Statements were received as follows:

 

Dave Lewis in respect of item 8 – Financial Plan

Jeremy Wire in respect of Item 12 – Climate Strategy

Brig Oubridge in respect of Item 12 – Climate Strategy

Christian Lange in respect of Item 12 – Climate Strategy

 

Following Item 7, a further public question was received for later items, as follows:

 

P22-10 - Andrew Nicolson - A written response was provided as detailed in the agenda supplement. A supplementary question was asked relating to the council’s strategy relating to traffic growth or reduction. Councillor Dr Mark McClelland as Cabinet Member for Transport, Waste, Street Scene and Flooding, noted the reduction in public transport use as a result of the pandemic, and the council’s goal to decarbonise transport whilst recognising cars would remain in use particularly for a rural county. Mr Nicolson questioned the council’s commitment to its resolution to seek to attain net zero status. Councillor Richard Clewer, Leader of the Council, confirmed the council would continue to seek to achieve that target, although this would be challenging under current legislative frameworks set by central government.

 

7.

Treasury Management Strategy 2022-23

A report from the Chief Executive, Terence Herbert.

 

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

The Chairman invited Councillor Richard Clewer, Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member with responsibility for Finance, to present a report on the Treasury Management Strategy 2022-23.

 

Councillor Clewer proposed a motion to accept the recommendations set out in the report, seconded by Councillor Laura Mayes, Deputy Leader of the Council. It was explained that the report set out an updated strategy looking at the way in which funds were invested to ensure the best returns possible, an example of which being that investments into property were being considered for the first time. However, it was highlighted that only specific investments funds aimed at local authorities were being contemplated.

 

Comments were then made on the proposals by Group Leaders as follows:

 

Councillor Ian Thorn, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group, agreed with the prudence of the report, welcomed the additional investments into property and was happy to support the strategy.

 

Councillor Ricky Rogers, Leader of the Labour Group, stated that he was happy to support the strategy.

 

During the debate comments were received including commending officers and the Cabinet on the accessibility of the report when considering its technical nature.  Reassurance was sought in relation to ethical investment, and comments were received regarding the forecasting of cash balances and changes to investment strategy including looking at lists of approved countries for investment.

 

At the conclusion of debate Councillor Clewer addressed comments made above, and it was,

 

Resolved:

 

That Full Council:

 

1)    Adopt the Minimum Revenue Provision Policy (paragraphs 25 – 27)?

 

2)    Adopt the Prudential and Treasury Indicators (paragraphs 19 – 24, 36 – 42 and Appendix A)?

 

3)    Adopt the Annual Investment Strategy (paragraphs 66 onwards).?

 

4)    Delegate to the Corporate Director of Resources & Deputy Chief Executive (S151 Officer) the authority to vary the amount of borrowing and other long-term liabilities within the Treasury Indicators for the Authorised Limit and the Operational Boundary?

 

5)    Authorise the Corporate Director of Resources & Deputy Chief Executive (S151 Officer) to agree the restructuring of existing long-term loans where savings are achievable or to enhance the long-term portfolio?

 

6)    Agree that short term cash surpluses and deficits continue to be managed through temporary loans, deposits and money market funds?

 

7)    Agree that any surplus cash balances not required to cover borrowing are placed in the most appropriate specified or non-specified investments, particularly where this is more cost effective than short term deposits; and delegate to the Corporate Director of Resources & Deputy Chief Executive (S151 Officer) the authority to select such funds?

 

8)    Approve the use of Property Funds (paragraphs 73 - 75)

 

8.

Wiltshire Council's Financial Plan Update and Budget 2022/23, Medium Term Financial Strategy 2022/23 - 2024/25

Details of the Budget Process are attached

 

8a) Financial Plan 2022/23 and Medium-Term Financial Strategy 2022/23-2024/25. Report by the Chief Executive, S151 Officer and Monitoring Officer is attached.

 

8b) Relevant extract of the minutes of Cabinet held on 1 Feb 2022

 

8c) Proposed amendments to the Budget

 

8d) Reports of the Overview and Scrutiny Management Committee meeting held on 25 January 2022 and 8 February 2022 (to follow).

 

8e) Notes from the meeting with Group Leaders and Trade Union Representatives and Non-Domestic Ratepayers on 1 February 2022.

