Agenda and draft minutes

Overview and Scrutiny Committee (Regeneration and Skills)
Tuesday 9th November, 2021 6.30 pm

Venue: The Ballroom, Town Hall, Bootle

Contact: Paul Fraser  Senior Democratic Services Officer

Items
No. Item

20.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Sathiy and Councillor Fairclough, Cabinet Member – Locality Services.

 

 

 

 

 

21.

Declarations of Interest

Members are requested at a meeting where a disclosable pecuniary interest or personal interest arises, which is not already included in their Register of Members' Interests, todeclare any interests that relate to an item on the agenda.

 

Where a Member discloses a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest, he/she must withdraw from the meeting room, including from the public gallery, during the whole consideration of any item of business in which he/she has an interest, except where he/she is permitted to remain as a result of a grant of a dispensation.

 

Where a Member discloses a personal interest he/she must seek advice from the Monitoring Officer or staff member representing the Monitoring Officer to determine whether the Member should withdraw from the meeting room, including from the public gallery, during the whole consideration of any item of business in which he/she has an interest or whether the Member can remain in the meeting or remain in the meeting and vote on the relevant decision.

 

Minutes:

 

In accordance with Paragraph 9 of the Council’s Code of Conduct, the following declarations of personal interest were made and the Member concerned remained in the room during the consideration of the item, took part in the consideration of the item and voted thereon:

 

Member

Minute No.

Nature of Interest

Councillor D’Albuquerque

Minute No. 23 - Southport Walking and Cycling Consultation and Active Travel Tranche 2

Personal – had a previous interest in a business on Hoghton Street that may have been affected by the proposals contained in the report

Councillor D’Albuquerque

Minute No. 23 - Southport Walking and Cycling Consultation and Active Travel Tranche 2

Personal – has publicly stated his opposition to proposals contained in the report

 

 

22.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 96 KB

Minutes of the meeting held on 21 September 2021

Minutes:

RESOLVED:

 

That the Minutes of the meetings held on 21 September 2021 be confirmed as a correct record.

 

 

23.

Southport Walking and Cycling Consultation and Active Travel Tranche 2 pdf icon PDF 458 KB

Report of the Head of Highways and Public Protection

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report of the Head of Highways and Public Protection that provided the results of the consultation recently completed on the Southport Cycling and Walking proposals for which funding had been secured from the Active Travel Fund Tranche 2.

 

The report indicated that the Council had received a formal funding offer from the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority (LCRCA) to deliver Tranche 2 of proposals within the Active Travel Fund; that these proposals showed an extension of the implemented Tranche 1 proposals to both the north and south of the existing proposals thus providing a north-south cycle route through the centre of Southport; that unlike Tranche 1 of the proposals, which were delivered without consultation to meet the funding deadlines, the Tranche 2 funding was dependent upon consultation having been completed; that this report provided the findings of the consultation completed to date; and the Committee was invited to provide comments for consideration by the Cabinet Member - Locality Services as part of the decision-making process.

 

Appendix A to the report set out the Sefton Communications Plan associated with the Southport Walking and Cycling Route – Summary of Engagement;  

Appendix B to the report provided detailed responses to the Your Sefton Your Say (YSYS) survey; and Appendix C to the report highlighted a graph showing the age range of respondents to the YSYS proposals.

 

Peter Moore, Head of Highways and Public Protection presented the report and started by placing the consultation and proposals in context. Mr. Moore indicated that as set out in the Key Messages within the Communications Plan (Appendix A) increasing "active travel" through improved walking and cycling infrastructure contributed to:

 

·       Improved Air Quality

·       Sefton's Vision 2030

·       LCR Travel Strategies

·       Government Policy

·       Climate Change Emergency - the Council's declaration on which recognised the need for “rapid and far reaching transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities"

 

Mr. Moore also referred to the Council’s Core Purpose which included:

 

·       Demonstrating Place Leadership

·       Being Drivers of change and reform

·       Creating a Cleaner and Greener borough

 

and that part of this included creating the infrastructure that enabled people to change to low-carbon, cleaner, greener, healthier transport

 

Mr. Moore then referred to previous surveys (referred to in the report) including:

 

·       Extensive consultation on Sefton Vision 2030

·       Bikelife Survey

·       Highways Annual satisfaction Survey

·       Southport Town Deal

 

and that the surveys highlighted that:

 

·       people wanted to be able to walk and cycle more easily and more safely

·       People thought that more cycling would make their area better

·       Cyclists were currently dissatisfied with the number and safety of cycle routes in Sefton

 

Mr. Moore continued that the Government Funding through the Active Travel Fund, that would fund the proposals, was aimed at:

 

·       Supporting Covid-19 recovery by helping people move around

·       was focused on short journeys

·       was allocated through LCRCA - consequently the routes put forward were those that fit with the LCR Cycling & Walking Infrastructure Plan (LCWIP)

 

Mr. Moore concluded by indicating that implementation was subject to demonstrating broad support for  ...  view the full minutes text for item 23.

