Agenda and minutes

Scrutiny Advisory Board - Communities and Place
Friday, 16th March, 2018 10.00 am

Venue: Committee Room 1 - County Offices, Kendal, LA9 4RQ. View directions

Contact: Stewart Consterdine  Email:

No. Item



To receive any apologies for absence.



Apologies for absence were received from Mr M Barbour, Mr A Kennon and Mr B McEwan.




To note any changes in membership of the Board.




Members are invited to disclose any disclosable pecuniary interest they have in any item on the agenda which comprises:-


1          Details of any employment, office, trade, profession or vocation carried on for profit or gain.


2          Details of any payment or provision of any other financial benefit (other than from the authority) made or provided within the relevant period in respect of any expenses incurred by you in carrying out duties as a member, or towards your election expenses.  (This includes any payment or financial benefit from a trade union within the meaning of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992.


3          Details of any contract which is made between you (or a body in which you have a beneficial interest) and the authority


            (a)    Under which goods or services are to be provided or works are to be executed; and


            (b)    Which has not been fully discharged.


4          Details of any beneficial interest in land which is within the area of the authority. 


5          Details of any licence (alone or jointly with others) to occupy land in the area of the authority for a month or longer. 


6          Details of any tenancy where (to your knowledge).


            (a)    The landlord is the authority; and


            (b)    The tenant is a body in which you have a beneficial interest.


7          Details of any beneficial interest in securities of a body where


            (a)    That body (to your knowledge) has a place of business or land in the area of the authority; and


            (b)    Either –


                     (i)         The total nominal value of the securities exceeds £25,000 or one hundredth of the total issued share capital of that body; or


                     (ii)        If that share capital of that body is of more than one class, the total nominal value of the shares of any one class in which the relevant person has a beneficial interest exceeds one hundredth of the total issued share capital of that class.


In addition, you must also disclose other non-pecuniary interests set out in the Code of Conduct where these have not already been registered.




A “disclosable pecuniary interest” is an interest of a councillor or their partner (which means spouse or civil partner, a person with whom they are living as husband or wife, or a person with whom they are living as if they are civil partners).



Mr C Hogg declared a non-pecuniary interest in Agenda Item 9 (Minute Number 30 refers) as he was a Member of the Lake District National Park Authority.




To consider whether the press and public should be excluded from the meeting during consideration of any item on the agenda.



RESOLVED,    that the press and public be not excluded from the meeting for any item on the agenda.



MINUTES pdf icon PDF 72 KB

To confirm as a correct record the minutes of the meeting of the Board held on 27 November 2017. (copy enclosed).



RESOLVED,    that the minutes of the meeting held on 27 November 2017 be confirmed as a correct record and thereupon signed by the Chair.



Mechanical Biological Treatment Plants (MBT) pdf icon PDF 127 KB

Consider the report and presentation on the impact of Mechanical Biological Treatment Plants. (MBT).


Additional documents:


The Board considered a briefing paper by the Corporate Director – Economy and Highways. The paper provided an overview of the Mechanical Biological Treatment facilities that formed part of the Public Private Partnership (PPP) contract with Renewi Cumbria Limited (RCL) (formerly Shanks).


Members were guided through a presentation on Cumbria’s Resource Park Facilities. The presentation gave an overview of the following:-

·         Background

·         The contract between Cumbria County Council and Renewi

·         Process of MBT

·         Resource Parks

·         Output- Refuse Derived Fuel (RDF)/ Solid Recovered Fuel (SDF)

·         Challenges


The Chair thanked the Contract Director from Renewi and the Waste Operational Manager for the informative presentation.


A request was made to see more of the financial detail behind the facilities and process, in response it was advised that this was a complex request and neither the Assistant Director – Economy and Highways or the Contract Director would be able to provide at this meeting.


A Member asked whether the outputted product has been used for road surfacing. Officers advised it had not been done previously, however could be an option to be explored.