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

Budget Introduction

The Chairman introduced the item and provided details of the reports which had been circulated. He explained the procedures to be followed for consideration and debate of the budget, including of any proposed amendments. He then invited Councillor Richard Clewer, Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member with responsibility for Finance, to present the proposed budget.

 

Councillor Clewer thanked officers and his Cabinet, including the former Cabinet Member for Finance Councillor Pauline Church, for the work that had gone into preparing the budget. He thanked the Overview and Scrutiny Management Committee and Financial Planning Task Group for their work to scrutinise the proposed budget, and all staff for their work over the last year in continued response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

 

Councillor Clewer emphasised the budget was not a standalone document but was to be considered in the context of the medium term financial strategy and the Business Plan, delivering on the aims of the manifesto on which the Wiltshire Conservative’s had set out at the May 2021 local elections. It would be part of a long term, strategic plan to put in place funding to deliver services, which would be monitored through data and evidence.

 

Councillor Clewer outlined some of the challenges facing the council and the public, including rising inflation and energy costs, the risk of war in Europe causing disruption, NHS backlogs as the country emerged from the pandemic, and uncertainty on longer term funding. He stated reserve funding had been set aside to deal with latent demand on services, and to address the need to deliver savings which had not been achieved due to the urgent focus on responding to the pandemic. He explained that difficult decisions were necessary to enable the council to be in a strong position in future, and criticised the submitted amendments as set out in the Summons as being short term and not focused on developing new ways of working, as well as impacting a very small element of the total budget.

 

Councillor Clewer further set out details of the proposed budget, including the £418m revenue spending and £1.3bn capital programme over 8 years. This would involve increasing council tax by 1.99% and the social care levy by 1%. Some of the details set out included £78m investment for the Wholelife Pathway, supporting those with complex need throughout their lives to live as independently as possible, £62m on Families and Children, including over 400 children in care and over 300 care levers. The ongoing transformation programmes in adult social care and other services had delivered strong results and would continue to deliver more efficient and effective services. Details were provided of increased spending on transport, drives to increase recycling, investment in leisure including £25m for a leisure centre in Trowbridge and a focus on supporting high streets, protecting the environment through effective tree planning strategies and biodiversity. He noted the high rating the council had received for its response to climate change, with work undertaken including £50m on upgrading  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

Recorded Vote
TitleTypeRecorded Vote textResult
Budget Motion Vote 1 of 2 Motion

a)    A net general fund budget of 2022/23 of £417.703m;

b)    The Council’s Tax requirement for the Council be set at £311.192m for 2022/23 with an average Band D of £1,638.16, an increase of 91p per week;

c)     The Wiltshire Council element of the Council Tax be increased in 2022/23 by the following:

i)                 A 1.99% general increase;

ii)               Plus a levy of 1% to be spent solely on Adult Social Care;

d)    The Corporate Leadership Team be required to meet the revenue budget targets for each service area as set out in Appendix 1 to this report, for the delivery of Council services in 2022/23;

e)    The changes in the fees and charges as set out in the report;

f)      The Capital Programme 2022/23 to 2029/30;

g)    The Capital Strategy set out in Appendix 9; and

 

It is recommended that Council endorse the Medium Term Financial Strategy and the forecast budget gap, after the utilisation of the budget equalisation reserve, of £10.705m for the 2024/25 financial year.

Carried
Budget Motion Vote 2 of 2 Motion

h)    The Housing Revenue Account (HRA) budget for 2022/23 of £24.173m;

i)       A 4.1% increase for social dwelling rents, except for rents currently over the formula rent which will    be capped at formula rent as per national guidance;

j)       All service charges related to the Housing Revenue Account (HRA)

 

Carried
Amendment 1A - Blue Badge Holders Amendment

Proposal Element

Impact

2022/23

£m

 

Impact

2022/23

£m

Impact

2022/23

£m

Funding

2022/23

£m

Funding

2023/24

£m

Removal of ‘Introduce Parking charges for Blue Badge holders’ saving

0.040

0

0

£0.040m reduction of the High Streets Budget

-

 

Removal of ‘Introduce Parking charges for Blue Badge holders’ saving of £0.040m to be funded by an equal value reduction of the £1m High Streets budget

 

Rejected
Amendment 1B - Sunday Charges Amendment

Proposal Element

Impact

2022/23

£m

 

Impact

2022/23

£m

Impact

2022/23

£m

Funding

2022/23

£m

Funding

2023/24

£m

Removal of ‘Introduce Sunday charges in all car parks’ saving

0.050

0

0

£0.050m reduction of the High Streets Budget

-

 