24.

Consideration of Consultation Results - Crosby Coastal Park Proposed Cycleway and Footway pdf icon PDF 3 MB

Report of the Head of Highways and Public Protection

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report of the Head of Highways and Public Protection that detailed the results of the recent consultation regarding the proposed cycleway and footway through Crosby Coastal Park prior to the scheme being reviewed and modified ahead of the submission of a planning application.

 

The report indicated that the main purpose of the proposed new cycleway and footway was to provide improved facilities for pedestrians and cyclists in the Coastal Park, that were suitable for use at all times throughout the year and made it easier for people of all abilities to enjoy the Park; and that the introduction of the scheme would support the Council’s stated 2030 Vision for the Borough, would support the Council’s climate emergency commitments and ensure that infrastructure was fully accessible for all and therefore the Council would comply with its Public Sector Equality Duty.

 

The report also indicated that the scheme was being funded through the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority using grant funding from the European Union Sustainable Urban Development (SUD) (Low Carbon and Environment and Resource Efficiency) Fund.

 

Appendix A attached to the report provided information from smart distribution solutions with details of the GPS tracking of all the deliveries; and Appendix B set out the overview of findings from the Crosby Coastal Path – new cycleway and footway consultation.

 

Peter Moore, Head of Highways and Public Protection presented the report and started by placing the consultation and proposals in context. Mr. Moore indicated that increasing "active travel" through improved walking and cycling infrastructure contributed to:

 

·       Improved Air Quality

·       Sefton's Vision 2030

·       LCR Travel Strategies

·       Government Policy

·       Climate Change Emergency - the Council's declaration on which recognised the need for “rapid and far reaching transitions in land, energy, industry, buildings, transport, and cities"

 

Mr. Moore also referred to the Council’s Core Purpose which included:

 

·       Demonstrating Place Leadership

·       Being Drivers of change and reform

·       Creating a Cleaner and Greener borough

 

and that part of this included creating the infrastructure that enabled people to change to low-carbon, cleaner, greener, healthier transport.

 

Mr. Moore continued by detailing the background to the proposed route as referred to in paragraph 1.7 of the report; and that the desire for an additional route through Crosby Coastal Park was previously agreed as a transport priority by Members in 2016 and confirmed in 2018; that the funding for this scheme was from LCRCA and utilised European Union Sustainable Urban Development funding; that a consultation Plan was developed and implemented; and that findings were attached for comment and that any comments would be submitted to the Cabinet Member for consideration.

 

Councillor Ian Maher, Leader of the Council, indicated that he was in attendance at the meeting on behalf of Councillor Fairclough, Cabinet Member – Locality Services; and that he would feed back to Councillor Fairclough the comments made by Members during the meeting.  

 

Members of the Committee asked questions/commented on the following issues:

 

·       The build-up of wind-blown sand on the Promenade

·       A document (submitted by a local residents’  ...  view the full minutes text for item 24.

25.

Sefton Economic Strategy Update pdf icon PDF 499 KB

Report of the Head of Economic Growth and Housing

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report of the Head of Economic Growth and Housing that updated on the ongoing work and progress of the Sefton Economic Strategy Action Plan (Dec 2019), the associated Covid-19 Recovery plan and plans to refresh and update the Sefton Economic Strategy Action Plan to take effect from April 2022.

 

The report provided information on the work underway to update and refresh the SES Action Plan which included:

 

·       Reviewing its 7 Priority Actions Areas (PAAs), and consideration as to whether they were still fit for purpose and met the Council’s overall vision and strategic objectives

·       Merging PAAs where there was crossover and alignment of activities

·       Introducing a New PAA - Health & Wellbeing

·       Taking stock of new LCR Combined Authority economic data sets including job furlough, GVA, Productivity and business openings/closure information for Sefton. Reviewing emerging LCR Prosperity Plan.

·       Reviewing economic data gaps for Sefton e.g. granular data for town centres to inform recovery actions; sector data; commercial market demand data etc

·       Sefton Import & Export performance (link to emerging Freeport opportunity)

·       Covid dashboard monitoring

·       Alignment with Sefton Economic Tracker and labour market data

·       Agreeing evidence required to provide robust evaluation of SES Action Plan

·       Future reporting; format and frequency

·       Embracing Climate Change and net zero action plan ambitions.

·       Further alignment with Sefton’s Digital Strategy;

 

the work undertaken in response to the Covid-19 pandemic which included a series of emergency measures to help support Sefton’s residents, communities and businesses throughout various lockdowns and associated Government tiers of control and the establishment of an Economy Cell led by the Head of Economic Growth and Housing; and the Strategic Recovery Plan, the main purpose of which was to provide leadership and highlight opportunity and corral our many stakeholders into collective and collaborative action at a borough level.

