Agenda and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber - County Hall

Contact: Karen Strahan 01392 382264  Email: karen.strahan@devon.gov.uk

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Items
No. Item

260.

Minutes

To approve as a correct record and sign the minutes of the meeting held on 5 December 2019.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chair of the Council MOVED and it was duly SECONDED that the minutes of the meeting held on 5 December 2019 be signed as a correct record.

 

The Motion was put to the vote and declared CARRIED.

261.

Announcements

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chair of the Council reported the sad passing away of former County Councillor Roger William Boote who had served the Council between 2005 and 2009 representing the former Honiton St Paul’s Division.

 

The Chair, along with other Members of the Council, had attended the funeral service on 28th January 2020.

 

The Council had also been shortlisted for Large Employer of the Year at the Apprentice and Employer Awards 2020. The ceremony was taking place on Thursday 26th March at Sandy Park.

 

Alderman Sir Simon Day was also in attendance at the meeting in the capacity of a co-opted member of the Council’s Standards Committee to monitor compliance with the Council’s ethical frameworks.

262.

Items Requiring Urgent Attention

Additional documents:

Minutes:

There was no item raised as a matter of urgency.

263.

Public Participation: Petitions, Questions and Representations pdf icon PDF 71 KB

Petitions, Questions or Representations from Members of the public in line with the Council’s Petitions and Public Participation Schemes.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Leader was presented, by Councillor Ray Steer-Kemp, who chaired the Bishops Clyst Traffic Group, with a report organised by the Parish Council containing a number of recommendations about a series of highway concerns around Clyst St Mary and the surrounding area. 

 

A further petition was presented to the Leader from Mr Legon relating to parking in Stoke Valley Road and the surrounding streets and requesting extended residents parking, containing over 30 signatures.

 

The Chair indicated that the relevant Cabinet Member or Head of Service would be asked to respond direct to both petitioners on the issues raised, within 15 days.

 

In accordance with the Council's Public Participation Rules, the Council received and acknowledged an oral representation made by Mr Moore on mental health and well-being, raising awareness on issues for young people and older generations on mental health and on ways to move forward.

 

Also, the relevant Cabinet Member responded to one question from a member of the public on increased car use through Halberton, speeding traffic and options for residents.

 

The Cabinet Member also responded orally to the supplementary question arising from the above.

 

The Chair thanked all Members of the public for attending the meeting, advising that Members will have heard their questions and representations.

 

[NB: A copy of the questions and answers are appended to these minutes and are also available on the Council’s Website at http://democracy.devon.gov.uk/ieListMeetings.aspx?CId=132&Year=0 and any supplementary questions and answers may be observed through the webcast of this meeting – see Notes below]

264.

Petitions from Members of the Council

Additional documents:

Minutes:

There was no Petition received from a Member of the Council.

265.

Questions from Members of the Council pdf icon PDF 184 KB

Answers to questions from Members of the Council pursuant to Standing Order 17.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

In accordance with the Council’s Procedure Rules, the relevant Cabinet Members provided written responses to 20 questions and a verbal reply to one question submitted by Members of the Council on the following issues;

 

·         supporting the 2020 Summer Sunday service to Okehampton;

·         the reopening of Appledore Shipyard (including dates, the Ferguson Marine shipyard, public investment and parity of funding);

·         the recent decision to reduce numbers of Police Community Support Officers in Devon and Cornwall;

·         the learning records database (breach of data, any disclosure and relevant checks);

·         the numbers of children and young people in care since January 2018;

·         the numbers placed in care settings outside of the Council area and the furthest distance of the placing;

·         meeting obligations in relation to visits to young people outside of the Council area from social workers;

·         approved budgets for highways drainage and actual spends;

·         the Road Warden scheme and completion of Chapter 8 Training;

·         the number of potholes filled each year by community road wardens;

·         the number of potholes reported/known to the County Council and how many were repaired;

·         the process through which Parish and Town Councils could install flashing speed awareness signs in communities;

·         care fees and residential properties interests with the Land Registry;

·         monies owed to the Council for care fees and the number of people the fees related to;

·         financial support and officer time the Council had provided outside of its contract to Libraries Unlimited;

·         extensive flooding of the road between Colyton and Offwell at Holmebush / Suttons Cross and urgent resolution of the problem;

·         creation of a clearway at Haldon;

·         the decision to remove Colyton Primary School from the Axe Beacon Federation;

·         the Council’s working from home policy and relevant promotion of policy in light of the climate emergency and carbon neutrality; and

·         budget provision and real term value when compared to 2019/20 and 2009/2010.

 

The Cabinet Members also responded orally, as appropriate, to any supplementary questions arising therefrom.

 

[NB: See also responses to Questions referred to at Minute 263 above. A copy of the questions and answers are appended to the signed minutes and any supplementary questions and answers may be observed through the webcast of this meeting – see Notes below]

266.

