Agenda and minutes

Council
Wednesday, 18th September, 2019 15:00

Venue: Council Chamber, Civic Offices Angel Street Bridgend CF31 4WB. View directions

Contact: Andrew Rees  Democratic Services Manager

Items
No. Item

347.

Apologies for absence

To receive apologies for absence from Members.

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from the following Members/Officer:-

 

Councillor J Williams

Councillor A Williams

Councillor C Webster

Councillor S Smith

Councillor K Edwards

Councillor B Jones

Councillor R Stirman

Councillor N Clarke

Councillor M Clarke

Corporate Director – Social Services and Wellbeing

348.

Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations of personal and prejudicial interest from Members/Officers in

accordance with the Members’ Code of Conduct adopted by Council from 1 September 2008. 

 

 

Minutes:

Councillor N Burnett declared a prejudicial interest in Agenda item 9. as BCBC’s elected Member representative for meetings of the Court of Swansea University.

 

Councillor RE Young declared a prejudicial interest in Agenda item 7. as BCBC’s representative Member of the Police and Crime Panel.

 

Both Members left the meeting when respective the items they had declared an interest in were considered.

349.

Approval of Minutes pdf icon PDF 192 KB

To receive for approval the minutes of 23/07/19

 

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED:                      That the Minutes of a meeting of Council dated 23 July 2019, be approved as a true and accurate record.

350.

To receive announcements from:

(i) Mayor (or person presiding)

(ii) Members of the Cabinet

(iii) Chief Executive

(iv) Monitoring Officer

 

Minutes:

Mayor

 

The Mayor announced that it gave him great pleasure to say that the Youth Mayor for the forthcoming year will be Megan Lambert and the Deputy Youth Mayor, Todd Murray. 

 

The Youth Mayor’s Charity ball was held on the 6th of September at the Hi Tide in Porthcawl, in aid of the charity Prostate Cymru, a charity chosen by the young people in the Youth Council.  Around 30 prizes were donated by local businesses.

 

All present and new members of the youth council were invited to the Ball, as well as a number of dignitaries including himself, the Leader, Cllr Patel, the Chief Executive and Lyndsay Harvey.

 

He stated that the Ball was a fun way to end Lewis’s term as Youth Mayor and was used as the official handover ceremony for Megan and Todd. 

The night was a great success and raised in the region of £400, and it was also encouraging to see our future politicians so eagerly engaged and wanting their voices heard.

 

On Friday evening his Consort and he, attended the Bridgend Business Forum Awards which were sponsored by Valleys to Coast Housing and took place at the Coed-y-Mwstwr Hotel. These prestigious awards recognise and reward excellence across all sizes and sectors of business in the county borough.

 

There were various categories of winners, but the overall winner was Rockwool UK Ltd who scooped the overall title of ‘Bridgend Business of the Year 2019’. 

 

The awards showed the diversity of business talent within the county borough and over the next few weeks he would be visiting the businesses personally to offer congratulations and see first hand the services that they provide.  The evening also raised over £800.00 towards his charity for this year PRIDE Cymru.

 

The Mayor was also extremely pleased to inform Members that Bridgend Fire Station were crowned overall world champions for the 4th year running in the World Rescue Championships. The finals were held recently in France with Bridgend representing South Wales Fire and Rescue Service and the UK.  This is the 7th year that they have won the title and he was sure that members and officers would join him in offering their sincere congratulations, which he would ask our representatives Cllr David White and Cllr Rod Shaw to convey to the Service.

 

The Mayor stated that he had the pleasure of attending the official opening of the Wales and West Hafod Housing affordable housing scheme in Coity on 28th August.  He seen the inside of one particular home that was physically adapted with hoists and wheelchair accessibility. Finally, he also attended the opening of the Porthcawl Town Beach Flood defences last week with members of the Cabinet and Lesley Griffiths, AM.  It was heartening to see that this very well executed project is now protecting over 260 sea front properties.

 

Deputy Leader

 

The Deputy Leader advised that the Council’s annual budget consultation is underway, and he thanked everyone who attended the pre-Council briefing. If all Members hadn’t attended this, he  ...  view the full minutes text for item 350.