 

The following appendices were attached to the report – the Sefton Economic Strategy Action Plan (December 2019);  the Sefton Economic Recovery Plan; and the Sefton Economic Recovery Plan (Appendices).

 

Members of the Committee asked questions/commented on the following issues:

 

                staff were thanked for their work during lockdown by delivering and administering grants and business rates support to help the local economy

                the fantastic offer provided to residents and visitors by the redevelopment of Southport Market

 

 

RESOLVED: That

 

(1)

the progress of the Sefton Economic Strategy Action Plan approved by Cabinet Member – Regeneration and Housing in December 2019 and the associated Covid-19 Recovery Plan be noted; and

 

(2)

work underway to refresh and update the Sefton Economic Strategy Action Plan to take effect from April 2022 be noted.

 

 

 

 

 

26.

Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management Annual Report pdf icon PDF 1 MB

Report of the Head of Head of Operational In-House Services

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report of the Head of Operational In-House Services advising that the Flood and Water Management Act 2010 previously required that arrangements be made to review and scrutinise the exercise by the Council as a Lead Local Flood Risk Authority of its flood risk management functions and coastal erosion risk management functions; that following the cessation of this requirement, the Overview and Scrutiny Committee had requested that an annual Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management review be submitted to it; and that included with the review this year was the draft Local Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management Strategy (2022-2030) and Business Plan which was currently out for public consultation.

 

The report indicated that the Council’s delivery of duties under the Flood and Water Management Act, 2010 related to:

 

·       Duty to have an up-to-date Local Flood Risk Strategy

·       Duty to co-operate with other Risk Management Authorities

·       Undertake duties as a Riparian owner

·       Maintain a register of assets – features that have a significant effect on flooding in the area

·       Undertake statutory consultee role - Respond to major planning applications checking the SUDS design

·       Duty to investigate significant local flooding incidents and publish the results

 

The report also provided information on flood and coastal erosion events; progress made in relation to:

 

·       Resilient Communities

·       Asset inspections

·       Capital schemes

·       Annual Grant in Aid refresh submissions

·       Regional Coastal Monitoring Programme

·       Antony Gormley’s Another Place

·       National Flood Risk Management Plans

·       Sefton Strategic Flood Resilience Working Group

·       Maghull Flood Planning Officer’s group

·       Use of Digital Technology

·       Climate Emergency;

 

and the priorities for the next year relating to delivery of actions set out in the draft FCERM strategy; better use of digital technology to automate processes and improve recording and reporting; support of the review and development of an operational flood response plan; Sefton Council’s Climate Emergency Declaration

 

The report concluded by seeking the Committee’s comments for submission to the Cabinet Member - Health and Wellbeing) relating to the new draft strategy and business plan.

 

The New Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management strategy and the New Flood and Coastal Erosion Risk Management business plan were attached as appendices to the report.

 

Members of the Committee asked questions/commented on the following issues:

 

·       The priorities for dealing with, and alleviating flooding to, internally within properties, Council owned assets, key highway networks, greenspaces and undeveloped sites

·       The removal of the Essex Road Birkdale Flood Alleviation Scheme from the Annual Grant in Aid refresh submissions

·       The impact of water drainage from two golf courses in the Birkdale and Hillside areas into the local watercourses and drains which may cause flooding issues for local residents; and the liabilities of the Golf Clubs to introduce measures to alleviate such problems, for example by the use of sustainable drainage systems (SuDS) and swales (a shallow drainage channel with gentle side slopes in the ground where water running off a site can collect and soak away)

·       The significant rainfall associated with Storm Christoph in January 2021 was referred to which caused  ...  view the full minutes text for item 26.

27.

Green Sefton Annual Review 2021 pdf icon PDF 1 MB

Report of the Head of Head of Operational In-House Services

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report of the Head of Operational In-House Services that provided an update on the progress of Green Sefton’s establishment and development, its current operational delivery over the last year, and setting out the strategic work programme, in line with the Service Vision 2030, and Service Plan for the next year.

The full Annual Review was attached as appendix 1 and included other background information including the current Service Plan updates for the three service areas, and examples of the Green Sefton communications, newsletters etc were also embedded.

Tables within the report provided a summary of progress against the Service Plan actions, and the headlines actions/ priorities as agreed in 2020 with a summary of progress in 2021 and outlined actions planned for 2022. The headlines detailed in the tables had been populated in an ‘importance/ urgency’ matrix in order to inform the work programme of officers in the coming year.

The report concluded by seeking comments for submission to the Cabinet Members for Health and Wellbeing and Locality Services.

