Agenda and draft minutes

Cabinet - Thursday, 22nd September, 2022 10.00 am

Venue: Cumbria House, Botchergate, Carlisle

Contact: Jackie Currie  Email: jackie.currie@cumbria.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

22.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

To receive any apologies for absence.

Minutes:

There were no apologies for absence.

 

 

23.

DISCLOSURES OF INTEREST

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.

 

Note

 

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). 

Minutes:

There were no disclosures of interest made on this occasion.

 

 

24.

EXCLUSION OF PRESS AND PUBLIC

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

Minutes:

RESOLVED, that the press and public be not excluded from any items on the agenda today.

 

 

25.

MINUTES pdf icon PDF 176 KB

To receive the minutes of the Cabinet meeting held on 21 July 2022 (copy enclosed)

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED  that the minutes of the meeting held on 21 July 2022 be agreed as an accurate record and signed by the Chair.

 

 

26.

STATEMENTS BY THE LEADER OF THE COUNCIL AND CABINET MEMBERS

To receive statements by the Leader of the Council and Cabinet Members.

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member for Health and Care Services informed Cabinet about the work undertaken last weekend by staff working within adult social care.

 

The team received notification, with very little notice, that a care provider would close at 5 pm on Friday 9 September 2022.

 

The impact was that approximately 70 vulnerable people with care and support needs were left without care provision, and 31 carers were left feeling anxious about their own futures, and worried for the safety of their clients.

 

Operations, Cumbria Care, Commissioning, Brokerage, People Management and Legal worked tirelessly, together, over that weekend to achieve the TUPE transfer of staff, and to ensure people were safe and had the care and support they needed going forward.

 

The Cabinet Member said the value of Cumbria Care in such a situation could not be underestimated, particularly in light of the incredibly tight time frames involved.

 

Cabinet asked that their thanks be recorded to Alison Granville, Cumbria Care and the wider teams for all the effort taken to ensure the vulnerable people were safe.

 

 

27.

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION

There were no questions, petitions or statements at the time of despatch

 

Minutes:

There were no public questions, petitions or statements made at this meeting.

 

There were no referrals from local committee or scrutiny committees on this occasion.

 

 

28.

2022/23 Revenue and Capital Budget Monitoring Report to 30 June 2022 pdf icon PDF 612 KB

To consider a report from the Director of Finance (Section 151) Officer (copy to follow)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a report from the Director of Finance (Section 151 Officer) which set out the Council’s forecast year-end financial position at 30 June 2022, Quarter 1 (Q1); covering the Revenue Budget, Capital Programme and Treasury Management.  Cabinet receives a report quarterly and Directorate and Corporate Management Teams receive detailed reports monthly. This report linked to the Q1 Corporate performance monitoring report.

 

Since Council set the 2022/23 Budget in February 2022 the economic uncertainly both nationally and internationally had continued. Like all public sector organisations the Council continued to face significant financial pressures relating to unprecedented high levels and increasing rates of inflation; cost of living crisis; supply chain disruption and contractual delivery risks and increased demand on services both as a result of continued impact from the COVID-19 pandemic and wider Health and social care system pressures.

 

Despite being able to fund some of the exceptional pressures significant financial risks for the remainder of the year remain and management focus would continue in respect of closely monitoring the financial position and take further appropriate mitigating actions to ensure that the financial outturn position is managed within the Council’s approved budget.  The Council had an adequate level of reserves and was in a financially sustainable position to respond to the risks if they materialised and could not be managed within the approved budget. 

 

In respect of the cost of living crisis the Council agreed, as part of its 2021/22 outturn position at Cabinet on 9 June 2022, to earmark £2m in financial support for the Council Ways to Welfare fund, the School Clothing Grant Budget on a one off basis for 2022/23 only to provide parents of children in receipt of free school meals a contribution to the cost of school uniforms at an increased rate of £50 for children in primary school and £100 for those in a secondary school, the enhanced free school meals offer including funding the shortfall in free school meal voucher provision for the summer 2022 school holidays, and direct community support to be used to provide support directly to individuals in need, including: direct food purchase support for food banks, to meet increasing need and fill a shortfall in donations as the cost of living crisis hits.

 

In addition, Cabinet was asked to support a further investment of £1m of Public Health earmarked reserve to provide immediate relief to people in Cumbria most vulnerable to the impacts of the cost of living crisis with a programme of poverty relief activity. This includes support to a number of organisations where demand for their support, service and direct financial support to families has increased significantly.

 

The Deputy Leader took Cabinet through the key messages contained in the report, and moved the recommendations.