351.

To receive the report of the Leader

Minutes:

In a major vote of confidence in the Bridgend and Welsh economy in a very challenging and uncertain time, today INEOS Automotive announced it will be constructing a new, bespoke 250,000 sq foot manufacturing and assembly plant at the Brocastle Business Park for the production of their new 4x4 Grenadier vehicle.

 

With Welsh Government and UK Government support the facility will create 200 jobs initially, and it is hoped up to 500 in the long term. To house this new facility the company is purchasing 14 acres of land from the Welsh Government at market value and with development of the site infrastructure already underway, production of the new vehicle is projected to start as early as 2021.

 

INEOS Automotive has signed up to the Economic Contract, designed to drive growth and responsible business behaviors in companies. The health and wellbeing of workers is an important part of INEOS' ethos.

 

INEOS Automotive are already in talks with two Wales-based component supply companies to support their work which could provide a further boost to the Welsh economy.

 

This new development, will have capacity to accommodate a further 500,000 sq ft and the potential for many more jobs for expanding companies and other new investors. The Minister for Economy and Transport Ken Skates AM has confirmed today that the work to support Bridgend in the wake of Ford's plans will not stop here and he confirmed Welsh Government will continue to do all it can to attract new business opportunities, to support Ford workers and secure further investment in the future of Bridgend.

 

We look forward to further announcements.

 

BCBC were also thrilled that Welsh Government has confirmed a vital £3.5m contribution of European Union funding towards the planned extension and redevelopment of the iconic Maesteg Town Hall.

 

With additional investment in place from this council, Awen, the National Lottery Heritage Fund, Welsh Government Communities Facilities Programme, Maesteg Town Council and the Davies Trust, work can shortly begin on the £6m project, which will repair the 138-year-old landmark building and refurbish it with modern arts and culture facilities.

 

Planned improvements include a modern library, a heritage and volunteering centre, a café, new workspaces, toilets and fully accessible 'changing place' facilities. A multi-functional performing arts centre is to be created on the first floor, and this will incorporate the main hall, a renovated stage, improved dressing rooms, a bar and for the first time a smaller, more intimate studio theatre and community cinema. The balcony seating area will be refurbished, and both upper and lower floors will be linked by a modern glazed atrium and foyer to address accessibility throughout the building.

 

Additional funding bids will be submitted early in 2020 to ensure that the building is fully equipped with state of the art furniture and fittings for the reopening. We are thrilled that thanks to our joint efforts with Awen Cultural Trust we have been able to safeguard the future, a bright future of this historic building at the heart of the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 351.

352.

Annual Treasury Management Outturn Report 2018-19 pdf icon PDF 732 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Deputy Head of Finance presented a report, the purpose of which, was to comply with the requirement of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy ‘Treasury Management in the Public Services: Code of Practice’ (referred to as the Code) to report an overview of treasury activities for the preceding financial year, including the Treasury Management and Prudential Indicators for 2018-19, and to highlight compliance with the Council’s policies and practices.

 

She advised, that as set out in paragraph 3.2 of the report, the Council is required to operate the overall treasury function with regard to the Code and this was formally adopted by the Council in February 2012. This includes a requirement for the Council to approve a Treasury Management Strategy (TMS) before the start of each financial year which sets out the Council’s and Chief Financial Officer’s responsibilities, delegation and reporting arrangements. Council approved the TMS 2018-19 at its meeting on 28 February 2018.

 

Paragraph 3.2 also explained that late in December 2017 CIPFA published new editions of Treasury Management in the Public Services: Code of Practice and the Prudential Code for Capital Finance in Local Authorities. However, the TMS 2018-19 and this report has been produced using the 2011 Codes, as due to the late publication of the 2017 Codes, they were not implemented until the TMS 2019-20.

 

Paragraph 3.4 of the report reminded Council, that Members approved a revised Minimum Revenue Provision policy for 2018-19 on 19th September 2018, which amended the method of calculating the amount to charge to revenue to repay capital financing costs.

 

All other investment activities not covered by the Code, such as property investments, would be subject to normal Council approvals and need not comply with the Treasury Management Strategy. The current value of these investment properties was £4.635 million.