Removal of ‘Introduce Sunday charges in all car parks’ saving of £0.050m to be funded by an equal value reduction of the £1m High Streets budget

 

Rejected
Amendment 1C - Free Event Parking Amendment

Proposal Element

Impact

2022/23

£m

 

Impact

2022/23

£m

Impact

2022/23

£m

Funding

2022/23

£m

Funding

2023/24

£m

Removal of ‘Remove free event parking from Town Councils’ saving

0.020

0

0

£0.020m reduction of the High Streets Budget

-

 

Removal of ‘Remove free event parking from Town Councils’ saving of £0.020m to be funded by an equal value reduction of the £1m High Streets budget

 

Rejected
Amendment 1D - 10p car parking charge Amendment

Proposal Element

Impact

2022/23

£m

 

Impact

2022/23

£m

Impact

2022/23

£m

Funding

2022/23

£m

Funding

2023/24

£m

Removal of ‘Increase car parking charges by 10p per hour on every tariff’ saving

0.600

0.120

0

Additional saving ‘To increase Annual, Half-yearly and Quarterly Season Tickets by CPI (4%)’ of £0.024m and a £0.576m reduction in the High Streets Budget

£0.120m reduction in the High Streets Budget

 

Removal of ‘Increase car parking charges by 10p per hour on every tariff’ saving of £0.600m to be funded by an additional saving ‘To increase annual, half-yearly and Quarterly Season Tickets by CPI (4%)’ which would deliver £0.024m and a £0.576m reduction of the £1m High Streets budget for the 2022/23 financial year and £0.120m funded by an equal £0.120m reduction in the High Streets budget in the 2023/24 financial year.

 

Rejected
Amendment 3 - Area Board Capital Grants Amendment

The proposal is to increase the Area Board Capital Grants to the previous level of funding of £0.800m prior to the re-allocation of £0.400m to Local Highways and Footpath Improvement Groups (LHFIG), an increase of the budget of £0.400m. It is proposed that this increase in the Capital Programme is funded by borrowing.

 

There is a revenue impact of undertaking additional borrowing to fund an increase in the Capital Programme, made up of interest and Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP). This impact will not affect the 2022/23 budget as any borrowing is assumed to be undertaken at the end of the financial year and therefore no interest cost is assumed and the MRP is charged the year following the expenditure.

 

The revenue impact of this proposal is £0.020m every year from 2023/24 and will have the impact of increasing the draw from the Budget Equalisation Reserve in 2023/24 to £9.122m and increase the budget gap in 2024/25.

Rejected
  • View Recorded Vote for this item
  • 9.

    Council Tax Setting 2022-23

    A report from the Chief Executive, Terence Herbert.

     

    Supporting documents:

    Minutes:

    The Chairman invited Councillor Richard Clewer, Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member with responsibility for Finance, to present a report and recommendation on approving the Council Tax requirement for 2022/23.

     

    The report detailed the level by which the basic element of the Council Tax would be allowed to increase for 2022/23 (1.99%) and the Council’s ability to increase the adult social care element by a further 1% on top of the basic element, a total recommended increase of 2.99%. Cabinet had considered and approved the proposals on 1 February 2022 and recommended them for consideration by Full Council.  

     

    The report set out that since the Cabinet meeting the precept levels of other precepting authorities (Town & Parish Councils / Office of the Police & Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire and Swindon), except the Dorset and Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Authority, for which draft figures were included in the report, had been received by the Council.

     

    Councillor Clewer moved the recommendations in the report, which were seconded by Councillor Laura Mayes, Deputy Leader of the Council.

     

    Councillor Ian Thorn, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group, noted the outcome of the budget debate at Item 9, and as such would support the proposal.

     

    No additional comments were received in debate, or further comments made by Councillor Clewer.

     

    It was therefore,

     

    Resolved:

     

    1)    It be noted that on 3 December 2021 an Officer Decision was made by Andy Brown Interim Corporate Director of Resources.

     

    a)    the Council Tax Base 2022/23 for the whole Wiltshire Council area as £189,964.37 [Item T in the formula in Section 31B(3) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, as amended (the "Act")] and,

    b)    for dwellings in those parts of its area to which a Parish precept relates as in the attached Appendix

     

    2)    Calculate that the Council Tax requirement for the Council’s own purposes for 2022/23 (excluding parish precepts) is £311,192,032.36.