Revenue Budget 2020/2021, Medium Term Financial Strategy & Capital Programme 2020/2021 to 2024/2025 pdf icon PDF 93 KB

In the exercise of its Public Sector Equality Duty, as set out below, the County Council must have full regard to and consider the impact of any proposals in relation to equalities prior to making any decisions and any identified significant risks and mitigating action required.  The overview of the impact assessments for all service areas entitled ‘2020/21 Budget Impact Assessment’ has been circulated separately and is available to all Members of the Council for consideration under this item (alongside any specific equality impact assessments undertaken as part of the budget’s preparation) at https://www.devon.gov.uk/impact/budget-2020-2021/.

 

To receive and approve the Report of the County Treasurer (CT/20/20) together with the Minutes of the Cabinet held on 14th February 2020 relating to the budget and the Scrutiny Budget Resolutions from 28th January 2020, attached.

 

Minutes from the recent Scrutiny Budget meetings (Children’s Scrutiny, Health and Adult Care and Corporate Infrastructure and Regulatory Services) are also attached for the information of Members.

 

The Report of the County Treasurer will follow. The Cabinet Minutes will be available to view at https://democracy.devon.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=133&MId=3435&Ver=4 shortly.

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(Councillor Connett declared a personal interest in this matter by virtue of being a Member of Teignbridge District Council referring to said Council in the debate).

 

(Councillor Parsons declared an interest by virtue of his partner being in receipt of funding for foster caring, although this issue was covered by the general dispensation).

 

All Members of the Council had been granted a dispensation to allow them to speak and vote in any debate on the setting of the Council Tax or Precept or any fees and charges arising therefrom as a consequence of simply being a resident of or a land, business or property owner in the administrative County of Devon or by being a County Council representative on a local authority company or  joint venture or by being a parent or guardian of a child in a school on any matter relating to school meals and school transport, or in relation to being an approved foster parent, providing placements for the Council’s Children in Care or in relation to the setting of members’ allowances or as a parent or a guardian of a child in care or in receipt of statutory sick pay or a pension. 

 

The Council considered the Minutes of the Cabinet meeting (Minute 462 (1-21) of 14th February 2020), together with the Report of the County Treasurer on the Revenue Budget for 2020/21, Medium Term Financial Strategy to 2023/24 and Capital Strategy 2020/21 to 2024/25, including an assessment of the adequacy of reserves, a range of prudential indicators concerning the financial implications of the capital programme and an assessment that identified risks associated with the budget strategy, together with how the risks would be managed. The budget book contained details of the County Council’s revenue and capital budgets together with associated financial and operational information. There was a requirement to prepare a Capital Strategy in line with the CIPFA Prudential Code for Capital Finance in Local Authorities 2017 and this was also included.

 

The book contained;

 

·         Revenue Budget Overview;

·         Statement on the Robustness of the Budget Estimates, the Adequacy of Reserves and Affordability of the Capital Strategy;

·         Capital Strategy and Programme Overview 2020/21 - 2024/25;

·         Service Budgets;

·         Fees & Charges;

·         Medium Term Financial Strategy 2020/21 - 2023/24;

·         County Fund Balance and Earmarked Reserves 2020/21;

·         Treasury Management Strategy 2020/21 - 2022/23 and Prudential Indicators 2020/21 - 2024/25;

·         Risk Analysis of Volatile Budgets; and

·         Abbreviations. 

 

The Chairs of the Children’s Scrutiny Committee, Health and Adult Care Scrutiny and Corporate Infrastructure and Regulatory Services Scrutiny having MOVED and it having been duly SECONDED that the Minutes of the budget Scrutiny Committee meetings held on 20th, 23rd and 28th January 2020 relating to the annual estimates be approved, the motion was subsequently put to the vote and declared CARRIED.

 

The Council noted that the Corporate Infrastructure and Regulatory Services Scrutiny Committee had, at its meeting on held 28th January 2020, considered and endorsed the proposed Treasury Management Strategy for 2020/21, prior to determination of the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 266.

Recorded Vote
TitleTypeRecorded Vote textResult
Amendment in the name of Councillor Connett Amendment Lost
Amendment in the name of Councillor Hannaford Amendment Lost
Motion in the name of Councillor Hart Motion Carried
  • View Recorded Vote for this item
  • 267.

    Pay Policy Statement 2020/2021 pdf icon PDF 136 KB

    To receive and approve the Councils Pay Policy Statement, as recommended by the Appointments, Remuneration and Chief Officer Conduct Committee (4 February 2020) (Minute 55 refers). The minutes and Pay Policy Statement are attached.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    The Council considered the recommendations of the Appointments, Remuneration and Chief Officer Conduct Committee held on 4 February 2020 relating to the adoption by the County Council of the proposed Pay Policy Statement for 2020/21.