 

The Leader reminded Cabinet about the motion agreed at full Council recently to call upon Scrutiny to convene a task and finish group to deliver on and build on the work of the Council’s Cost of Living Crisis fund and they would report  ...  view the full minutes text for item 28.

29.

Corporate Performance Monitoring Report 2022/23 - Quarter 1 pdf icon PDF 274 KB

To consider a report from the Director of Finance (Section 151 ) Officer (copy enclosed)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members had before them a report from the Director of Finance (Section 151 Officer) which provided Cabinet with an update on corporate performance, measured against the new Council Plan Delivery Plan agreed in March 2022.

 

As a result of Local Government Reorganisation within Cumbria, a 12 month extension to the existing four year Council Plan 2018-22 had been agreed and would now run until March 2023.  This supported a consistent focus on delivery of the broader outcomes across the Council in a rapidly changing working landscape.

 

Overall 40 or the 67 indicators had been met, or on track, 19 were amber and 4 were rated red.  Compared to the previous quarter this showed an improvement with 4 more indicators now green, and 4 less indicators rated red.

 

RESOLVED, that Cabinet notes the overall performance relating to delivery of the four Council Plan outcomes and context indicators for the quarter ending 30 June 2022.

 

30.

Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA). pdf icon PDF 148 KB

To consider a report from the Chief Legal Officer (Monitoring Officer) (copy enclosed)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members had before them a report which sought approval of the policy document at Appendix 1, which set out how Cumbria County Council would comply with the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA).

The report also provided Cabinet with an update on surveillance activity since the last report to Cabinet in September 2021.  The Council rarely made use of the powers available under RIPA and no authorisations had been applied for or granted in the last year.

The approval of the policy as drafted would ensure the Council’s compliance with relevant legislation and guidance.  Ensuring that an up to date and accurate policy and guidance was available would assist the Council to balance the needs of undertaking work to safeguard individuals and local communities whilst ensuring that it did not unnecessarily infringe the human rights of individuals.

RESOLVED, that Cabinet

(1) approves the updated Policy, attached as Appendix 1 of the report, in respect of how Cumbria County Council will comply with the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000.

(2) delegates authority to the Chief Legal Officer/Monitoring Officer in consultation with the Leader and Deputy Leader to make amendments to the policy where required as a result of changes in legislation.

 

 

31.

Scope 1,2 and 3 Baseline - Cumbria County Council Carbon Management Strategy 2022 pdf icon PDF 468 KB

To consider a report from the Executive Director – Economy and Infrastructure (copy enclosed)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a report from the Executive Director – Economy and Infrastructure which outlined the Cumbria County Council Carbon Management Strategy 2022.

 

The Strategy built upon the existing Carbon Management Strategy for the Corporate Estate (2020) approved by Cumbria County Council Cabinet on 12 November 2020. This strategy included the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions for all Cumbria County Council operational service areas to a detailed Scope 1, 2 and 3 level.

Using the pre pandemic baseline year of 2019/2020 the Strategy also identified how the baseline emissions, caused by County Council service activity, would be allocated between the future successor authority areas of Cumberland and Westmorland and Furness. The Strategy would be passed to the new Councils to help establish a complete picture of carbon emissions for their new areas and aid future decision making around carbon and climate change matters. 

 

A series of delivery strategies were identified to reduce emissions from County Council services in accordance with regional and national targets to reach Net Zero GHG emissions.

 

It was important that Cumbria County Council established a clear Strategy to ensure it had recorded, and had a proposal to manage its carbon emissions effectively having regard to International treaties and National statutory requirements.

 

The adoption of a Carbon Management Strategy demonstrated the County Council’s commitment to decarbonisation of its services, its approach and set out the baseline on which it, and the successor organisations could choose to manage carbon emissions in the future.  The Strategy defined the actions and estimated costs required and target dates for achieving net zero.

 

The adoption of the Strategy contributed to decarbonising the County of Cumbria’s broader carbon footprint as part of the  local government sector, and offers opportunities through investment in decarbonisation projects to increase skills and understanding of the risks and opportunities of decarbonisation delivery in Cumbria.

 

RESOLVED, that Cabinet approves the Cumbria County Council Carbon Management Strategy 2022 as attached in Appendix 1 of the report.

 

32.

Cumbria County Council Children Looked After Placements Sufficiency Strategy 2022-2025 pdf icon PDF 168 KB

To consider a report from the Executive Director – People (copy enclosed)

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members considered a report from the Executive Director – People, which asked Cabinet to approve Cumbria County Council’s Children Looked After Placements Sufficiency Strategy 2022-2025.