     

    3)    That the following amounts be calculated for the year 2022/23 in accordance with Sections 31 to 36 of the Act:

     

    a)    £919,609,816 (Gross Revenue Expenditure including transfers to reserves, parish precepts and any collection fund deficit) being the aggregate of the amounts which the Council estimates for the items set out in Section 31A(2) of the Act taking into account all precepts issued to it by Parish Councils).

     

    b)    £581,560,201 (Gross Revenue Income including transfers from reserves, General Government Grants and any collection fund surplus) being the aggregate of the amounts which the Council estimates for the items set out in Section 31A(3) of the Act.

     

    c)    £338,049,615 (Net Revenue Expenditure including parish precepts) being the amount by which the aggregate at 3(a) above exceeds the aggregate at 3(b) above, calculated by the Council in accordance with Section 31A(4) of the Act as its Council Tax requirement for the year. (Item R in the formula in Section 31A(4) of the Act).

     

    d)    £1,779.54 (Wiltshire Council band D tax plus average Town & Parish Councils Band D Council Tax) being the amount at 3(c) above (Item R), all  ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.

    Recorded Vote
    TitleTypeRecorded Vote textResult
    Council Tax Setting 2022/23 Motion

    1.    It be noted that on 3 December 2021 an Officer Decision was made by Andy Brown Interim Corporate Director of Resources.

    a)    the Council Tax Base 2022/23 for the whole Wiltshire Council area as 189,964.37 [Item T in the formula in Section 31B(3) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, as amended (the "Act")] and,

    b)    for dwellings in those parts of its area to which a Parish precept relates as in the attached Appendix.

    2.    Calculate that the Council Tax requirement for the Council’s own purposes for 2022/23 (excluding parish precepts) is £311,192,032.36.

    3.    That the following amounts be calculated for the year 2022/23 in accordance with Sections 31 to 36 of the Act:

    a)    £919,609,816   (Gross Revenue Expenditure including transfers to reserves, parish precepts and any collection fund deficit) being the aggregate of the amounts which the Council estimates for the items set out in Section 31A(2) of the Act taking into account all precepts issued to it by Parish Councils).

    b)    £581,560,201   (Gross Revenue Income including transfers from reserves, General Government Grants and any collection fund surplus) being the aggregate of the amounts which the Council estimates for the items set out in Section 31A(3) of the Act

    c)     £338,049,615   (Net Revenue Expenditure including parish precepts) being the amount by which the aggregate at 3(a) above exceeds the aggregate at 3(b) above, calculated by the Council in accordance with Section 31A(4) of the Act as its Council Tax requirement for the year. (Item R  in the formula in Section 31A(4) of the Act)

    d)    £1,779.54 (Wiltshire Council band D tax plus average Town & Parish Councils Band D Council Tax) being the amount at 3(c) above (Item R), all divided by Item T (2 above), calculated by the Council, in accordance with Section 31B(1) of the Act, as the basic amount of its Council Tax for the year (including Parish precepts), as shown below:

     

    e)    £26,857,582.57 (Aggregate of Town & Parish Council Precepts) being the aggregate amount of all  special items (Parish Precepts) referred to in Section 34(1) of the Act (as per the attached Appendix C).

    f)      £1,638.16 (band D Council Tax for Wiltshire Council purposes only) being the amount at 3(d) above less the result given by dividing the amount at 3(e) above by Item T (2 above), calculated by the Council, in accordance with Section 34(2) of the Act, as the basic amount of its Council Tax for the year for  dwellings in those parts of its area to which no Parish precept relates, as shown below:

    Carried
  • View Recorded Vote for this item
  • 10.

    Pay Policy Statement

    To consider the Pay Policy Statement as recommended by Staffing Policy Committee at its meeting on 5 January 2022.

     

    A report from the Chief Executive and relevant extract of the minutes of the Staffing Policy Committee are attached.

     

    Supporting documents:

    Minutes:

    The Chairman invited Councillor Richard Clewer, Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member with responsibility for Finance, to present the report which provided an update on the pay policy statement for 2022/23.

     

    This included minor revisions, which applied to all non-school employees of Wiltshire Council, except for centrally employed teachers who were covered by the teachers’ pay policy. The proposals had been reviewed by the Staffing Policy Committee.

