Agenda and draft minutes

Full Council - Tuesday, 19th March, 2024 2.10 pm

Venue: Council Chamber - The Guildhall

Contact: James Harris  Email: james.harris@portsmouthcc.gov.uk

Media

Items
No. Item

15.

Declaration of Members' Interests

Minutes:

Councillor

Minute Number

 

Nature of Interest

Cllr Cal Corkery

 

37

Personal - Cllr Corkery was employed by an NHS Trust.

 

16.

To approve as a correct record the Minutes of 13 February 2024 pdf icon PDF 150 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

It was

 

Proposed by Councillor Suzie Horton

Seconded by Councillor Simon Bosher

 

That the minutes of the Council meeting held on 13 February 2024 be confirmed as a correct record.

 

These were agreed by assent.

17.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence had been received from Councillor Steve Pitt.

 

Councillor Abdul Kadr and Councillor Asghar Shah advised that they would need to leave the meeting at 5.45pm.

18.

To receive such communications as the Lord Mayor may desire to lay before the Council

Minutes:

The Lord Mayor reminded Council that at an extraordinary Full Council meeting held on 12 December 2023, it was agreed to admit former Portsmouth City Councillors Robert New, Lynne Stagg, Luke Stubbs and Linda Symes to the roll of honorary aldermen.

 

The Lord Mayor presented Honorary Aldermen Robert New, Lynne Stagg, Luke Stubbs and Linda Symes with their framed certificates, with Honorary Aldermen Robert New, Lynne Stagg and Linda Symes taking the opportunity to make a short speech.

 

Further to the email sent to all members by the Chief Executive on 26 February 2024, the Lord Mayor advised that there was a need to hold extraordinary Cabinet and Council meetings in May 2024 to consider the local plan.

 

The Lord Mayor advised that he and the Deputy Lord Mayor had agreed that this meeting be provisionally set for late afternoon on Tuesday 28 May 2024.

 

In response, Councillor Judith Smyth encouraged that this date be reconsidered, due to it being in the school half term week which would potentially make it difficult for some councillors to attend.

19.

Deputations from the Public under Standing Order No 24.

Deputations by members of the public may be made on any item where a decision is going to be taken. The request should be made in writing to the contact officer (james.harris@portsmouthcc.gov.uk) by 12 noon of the working day before the meeting (so Monday 18 March 2024 for this meeting), and must include the purpose of the deputation (for example, for or against the recommendations). Email requests are accepted.

Minutes:

The City Solicitor advised that five verbal deputation requests had been received for this meeting. 

 

The first was from Christine McMillan in support of minute 28, Notice of Motion - Fairtrade City.

 

The second was from Malcom Little in support of minute 29, Notice of Motion - City of Sanctuary.

 

The third was from Shamila Dahna in support of minute 29, Notice of Motion - City of Sanctuary.

 

The fourth was from Steph Richards in support of minute 32, Notice of Motion - International Women's Day - Tackling Gender Inequality in Portsmouth.

 

The fifth was from Sue Mullan in support of minute 32, Notice of Motion - International Women's Day - Tackling Gender Inequality in Portsmouth.

 

At the invitation of the City Solicitor, Christine McMillan, Malcolm Little, Shamila Dhana, Steph Richards and Sue Mullan delivered their deputations to Council.

20.

Questions from the Public under Standing Order 25. pdf icon PDF 90 KB

Minutes:

The Lord Mayor advised that two public questions had been submitted for this meeting.

 

At the invitation the Lord Mayor, Mr Batterbury and Mr Head asked their questions, which were answered respectively by Councillor Gerald Vernon Jackson and Councillor Suzy Horton as the relevant Cabinet Members.

21.

Appointments

Minutes:

The Lord Mayor advised that there were no appointments to be made at this meeting.

22.

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

Minutes:

The Lord Mayor advised that there was no urgent business to consider at this meeting.

23.

Tipner West & Horsea Island East Regeneration pdf icon PDF 42 KB

To receive and consider the attached report and recommendation from Cabinet held on 5 March 2024.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council Agenda item 9 (Cabinet Minute 27)

 

Tipner West & Horsea Island East Regeneration

 

The noting recommendation within the report was approved unopposed.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that the report be NOTED.

24.

Capital Strategy 2024/25 - 2033/34 pdf icon PDF 61 KB

To receive and consider the attached report and recommendations from Cabinet held on 5 March 2024.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council Agenda Item 10 (Cabinet minute 38)

 

The recommendations within this report were approved unopposed.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED:

 

1.     That Part I of the Capital Strategy (Capital Expenditure and Aspirations) be approved including:

 

a)   The aspirations set out in section 6

 

2.     That Part II of the Capital Strategy (Borrowing and Investing) be approved including:

 

a)       The Minimum Revenue Provision (MRP) for Debt Repayment Policy (Part II, (paragraphs 3.5 to 3.7)

 

b)       The investment indicators in Part II - Appendix 1 (Part II, paragraphs 4.15 to 4.21)

 

c)       That the Director of Finance and Resources (Section 151 Officer) will bring a report to the next Cabinet and City Council if (Part II, paragraph 4.11):

 

(i)      The Council's gross General Fund (GF) debt exceeds 400% of GF net service expenditure or

 

(ii) Overall investment income and long term treasury management investments exceeds 14% of GF net service expenditure.

25.