     

    The Leader of the Council MOVED and Councillor McInnes SECONDED that the recommendations of the Appointments, Remuneration and Chief Officer Conduct Committee be approved and that the Pay Policy Statement for 2020/21 (and consequential changes to the Council’s Constitution) as set out at Minute 55 of that Committee be endorsed and the Constitution amended accordingly.

     

    The motion was put to the vote and declared CARRIED.

    268.

    Cabinet Member Reports pdf icon PDF 74 KB

    To consider reports from Cabinet Members.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    The Council received reports from the relevant Cabinet Members on matters of interest or service developments relating to their remits which had occurred since the previous meeting or were likely to have an impact in the future or on specific issues upon which they had been asked to comment, as set out below:

     

    (a)        Policy, Corporate and Asset Management

               

    Councillor Hart commented, as requested by Councillor G Hook on the settlement of claims for compensation for residents living adjacent to the South Devon Highway. The Leader commented on the numbers of agents and claims submitted and the difficulties sometimes experienced with agents that were not always local. Duplicate claims were being filtered out and people notified if claims were invalid. 14 claims were eligible under different noise legislation and these claimants would be notified shortly.

     

    He was also asked to report, by Councillor Greenslade, on the “Great South West” initiative and the projects this organisation was promoting which benefitted economic regeneration in north Devon. The Leader circulated a report that said the initiative was a partnership covering Cornwall, Devon, Somerset and Dorset geographies to deliver a £45 billion boost to the regional economy. There was a prospectus entitled “Securing our Future” which highlighted the need for and benefits of funding for the area, including transformational change opportunity for the Green and Blue economies. He reported that at this early stage there was not a list of projects, as the prospectus was highlighting themes from the Government’s Industrial Strategy, although support was being sought for an enhanced export and investment hub, rural productivity deal and a South West tourism action zone and the region’s MP’s had been lobbying Government at the highest level.

     

    The Great South West initiative did not identify individual projects in specific areas, although the key aim was to bring prosperity to the left-behind areas of the region therefore areas such as North Devon, should be at the forefront of efforts.

     

    The Leader also responded, as an urgent matter, to questions from Councillor Connett on the Government’s new immigration controls, the current issues regarding recruitment and retention of care staff and the impact this new policy could have on filling care and care-related roles in Devon.  The Leader said that the adult social care workforce was 90% British, 6% EU and 4% Non-EU origin. Whilst it was too early to say what impact a new policy may have, anything that could reduce the available pool of 'labour' was not likely to help the sector. The Leader endeavoured to keep the Council updated.

     

    He also responded to questions from the floor on the Plough Arts Centre in Torrington and a potential shortage of junior doctors in light of Brexit.

     

    (b)        Community, Public Health, Transportation and Environment

     

    Councillor Croad circulated a Report, as requested by Councillor Wright, on progress with the 10-point green action plan. The Cabinet Member highlighted that opportunities for enhanced green action had been considered by the Environmental Performance Board and relevant aspects by the Farms Estate  ...  view the full minutes text for item 268.

    269.

    Minutes pdf icon PDF 99 KB

    To receive and approve the Minutes of the under mentioned Committees

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    The Chair of the Council MOVED and it was duly SECONDED that the Minutes of the under-mentioned meetings of Committees be approved.

     

    Appeals Committee                                           - 6 January 2020           

    Procedures Committee                                      - 4 February 2020         

    (including approval of Minutes 82 and 83 relating to amendments to the terms of reference for the Appointments, Remuneration and Chief Officer Conduct Committee and also the Members Allowances Scheme)

    Appointments & Remuneration Committee          - 4 February 2020         

    (including approval of Minute 56 relating to the Appointment process for the Director of Public Health)

     

    Children’s Scrutiny (Ordinary Meeting)                - 20 January 2020         

    Health & Adult Care Scrutiny (Ordinary Meeting)- 23 January 2020         

    Corporate Infrastructure & Regulatory                 - 28 January 2020         

    Services Scrutiny (Ordinary Meeting)

                           

    The Motion was put to the vote and declared CARRIED.

    270.

    LGBT+ Inclusive Relationship and Sex Education (Minute 255 - 5 December 2019)

    To receive and consider the recommendations of the Cabinet (Minute 449(a)) as an amendment to the following Notice of Motion submitted previously to the Council by Councillor Hannaford and referred thereto in accordance with Standing Order 8(2), namely; 

     

    This Council notes that LGBT+ inclusive relationships and sex education is crucial to the development of young LGBT+ people, and in creating a more tolerant, caring and open society.

     

    Council notes with concern that the current climate for LGBT+ people in the UK means that that nearly half - including 64 per cent of trans pupils - are bullied for being LGBT+ in Britain's schools.