The Committee watched a short video that provided a review of the Green Sefton highlights during 2020/21; and also received a presentation from Mark Shaw, Service Manager, Green Sefton. Mr Shaw highlighted aspects of the work undertaken by the Green Sefton service relating to the following categories:

·       Community working partnerships

·       Delivery of the Bootle golf driving range

·       Land Management team operations

·       Visitor action plan

·       Response to storm events

·       Publication of Coast Plan Position Statement and mapping sessions for the coast gateways

·       Development of income through innovation and business case approaches

·       Performance tracking and the service plan

·       Contributions made to the Climate Change Working Group

In respect of the year ahead Mr. Shaw commented on:

·       Development of communications plan and customer satisfaction surveys

·       Increase staff capacity via apprenticeships and training

·       Adoption of the Tree, Allotment, FCERM, Playing Pitch/Football Development and Nature Conservation Strategies

·       Setting of standards of what can be achieved within resources available

·       Development of the Coastal Gateways and normalisation of the Visitor Action Plan

·       Development of a vision and investment at Southport Golf Course

·       Planning for replacement of the vehicle fleet

·       Promoting changes to overall Landscape Management

·       Addressing resourcing and capacity issues, and continue to Innovate: Business case approach

Members of the Committee asked questions/commented on the following issues:

·       The prompt resolution of problems associated with overhanging trees on the highway and the emptying of refuse bins in coastal locations was praised

·       The unacceptable abuse of Green Sefton staff, especially on the evening shifts on the coast, was condemned   

·       Green Sefton’s work at Botanic Gardens was praised and particularly the Natural Alternatives, Green Sefton’s own long-running inclusion programme for adults and young people with additional needs

 

RESOLVED: That

(1)

the report updating on the progress of Green Sefton’s establishment and development be noted; and

 

(2)

Mr. Shaw be thanked for his informative presentation. 

 

 

 

 

28.

Work Programme 2021/22, Scrutiny Review Topics and Key Decision Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 107 KB

Report of the Chief Legal and Democratic Officer

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report of the Chief Legal and Democratic Officer on the Work Programme for 2021/22; the identification of potential topics for scrutiny reviews to be undertaken by a Working Group(s) appointed by the Committee; the identification of any items for pre-scrutiny from the Key Decision Forward Plan; that updated on the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Overview and Scrutiny Committee; and updated Members on the progress of items that have previously been considered by the Committee.

 

A Member of the Committee suggested that the topic of investigating ways to reduce the problem of dog fouling could form the subject of a Working Group review.

 

RESOLVED: That

 

(1)

 

the Work Programme for 2021/22, as set out in Appendix 1 to the report, be approved;

 

(2)

the Chief Legal and Democratic Officer be requested to contact appropriate Heads of Service whose roles fall under the remit of the Committee seeking their ideas on the selection of a topic for a Working Group review;

 

(3)

the update on the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority Overview and Scrutiny Committee be noted; and

 

(4)

the update on the unadopted highways in the borough be noted.

 

 

29.

Cabinet Member Reports - October/November 2021 pdf icon PDF 63 KB

Report of the Chief Legal and Democratic Officer

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the report of the Chief Legal and Democratic Officer that included the most recent reports from the Cabinet Members for Communities and Housing; Health and Wellbeing; Locality Services; Planning and Building Control; and Regeneration and Skills.

 

Councillor Moncur, Cabinet Member – Health and Wellbeing presented his report and thanked members of the Committee for their positive feedback upon consideration of the Green Sefton Annual Report earlier in the meeting. Councillor Moncur also referred to the operational challenges faced by the Green Sefton service during the last year whilst performing their day to day duties during the pandemic as many staff members were off ill with Covid-19 or had to self-isolate. Furthermore, front-line Green Sefton service staff were also called off their duties to help out with other priority services across the Council.  Both these issues had an impact on the Green Sefton service delivery.

 

Councillor Moncur also detailed the work of the Green Sefton service staff in relation to:

 

·       Flooding incidents

·       The huge increase in visitor numbers to the Sefton coast

·       Developments to enhance service provision such as the Bootle Golf Course driving range and the food offer at locations along the coast

 

Councillor Atkinson, Cabinet Member – Regeneration and Skills presented her report and expressed her strong disappointment that both the Bootle and Crosby Levelling Up bids were unsuccessful, particularly bearing in mind all the hard work that had gone into the preparation of the bids. Councillor Atkinson also referred to the following:

 

·       Thanked staff in her portfolio for their great work during lockdown by continually delivering essential services and administering grants and business rates support to help the local economy

·       Positive feedback received in relation to Southport Market

·       Developments associated with the Bootle Canalside event and activity space

 

RESOLVED: That

 

(1)

the update reports from the Cabinet Members for Communities and Housing; Health and Wellbeing; Locality Services; Planning and Building Control; and Regeneration and Skills be noted; and

 

(2)

Councillors Atkinson and Moncur be thanked for their attendance at the meeting.