Agenda and minutes

Council - Wednesday 24th January 2018 6.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Town Hall

Contact: Ainsley Gilbert  01473 432510

Items
No. Item

45.

Apologies for Absence.

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Debman, Harsant, Maguire, Phillips and Pope.

46.

To Confirm the Minutes from the Previous Council Meeting. pdf icon PDF 84 KB

Minutes:

It was RESOLVED:

 

That the Minutes of the meeting held on 22 November 2017 be signed as a true record.

47.

To Confirm or Vary the Order of Business on the Agenda.

Minutes:

It was RESOLVED:

 

that the order of business be confirmed as printed on the Agenda.

48.

To Receive any Declarations of Interest.

Minutes:

The Monitoring Officer had granted Dispensations to all Members present in respect of Agenda Item 7 (C/17/12 - Council Housing Rents for 2018/19) and Agenda Item 8 (C/17/13 - Council Tax Reduction Scheme).

 

Councillors Gardiner and Lockington declared a Non-Pecuniary Interest in Agenda Item 6 – Questions in Accordance with Procedure Rule 9 as non-Executive Directors of Ipswich Buses Limited, to which one of the questions related.

49.

Mayor's Communications.

Minutes:

The Mayor and her Consort were looking forward to helping the Town Hall celebrate its 150th anniversary during the Burns supper on Sunday 28th January. The Mayor commented that it would be lovely to share the occasion of this Burns night, which was to include pipers and Councillor Neil MacDonald addressing the haggis in his finest kilt, with as many of those present as possible. The Mayor confirmed that all the proceeds from the event would be donated to the Mayor’s Charities.

 

The Mayor explained that as part of the Town Hall anniversary weekend celebrations a lot of people, particularly community groups and organisations, were to be welcomed to the Town Hall.  Ipswich town hall is one of the most iconic buildings in Ipswich and it is important to celebrate its role in our civic life.  

 

The Mayor was always pleased to welcome guests to the mayor’s parlour to help to share the history and heritage of Ipswich that it contains.  One of the most recent guest had been Suffolk County Council’s Chair Cllr Stephen Burroughes, who has an ancestor who was a previous Mayor of Ipswich.  Catherine Johnson of the Suffolk Chamber of Commerce was also a recent visitor to the Mayor’s parlour, during which she and the Mayor discovered a mutual interest in cycling.

 

In the past month the Mayor had attended the official opening of Fareshare in Ipswich, which is a charity that helps to reduce food waste, and the Mayor was sure that Fareshare would work hard for Ipswich and East Anglia. 

 

Though Christmas felt a long time ago the Mayor confirmed that she did complete a chilly Christmas day dip at Felixstowe which was great fun. There had been a record attendance of over 400 people who had taken the plunge in aid of St. Elizabeth hospice, which showed the support for the Hospice from the people of Suffolk.

50.

Councillors to answer questions asked in accordance with Rules of Procedure 9.

Minutes:

 

Question put to:

 

Question from:

Question Title

1.

 

Councillor M Cook

Mr K Algar

Council Tax Increase and Reduction Scheme

 

2.

 

Councillor P Smart

Councillor Goldsmith

Enforcement of Parking Regulations

 

3.

 

Councillor Rudkin

Councillor Cenci

Countryfile Magazine Holiday Destination

 

4.

 

Councillor Ellesmere

Councillor Fisher

Ipswich Buses

5.

 

Councillor P Smart

Councillor Reynolds

Recycling Bins in Parks

6.

 

Councillor Jones

Councillor Phillips

Queen’s Head Building*

* In the absence of Councillor Phillips, a written response would be provided.

51.

C/17/12 To Consider a Report from Councillor MacDonald on the Council Housing Rents for 2018/19. pdf icon PDF 116 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

It was RESOLVED:

 

i)             That rents be reduced in line with the proposals outlined in the Welfare Reform and Work Act 2016 by 1% in time to give written notice to tenants of a rent decrease by the 5th of March 2018;

 

ii)            That the increase of 4.0% to the service charge for sheltered schemes for 2018/19 be approved and for the utility charges to remain at the 2017/18 rate, as set out at Appendix 1 to the report and;

 

iii)          That the increase of 4.0% in for 2018/19 for housing garage and hard standing rents as set out in Appendix 2 to the report be approved.

 

52.