Treasury Management Policy 2024/25 pdf icon PDF 63 KB

To receive and consider the attached report and recommendations from Cabinet held on 5 March 2024.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council Agenda Item 11 (Cabinet minute 39)

 

The recommendations within this report were approved unopposed.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that Full Council:

 

1.   Approve the upper limit for principal sums invested for longer than 365 days contained in section 4.6 of the attached Treasury Management Policy Statement;

 

2.   Approve the upper and lower limits on the maturity structure of borrowing contained in appendix 5.1 of the attached Treasury Management Policy Statement;

 

3.   Approve the attached Treasury Management Policy Statement including the Treasury Management Strategy and Annual Investment Strategy for 2024/25;

 

4.  Note that there are no significant changes to the Treasury Management Policy for 2024/25 compared to 2023/24;

 

5.   Agree that as set out in section 1.5 of the Treasury Management Policy Statement, the Director of Finance and Resources (Section 151 Officer) and officers nominated by him have delegated authority to:

 

                  i.         invest surplus funds in accordance with the approved Annual Investment Strategy;

                ii.         borrow to finance short term cash deficits and capital payments from any reputable source within the authorised limit for external debt of £1,110m approved by the City Council on 13 February 2024;

               iii.         reschedule debt to even the maturity profile or to achieve revenue savings; and

               iv.         to buy and sell foreign currency, and to purchase hedging instruments including forward purchases, forward options, and foreign exchange rate swaps to mitigate the foreign exchange risks associated with some contracts that are either priced in foreign currencies or where the price is indexed against foreign currency exchange rates;

 

6.   Agree that the Director of Finance and Resources (Section 151 Officer) has the power to delegate treasury management operations to relevant staff; and 

 

7.   Agree that the Chief Executive, the Leader of the City Council and the Chair of the Governance and Audit and Standards Committee be informed of any material variances from the Treasury Management Policy when they become apparent, and that the Leader of the City Council be consulted on remedial action (paragraph 1.2.3 of Treasury Management Policy Statement).

26.

Pay Policy Statement 2024/25 pdf icon PDF 123 KB

To receive and consider the attached report from Employment Committee held on 11 March 2024 (recommendation to follow).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Council Agenda Item 12 (Employment Committee Minute 8)

 

The recommendation within this report was approved unopposed.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that:

 

Full Council APPROVED the Pay Policy Statement attached as Appendix 1 to the report.

27.

Notices of Motion

28.

Fairtrade City

Proposed by: Councillor Hugh Mason

Seconded by: Councillor Suzy Horton

 

It is 20 years since Portsmouth was awarded the status of a ‘Fairtrade City’ (5 March 2004). The Council recognises the contribution which Fairtrade has and is making towards ending exploitation in global supply chains and thereby the endemic poverty experienced in many poorer countries.

 

The Council wishes to maintain its status as a Fairtrade City and thanks the group of volunteers who work hard to submit regular evidence to ensure that the city maintains its Fairtrade status.

 

The Council therefore reaffirms its commitment to using Fairtrade products at council events and as widely as possible in the Civic Offices and other public buildings which it operates. It reaffirms its intention to encourage the use of Fairtrade products throughout the city and to promote appreciation of the importance of Fairtrade.

Minutes:

It was

 

Proposed by Councillor Hugh Mason

Seconded by Councillor Suzy Horton

 

That notice of motion (a) as set out on the agenda be adopted.

  

Upon being put to a vote, the motion was declared CARRIED.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that:

 

It is 20 years since Portsmouth was awarded the status of a ‘Fairtrade City’ (5 March 2004). The Council recognises the contribution which Fairtrade has and is making towards ending exploitation in global supply chains and thereby the endemic poverty experienced in many poorer countries.

 

The Council wishes to maintain its status as a Fairtrade City and thanks the group of volunteers who work hard to submit regular evidence to ensure that the city maintains its Fairtrade status.

 

The Council therefore reaffirms its commitment to using Fairtrade products at council events and as widely as possible in the Civic Offices and other public buildings which it operates. It reaffirms its intention to encourage the use of Fairtrade products throughout the city and to promote appreciation of the importance of Fairtrade.

29.

Council of Sanctuary

Proposed by: Councillor Suzy Horton

Seconded by: Councillor Chris Attwell

 

 

Since 2019 Portsmouth has been recognised as a City of Sanctuary and is proud to offer sanctuary to people fleeing persecution and violence. This Council recognises that people fleeing violence and persecution are not only entitled to claim asylum under the law, but that they also deserve to be always treated with dignity, and to receive our welcome and support.  

 

As a city with a rich history of welcoming and supporting those fleeing violence and persecution, we want to build on our proud tradition as a City of Sanctuary by committing this council to becoming a recognised ‘Council of Sanctuary’ through its actions and policies, and with its partners in all sectors.

 

We recognise that people fleeing violence and persecution flourish and contribute to their new country when given comprehensive, and well-co-ordinated support within their new host communities. The national network of City of Sanctuary Councils offers this kind of forward-looking approach to the welfare of people moving into the country while also enabling community cohesion between new and existing communities. 

 

Local authorities across the political spectrum have been awarded ‘Council of Sanctuary’ status by following simple steps.

 

The city already has been awarded Libraries of Sanctuary status and Portsmouth schools have been or are in the process of being awarded Schools of Sanctuary status so becoming a Council of Sanctuary would strengthen and further those community connections.

 

This Council acknowledges the importance of being an active member within a network of local authorities that are working towards a vision of welcome for all, the sharing of innovative practices and the opportunity to speak nationally with one voice on matters that affect local communities.