     

    Councillor Clewer moved the recommendations in the report, which were seconded by Councillor Laura Mayes, Deputy Leader of the Council.

     

    Councillor Ricky Rogers, Leader of the Labour Group, noted he would support the proposal.

     

    A comment was received regarding the number of items and motions at council meetings. In response it was stated the Pay Policy Statement was a statutory requirement.

     

    There were no further comments made by Councillor Clewer at conclusion of debate.

     

    It was therefore,

     

    Resolved:

     

    To approve the updated pay policy statement set out in Appendix 1 of the report.

     

    11.

    Wiltshire Council Business Plan

    To consider the draft Wiltshire Council Business Plan 2022 – 2032. A report of the Chief Executive and the draft Business Plan documents are attached. 

    Supporting documents:

    Minutes:

    The Chairman invited Councillor Richard Clewer, Leader of the Council, to present in respect of the draft Business Plan 2022-2032. The Business Plan Principles had been agreed by Cabinet in September 2022.

     

    Councillor Clewer moved the recommendations in the covering report, which was seconded by Councillor Laura Mayes, Deputy Leader of the Council.

     

    It was explained that the draft Business Plan set out the council’s overarching strategy for the next ten years and had been agreed by Cabinet on 1 February 2022. It was stated the Plan would be a living document, which would evolve over time. It would focus on guiding themes, such as early intervention and prevention, and tacking inequality, which would work across different council departments and in working with partners such as voluntary groups, parish councils, the military and others to address issues cohesively and collaboratively. Underpinning the Business Plan would be service delivery plans, which would interlock with the main plan to deliver on its aims. There would be metrics to measure whether the council was achieving its aims and would be reviewed informally and formally by Cabinet and Overview and Scrutiny. Data would be utilised to identify the most relevant metrics in order to deliver needed changes and outcomes. Councillor Clewer thanked Cabinet and officers on developing the plan, to set priorities and initiate delivery.

     

    The Chairman then invited comments from Group Leaders.

     

    Councillor Ian Thorn, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group, commented that the plan was an improvement on the plan approved in 2017, which had also been a ten year plan. He welcomed the idea of the scorecard included, although he still had concerns around metrics and performance measures and could not support the plan as presented.

     

    Councillor Graham Wright, deputy for the Independent Group Leader, was positive about the plan and the intended metrics. During the Budget item, as Chairman of the Overview and Scrutiny Management Committee, Councillor Wright commented on the Committee’s consideration of the Business Plan, including developing a plan to assess the consideration of performance metrics.

     

    Councillor Ricky Rogers, Leader of the Labour Group, was pleased that the plan would be an evolving document and would welcome regular updates on performance and supported the proposal.

     

    A public question from Colin Gale P22-13 was received between Minutes 8 and 9 relating to this item. He asked whether freight management was being considered seriously and resources were in place. Councillor Dr Mark McClelland as Cabinet Member for Transport, Waste, Street Scene and Flooding said the work was not on hold, but dependent on national work run by national agencies.

     

    The Chairman then invited comments in debate.

     

    Comments in debate in support of the plan included that it would be a living document, and that it included details for the measuring of performance planned for each service area, with metrics available to monitor progress, and that it was a well-designed proposal.

     

    Comments in debate in opposition to the proposal included that whilst it was an improvement, some did not feel appropriate  ...  view the full minutes text for item 11.

    12.

    Climate Strategy and Update on the Council's Response to the Climate Emergency

    A report from the Chief Executive Officer, Terence Herbert.

     

    Supporting documents:

    Minutes:

    The Chairman invited Councillor Nick Botterill, Cabinet Member for Development Management, Strategic Planning and Climate Change, to present the report which provided detail in relation to consultation responses on the Climate Strategy, a six month update on the Council’s response to the Climate Emergency, and recommended the Climate Strategy for approval.

     

    Councillor Botterill moved the proposals as set out in the report, seconded by Councillor Richard Clewer.

     

    Councillor Botterill provided details of the update on the council’s response to the climate emergency and the seven delivery themes set out in the report. Details included announcement of the bulk buy scheme for solar panels, a green electricity deal which had been signed up to by 128 schools, further details on schemes for low EPC (Energy Performance Certificate) rated homes, with more retrofitting and more additional new homes, the warm and safe Wiltshire advice service, approval of the delivery plan for Electric Vehicle charging and council fleet replacement, the Salisbury River Park project, trees in Bradford on Avon, improvements to household recycling centres, reconfigured waste rounds leading to a reduction in the fleet, work to help business reduce energy consumption, and the bus improvement plan.

