Venue: Committee Suite, Civic Centre, Poole BH15 2RU. View directions
Contact: Claire Johnston - 01202 123663 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
To receive any apologies for absence from Members.
Apologies were received from Councillors Lewis Allison, Lesley Dedman, David Kelsey and Chris Rigby.
To receive information on any changes in the membership of the Committee.
Note – When a member of a Committee is unable to attend a meeting of a Committee or Sub-Committee, the relevant Political Group Leader (or their nominated representative) may, by notice to the Monitoring Officer (or their nominated representative) prior to the meeting, appoint a substitute member from within the same Political Group. The contact details on the front of this agenda should be used for notifications.
Cllr D Borthwick substituted for Cllr D Kelsey.
Declarations of Interests
Councillors are requested to declare any interests on items included in this agenda. Please refer to the workflow on the preceding page for guidance.
Declarations received will be reported at the meeting.
Cllr V Slade declared, for the purpose of transparency, in relation to agenda items 6, Climate Action Annual Report and 7, Climate Change Enquiry Session that her work role was as a director of climate communications but this had no relevance to the BCP area.
To confirm and sign as a correct record the minutes of the Meeting held on 6 December 2021.
The minutes of the meetings held on 6 December 2021 were confirmed as a correct record.
To note and comment on the attached action sheet which tracks decisions, actions and recommendations from previous meetings.
With reference to minute 136, Scrutiny of Finance Related Cabinet Reports – Quarter 2 Budget Monitoring Report, the Chairman advised that he had written to the Chairs of both Children’s Services and Health and Adult Social Care Overview and Scrutiny Committees and had received responses from both. The Chairman read out the response from Children’s Services and the Chair of Health and Adult Social Care explained that she had sent questions to relevant officers regarding this. Officers had advised that they were facing some recruitment challenges, but they were not using locums and could fill some posts. Discussions had taken place on the winter position and it was noted that Covid was having some impact on pressures.
To receive any public questions, statements or petitions submitted in accordance with the Constitution, which is available to view at the following link:
The deadline for the submission of a public question is 4 clear working days before the meeting.
The deadline for the submission of a statement is midday the working day before the meeting.
The deadline for the submission of a petition is 10 working days before the meeting.
There were no public statements or petitions.
A question had been submitted by a member of the public, Mrs Zoe Tees as follows:
The global overheating tragedy accelerates. Crop failure, starvation, floods, fires, ocean acidification, landslides, tornados; effects are multiplying exponentially. We are all vulnerable.
But Councillor Stribley (Echo report 18.12.21) fails to explain to local motorists the deep urgency of the climate crisis let alone show concern for the schoolchildren of the area on an extremely dangerous road (Tatnam).
Despite financial government support, the approval of officers, the transport portfolio holder, headteachers, councillors and residents the decision is - inconsistently - being reversed, the road kept open to polluting vehicles.
Moreover, BCP still support deadly policies harmful to nature. How can BCP reassure us we'll be speedily protected?
The Chairman responded that a significant part of the question was a statement but the question at the end was related to the agenda items and he did therefore accept it as a relevant question. However, the O&S Board whilst looking into related issues today, was not able to answer the question as the Board was not involved directly in formulating policy. The Chairman suggested that the question be referred to the relevant portfolio holder and that he be asked to respond to it as part of Cabinet’s consideration of the Climate Action Annual report.
The O&S Board is asked to scrutinise and comment on the report and if required make recommendations or observations as appropriate.
Cabinet member invited to attend for this item: Councillor Mike Greene, Portfolio Holder for Sustainability and Transport
The Cabinet report for this item is included with the agenda for consideration by the Overview and Scrutiny Board.
The Chairman explained to the Board the process for consideration of the items for this meeting. The Climate Change Enquiry would be addressed in three sections. The Climate Action Annual Report which was due to be considered by Cabinet on 12 January 2022 would be dealt with in the normal scrutiny form. The meeting would then move into the informal information gathering session. The Chairman thanked senior officers for being in attendance for this session. The final part of the session was primarily for board members to reflect on the discussions which had taken place.
Climate Action Annual Report – The Portfolio Holder for Sustainability and Transport presented a report, a copy of which had been circulated to each member of the Board and a copy of which appears as Appendix 'A' to these minutes in the Minute Book. The Portfolio Holder and officers addressed a number of points raised by the Board including:
· Measuring carbon usage – The IT changes which had been made increased carbon efficiency from a buildings point of view but there was no recording of potential increased carbon emissions of those working from home. The Portfolio Holder was asked whether staff would be encouraged back into work from working from home so that the Council was not heating empty offices. The Portfolio Holder advised that it was difficult to measure some of these issues but the way that Council had developed would allow for more efficient use of buildings whilst officers continued some work from home.
· Staff Commuting – It was noted that not all staff could be home-based and the Portfolio Holder was asked what consideration had been given to how staff commuted, particularly care workers, for example whether they had the ability to use co-wheels electric cars to reduce their carbon footprint. The Portfolio Holder advised that issues around car clubs needed further consideration as there were issues with this when the local authorities were merged. Co-Wheels was very Bournemouth based, but the car club strategy needed to be developed.