 

This Council requests that Cabinet should consider the implications of Portsmouth City Council becoming a Council of Sanctuary including taking the following steps:

 

(i)    Continuing to work with Portsmouth City of Sanctuary and other partners to support those seeking sanctuary in our city;

 

(ii)   Join the local authority network. In joining the network, we are committing to continuing our work towards the Council of Sanctuary Award and are agreeing to sign up as a Supporting Organisation;  

 

(iii)Produce an Action Plan, which focuses on learning and embedding the principles of City of Sanctuary and sharing good news stories; and  

 

(iv)Then, when ready, apply for formal recognition. 

Minutes:

It was

 

Proposed by Councillor Suzy Horton

Seconded by Councillor Chris Attwell

 

That notice of motion (b) as set out on the agenda be adopted.

 

Upon being put to a vote, the motion was declared CARRIED.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that:

 

Since 2019 Portsmouth has been recognised as a City of Sanctuary and is proud to offer sanctuary to people fleeing persecution and violence. This Council recognises that people fleeing violence and persecution are not only entitled to claim asylum under the law, but that they also deserve to be always treated with dignity, and to receive our welcome and support.  

 

As a city with a rich history of welcoming and supporting those fleeing violence and persecution, we want to build on our proud tradition as a City of Sanctuary by committing this council to becoming a recognised ‘Council of Sanctuary’ through its actions and policies, and with its partners in all sectors.

 

We recognise that people fleeing violence and persecution flourish and contribute to their new country when given comprehensive, and well-co-ordinated support within their new host communities. The national network of City of Sanctuary Councils offers this kind of forward-looking approach to the welfare of people moving into the country while also enabling community cohesion between new and existing communities. 

 

Local authorities across the political spectrum have been awarded ‘Council of Sanctuary’ status by following simple steps.

 

The city already has been awarded Libraries of Sanctuary status and Portsmouth schools have been or are in the process of being awarded Schools of Sanctuary status so becoming a Council of Sanctuary would strengthen and further those community connections.

 

This Council acknowledges the importance of being an active member within a network of local authorities that are working towards a vision of welcome for all, the sharing of innovative practices and the opportunity to speak nationally with one voice on matters that affect local communities.

 

This Council requests that Cabinet should consider the implications of Portsmouth City Council becoming a Council of Sanctuary including taking the following steps:

 

(i)  Continuing to work with Portsmouth City of Sanctuary and other partners to support those seeking sanctuary in our city;

 

(ii)  Join the local authority network. In joining the network, we are committing to continuing our work towards the Council of Sanctuary Award and are agreeing to sign up as a Supporting Organisation;  

 

(iii) Produce an Action Plan, which focuses on learning and embedding the principles of City of Sanctuary and sharing good news stories; and  

 

(iv)Then, when ready, apply for formal recognition.

30.

Urgent Need for Improved NHS Dentistry Provision in Portsmouth pdf icon PDF 14 KB

Proposed by: Councillor George Fielding

Seconded by: Councillor Asghar Shah

 

This Council notes with great concern the severe and ongoing shortage of NHS dentistry provision in the city of Portsmouth.  The lack of accessible and timely dental care is a matter of significant public concern, with serious implications for the oral health and well-being of our community.

 

Acknowledging that oral health is an integral part of overall health, this Council recognises the importance of ensuring that residents have access to affordable and quality dental services through the NHS.  However, it is well known that a large number of residents in Portsmouth are experiencing difficulties in securing NHS dental appointments, leading to a situation where preventative and necessary dental care is being delayed or neglected.

 

This Council further acknowledges the potential impact of delayed dental care on the overall health of our residents, as untreated dental issues can lead to more severe health complications.  We are deeply concerned about the potential consequences for vulnerable populations, including children, the elderly, and those with limited financial means.

 

This Council also notes that Portsmouth has some of the worst rates for the number of dentists for the population size in the UK.  Indeed, the cataclysmic drop in the number of dentists has been previously reported back by the NHS at the end of March 2021 as just 90 dentists operating in the city marking a 26 per cent fall compared to the previous year.1

 

In this context, we draw attention to the remarks of our city MP, Stephen Morgan, who has highlighted the severity of the issue.  Mr Morgan has stated:

 

“The shortage of NHS dentistry provision in Portsmouth is reaching crisis levels, with constituents struggling to secure basic dental appointments.  This is a matter of public health concern that demands urgent attention and intervention.”

 

This Council welcomes the recent announcement by NHS Hampshire and Isle of Wight partnering with the charity Dentaid that a new mobile dental service will be available outside specific centres in Portsmouth, Havant and Southampton followed by the Isle of Wight in March 2024 with other areas of Hampshire to be covered later this year.2  Whilst this is indeed welcomed, it is only a short-term plan with funding only for 18 months whereas what is needed is long-term solutions to help alleviate pressures on existing services and provide the capacity in the local area for quality NHS dentistry for residents across Portsmouth.

 

Notwithstanding the above, and recognising the continued gravity of this situation, this Council resolves to:

 

      i.         Express its strong dissatisfaction with the current state of NHS dentistry provision in Portsmouth and the impact it is having on residents;

     ii.         Request the Cabinet Member for Community Well-being, Health and Care to call on the national and regional health authorities to address the shortage of NHS dental services in Portsmouth as a matter of urgency;

 

    iii.         Request the Cabinet Member for Community Well-being, Health and Care and the Health Overview Scrutiny Panel to collaborate with local health and dental professionals, community representatives, and NHS authorities to explore interim solutions, such as the establishment of temporary dental clinics and outreach programmes, to provide immediate relief to residents in need;

 

   iv.         Ask the Leader of the Council along with all Group Leaders to write jointly to call on the Secretary of State for Health and Care to outline the specific actions and timelines for addressing the shortage of NHS dentistry provision in Portsmouth; and

 

     v.         Advocate for a long-term, sustainable plan to ensure that all residents in Portsmouth have equitable access to affordable and quality dental care through the NHS.