     

    Council notes that the repeal of Section 28 was a pivotal moment for LGBT+ rights, and that the UK must never move backwards on LGBT+ rights by stopping LGBT+ inclusive education in schools.

     

    Council notes that people of all faiths and none are LGBT+ and it is vital that all children receive comprehensive and inclusive age appropriate relationships and sex education.

     

    Council welcomes the introduction of statutory Relationships Education and Relationships and Sex Education (RSE), which all primary and secondary schools in England respectively will be required to teach from September 2020.

     

    Council affirms unequivocally its support for compulsory LGBT+ inclusive Relationships Education and Relationships and Sex Education in all state funded primary and secondary schools.

     

    Council commits to ensuring that schools are delivering RSE in line with new Government guidance.

     

    Having had regard to the aforementioned, any factual briefing/position statement on the matter set out in Report (CSO/20/1) and other suggestions or alternatives considered at that meeting the Cabinet subsequently resolved:

     

    ‘that Council be asked to support the principles of the Motion and therefore commits to advocate, promote and challenge schools to deliver RSE in line with new Government guidance’.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Pursuant to County Council Minute 255 of 5 December 2019 relating to the Notice of Motion set out below as previously submitted and formally moved and seconded by Councillor Hannaford that: 

                           

    This Council notes that LGBT+ inclusive relationships and sex education is crucial to the development of young LGBT+ people, and in creating a more tolerant, caring and open society.

     

    Council notes with concern that the current climate for LGBT+ people in the UK means that that nearly half - including 64 per cent of trans pupils - are bullied for being LGBT+ in Britain's schools.

     

    Council notes that the repeal of Section 28 was a pivotal moment for LGBT+ rights, and that the UK must never move backwards on LGBT+ rights by stopping LGBT+ inclusive education in schools.

     

    Council notes that people of all faiths and none are LGBT+ and it is vital that all children receive comprehensive and inclusive age appropriate relationships and sex education.

     

    Council welcomes the introduction of statutory Relationships Education and Relationships and Sex Education (RSE), which all primary and secondary schools in England respectively will be required to teach from September 2020.

     

    Council affirms unequivocally its support for compulsory LGBT+ inclusive Relationships Education and Relationships and Sex Education in all state funded primary and secondary schools.

     

    Council commits to ensuring that schools are delivering RSE in line with new Government guidance.

     

    and having had regard to the advice of the Cabinet set out in Minute 449(a) 15 January 2020:

     

    Councillor Hart MOVED and Councillor McInnes SECONDED that the Cabinet’s advice be accepted and that the principles of the Notice of Motion be supported and that the Council commits to advocate, promote and challenge schools to deliver RSE in line with new Government guidance.

     

    The amendment in the name of Councillor Hart was then put to the vote and declared CARRIED and subsequently thereafter also CARRIED as the substantive motion.

    271.

    Care Leavers Council Tax Exemption (Minute 256 - 5 December 2019)

    To receive and consider the recommendations of the Cabinet (Minute 449(b)) as an amendment to the following Notice of Motion submitted previously to the Council by Councillor Hannaford and referred thereto in accordance with Standing Order 8(2), namely; 

     

    This Council notes that:

     

    1. Last year 780 young people (aged 16 or over) left the care of Devon County Council and began the difficult transition out of care and into adulthood.

     

    2. A 2016 report by The Children’s Society found that when care leavers move into independent accommodation they begin to manage their own budget fully for the first time. The report showed that care leavers can find this extremely challenging and with no family to support them and insufficient financial education, are falling into debt and financial difficulty.

     

    3. Research from The Centre for Social Justice found that over half (57%) of young people leaving care have difficulty managing their money and avoiding debt when leaving care.

     

    4. The local authority has statutory corporate parenting responsibilities towards young people who have left care up until the age of 25.

     

    5. The Children and Social Work Act 2017 places corporate parenting responsibilities on district councils for the first time, requiring them to have regard to children in care and care leavers when carrying out their functions.

     

    This Council believes that:

     

    1. To ensure that the transition from care to adult life is as smooth as possible, and to mitigate the chances of care leavers falling into debt as they begin to manage their own finances, they should be exempt from paying council tax until they are 25.

     

    2. Care leavers are a particularly vulnerable group for council tax debt.

     

    This Council, therefore, resolves:

     

    1. To use the county council’s convening powers and expertise in corporate parenting to work with all council tax collecting authorities to exempt all care leavers in the county from council tax up to the age of 25, sharing any arising costs proportionately.