· Investments – Concerns were raised regarding how the Council’s investments were justified under the declared environmental emergency as BCP was using services from one of the most environmentally unfriendly business in the market. A Board member asked whether there were problems with the procurement and tendering process in this regard or the market in general. The Portfolio Holder advised that he felt this issue had already been addressed. There was a sustainable procurement section and policy within the Council’s procurement regulations. The Chief Financial Officer advised that there had already been an extensive dialogue with relevant members and officers. The company was a significant local employer and followed its own standards and those set out legally. The Board member commented that concerns remained regarding the company’s funding of coal infrastructure, fossil fuels, artic digging, etc. The Portfolio Holder responded that it was important to address things in a pragmatic way and weight issues appropriately rather than letting one issue dominate everything.
· Future Car ... view the full minutes text for item 144.
The Overview and Scrutiny Board are asked to consider the progress and current status of BCP Council’s response to Climate change the declared climate emergency.
This part of the meeting will be divided into two sections in the first section the Board has invited Council Officers, Portfolio Holders and Partners to attend the to respond to enquiries from Board members and other Councillors on current progress and future plans, including how the Council is progressing against its Climate action Plan.
Each Board member will be looking at a particular area of focus but all Board members may ask questions on any aspect of the Council’s response to climate change. The attached report provides a full scope for the session.
Following the questioning and investigation section Board members will consider and comment on the information received with a view to making recommendations or observations as appropriate.
The Chairman introduced the item and outlined how the enquiry process would work. A number of members of the Board had undertaken to lead questioning on specific areas. The areas of discussion were outlined in the scoping report which had been circulated to Board members and which was attached at Appendix B to these minutes in the Minute Book. During the enquiry session the issues raised included:
How the Council's leadership championed and directed action on climate change? The Board asked how the Portfolio Holder and the senior leadership team led the process of tackling climate change, how this was done on a daily basis and how that was targeted for each of the different departments. The Portfolio Holder advised that from his perspective the political leadership on this issue was very solid, as was the political support for the climate change agenda that had been put through. This was evidenced particularly financially, but also in the support for putting together the team that was now in place. There had been an increase in activity across the board. The Steering Group was making sure that everyone was pulling in the same direction and ensuring that the action plan had been a collaborative approach. The Leadership on this was extremely strong.
The Board asked about the liaison with different teams on a daily basis and how the ongoing work was being disseminated through managers to their teams and delivered.
The Head of Climate Action explained that currently the systems and processes in place were not necessarily the ones that needed to go forward. There was good engagement with directors, but this needed formalising and for it to be made clear how plans tied together to support an overall reduction. All actions would be tracked going forward and there would be a management control process to ensure things moved in the right direction.
More regular meetings would be useful to ensure that the emissions reductions were passed to the appropriate officers in different Directorates and that they were aware of the support that could be provided to them. The Strategic Lead for Climate explained that they had worked with different teams on a case-by-case basis, some teams required more support, and some needed specific support on practical solutions to reduce carbon emissions. It was suggested that it would be useful to have officer responsibility included in the internal version of the Climate Action Plan.
The Board asked how many Council buildings were now on a green energy tariff and how the Council was engaging with the commercial sector and public to encourage similar change – All Council buildings were now on a green tariff. The only non-green contract in place was Christchurch streetlighting, which was in place until 2031/32 but the Portfolio Holder advised that he was happy to take away Cllr A Hadley’s suggestion to push them to move towards a green tariff.
The Council would look into how it could green up both commercial and residential centres, but it should ... view the full minutes text for item 145.
To consider and amend the Board’s Forward Plan as appropriate and to consider the published Cabinet Forward Plan.
The Chairman advised that he had a number of changes to the Forward Plan for the Board’s meetings on 31 January, but that this would be updated outside of the meeting and circulated to Board members.
The Vice-Chair requested that an item be added to the agenda on play, including; its role in health and wellbeing, whether there was a strategy in place and the role of play in poorer neighbourhoods.
The Lead Member for the Enforcement Working Group provided an update to the Board on what the group had considered in its initial meeting and the areas which it would like to move forward on. There were a number of issues considered but the areas that the group wanted to initially focus on were; street-based littering and dog fouling and Bylaws, including finding out what these were and how they were enforced.
Future Meeting Dates 2021/22
To note the following proposed meeting dates for the 2021/22 municipal year:
· 31 January 2022
· 28 February 2022
· 4 April 2022
And 2022/23 municipal year:
· 16 May 2022
· 13 June 2022
· 18 July 2022
· 22 August 2022
· 19 September 2022
· 17 October 2022
· 14 November 2022
· 5 December 2022
· 9 January 2023
· 6 February 2023
· 6 March 2023
· 3 April 2023
All meetings will be held via video conferencing until further notice.
The dates for future meetings were noted.