 

This Council urges all members to unite in supporting this motion, recognising the severity of the issue and the need for swift and effective action to address the critical lack of NHS dentistry provision in Portsmouth.

 

1.         https://www.portsmouth.co.uk/health/portsmouth-records-a-cataclysmic-drop-in-number-of-nhs-dentists-3534285

 

2.         https://www.portsmouth.gov.uk/2024/02/22/portsmouth-councillors-welcome-news-of-mobile-dentist-unit-to-provide-much-needed-appointments-for-residents/

 

Minutes:

It was

 

Proposed by Councillor George Fielding

Seconded by Councillor Asghar Shah

 

That notice of motion (c) as set out on the agenda be adopted.

 

As an amendment it was

 

Proposed by Councillor Matthew Winnington

Seconded by Councillor Lewis Gosling

 

To insert new paragraph five

 

"In response to this the City Council worked with NHS partners to garner 104,000 units of NHS dental treatment into Portsmouth in 2023, the equivalent of 15 extra NHS dentists. This fits in with the long-standing Liberal Democrat policy nationally of no-one having to pay significant amounts of money to private dental providers just to get basic dental treatment. Alongside this we have had two new dental surgeries open in Portsmouth and city MP Penny Mordaunt hosted a dental summit at the end of 2022, bringing together all partners in the city."

 

Amend point ii so it reads:

 

"Request the Cabinet Member for Community Wellbeing, Health and Care to continue to work with all partners in Health and Care Portsmouth, and within the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care System to address the ongoing significant shortage of NHS dental provision in Portsmouth."

 

Amend point iii so it reads:

 

"Request the Health & Wellbeing Board and the Health and Care and the Health Overview Scrutiny Panel to collaborate with local health and dental professionals, community representatives, and NHS authorities to co-produce interim solutions to provide immediate relief to residents in need, using as a model the working on oral health outreach that has been funded by the Public Health Transformation Fund for some of the groups in greatest needs in the city."

 

Following debate, the proposer of the original motion, Councillor George Fielding agreed to subsume the amendment put by Councillor Matthew Winnington into the motion.

 

Upon being put to a vote, the substantive notice of motion incorporating the amendment in the name of Councillor Matthew Winnington was declared CARRIED.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that:

 

This Council notes with great concern the severe and ongoing shortage of NHS dentistry provision in the city of Portsmouth.  The lack of accessible and timely dental care is a matter of significant public concern, with serious implications for the oral health and well-being of our community.

 

Acknowledging that oral health is an integral part of overall health, this Council recognises the importance of ensuring that residents have access to affordable and quality dental services through the NHS.  However, it is well known that a large number of residents in Portsmouth are experiencing difficulties in securing NHS dental appointments, leading to a situation where preventative and necessary dental care is being delayed or neglected.

 

This Council further acknowledges the potential impact of delayed dental care on the overall health of our residents, as untreated dental issues can lead to more severe health complications.  We are deeply concerned about the potential consequences for vulnerable populations, including children, the elderly, and those with limited financial means.

 

This Council also notes that Portsmouth has some of the worst rates for the number of dentists for the population size in the UK.  Indeed, the cataclysmic drop in the number of dentists has been previously reported back by the NHS at the end of March 2021 as just 90 dentists operating in the city marking a 26 per cent fall compared to the previous year.1

 

In response to this the City Council worked with NHS partners to garner 104,000 units of NHS dental treatment into Portsmouth in 2023, the equivalent of 15 extra NHS dentists. This fits in with the long-standing Liberal Democrat policy nationally of no-one having to pay significant amounts of money to private dental providers just to get basic dental treatment. Alongside this we have had two new dental surgeries open in Portsmouth and city MP Penny Mordaunt hosted a dental summit at the end of 2022, bringing together all partners in the city

 

In this context, we draw attention to the remarks of our city MP, Stephen Morgan, who has highlighted the severity of the issue.  Mr Morgan has stated:

 

“The shortage of NHS dentistry provision in Portsmouth is reaching crisis levels, with constituents struggling to secure basic dental appointments.  This is a matter of public health concern that demands urgent attention and intervention.”

 

This Council welcomes the recent announcement by NHS Hampshire and Isle of Wight partnering with the charity Dentaid that a new mobile dental service will be available outside specific centres in Portsmouth, Havant and Southampton followed by the Isle of Wight in March 2024 with other areas of Hampshire to be covered later this year.2  Whilst this is indeed welcomed, it is only a short-term plan with funding only for 18 months whereas what is needed is long-term solutions to help alleviate pressures on existing services and provide the capacity in the local area for quality NHS dentistry for residents across Portsmouth.