     

    Having had regard to the aforementioned, any factual briefing/position statement on the matter set out in Report (CSO/20/1) and other suggestions or alternatives considered at that meeting the Cabinet subsequently resolved:

     

    (a) that Council note that in April 2020 there will be an evaluation of the first-year operation of the scheme established by the Devon Local Government Steering Group (targeted support including exceptional hardship funding and/or discretionary Council Tax write offs); and

     

    (b) that this review establish how the Council continue to support care leavers by establishing how many care leavers have been assisted, how they have benefited, the costs to the Collection Fund and to inform a further consideration of alternative options available for the future of support for care leavers.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    (Councillor Connett declared a personal interest in this matter by virtue of being a Member of Teignbridge District Council)

     

    Pursuant to County Council Minute 456 of 5 December 2019 relating to the Notice of Motion set out below as previously submitted and formally moved and seconded by Councillor Hannaford that:

                           

    This Council notes that:

     

    1. Last year 780 young people (aged 16 or over) left the care of Devon County Council and began the difficult transition out of care and into adulthood.

     

    2. A 2016 report by The Children’s Society found that when care leavers move into independent accommodation they begin to manage their own budget fully for the first time. The report showed that care leavers can find this extremely challenging and with no family to support them and insufficient financial education, are falling into debt and financial difficulty.

     

    3. Research from The Centre for Social Justice found that over half (57%) of young people leaving care have difficulty managing their money and avoiding debt when leaving care.

     

    4. The local authority has statutory corporate parenting responsibilities towards young people who have left care up until the age of 25.

     

    5. The Children and Social Work Act 2017 places corporate parenting responsibilities on district councils for the first time, requiring them to have regard to children in care and care leavers when carrying out their functions.

     

    This Council believes that:

     

    1. To ensure that the transition from care to adult life is as smooth as possible, and to mitigate the chances of care leavers falling into debt as they begin to manage their own finances, they should be exempt from paying council tax until they are 25.

     

    2. Care leavers are a particularly vulnerable group for council tax debt.

     

    This Council, therefore, resolves:

     

    1. To use the county council’s convening powers and expertise in corporate parenting to work with all council tax collecting authorities to exempt all care leavers in the county from council tax up to the age of 25, sharing any arising costs proportionately.

     

    and having had regard to the advice of the Cabinet set out in Minute 449(b) of 15 January 2020:

     

    Councillor Hart MOVED and Councillor McInnes SECONDED that the Cabinet’s advice be accepted and that whilst the Notice of Motion is welcomed, it be amended as follows;

     

    (a)   Council note that in April 2020 there will be an evaluation of the first-year operation of the scheme established by the Devon Local Government Steering Group (targeted support including exceptional hardship funding and/or discretionary Council Tax write offs); and

     

    (b) that this review establish how the Council continue to support care leavers by establishing how many care leavers have been assisted, how they have benefited, the costs to the Collection Fund and to inform a further consideration of alternative options available for the future of support for care leavers.

     

     

    The amendment in the name of Councillor Hart was then put to the vote and declared CARRIED and subsequently thereafter also CARRIED as the substantive motion.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 271.

    272.

    Artificial Light Pollution (Minute 257 - 5 December 2019)

    To receive and consider the recommendations of the Cabinet (Minute 449(c)) as an amendment to the following Notice of Motion submitted previously to the Council by Councillor Shaw and referred thereto in accordance with Standing Order 8(2), namely;

     

    This County Council is concerned by scientific findings showing that artificial light pollution is a major factor in the decline of insect populations, and resolves to review the appropriateness of all external lighting for which the Council is responsible in the light of this concern, in conjunction with its Climate Emergency planning. 

     

    Having had regard to the aforementioned, any factual briefing/position statement on the matter set out in Report (CSO/20/1) and other suggestions or alternatives considered at that meeting the Cabinet subsequently resolved that Council:

     

    (a) Notes with concern recent research highlighting the effect of artificial lighting in contributing to the decline of insect populations;

     

    (b) Continues its current efforts to reduce the detrimental effects of artificial lighting; and

     

    (c) Investigates what further steps might be taken as part of its commitment to enhanced environmental action through the DCC Environmental Performance Board.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Pursuant to County Council Minute 257 of 5 December 2019 relating to the Notice of Motion set out below as previously submitted and formally moved and seconded by Councillor Shaw that: 

                           

    This County Council is concerned by scientific findings showing that artificial light pollution is a major factor in the decline of insect populations, and resolves to review the appropriateness of all external lighting for which the Council is responsible in the light of this concern, in conjunction with its Climate Emergency planning.

     

    and having had regard to the advice of the Cabinet set out in Minute 449(c) of 15 January 2020, Councillor Hart MOVED and Councillor McInnes SECONDED that the Cabinet’s advice be accepted and that spirit of the Notice of Motion be supported; and Council

     

    (a) Notes with concern recent research highlighting the effect of artificial lighting in contributing to the decline of insect populations;

     

    (b) Continues its current efforts to reduce the detrimental effects of artificial lighting; and

     

    (c) Investigates what further steps might be taken as part of its commitment to enhanced environmental action through the DCC Environmental Performance Board.