     

    On the Climate Strategy Councillor Botterill noted it had been reviewed by Overview and Scrutiny and Cabinet, and received a high number of responses during consultation, with changes made to reflect new government strategies and legislation.  He welcomed the Council’s recent excellent rating of 81% in Climate Emergency UK's Council Climate Plan Scorecards, ranking it as the fifth best unitary authority in the UK for its response to climate change, the highest non-urban authority, noting the 28 wide ranging aspects and five performance reporting themes. He emphasised that further delivery plans would be developed.

     

    The Chairman then invited comments from Group Leaders.

     

    Councillor Richard Clewer, Leader of the Council, noted there had been a very strategic and analytical approach to prepare the Climate Strategy. He noted the significant progress on decarbonisation on areas within council control, including new council housing being built to zero carbon standards, and the ongoing delivery of further plans. He stated Wiltshire Council was seen as leading the way by others, though much still depended on central government, with the strategy providing a plan to deliver on the council’s climate priorities.

     

    Councillor Ian Thorn, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group, stated the Climate Strategy was an excellent document and praised the leadership in the council’s Climate Team. He celebrated that the council were highly rated and the position of the council compared to other local authorities in the development and implementation of proposals. He added queries on how the council would work with the many external organisations and individuals for those areas the council had no control over. He also commented on the challenge of monitoring progress in achieving the proposals detailed in the Strategy. He offered his support for the strategy.

     

    Councillor Graham Wright, deputy for the Independent Group Leader, offered support for the strategy.

     

    Councillor Ricky Rogers, Leader of the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 12.

    13.

    Adoption of the Green and Blue Infrastructure Strategy

    A report from the Chief Executive Officer, Terence Herbert.

     

    Supporting documents:

    Minutes:

    The Chairman invited Councillor Nick Botterill, Cabinet Member for Development Management, Strategic Planning and Climate Change to present the report which provided detail in relation to the Green and Blue Infrastructure Strategy (GBI) for Wiltshire.

     

    Councillor Botterill moved that the strategy be adopted as part of the Policy Framework of the Council, which was seconded by Councillor Laura Mayes, Deputy Leader of the Council. The strategy had been recommended for approval by Cabinet at its meeting on 1 February 2022.

     

    The Chairman then invited comments from Group Leaders.

     

    Councillor Richard Clewer, Leader of the Council, stated the strategy was an excellent and critical document to build strategies to protect and improve the environment.

     

    Councillor Ian Thorn, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group, welcomed the strategy as an important document to sit alongside the Climate Strategy.

     

    Councillor Graham Wright, Deputy for the Independent Group Leader, supported the strategy and noted it was also endorsed by the Climate Emergency Task Group, of which he was Chairman.

     

    Councillor Ricky Rogers, Leader of the Labour Group, also expressed support for the strategy.

     

    The Chairman then invited comments in debate.

     

    Comments in debate included supporting the strategy, noting the need to encourage partnership working including with Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty groups, and other non-government organisations, with ongoing work the council could support.

     

    In response to debate Councillor Botterill stated that the Council would always work in partnership with other bodies such as Wiltshire Wildlife Trust and Natural England.

     

    It was then,

     

    Resolved:

     

    1)    That Council notes the recommendation from Cabinet on 1 February 2022.

     

    2)    That Council approves the final Green & Blue Infrastructure Strategy for Wiltshire -Wiltshire’s Natural Environment Plan (2022-30) and adopts it as part of the council’s policy framework.

     

    14.

    Re-Tender of the External Audit Contract

    A report from the Chief Executive, Terence Herbert.

     

    Supporting documents:

    Minutes:

    The Chairman invited Councillor Richard Clewer, Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member with responsibility for Finance, to present the report which presented the procurement options on the process for retendering external audit services and the preferred approach recommended by the Audit and Governance Committee.

     

    The report highlighted that External Audit services are required to be in place by regulation and form part of the overall annual accounts and audit process. Councillor Clewer detailed difficulties with local government audits and in finding auditors to undertake the specialised work. It was proposed the council enter into the national framework that had been established in order to meet the council’s audit requirements.

     

    Councillor Clewer moved the proposals as detailed in the report and this was seconded by Councillor Laura Mayes, Deputy Leader of the Council.