 

Notwithstanding the above, and recognising the continued gravity of this situation, this Council resolves to:

 

      i.   Express its strong dissatisfaction with the current state of NHS dentistry provision in Portsmouth and the impact it is having on residents;

 

     ii.    Request the Cabinet Member for Community Wellbeing, Health and Care to continue to work with all partners in Health and Care Portsmouth, and within the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care System to address the ongoing significant shortage of NHS dental provision in Portsmouth;

 

    iii.    Request the Health & Wellbeing Board and the Health and Care and the Health Overview Scrutiny Panel to collaborate with local health and dental professionals, community representatives, and NHS authorities to co-produce interim solutions to provide immediate relief to residents in need, using as a model the working on oral health outreach that has been funded by the Public Health Transformation Fund for some of the groups in greatest needs in the city;

 

   iv.     Ask the Leader of the Council along with all Group Leaders to write jointly to call on the Secretary of State for Health and Care to outline the specific actions and timelines for addressing the shortage of NHS dentistry provision in Portsmouth; and

 

     v.    Advocate for a long-term, sustainable plan to ensure that all residents in Portsmouth have equitable access to affordable and quality dental care through the NHS.

 

This Council urges all members to unite in supporting this motion, recognising the severity of the issue and the need for swift and effective action to address the critical lack of NHS dentistry provision in Portsmouth.

 

1.        https://www.portsmouth.co.uk/health/portsmouth-records-a-cataclysmic-drop-in-number-of-nhs-dentists-3534285

 

2.       https://www.portsmouth.gov.uk/2024/02/22/portsmouth-councillors-welcome-news-of-mobile-dentist-unit-to-provide-much-needed-appointments-for-residents/

31.

Pride in the Streets of Pompey pdf icon PDF 75 KB

Proposed by: Councillor Charlotte Gerada

Seconded by: Councillor George Fielding

 

This council notes:

 

In most wards in the city, residents raise concerns about street cleanliness, fly-tipping, graffiti, bins left outside of properties, smashed glass on pavements and dog fouling that make our streets unpleasant, unsafe and inaccessible.

 

In particular, disabled residents, parents with pushchairs and older people find it difficult to walk down roads safely because of these issues.

 

The condition of our streets affects how residents feel about where they live - many don’t feel pride in their city anymore because of how unclean it presently is.

 

The council has been undertaking a campaign to encourage residents on streets with flat-fronted houses to take in their bins after refuse collections, but so far, this has had limited success.

 

This council believes:

 

The cleaner our streets are, the more likely they are to be kept clean.

 

As a council and a city, we are responsible for making Portsmouth as accessible as possible, especially to disabled people. We have a duty of care to ensure streets are clear of obstacles to ensure those with access needs can get from A to B.

 

Pride in Portsmouth streets is really important - if our roads are clean, attractive and easy to navigate, more people will opt to use forms of active travel, rather than by vehicle.

 

This council resolves:

 

      i.         To ask the Transport, Environment and Community Safety Scrutiny Panel to conduct a review into hotspots of anti-social behaviour and street cleanliness, with a view to provide recommendations to Cabinet on how improvements can be achieved;

 

     ii.         To ask Cabinet to look into alternative measures to ensure residents remove their bins from the street and to report back the outcome of the different measures to Full Council;

 

    iii.         To ask the Cabinet Member for Environmental Services to engage with Colas to see if more proactive measures can be taken to improve street cleanliness; and

 

   iv.         To ask the Cabinet Member for Environmental Services to conduct a review of graffiti hotspots across the city, to target council services to make improvements in the worst affected areas.

Minutes:

It was

 

Proposed by Councillor Charlotte Gerada

Seconded by Councillor George Fielding

 

That notice of motion (d) as set out on the agenda be adopted.

 

As an amendment it was

 

Proposed by Councillor Dave Ashmore

Seconded by Councillor Mark Jeffery

 

To replace paragraph 3 - "The condition of our streets affects how residents feel about where they live - many don’t feel pride in their city anymore because of how unclean it presently is."

with:  "The cleanliness of our streets has an impact on residents' sense of pride in their area."

To replace paragraph 4 - " The council has been undertaking a campaign to encourage residents on streets with flat-fronted houses to take in their bins after refuse collections, but so far, this has had limited success."


with: "The council has been undertaking a campaign which follows up on the policy for residents on streets with flat-fronted houses to take in their bins after refuse collections, and this needs to be continued across the city."

To replace recommendation ii. with: " To ask Cabinet to continue to monitor the measures to ensure residents who can remove their bins from the street do so, and to report back the outcome of the measures to Full Council; with a focus on improving accessibility while helping those who have disabilities"

To replace recommendation iii. with: "To ask the Cabinet Member for Environmental Services to continue to engage with Colas to see if more proactive measures can be taken to improve street cleanliness; and"

 

Following debate, the proposer of the original motion, Councillor Charlotte Gerada agreed to subsume the amendment put by Councillor Dave Ashmore into the motion.

 

Upon being put to a vote, the substantive notice of motion incorporating the amendment in the name of Councillor Dave Ashmore was declared CARRIED.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that:

 

This council notes:

 

In most wards in the city, residents raise concerns about street cleanliness, fly-tipping, graffiti, bins left outside of properties, smashed glass on pavements and dog fouling that make our streets unpleasant, unsafe and inaccessible.

 

In particular, disabled residents, parents with pushchairs and older people find it difficult to walk down roads safely because of these issues.

 

The cleanliness of our streets has an impact on residents' sense of pride in their area.

 

The council has been undertaking a campaign which follows up on the policy for residents on streets with flat-fronted houses to take in their bins after refuse collections, and this needs to be continued across the city.

 

This council believes:

 

The cleaner our streets are, the more likely they are to be kept clean.