                           

    The amendment in the name of Councillor Hart was then put to the vote and declared CARRIED and subsequently thereafter also CARRIED as the substantive motion.

    273.

    Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service - Consultation and Options for Change (Minute 258 - 5 December 2019)

    To receive and consider the recommendations of the Cabinet (Minute 258) as an amendment to the following Notice of Motion submitted previously to the Council by Councillor Shaw and referred thereto in accordance with Standing Order 8(2), namely; 

     

    This County Council notes that the Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service have carried out a public consultation on 7 options for change, all of which include the closure of fire stations at Appledore, Ashburton, Budleigh Salterton, Colyton, Kingston, Porlock, Topsham and Woolacombe, as well as the removal of engines from other stations, and that, while a potential overall improvement in safety has been claimed as a result of these options, all are likely to result in increased risk for the substantial proportion of Devon's population who live near the affected stations.

        

    This County Council notes that divisional members representing affected stations who are not members of the Fire and Rescue Authority, while having had the opportunity to submit written representations to the consultation, would not normally be able under the Authority's Standing Orders to address the Authority's decision-making meeting, This Council therefore requests the Authority to provide an opportunity, Standing Orders notwithstanding, for any affected members who wish so to speak.

        

    This County Council also regrets the failure of the Fire and Rescue Service to consult directly with the Council as a partner Category 1 responder organisation in the provision of emergency services under the Civil Contingencies Act 2004, and notes that detailed discussion of the impact on civil contingencies such as flooding was not provided in the consultation. The Council therefore resolves to communicate its concern to the Service about this aspect of the consultation.

     

    Having had regard to the aforementioned, any factual briefing/position statement on the matter set out in Report (CSO/20/1) and the updated report circulated at the meeting and other suggestions or alternatives considered at that meeting the Cabinet subsequently resolved:

     

    ‘that the Council notes the decisions made on 10 January 2020 by the Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Authority about changes to operation of the fire and rescue service, the details of which are summarised in the statement available here; http://www.dsfire.gov.uk/News/Newsdesk/PressReleaseArticle.cfm?ReleaseID=2277&siteCategoryId=3&T1ID=26&T2ID=36.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Pursuant to County Council Minute 258 of 5 December 2019 relating to the Notice of Motion set out below as previously submitted and formally moved and seconded by Councillor Shaw: 

               

    This County Council notes that the Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service have carried out a public consultation on 7 options for change, all of which include the closure of fire stations at Appledore, Ashburton, Budleigh Salterton, Colyton, Kingston, Porlock, Topsham and Woolacombe, as well as the removal of engines from other stations, and that, while a potential overall improvement in safety has been claimed as a result of these options, all are likely to result in increased risk for the substantial proportion of Devon's population who live near the affected stations.

        

    This County Council notes that divisional members representing affected stations who are not members of the Fire and Rescue Authority, while having had the opportunity to submit written representations to the consultation, would not normally be able under the Authority's Standing Orders to address the Authority's decision-making meeting, This Council therefore requests the Authority to provide an opportunity, Standing Orders notwithstanding, for any affected members who wish so to speak.

        

    This County Council also regrets the failure of the Fire and Rescue Service to consult directly with the Council as a partner Category 1 responder organisation in the provision of emergency services under the Civil Contingencies Act 2004, and notes that detailed discussion of the impact on civil contingencies such as flooding was not provided in the consultation. The Council therefore resolves to communicate its concern to the Service about this aspect of the consultation.

     

    and having had regard to the advice of the Cabinet set out in Minute 449(d) of 15 January 2020:

     

    Councillor Hart MOVED and Councillor McInnes SECONDED that the Cabinet’s advice be accepted and that no further action be taken on the Notice of Motion and Council notes the decisions made on 10 January 2020 by the Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Authority about changes to operation of the fire and rescue service, the details of which are summarised in the statement here;

    http://www.dsfire.gov.uk/News/Newsdesk/PressReleaseArticle.cfm?ReleaseID=2277&siteCategoryId=3&T1ID=26&T2ID=36

     

    The amendment in the name of Councillor Hart was then put to the vote and declared CARRIED and subsequently thereafter also CARRIED as the substantive motion.

    274.

    Prevention Concordat for Better Mental Health and the 'Every Mind Matters' Campaign (Minute 259 - 5 December 2019)

    To receive and consider the recommendations of the Cabinet (Minute 449(e)) as an amendment to the following Notice of Motion submitted previously to the Council by Councillor Scott and referred thereto in accordance with Standing Order 8(2), namely; 

     

    DCC to sign the Prevention Concordat for better mental health.

     

    Recognises and commits to support The Every Mind Matters campaign.

     

    Supports the mental health of all DCC employees and contractors, this is key to providing first class services and leadership in Devon.

     

    Understands the need to prevent mental health problems and promote good mental health through the lived experience of people who have suffered mental health problems.