 

Section 4.1 of the report outlined the Council’s External Debt and Investment Position for 2018-19, with a summary position in Table 1. This shows total external borrowing at year end of £96.87 million, with an average interest rate of 4.69%. This was split between loans from the Public Works Loans Board and Lender’s Option Borrower’s Options (also known as LOBOs). No additional borrowing was taken out during 2018-19. There are also other long term liabilities totalling £17.88 million, the majority of which relates to the Maesteg School PFI scheme.

 

In terms of investments, the year-end position was total investments of £27.4 million, with an average interest rate of 0.94%, £21 million of which was held by other local authorities. This has reduced since the start of the year when it was £30.4 million as a result of a higher level of investments being repaid than raised. This leads to a total net debt at year end of £87.35 million.

 

Paragraph 4.1.6 of the report, referred to the review of the treasury management function by both internal and external audit during the year, with an overall view by internal audit that the internal control environment is sound and that substantial assurance  ...  view the full minutes text for item 352.

353.

Departure from Development Plan Planning Application P/19/140/FUL - Development of a Police Learning Centre, Gymnasium, Site Regrading, Access, Car Parking and Associated Works pdf icon PDF 392 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Group Manager Development and Planning Services presented a report on the above planning application previously considered by the Development Control Committee.

 

He advised Members that they would be familiar with him attending Council to provide updates on the LDP and other development planning matters, whereby he usually emphasised the importance of compliance with and delivery of the Development Plan. Occasionally however, reports were required to be referred to Council, in relation to any developments that are not in accord with the development plan where the Development Control Committee have resolved to approve.  This Committee is unable to make this type of determination and the matter must then be referred to Council for decision.

 

The current application before Members, seeks permission for the redevelopment of the north-western area of the SWP Headquarters site. It is proposed to develop a four storey Police Learning Centre (PLC) and Human Resources Building, a two storey gymnasium, new access arrangement, parking provision and associated hard and soft landscaping works. The scheme also involves the redirection of a mains sewer. The full detail and assessment was outlined in the report.

 

The application site forms part of a residential allocation in the Bridgend Strategic Regeneration Growth Area for approximately 138 units under Policy COM1 (5) of the Local Development Plan (LDP) (2013). South Wales Police (SWP) have undertaken a large-scale rationalisation programme of their existing facilities and assets and, their original rationalisation proposals, which involved the release of the entire northern part of their existing HQ facilities for alternative development has been replaced. They are now however, pursuing an alternative strategy which entails carrying on with their programme of refurbishment and improvement works and retaining the whole of their existing HQ site at Cowbridge Road.

 

On the basis that the SWP rationalisation strategy has evolved since the adoption of the LDP in 2013, the investment in the HQ site and that their asset plan going forward is now to consolidate their activities and facilities at their existing site at Cowbridge Road, there is now no realistic prospect of the delivery of any housing under Policy COM1(5) on this site and the housing numbers no longer count towards the Council’s land supply. Members may also recall that Council approved a new café building on site in 2017, also as a departure application.  The café has now been completed and is operational.

 

The facility in question, will provide the Police with their own in-house, on-site training, continual professional development, human resources and recruitment centre.  The PLC will provide 22 Training classrooms with associated breakout space, a human resource recruitment centre as well as office space for internal departments across the force. It will include provision for an assessments and standards unit, an operations training unit, investigative training and ‘policing through technology’ facilities.  The building would also accommodate an office for the Police and Crime Commissioner.

 

The new PLC building will be utilised roughly in the ratio of 75% for training and 25% for human resources.

 

The main access  ...  view the full minutes text for item 353.

354.

Appointment of a Registered Representative to the Overview and Scrutiny Subject Committees pdf icon PDF 64 KB

Minutes:

The Head of Legal and Regulatory Services presented a report that sought Council’s approval of the appointment of Ms. Lynsey Morris as the Secondary School Parent Governor Registered Representative to the Overview and Scrutiny Subject Committees (for Education related items), for a maximum of four years.

 

She explained that Ms. Morris had been nominated in place of Mr. Kevin Pascoe whose term in the same role had now come to an end.