Members asked whether the Scrutiny Board could do more to add value to the process/ project. It was advised that Officers would need to look into this in more detail and would feed back to the Board.



Household Recycling Targets pdf icon PDF 296 KB

To consider recent information on household recycling targets and street sweep.



Consideration was given to a briefing note from the Corporate Director – Economy and Highways which provided Members with a review of the recycling performance information for the County Council and District Councils. The note presented information on the following headings:-




The County Council as the statutory Waste Disposal Authority (WDA) was responsible for the disposal of waste and household waste recycling centres. Whereas District Councils, as Waste Collection Authorities (WCA), were responsible for collecting waste and recycling through kerbside collections, as directed by the County Council. The County Council’s 14 Household Waste Recycling Centres received 44,000 tonnes of material annually and of that, 60.3% was recycled or composted which was above target.


Members were informed of changes to Recycling Credit Payments which included the establishment of a general mechanism for determining the WDA’s net saving of diverting waste from landfill.


Standards, policies and strategies


The Board were also advised of the standards, policies and strategies relating to waste and were informed that the Council is bound by legislation to apply the waste hierarchy as a priority order.


Current performance reporting


Performance for the County Council was reported as part of the corporate performance reporting procedure. This incorporated progress against the 2017/18 Council Plan Delivery Plan and was monitored on a quarterly basis.


A discussion took place regarding current measures and targets for Waste Services. The Board was notified that Cumbrian households had been forecasted to generate 243,000 tonnes of waste in 2017/18 which amounted to 488kg per person and was in line with targets.


The Board considered countywide recycling rates and were presented with the DEFRA 2016/17 official figures for recycling performance for each local authority.


Future developments


In relation to future development, the Council was looking at options for the recycling of materials from street sweepings which would expand the range of materials being recycled in Cumbria. A trial had been carried out which involved diverting street sweepings to a recycling facility in the north-west of the County. The result of the trial was positive with 2,000 tonnes of street sweepings being diverted from direct disposal.


The Corporate Director expressed his thanks to the Assistant Director – Economy and Environment and the Waste Operational Manager for their dedication and hard work.


The briefing paper was noted.



Scope for Recycling and ReUse Task and Finish Group pdf icon PDF 136 KB

To consider draft scope for work to explore how recycling and reuse of household waste can be maximised through work with the 3rd sector.


Additional documents:


Members were presented with the project outline for scrutiny reviews from the Corporate Director – Resources and Transformation which outlined:-


Ø  Timescales

Ø  Reasons for review

Ø  Review aims and objectives

Ø  Links to Council Plan and Outcomes

Ø  Key Officer support

Ø  Potential site visits

Ø  Supporting documents: 2016-19 Waste Prevention Programme


It was AGREED for the scope to be submitted to Scrutiny Management Board for approval.



Thirlmere to West Cumbria Pipeline

Verbal update on progress of project.


The Vice-Chair of the Board provided a number of photographs of work sites on the Thirlmere to West Cumbria Pipeline and expressed concerns.


The Board were given a verbal update on the Pipeline by the Corporate Director – Economy and Highways.


The Assistant Director – Economy and Environment explained that the County Council was a statutory consultee and not the responsible planning authority, therefore it was advised that any concerns relating to planning enforcements should be raised with the District Council in their role as the responsible planning authority.


It was suggested that there was a need to gauge wider opinion on the matter and it was AGREED that a private Member briefing open to all County Council Members be held to discuss the matter in more detail.


The Board thanked Officers and the Vice-Chair for the update.



Permit Scheme

Presentation with regards to working arrangements between Highways Department and Utility Companies. ( To be tabled)



Members were guided through a presentation by the Corporate Director – Economy and Highways on the future Highways Permit Scheme that was expected to be implemented in April 2019.


