Agenda

Limited attendance due to COVID 19, Full Council
Tuesday, 17th March, 2020 2.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber - The Guildhall. View directions

Contact: Stewart Agland  Email: stewart.agland@portsmouthcc.gov.uk

Webcast: View the webcast

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Deputy Lord Mayor

a)    To thank the former Deputy Lord Mayor and Deputy Lady Mayoress

 

b)    To appoint a Deputy Lord Mayor for the remainder of the current Municipal Year to fill the vacancy that has arisen

2.

Declaration of Members' Interests

3.

To approve as a correct record the Minutes of the Ordinary Council meeting held on 11 February 2020 pdf icon PDF 631 KB

Additional documents:

4.

To receive such communications as the Lord Mayor may desire to lay before the Council, including apologies for absence.

5.

Deputations from the Public under Standing Order No 24 for all items excluding those in respect of item 8, which are dealt with separately on the agenda

6.

Questions from the Public under Standing Order 25.

7.

Appointments pdf icon PDF 103 KB

A Council representative is sought on the Shadow Fire and Rescue Authority (see attached note for background detail).

8.

Petition - Title "Accessible Beach 4 Pompey"

Statement "Improve Eastney Beach by making it fully and easily accessible to people of all ages and abilities"

 

The Council’s rules state that if the petition contains more than 1000 signatures (as it does) it will be debated by the Full Council (if the lead petitioner so requests and they do) even if the issue has been considered by the Council within the last 24 months, (which it has not). Consequently 500 signatures was the requisite threshold on this occasion. 

 

1.            The petition organiser, Mr John Cullen, will be given six minutes to present the petition at the meeting,

 

2.            Followed by any public deputations received on this item.

 

3.            The Administration, via a proposer and seconder, will then present its response to the petition

 

4.            The petition will then be discussed by councillors and the normal rules of debate will apply,

 

Note - As an Executive (Cabinet) matter, the Full Council is precluded from determining the issues raised in the Petition, although of course the petition can still be debated at the Full Council meeting.

9.

Urgent Business - To receive and consider any urgent and important business from Members of the Cabinet in accordance with Standing Order No 26.

10.

Recommendations from the Cabinet Meeting held on 10 March 2020 pdf icon PDF 484 KB

To receive and consider the attached report from Cabinet held on 10 March (recommendation to follow)

Additional documents:

11.

Recommendations from Governance & Audit & Standards Committee held on 3 March 2020 pdf icon PDF 241 KB

To receive and consider the attached report from Cabinet held on 10 March (recommendation to follow).

Additional documents:

12.

Recommendations from Employment Committee held on 6 March 2020 pdf icon PDF 126 KB

To receive and consider the attached report and recommendation from Governance and Audit and Standards Committee held on 3 March.

Additional documents:

13.

Notices of Motion pdf icon PDF 126 KB

To receive and consider the attached report and recommendation from Governance and Audit and Standards Committee held on 3 March.

Additional documents:

14.

Constitution Amendments Concerning Part 2 Section 5 - Chief Officers' Delegated Authority pdf icon PDF 125 KB

To receive and consider the attached report and recommendation from Governance and Audit and Standards Committee held on 3 March.

Additional documents:

15.

Proposed Revision to Standing Order 32 - Referral of Motions to other bodies of the Council pdf icon PDF 120 KB

To receive and consider the attached report and recommendation from Governance and Audit and Standards Committee held on 3 March.

Additional documents:

16.

Pay Policy Statement 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 146 KB

To receive and consider the attached report and recommendation from Employment Committee held on 6 March.

Additional documents:

Notices of Motion: Process information

Standing Order (32(d)) requires a vote by members before each motion to determine whether or not the motion is to be debated at the meeting or stand referred to the Cabinet or relevant Committee (including Scrutiny) to report back to a future meeting.

17.