C/17/13 To Consider a Report from Councillor Meudec on the Adoption of a Revised Council Tax Reduction Scheme. pdf icon PDF 197 KB

Minutes:

It was RESOLVED:

 

That the Council Tax Reduction (Working Age) Local Scheme (Revised) as set out in Appendix C of the report be approved for Ipswich Borough Council from 1 April 2018, as recommended by Executive on 9 January 2018.

53.

C/17/14 To Consider a Report from Councillor Ellesmere on the Economic Development Strategy. pdf icon PDF 106 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

53.1   Councillor Ellesmere introduced the report, explaining that since Ipswich’s current Economic Development Strategy had been approved in 2013, both the Town and the Council had moved on significantly. Council was being asked to consider and comment on the new draft Strategy before the report was returned to Executive for adoption.

 

53.2   Council considered the report and made the following comments:-

 

·         Councillor Kriedewolf (as seconder to the motion) noted the dual purpose of Ipswich Borough Assets both generating income for the borough but also of supporting the town’s economic development. Councillor Kriedewolf highlighted a number of recent investments which had brought jobs into Ipswich and commented that the Council’s partnership with the University of Suffolk had led to the creation of the Suffolk Centre for Female Entrepreneurship which was a unique facility in the UK.

 

·         Councillor Fisher (Leader, Conservative Group) explained that he agreed with the four strategic priorities outlined in the document. Councillor Fisher commented, however, that the development plan lacked new, fresh ideas which would enable the Council to reach its goals for Ipswich. Councillor Fisher stated that in his view the Borough did not currently perform particularly well in the key performance indicators relevant to the town’s Economic Development. Councillor Fisher suggested that the Council needed to create a town with its own identity and not try to simply copy things that seemed to be working in other places.

 

·         Councillor Lockington (Leader, Liberal Democrat Group) asked that,when the final version of the Strategy was produced, it was formatted in a similar way to the previous version and include images of the Ipswich’s highlights. Councillor Lockington noted that, in the Harper Dennis Hobbs ‘Vitality Ranking’ of the top British retail centres, Ipswich had gone down by 84 places and hoped that this could be reversed in the coming years. Councillor Lockington commented that the Strategy did not reference the economic impact of Brexit or the implications of business rate retention and felt that it should include both. Councillor Lockington asked that, at a suitable time, the Economic Development Strategy be considered by the Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

 

·         Councillor Cenci commented that improving the Ipswich ‘brand’ was important and said that Ipswich was more than just a Waterfront town, more than just a retail centre, and more than just a beautiful historic centre and that all of these virtues needed to be marketed together, rather than individual elements being emphasised. Councillor Cenci suggested that the Strategy should support the building of larger houses which might attract professional people who would have more spending power.  Councillor Cenci also commented that the Strategy needed to identify how the Council would attract more independent and high-end retailers to the town.

 

·         Councillor Holmes commented that the Strategy should place more emphasis on skills and education levels as this was an area in which Ipswich was not particularly successful, especially in terms of the proportion of residents who had achieved NVQ 4 and above. Councillor Holmes also commented that the Strategy  ...  view the full minutes text for item 53.

54.

C/17/15 To Consider a Report from Councillor M Cook on the Council Tax Base for 2018/19. pdf icon PDF 122 KB

Minutes:

It was RESOLVED:

 

That in accordance with the report and the Local Authority (Calculation of Council Tax Base) (England) Regulations 2012, the amount calculated by Ipswich Borough Council as its Council Tax Base for the financial year 2018/19 be 38,132.

55.

C/17/16 To Consider a Report from Councillor M Cook on the Establishment of a Committee to be known as the Human Resources Panel. pdf icon PDF 112 KB

Minutes:

It was RESOLVED:

 

i)             That a Committee to be known as the Human Resources Panel with the terms of reference as set out in paragraph 2.6 of the report (as clarified by paragraphs 2.7 to 2.11 of the report) be established;

 

ii)            That the political balance of the Panel be in accordance with the details set out in paragraph 2.5 of the report (i.e. Labour (3), Conservative (1) and Lib Dem (1)); and

 

iii)          That the Monitoring Officer be authorised to update the Council’s Constitution to include the formation of the Human Resources Panel and its terms of reference.

56.

To Consider nominations/changes of Councillors to serve on Committees, Panels, Working Groups and Outside Bodies.

Minutes:

It was RESOLVED:

 

That Councillor Ellesmere, Councillor M Cook, Councillor Riley, Councillor Xhaferaj and Councillor Holmes be appointed to the Human Resources Panel.

57.

Council Questions - 24 January 2018 pdf icon PDF 60 KB