     

    The Chairman then invited Group Leaders to comment, with all expressing support for the proposal.

     

    It was therefore,

     

    Resolved:

     

    To approve the option for the council to opt into the national arrangement for the procurement of external audit services for the accounts that relate to the financial years 2023/24 to 2027/28 through Public Sector Audit Appointments Ltd.

     

    15.

    HSBC Bank Mandate

    A report of the Chief Executive, Terence Herbert.

     

    Supporting documents:

    Minutes:

    The Chairman invited Councillor Richard Clewer, Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member with responsibility for Finance, to present the report which asked Council to approve a revision to the council’s HSBC Bank mandate, as a result of restructure and staff changes.

     

    Councillor Clewer moved the proposals as detailed in the report and this was seconded by Councillor Laura Mayes, Deputy Leader of the Council.

     

    The Chairman then invited comments from Group Leaders, with all expressing support for the proposal.

     

    There were no comments in debate.

     

    It was therefore,

     

    Resolved:

     

    To approve the revised HSBC Bank Mandate as detailed in the Appendix to the report.

     

    16.

    Designation of Statutory Officers

    A report from the Director of HR & OD.

     

    Supporting documents:

    Minutes:

    The Chairman invited Councillor Richard Clewer, Leader of the Council, to present the report which asked Council to consider the designation of statutory roles following changes to the senior management structure of the council.

     

    Councillor Clewer moved the proposals as detailed in the report and this was seconded by Councillor Laura Mayes, Deputy Leader of the Council.

     

    The Chairman then invited comments from Group Leaders, with all expressing support for the proposal.

     

    There were no comments in debate.

     

    It was therefore,

     

    Resolved

     

    That Council:

     

    1)    Approve the designation of statutory role of Director of Adult Social Services (DASS) to Director, Wholelife Pathway.

     

    2)    Note that other designated statutory roles are unchanged as a result of the restructure and remain with existing posts:

     

    a)    Head of Paid Service, Returning Officer (RO) and Electoral Registration Officer (ERO) with the post of Chief Executive

    b)    Section 151 with the post of Corporate Director - Resources / Deputy Chief Executive

    c)    Director of Children’s Services (DCS) with the post of Corporate Director – People

    d)    Director of Public Health (DPH) with the post of Director of Public Health

    e)    Monitoring Officer with the post of Director, Legal and Governance

     

    3)    Authorise the Monitoring Officer to make any consequential changes to the Constitution arising from the designation of the statutory function outlined above.

     

    17.

    Notice of Motion No.2022-01 - Social Mobility Pledge

    To consider the attached motion from Councillors Richard Clewer and Laura Mayes.

    Supporting documents:

    Minutes:

    A motion was moved by Councillor Richard Clewer which was seconded by Councillor Laura Mayes, calling for the Council to support the Social Mobility Pledge and that Wiltshire Council becomes a Social Mobility Pledge accredited employer. Councillor Clewer urged Members to support the motion and encourage external partners and businesses to concentrate on delivering social mobility, reaching out to areas of deprivation and social immobility.

     

    The Chairman moved that the motion be debated, which was seconded by the Vice-Chairman.

     

    The Chairman then invited Group Leaders to comment on the motion.

     

    Councillor Ian Thorn, Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group, considered the motion to be very sensible and was happy to support it. Councillor Graham Wright, as Deputy for the Independent Group Leader, and Councillor Ricky Rogers, Leader of the Labour Group, expressed their support for the motion.

     

    The Chairman then invited comments from Members. A comment was made by the seconder explaining support for the motion and asking Members to approve it.

     

    There being no further comments, it was then,

     

    Resolved:

     

    That Council supports the Social Mobility Pledge and resolves that Wiltshire Council becomes a Social Mobility Pledge accredited employer.

     

    That Council further acknowledges that improving social mobility is a priority in the Business Plan and will require a coordinated, multi-agency approach.

     

    Consequently, that Council resolves to adhere to the principles of the Social Mobility Pledge and work with Councillors and external partners and businesses to improve social mobility across Wiltshire and encourage further sign up to the pledge.

     

     

    The Social Mobility Pledge

    Outreach

    We will work to schools and colleges to provide coaching through quality careers advice, enrichment experience and mentoring to people from disadvantaged backgrounds or circumstances.

     

    Access

    We will work to provide structured work experience and apprenticeship opportunities to people from disadvantaged backgrounds or circumstances.