The Strategy outlined Cumbria County Council’s aspirations, vision, and approach to providing sufficient, safe, and appropriate placements for children looked after and care leavers over the next 3 years. 

It was expected that this approach would continue to be relevant until 2025, at which time, if not before, Cumberland Council and Westmorland & Furness Council would be in a position to develop their own individual strategy, analysis and action plan.

There was legislation in place to enable a seamless transition of any strategies that had been carried out, formulated or prepared and published prior to Vesting day.  These shall be treated as if they had been carried out, formulated, prepared, and published by the single tier council.

The Strategy would provide a common understanding of the needs of Cumbria’s looked after children and the strategic priorities in relation to meeting the need.

RESOLVED, that Cabinet approves the Cumbria County Council’s Children Looked After Placements Sufficiency Strategy 2022-2025.

 

33.

Consultation on the potential change of age range to St Bees Village Primary School and Wigton Infant School pdf icon PDF 167 KB

To consider a report from the Executive Director – People (copy enclosed)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members had before them a report from the Executive Director – People, which sought a decision on the publication of change of age range notices for St Bees Village Primary School and Wigton Infant School.  An initial public consultation exercise on the change of age ranges was carried out between 6 June 2022 and 15 July 2022. 

 

St Bees was a thriving Governor–led nursery which the Head and School Governors now want to integrate more fully into the primary school.  To formally make the nursery part of the school the age range would need to change from 4 to 11 years of age to a new range of 2 to 11 years.

 

The extension of age range would allow the school to more effectively share its resources with the nursery, whilst making no changes to the day-to-day running of the existing arrangements for parents and children.

 

There were two responses to the initial consultation, the first queried whether the change would automatically entitle those in the nursery to a place in St Bees Village School, which would not be the case, and the second was from the Clerk to St Bees Parish Council supporting the change of age range.

 

In September 2020 Wigton Infant School changed its age range to 2 to 7 years in order to allow it to take on the former Longthwaite Road Pre-School.

 

Following a review of the facility since that date, and a temporary change to concentrate on 3 year-olds, it was now proposed to permanently amend the age range of the school to 3 to 7 years of age. 

 

There was 1 response from a member of staff/governor supporting the change of age range.

 

Following the decision by Cabinet publication of formal change of age range notices would trigger a four week ‘representation period’, after which Cabinet must make a decision within 2 months on the proposals.

 

RESOLVED, that the Cabinet approves the publication of formal change of age range notices for St Bees Village Primary School and Wigton Infant School.

 

 

 

 

34.

School Admission Arrangements 2024/25 pdf icon PDF 166 KB

To consider a report from the Executive Director – People (copy enclosed)

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a report from the Executive Director – People which set out the proposed admission arrangements for Community and Voluntary Controlled schools, for which the county council was the statutory admission authority. 

This paper also set out the proposed co-ordinated scheme for school admissions in 2024-25, which the LA was required to formulate by 1 January 2023.  The LA was not required to consult on the scheme if it had not changed from the scheme adopted for the previous academic year, or where any changes were directed by legislation.  Cabinet noted that no consultation was required for the proposed 2024-25 scheme. 

 

Members were informed that references to the County Council being the statutory admissions authority referred to the current position; at this stage, there was no other statutory admissions authority for Community and Voluntary Controlled schools which could undertake consultation on, or determination of, the admissions policy as required by the School Admissions Code.  Cabinet understood that references to the statutory admissions authority relating to the period from 1 April 2023 onwards should be read as references to Cumberland and Westmorland & Furness respectively.

 

RESOLVED, that Cabinet

 

(1)     Approves the proposed admissions policy for Community and Voluntary Controlled schools at Appendix A to go out to consultation with the required groups as set out in the School Admissions Code 2021, paragraph 1.47;

(2)     Determines the proposed co-ordinated scheme for 2024-25 for all maintained schools and academies in Cumbria, Appendix B of the report;

(3)     Agrees the nursery admissions policy for 2024-25 for Community and Voluntary Controlled nursery schools and infant/primary schools providing nursery education, Appendix C of the report;

(4)     Notes that this consultation relates to the policy on admissions to school in September 2024, at which point the County Council will have been abolished. It is recommended, however, that the County Council undertakes consultation on, and determination of admission arrangements for 2024-25 so that these can be adopted by the successor authorities.  It is suggested that the new shadow authorities should be consulted formally and directly on the proposed arrangements;

(5)     Notes that a further report will be brought to Cabinet in December 2022 to provide feedback from the consultation and to seek a decision on the adoption of the 2024-25 arrangements.