 

As a council and a city, we are responsible for making Portsmouth as accessible as possible, especially to disabled people. We have a duty of care to ensure streets are clear of obstacles to ensure those with access needs can get from A to B.

 

Pride in Portsmouth streets is really important - if our roads are clean, attractive and easy to navigate, more people will opt to use forms of active travel, rather than by vehicle.

 

This council resolves:

 

      i.   To ask the Transport, Environment and Community Safety Scrutiny Panel to conduct a review into hotspots of anti-social behaviour and street cleanliness, with a view to provide recommendations to Cabinet on how improvements can be achieved;

 

     ii.   To ask Cabinet to continue to monitor the measures to ensure residents who can remove their bins from the street do so, and to report back the outcome of the measures to Full Council; with a focus on improving accessibility while helping those who have disabilities;

 

    iii.   To ask the Cabinet Member for Environmental Services to continue to engage with Colas to see if more proactive measures can be taken to improve street cleanliness; and

 

   iv.    To ask the Cabinet Member for Environmental Services to conduct a review of graffiti hotspots across the city, to target council services to make improvements in the worst affected areas.

 

The Lord Mayor adjorned the meeting at 4.32pm.

 

The Lord Mayor reconvened the meeting at 4.51pm.

32.

International Women's Day - Tackling Gender Inequality in Portsmouth pdf icon PDF 25 KB

Proposed by: Councillor Yinka Adeniran

Seconded by:Councillor Charlotte Gerada

 

This council notes:

 

·       International Women’s Day on March 8th celebrated the many achievements of women and has a call to action to accelerate gender equality globally.

 

·       That women have been disproportionately impacted by austerity and the cost-of-living crisis, partly as a result of the gender pay gap and the unequal caring duties placed on them. These impacts are amplified when they intersect with class, disability, ethnicity and sexuality. Despite there being more women than men living in Portsmouth, women are paid less than men and are less likely to be in employment.[1] 70% of the Council’s workforce is female and a large proportion of these are employed in the lower pay bands, with fewer at senior levels.[2] An estimated 1.5 million women in the UK are economically inactive due to long-term sickness compared to 1.3 million men, a gap of 200,000 more women.[3]

 

·       100 years after women first won the right to vote, there has been virtually no progress on women’s representation in local government.[4]

 

·       That violence against women and girls remains a big concern and welcomes recent initiatives to make our city safer and our work more effective in reducing gender inequality (such as Safer Portsmouth, White Ribbon and the forthcoming VAWG Strategy).

 

·       Portsmouth’s 2022-30 Health and Wellbeing Strategy recognises the importance of delivering fair and equitable services to all of our communities using a joint strategic approach.

 

This council believes:

 

·       While recognising the significant progress made on gender equality, more joined up action is needed for women to have full and equal rights.

 

·       It is vital that local government and leadership in the Council better reflects the communities we represent and is inclusive in order to have the best skills and make the best possible decisions.

 

  • Central government has failed to provide sustainable funding for the services that women depend on, but this should not prevent this Council from making a commitment to reduce inequalities using cost effective measures.

 

This council resolves:

 

      i.         To ask Cabinet to deliver the proposed Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy within the next six months so that a greater awareness of gender equality can be embedded throughout the Council;

 

     ii.         To ask Cabinet to review and, if needed, update staff training, to equip all staff members with the language and tools needed to actively promote diversity and inclusivity;

 

    iii.         To ask Cabinet to support women and their families to access the benefits that they are entitled to, by ensuring that Council services, schools, healthcare sector and HIVE are communicating advice and information effectively in a joined-up way;

 

   iv.         To ask the Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care to commit to exploring initiatives that aim to address health inequalities for women, allowing them to remain or return to economic activity, and improve their quality of life; and

 

     v.         To ask Cabinet to continue to prioritise funding to deliver services that support families, children and care-givers, including the establishment of the Women’s Health Hub in Portsmouth.


 



[1]https://www.nomisweb.co.uk/reports/lmp/la/1946157284/report.aspx?town=Portsmouth#tabwab

[2] https://www.portsmouth.gov.uk/services/council-and-democracy/transparency/senior-management-salary-information__trashed/gender-pay-gap-report-2022-23/

[3] https://www.nomisweb.co.uk

Minutes:

It was

 

Proposed by Councillor Yinka Adeniran

Seconded by Councillor Charlotte Gerada

 

That notice of motion (e) as set out on the agenda be adopted.

 

As an amendment it was

 

Proposed by Councillor Kirsty Mellor

Seconded by Councillor Mary Vallely

 

To add at the end of the 'This council notes' section:

 

  • The government Domestic Abuse Commissioner Nicole Jacobs has recently warned that the crisis in local government finances is likely to lead to the loss of vital, specialist domestic abuse services.

 

  • The Domestic Abuse Commissioner has also called on Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities to provide councils with emergency funding to maintain specialist domestic abuse services, backed by guidance on the necessity of resourcing this provision for the fulfilment of their statutory duties.

 

To add at the end of the 'This council believes' section:

 

·       Women's voices should also be central to the development of health hubs, including engagement with local women particularly in areas of the city where there are higher levels of inequality. 

 

To add at the end of the 'This council resolves' section:

 

vi.     To ask Cabinet to consider committing to the long term provision of  council commissioned domestic abuse services and ensure funding for those services is not cut when contracts come up for renewal or extension.