Notices of Motion

17a

Markings on Private Hire Vehicles

Proposed by Councillor Donna Jones

Seconded by Councillor Luke Stubbs

 

Over the last 12 months there has been an increase in the number of criminal damage incidents committed on taxis registered in Portsmouth. The council is concerned about the spate of attacks on private hire vehicles in the city and the losses imposed on drivers from being off the road. In some cases loses can run into the thousands of pounds. The council shares the concern of the taxi trade that the council’s policy requiring vehicles to display multiple identifying marks that cannot be removed when not in use, is assisting criminals in identifying taxis from privately owned cars.

 

It notes that some neighbouring authorities have adopted much less prescriptive rules such as Havant and Fareham, who allow a single magnetic licence plate which can be removed when the vehicle is not being operated as a taxi.

 

The council therefore calls on the Licensing Committee to review the policy surrounding signage to simplify the regulations so that Portsmouth registered vehicles are not placed at a disadvantage.

17b

Central Police Station

Proposed by Councillor Hugh Mason

Seconded by Councillor Matthew Winnington

 

Central Police Station in Winston Churchill Avenue is earmarked for closure & disposal. The Council calls on Hampshire Police & Crime Commissioner to reopen Central Police station with its public counter; if this proves not to be possible, then to open a police public counter in the vicinity of this current location.

17c

Stop The Knock: local authority debt collection practices

Proposed by Councillor Cal Corkery

Seconded by Councillor George Fielding

 

Too many Portsmouth households live in constant fear of bailiffs knocking their door. The poorest and most vulnerable suffer disproportionately from debt issues and the local authority should not be actively adding to their woes.

 

One in two adults with debts has a mental health problem. One in four people with a mental health problem is also in debt. Debt can cause - and be caused by - mental health problems.

 

Those on the lowest incomes in our city used to be eligible for Council Tax Support for up to 100% of their liability. However this level of support was cut in 2016 so now even the poorest have to pay at least 20% of their total Council Tax bill.

 

Despite their public service remit, local authorities have some of the most stringent debt collection practices of all creditors. Debts owed to councils often end up in court and Council Tax is the only debt where a debtor can be sentenced to a custodial sentence for non-payment.

 

In 2018/19, Portsmouth City Council instructed bailiffs to collect debts from individuals and businesses on 17,534 occasions - an increase of 77% since 2016/17. Of these bailiff referrals 6,011 related to Council Tax debts. 

 

There is divergence between local authorities regarding how affordability is assessed and appropriate repayment plans calculated. The Standard Financial Statement (SFS), produced by the Money and Pensions Service, provides a consistent, fair and industry-recognised method of working out affordable repayments, for residents in financial difficulty.

 

Full Council supports the Money Advice Trust's campaign 'Stop The Knock' and calls on Cabinet to:

 

1.         Make a clear public commitment to reduce the council’s use of bailiffs over time.

2.         Review the council’s signposting to free debt advice, including phone/online channels.

3.         Adopt the Standard Financial Statement (SFS) to objectively assess affordability.

4.         Review the formal policy covering indebted residents in vulnerable circumstances.

5.         Exempt Council Tax Support recipients from bailiff action.

6.         Sign the Citizens Advice/LGA 'Council Tax Protocol' and review the authority’s current practice against the Money and Pensions Service’s ‘Supportive Council Tax Recovery’ Toolkit.

17d

Road Safety

Proposed by Councillor Matthew Atkins

Seconded by Councillor Simon Bosher

 

"There have been several serious accidents across Drayton, Cosham, Wymering and Paulsgrove in recent months, including one outside Portsdown Primary School and two on the same junction adjacent to a nursery school and within walking distance of the Court Lane schools.

 

This Council recognises the urgent need to address road safety in North Portsmouth and calls on the cabinet member for Traffic and transportation to conduct an urgent review into road safety and potential traffic calming measures in areas of high traffic intensity and in roads near to schools in North Portsmouth."

18.

Questions from Members under Standing Order No 17. pdf icon PDF 220 KB