 

Accordingly, following an election held in accordance with the Parent Governor Representatives and Church Representatives (Wales) Regulations 2001, the above change had been put forward.

 

RESOLVED:                      That Council noted the report and approved the appointment of Ms. Lynsey Morris as a Registered Representative for Education terms considered by the Overview and Scrutiny Subject Committees, for a maximum term of four years as the Secondary School Parent Governor Representative. 

355.

Information Reports for Noting pdf icon PDF 65 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Legal and Regulatory Services submitted a report, the purpose of which was to inform Council of the Information Reports for Noting which have been published since its last scheduled meeting.

 

RESOLVED:                      That Council acknowledged the publication of the  documents listed in the report.

356.

To receive the following Question from:

Councillor T Thomas to the Cabinet Member Education and Regeneration

 

Neighbouring local authorities such as the Vale of Glamorgan have similar characteristics and challenges in terms of the Welsh language. Would the Cabinet Member agree that Welsh medium schools provision in this authority should, at the very least, match provision in the Vale of Glamorgan?

 

 

 

 

Minutes:

Councillor Tim Thomas to the Cabinet Member – Education and Regeneration

 

Neighbouring local authorities such as the Vale of Glamorgan have similar characteristics and challenges in terms of the Welsh language. Would the Cabinet Member agree that Welsh medium schools provision in this authority should, at the very least, match provision in the Vale of Glamorgan?

 

Response

 

1.        Bridgend County Borough Council is keen to promote the Welsh language and is fully committed to working with Welsh Government to achieve its aim of one million Welsh speakers by 2050. Elected members and officers all fully support the Welsh language and what it means for Bridgend and our nation’s future. The local authority readily promotes the benefits of bilingualism at every opportunity and places significant emphasis on the importance of the Welsh language and Welsh-medium education.

 

2.          There is limited value in comparing Welsh-medium education provision in Bridgend with that of Vale of Glamorgan. Welsh Government’s proposed methodology (refer to the recent consultation on the draft Welsh in Education Strategic Plans Regulations (Wales) 2019 and Guidance) takes into account the range of Welsh-medium education provision across Wales by introducing a group system. The factors considered when grouping local authorities include: the percentage of learners taught in Welsh, the models of Welsh-medium education provision adopted by the local authority and the linguistic nature of a local authority.

 

3.          The proposed guidance identifies ‘Group 3’ local authorities as having between 13% and 19% of Year 1 children being taught through the medium of Welsh (in 2017-2018). It may be that Welsh-medium community education is the norm in one/a very small number of areas, but this is the exception not the rule. There is usually a choice between Welsh-medium education and English-medium education. ‘Group 4’ local authorities are identified as having 12% or fewer Year 1 being taught through the medium of Welsh (in 2017-2018). There is a choice between Welsh-medium education and English-medium education in these local authorities. On this basis, Bridgend is identified as a Group 4 local authority while Vale of Glamorgan falls into Group 3.

 

4.          As a local authority, we identify our Welsh in Education Strategic Plan (WESP) as the key strategic document which outlines our strategy to support the delivery and growth of Welsh-medium education.  I can confirm that Bridgend County Borough Council’s WESP has been approved by Welsh Government. The recent consultation on the draft Welsh in Education Strategic Plans Regulations (Wales) 2019 and Guidance recently closed (on 13 September 2019) and, therefore, we await the outcome of this consultation. The local authority will respond accordingly to the new regulations if approved as drafted.

 

5.          However, as noted in the local authority’s recent inspection, we need to strengthen the role of the Welsh Education Strategic Forum in delivering the priorities identified in our WESP. This priority will form a key part of our post-inspection action plan (PIAP) which will be shared with and monitored by the Welsh Education Strategic Forum.

 

6.          It is important to note that  ...  view the full minutes text for item 356.

357.

Urgent Items

To consider any item(s) of business in respect of which notice has been given in

accordance with Part 4 (paragraph 4) of the Council Procedure Rules and which the person presiding at the meeting is of the opinion should by reason of special circumstances be transacted at the meeting as a matter of urgency. 

 

 

Minutes:

None.