 

vii.       To ask Group Leaders to write to Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, calling for more resources to be made available for councils to properly fund domestic abuse services and for the government to place a legal responsibility on local authorities to provide those services; and

 

viii.      To ask the Health Overview & Scrutiny Panel to undertake a comprehensive review aimed at gaining a deeper understanding of women's experiences within the healthcare system. This review should focus on and make clear the unique challenges and barriers that women encounter in accessing and navigating healthcare services and make recommendations as to how these can be addressed.

 

Following debate, the proposer of the original motion, Councillor Yinka Adeniran agreed to subsume the amendment put by Councillor Kirsty Mellor into the motion.

 

Upon being put to a vote, the substantive notice of motion incorporating the amendment in the name of Councillor Kirsty Mellor was declared CARRIED.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that:

 

This council notes:

 

·       International Women’s Day on March 8th celebrated the many achievements of women and has a call to action to accelerate gender equality globally.

 

·       That women have been disproportionately impacted by austerity and the cost-of-living crisis, partly as a result of the gender pay gap and the unequal caring duties placed on them. These impacts are amplified when they intersect with class, disability, ethnicity and sexuality. Despite there being more women than men living in Portsmouth, women are paid less than men and are less likely to be in employment.[1] 70% of the Council’s workforce is female and a large proportion of these are employed in the lower pay bands, with fewer at senior levels.[2] An estimated 1.5 million women in the UK are economically inactive due to long-term sickness compared to 1.3 million men, a gap of 200,000 more women.[3]

 

·       100 years after women first won the right to vote, there has been virtually no progress on women’s representation in local government.[4]

 

·       That violence against women and girls remains a big concern and welcomes recent initiatives to make our city safer and our work more effective in reducing gender inequality (such as Safer Portsmouth, White Ribbon and the forthcoming VAWG Strategy).

 

·       Portsmouth’s 2022-30 Health and Wellbeing Strategy recognises the importance of delivering fair and equitable services to all of our communities using a joint strategic approach.

 

  • The government Domestic Abuse Commissioner Nicole Jacobs has recently warned that the crisis in local government finances is likely to lead to the loss of vital, specialist domestic abuse services.

 

  • The Domestic Abuse Commissioner has also called on Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities to provide councils with emergency funding to maintain specialist domestic abuse services, backed by guidance on the necessity of resourcing this provision for the fulfilment of their statutory duties.

 

This council believes:

 

·        While recognising the significant progress made on gender equality, more joined up action is needed for women to have full and equal rights.

 

·        It is vital that local government and leadership in the Council better reflects the communities we represent and is inclusive in order to have the best skills and make the best possible decisions.

 

·        Central government has failed to provide sustainable funding for the services that women depend on, but this should not prevent this Council from making a commitment to reduce inequalities using cost effective measures.

 

·        Women's voices should also be central to the development of health hubs, including engagement with local women particularly in areas of the city where there are higher levels of inequality. 

 

This council resolves:

 

      i.   To ask Cabinet to deliver the proposed Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy within the next six months so that a greater awareness of gender equality can be embedded throughout the Council;

 

     ii.   To ask Cabinet to review and, if needed, update staff training, to equip all staff members with the language and tools needed to actively promote diversity and inclusivity;

 

    iii.   To ask Cabinet to support women and their families to access the benefits that they are entitled to, by ensuring that Council services, schools, healthcare sector and HIVE are communicating advice and information effectively in a joined-up way;

 

    iv.    To ask the Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care to commit to exploring initiatives that aim to address health inequalities for women, allowing them to remain or return to economic activity, and improve their quality of life; and

 

     v.   To ask Cabinet to continue to prioritise funding to deliver services that support families, children and care-givers, including the establishment of the Women’s Health Hub in Portsmouth.

 

vi.  To ask Cabinet to consider committing to the long term provision of council commissioned domestic abuse services and ensure funding for those services is not cut when contracts come up for renewal or extension.

vii.  To ask Group Leaders to write to Michael Gove, Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, calling for more resources to be made available for councils to properly fund domestic abuse services and for the government to place a legal responsibility on local authorities to provide those services; and

 

viii. To ask the Health Overview & Scrutiny Panel to undertake a comprehensive review aimed at gaining a deeper understanding of women's experiences within the healthcare system. This review should focus on and make clear the unique challenges and barriers that women encounter in accessing and navigating healthcare services and make recommendations as to how these can be addressed.

 


[1]https://www.nomisweb.co.uk/reports/lmp/la/1946157284/report.aspx?town=Portsmouth#tabwab

 

[2]https://www.portsmouth.gov.uk/services/council-and-democracy/transparency/senior-management-salary-information__trashed/gender-pay-gap-report-2022-23/

 

[3]https://www.nomisweb.co.uk

 

[4]https://www.fawcettsociety.org.uk/news/womens-representation-in-local-government-stuck-in-the-past

33.

An end to Pointless Paper Usage pdf icon PDF 32 KB

Proposed by: Councillor Raymond Dent

Seconded by:Councillor George Madgwick

 

Portsmouth City Council prides itself on its forward-thinking Green Policy. It's actively promoted how we aim to plant trees and provide more greening to our city. Meanwhile every year we councillors alone contribute to the destruction of more than 50 trees. This needs to stop.

 

In the last 12 months each councillor has received an average of roughly 10,000 sheets of paper across all our roles. From each tree around 8,000 sheets of paper are produced meaning that for every elected councillor in Portsmouth we are directly receiving over a tree per year per person in needless paperwork.

 

Not only that it is estimated this has roughly cost £6,000 in printing and paper costs. That doesn't include the electricity generation required. The human paid hours and the carbon footprint of producing, distributing and storing the paper and ink. Furthermore, it doesn't include potential costs for stamps and carbon footprint in delivering these documents to some of our homes.