     

    (further information at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/prevention-concordat-for-better-mental-health-consensus-statement/prevention-concordat-for-better-mental-health)

     

    Having had regard to the aforementioned, any factual briefing/position statement on the matter set out in Report (CSO/20/1) and other suggestions or alternatives considered at that meeting the Cabinet subsequently resolved:

     

    ‘that this Council requests the support of all Members for signing the Prevention Concordat; in promoting the Public Health England ‘Every Mind Matters’ campaign; in supporting the mental health of the Council’s employees and, through its commissioned services, the mental health of providers; and to support the work the Council currently does – and will continue to do – in using the lived experience of people to better understand and to help and prevent mental ill-health’.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Pursuant to County Council Minute 259 of 5 Decembmer 2019 relating to the Notice of Motion set out below as previously submitted and formally moved and seconded by Councillor Scott: 

                           

    DCC to sign the Prevention Concordat for better mental health.

     

    Recognises and commits to support The Every Mind Matters campaign.

     

    Supports the mental health of all DCC employees and contractors, this is key to providing first class services and leadership in Devon.

     

    Understands the need to prevent mental health problems and promote good mental health through the lived experience of people who have suffered mental health problems.

     

    (further information at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/prevention-concordat-for-better-mental-health-consensus-statement/prevention-concordat-for-better-mental-health)

     

    and having had regard to the advice of the Cabinet set out in Minute 449(e) of 15 January 2020:

     

    Councillor Hart MOVED and Councillor McInnes SECONDED that the Cabinet’s advice be accepted and that Notice of Motion be supported and that the Council requests the support of all Members for signing the Prevention Concordat; in promoting the Public Health England ‘Every Mind Matters’ campaign; in supporting the mental health of the Council’s employees and, through its commissioned services, the mental health of providers; and to support the work the Council currently does – and will continue to do – in using the lived experience of people to better understand and to help and prevent mental ill-health.

     

    The amendment in the name of Councillor Hart was then put to the vote and declared CARRIED and subsequently thereafter also CARRIED as the substantive motion.

    275.

    Totnes and Littlehempston Cycle / Footpath Scheme and the Council's Cycling and Multiuse Trail

    Councillor Hodgson to move:

     

    That the proposed Cycle and footpath link scheme between Totnes and Littlehempston be added to the County Council’s current Cycling and Multiuse Trail strategy as this will:

     

    1.     provide an important non-vehicular link between Totnes and its adjacent parish and village centre in Littlehempston;

    2.     support the SHDC A385 Air Quality Management Action Plan (it is listed as an action) to address traffic congestion and air quality in Totnes and environs;

    3.     complete an important missing link of the national NC2 cycle route (which when complete will link Dover in Kent with St Austell in Cornwall) supporting commuters as well as tourism; and,

    4.     thereby support DCC’s declaration of a climate emergency.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Councillor Hodgson MOVED and Councillor Biederman SECONDED

     

    That the proposed Cycle and footpath link scheme between Totnes and Littlehempston be added to the County Council’s current Cycling and Multiuse Trail strategy as this will:

     

    1.     provide an important non-vehicular link between Totnes and its adjacent parish and village centre in Littlehempston;

    2.     support the SHDC A385 Air Quality Management Action Plan (it is listed as an action) to address traffic congestion and air quality in Totnes and environs;

    3.     complete an important missing link of the national NC2 cycle route (which when complete will link Dover in Kent with St Austell in Cornwall) supporting commuters as well as tourism; and,

    4.     thereby support DCC’s declaration of a climate emergency.

     

    In accordance with Standing Order 6(6) the Notice of Motion was referred, without discussion, to the Cabinet for consideration.

     

    276.

    The Education (Guidance about Costs of School Uniforms) Bill 2019-20

    Councillor Hannaford to move:

    Council notes

    In July 2019, the Work and Pensions Committee and Education Committee held a joint evidence session on school holiday poverty.

    Following the session, the chair of the Work and Pensions Committee, Frank Field, sent a letter to the Secretary of State for Education stating that the testimony at the session from parents and parental support organisations was “profoundly distressing” and raised the issue of school uniform costs, in particular schools using particular providers for generic items.

    The letter asked the Secretary of State to consider what the Government can do in supporting parents dealing with high uniform costs. It further stated that the committees would return to the wider issue later in the year, with further evidence sessions and a report.

    Council notes with concern.

    The Children’s Commission on Poverty, supported by the Children’s Society, published The Wrong Blazer: Time for action on school uniform costs in 2015, a report that highlighted concerns about uniform costs, recommended making the DfE guidance statutory, as well as that the Government should explore a school uniform cost cap.