     

    Recruitment

    We will work to adopt open employee recruitment practices which promote a level playing field for people from disadvantaged backgrounds or circumstances.

     

     

    18.

    S85 Local Government Act 1972 - Extension of Office

    To consider any councillor requests for extended leave.

    Supporting documents:

    Minutes:

    The Council considered a report from the Monitoring Officer, Perry Holmes, detailing requests from Councillors Jacqui Lay and Mary Webb for an extension of office beyond the six-month period of non-attendance. Both requests were due in part to ongoing medical reasons. The Chairman moved that the requests be approved and was seconded by the Vice-Chairman.

     

    Group Leaders expressed their support of the proposal. During a short debate comments were received wishing both Members well, and suggesting a letter be sent expressing the Council’s best wishes.

     

    There being no further comments, it was then,

     

    Resolved:

     

    1)    That Council approves the requests for the Members listed below for an extension beyond the six-month period of non-attendance on the grounds of ill health and/or in recognition of the unique impact of Covid-19 on member attendance:

     

    ·       Cllr Jacqui Lay

    ·       Cllr Mary Webb

     

    2)    That such an extension be granted until the end of October 2022 which would allow for any request for a further extension being considered by Council at its meeting on 18 October 2022. In the event of that meeting either being cancelled or postponed, such an extension to remain in place until after the next available meeting of the Council. 

     

    19.

    Announcements from Cabinet and Committees

    a) The Leader, Cabinet Members and Chairmen of Committees will be invited to make any important announcements.

     

    b) Members will be given the opportunity to raise questions to the Chairmen of Committees or to the Dorset and Wiltshire Fire Authority on the minutes of their meetings, available here.

     

    c) Members will be given an opportunity to raise general issues relating to Area Boards but not specific local issues.

     

     

    Minutes:

    There were no announcements by Cabinet Members or Chairmen of Committees.

     

    20.

    Membership of Committees

    To determine any requests from Group Leaders for changes to committee membership in accordance with the allocation of seats to political groups previously approved by the Council.

    Minutes:

    The Chairman invited Group Leaders to request any membership changes to committees. 

     

    Group Leaders then proposed changes to committee membership as detailed in the resolution.

     

    The Chairman moved the proposed membership changes. This was seconded by the Vice-Chairman. It was then,

     

    Resolved:

     

    To make the following appointments to Committees:

     

    ·        Councillor Jack Oatley to be removed from the Corporate Parenting Panel, to be replaced by Councillor Ernie Clark

    ·       Councillor Jack Oatley to be removed from Health Select Committee, to be replaced by Councillor Ernie Clark.

    ·       Councillor Steve Heyes (Swindon Borough Council) to be confirmed as Vice-Chairman of Pension Fund Committee.

     

    21.

    Members' Questions

    Members were required to give notice of any such question in writing to the officer named on the first page of this agenda no later than 5pm nine clear working days before the meeting, Tuesday 1 February 2022in order to be guaranteed a written response.

     

    Any question received after 5pm on 1 February 2022 and no later than 5pm four clear working days before the meeting, Tuesday 8 February 2022, may only receive a verbal response at the meeting. Any questions received after this date will be received at the next meeting.

     

    Questions may be asked without notice if the Chairman determines the matter is urgent.

     

    Details of any questions received will be circulated to Members prior to the meeting and made available at the meeting and on the Council’s website.

     

    Supporting documents:

    Minutes:

    A total of eight questions were received from Members, as set out in Supplement 1 to the agenda, together with written responses.

     

    Supplementary questions were received as follows:

     

    In respect of question 22-06 from Councillor Dr Brian Mathew – Councillor Mathew encouraged all Members to support and become involved in the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations in their local communities. He suggested that the Council should agree free parking across the County for the four days of the Jubilee. Councillor Richard Clewer supported Member involvement with the Jubilee celebrations, however, as communities were being encouraged to hold local events rather than travelling to large one off events, he did not agree that changes to car parking arrangements was necessary or appropriate.

     

    In respect of question 22-05 from Councillor Ruth Hopkinson – Councillor Hopkinson sought details of the conversion of a room at Springfield Leisure Centre to enable it to be used as a pre-school and whether this was a good use of resources. Councillor Laura Mayes agreed to respond in writing after the meeting.

     

    MinutesAttachments

    Supporting documents:

     

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