The presentation outlined:-


Legal context


The Assistant Director – Highways, Transport and Fleet  informed of relevant Acts, guidance and regulations including:

-       Traffic Management Act 2004

-       Department for Transport’s statutory guidance for Highways Authority Permit Schemes

-       Traffic Management Permit scheme (England) Regulations 2007


Scope of the permitting scheme


Members were provided with information relating to background of the permitting scheme and advised on the noticing system that was currently in place. It was explained that under the new scheme the County Council would be required to apply to permit themselves and this would be a significant change from the current system. However it was highlighted that this would be of benefit to the Council as it would improve accountability of works.


It was advised that the County Council was behind a national curve in introducing a permitting scheme and the scheme had been very successful in other authorities.


Key benefits to the County Council


A discussion took place regarding benefits of introducing a permitting scheme, the following advantages were highlighted:-


·         Minimised impact on the highways network while essential activities take place

·         Reduced occupation of the highway to benefit road users and minimise/ avoid/ manage delays

·         Ensure work is completed on time and to a good quality

·         Force the authority to manage work more efficiently

·         Better information available to the public

·         Ability to re-invest fees and fines into increased inspection work

·         Reduce long-term damage to the highways asset and promote best practice

·         Improved accountability of works, both internal and external.


Timescales and project milestones


It was advised that the authority hopes to implement the full permitting scheme in April 2019. In the meantime, the following actions would be undertaken: the initial scope and project plan would be defined during March 2018 and the internal noticing of highways work would commence in April 2018. The production of procedures and policy was ongoing as was the production of a wider stakeholder engagement process and utility engagement. A report and consultation documents would be discussed at the Cabinet meeting in November/ December. It was suggested that an update report be brought to the next meeting of the Scrutiny Board.


Key considerations


It was explained that it would be important to ensure links were established to other highways projects such as network hierarchy, classification and highways safety inspections. Officers would also need to consider how the payment scheme structure would work and what costs would be applied. A piece of work would also need to be undertaken to consider the effect on partner organisations.


Digital strategy


It was highlighted that there was legislation requiring the electronic transfer of notifications and therefore highways teams were working hard to explore various options and systems available for a digital solution. There was a need to define the potential for future technological needs and resources needed to deliver.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 31.


Board Briefing pdf icon PDF 92 KB

To consider a report by the Corporate Director – Resources and Transformation (copy enclosed).


This report informs members of new and updated items of significance to the Board (including relevant aspects of the Council’s Forward Plan and Key Decisions).


Additional documents:


Members received the Communities and Place Board Briefing from the Corporate Director – Resources and Transformation. The report provided an update on issues and developments that had occurred since the last meeting of the Board on 27 November 2017.


In order to support the Council’s preparations for the inspection of Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service under the new arrangements in Spring 2019 five Members had formed a working group to oversee activity, as part of this some Members had visited the Fire Service. Opportunities for further engagement would be identified going forward.


The Board considered the future work programme which identified topics for future consideration. Following an intensive discussion regarding the landfill site in Walney South it was proposed for the Board consider a future item on landfill sites. In addition to this, it was suggested that the Board consider future items on home to school transport and social isolation.


The Chair thanked Officers for the update on the Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service’s Integrated Risk Management Plan draft Year 3 Action Plan given on 4 January 2018 and suggested that a more detailed report be brought to the next Board meeting.


Finally the Board considered the Forward Plan of Key Decisions and noted items relevant to the work of the Scrutiny Board. A Member asked a question regarding the process of the Forward Plan and stated that it would be beneficial for the Scrutiny Board to see relevant items earlier in the process.


It was AGREED that going forward the board briefing would be considered at the start of the meeting.


RESOLVED,             that Members note:-


(1)  the range of activity set out in the report and updates following the last meeting of the Board on 27 November 2017;

(2)  the proposed work programme

(3)  the Forward Plan of Key Decisions 1 April 2018- 31 May 2018




To note that the next meeting of the Board will be held on Friday 15 June 2018 at 9.30 am in Conference Room A/B, Cumbria House, Botchergate, Carlisle.



It was noted that the next meeting of the Board would be held on 15 June 2018 at 10:00am at Cumbria House, Carlisle.