    In August 2018, the Children’s Society published an update to the report, based on a survey of 1,000 parents, which highlighted uniform costs and the potential impact on children:

    The report, The Wrong Blazer 2018: Time for action on school uniform costs, revealed families are paying out more on school uniforms, with an average of £340 per year for each child at secondary school – an increase of 7% or £24 since 2015. Parents of primary school children spent on average £255 per year, an increase of 2% since 2015.

    The high cost of uniforms can be put down in part to school policies that make parents buy clothing from specialist shops rather than giving them the choice of buying items at cheaper stores such as supermarkets or high-street chains. Where parents have to buy two or more items of school uniform from a specific supplier, spending was found to be an average of £71 per year higher for secondary school children and £77 higher for primary school children.

    For children themselves, the cost of school uniform can have a serious impact. Around one in 10 parents said it had led to their child wearing uniform that didn’t fit properly, and more than one in 20 said that their child had been sent home for wearing the wrong clothes or shoes as a result of them struggling to afford the cost.

    The full report again recommended that the Government make the DfE guidance statutory, and also that the Government should end the freeze on key benefits and tax credits for families with children.

    Council welcomes

    The Education (Guidance about Costs of School Uniforms) Bill 2019-20 that was introduced by Labour Mike Amesbury MP following the Private Members' Bills Ballot on 9 January 2020.

     

    First reading took place on 5 February 2020 and the Bill's second reading is due on 13 March 2020.

    The bill is designed to cut  ...  view the full agenda text for item 276.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Councillor Hannaford MOVED and Councillor Hart SECONDED that in accordance with Standing Order 6(6), the Notice of Motion submitted by Councillor Hannaford be considered at this meeting.

     

    The Motion was put to the vote and declared CARRIED.

     

    Councillor Hannaford then MOVED (with the amendment shown below and with the consent of the Council) and Councillor Hart SECONDED;

     

    Council notes

     

    In July 2019, the Work and Pensions Committee and Education Committee held a joint evidence session on school holiday poverty.

     

    Following the session, the chair of the Work and Pensions Committee, Frank Field, sent a letter to the Secretary of State for Education stating that the testimony at the session from parents and parental support organisations was “profoundly distressing” and raised the issue of school uniform costs, in particular schools using particular providers for generic items.

     

    The letter asked the Secretary of State to consider what the Government can do in supporting parents dealing with high uniform costs. It further stated that the committees would return to the wider issue later in the year, with further evidence sessions and a report.

    Council notes with concern.

    The Children’s Commission on Poverty, supported by the Children’s Society, published The Wrong Blazer: Time for action on school uniform costs in 2015, a report that highlighted concerns about uniform costs, recommended making the DfE guidance statutory, as well as that the Government should explore a school uniform cost cap.

     

    In August 2018, the Children’s Society published an update to the report, based on a survey of 1,000 parents, which highlighted uniform costs and the potential impact on children:

     

    The report, The Wrong Blazer 2018: Time for action on school uniform costs, revealed families are paying out more on school uniforms, with an average of £340 per year for each child at secondary school – an increase of 7% or £24 since 2015. Parents of primary school children spent on average £255 per year, an increase of 2% since 2015.

     

    The high cost of uniforms can be put down in part to school policies that make parents buy clothing from specialist shops rather than giving them the choice of buying items at cheaper stores such as supermarkets or high-street chains. Where parents have to buy two or more items of school uniform from a specific supplier, spending was found to be an average of £71 per year higher for secondary school children and £77 higher for primary school children.

     

    For children themselves, the cost of school uniform can have a serious impact. Around one in 10 parents said it had led to their child wearing uniform that didn’t fit properly, and more than one in 20 said that their child had been sent home for wearing the wrong clothes or shoes as a result of them struggling to afford the cost.

     

    The full report again recommended that the Government make the DfE guidance statutory, and also that the Government should end the freeze on key benefits and tax credits for families with children.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 276.

    277.

    Support to Town and Parish Councils and Speed Awareness Signs

    Councillor Connett to move:

     

    ‘Parish and Town Councils across Devon should be supported in providing the popular 'flashing or vehicle activated speed awareness' signs in their communities and the current fog of bureaucracy imposed by Devon County Council is ended.  We call for a simpler system to help and support our local communities tackle concerns about speeding vehicles by giving our local Highways Officers the authority to agree the number and location of the 'vehicle activated speed awareness' signs with Parish and Town Councils’.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Councillor Connett MOVED and Councillor Way SECONDED

     

                      ‘Parish and Town Councils across Devon should be supported in providing the popular 'flashing or vehicle activated speed awareness' signs in their communities and the current fog of bureaucracy imposed by Devon County Council is ended.  We call for a simpler system to help and support our local communities tackle concerns about speeding vehicles by giving our local Highways Officers the authority to agree the number and location of the 'vehicle activated speed awareness' signs with Parish and Town Councils’.

     

    In accordance with Standing Order 6(6) the Notice of Motion was referred, without discussion, to the Cabinet for consideration.