 

There is a solution. For a small investment, that is calculated to be cost neutral within two years, we can invest in technology that already exists and is used by other councils in the country. Specialized digital pads can be used that immediately upload documents to us, we can amend, edit and write notes on them. We can sign documents & make amendments to motions all at the press of a few buttons. A single charge, on some devices, can last 7 days and they are incredibly energy efficient.

 

Swapping to new technology, just for councillors alone, would:

 

·       Save over 50 Trees per annum;

·       Cut our Carbon Footprint down;

·       Save on the environmental impact of ink;

·       Promote and support learning disabilities, with auto spell check, colour blind correctness and screen reader capabilities; and

·       Save the taxpayer money

 

Full Council requests that the administration takes a serious look into the viability and practicality of switching us over to these devices and put an end to wasting paper needlessly.

Minutes:

It was

 

Proposed by Councillor Raymond Dent

Seconded by Councillor George Madgwick

 

That notice of motion (f) as set out on the agenda be adopted.

 

As an amendment it was

 

Proposed by Councillor Daniel Wemyss

Seconded by Councillor Simon Bosher

 

To replace paragraphs one, two and three with:

 

"Portsmouth City Council recognises the significant environmental impact and financial costs associated with excessive paper consumption. In the last 12 months, each councillor has received an average of roughly 10,000 sheets of paper, equivalent to more than one tree per elected official. The cost of printing for council business is projected to rise to £400,315, with council meetings alone costing £5,400 per annum."

 

To replace paragraph four with:

 

"In light of these findings and the urgent need to address environmental concerns and optimise financial resources, this council proposes the following measures:

 

  1. Transitioning to a digital-first format for all council documents, communications, and meetings, including agendas, reports, and minutes.
  2. Investing in specialised digital devices, such as tablets, that allow for immediate document upload, amendment, editing, note-taking, and signing. This technology is cost-neutral within two years and offers features like auto spell check, colour blind correctness, and screen reader capabilities.
  3. Implementing measures to ensure accessibility and inclusivity for all members and stakeholders in the digital transition, including appropriate training and support.
  4. Encouraging the use of digital and electronic documentation for correspondence, reducing reliance on printed materials.
  5. Allowing flexibility for printed materials to be requested by members of staff and residents, ensuring accessibility is not impacted through a 'common sense' policy across Portsmouth City Council.
  6. Conducting regular reviews and assessments to monitor the effectiveness of the digital transition, including its impact on paper consumption, costs, and operational efficiency."

 

To replace paragraph five with:

 

"By adopting these measures, Portsmouth City Council aims to:

 

  • Save over 50 trees per annum
  • Reduce our carbon footprint
  • Cut down on the environmental impact of ink.
  • Promote and support learning disabilities through accessible technology.
  • Save taxpayer money."

 

To amend paragraph six as below: (deleted content struck out and additional content in bold)

 

"Full Council requests that the administration takes a serious look into seriously considers the viability and practicality of switching us over to these digital devices and put an end to wasting paper needlessly practices, demonstrating its commitment to sustainability, efficiency, and responsible stewardship of public funds."

 

Following debate, the proposer of the original motion, Councillor Raymond Dent agreed to subsume the amendment put by Councillor Daniel Wemyss into the motion.

 

Upon being put to a vote, the substantive notice of motion incorporating the amendment in the name of Councillor Daniel Wemyss was declared CARRIED.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that:

 

Portsmouth City Council recognises the significant environmental impact and financial costs associated with excessive paper consumption. In the last 12 months, each councillor has received an average of roughly 10,000 sheets of paper, equivalent to more than one tree per elected official. The cost of printing for council business is projected to rise to £400,315, with council meetings alone costing £5,400 per annum.

 

In light of these findings and the urgent need to address environmental concerns and optimise financial resources, this council proposes the following measures:

 

  1. Transitioning to a digital-first format for all council documents, communications, and meetings, including agendas, reports, and minutes.
  2. Investing in specialised digital devices, such as tablets, that allow for immediate document upload, amendment, editing, note-taking, and signing. This technology is cost-neutral within two years and offers features like auto spell check, colour blind correctness, and screen reader capabilities.
  3. Implementing measures to ensure accessibility and inclusivity for all members and stakeholders in the digital transition, including appropriate training and support.
  4. Encouraging the use of digital and electronic documentation for correspondence, reducing reliance on printed materials.
  5. Allowing flexibility for printed materials to be requested by members of staff and residents, ensuring accessibility is not impacted through a 'common sense' policy across Portsmouth City Council.
  6. Conducting regular reviews and assessments to monitor the effectiveness of the digital transition, including its impact on paper consumption, costs, and operational efficiency.

 

By adopting these measures, Portsmouth City Council aims to:

 

  • Save over 50 trees per annum
  • Reduce our carbon footprint
  • Cut down on the environmental impact of ink.
  • Promote and support learning disabilities through accessible technology.
  • Save taxpayer money.

 

Full Council requests that the administration seriously considers the viability and practicality of switching to these digital devices and practices, demonstrating its commitment to sustainability, efficiency, and responsible stewardship of public funds.

34.

Guildhall Trust Theatre Operations Outside Portsmouth

Proposed by: Councillor Matthew Atkins

Seconded by: Councillor Simon Bosher

 

This council believes that Portsmouth taxpayers should not be subsidising theatre provision in Hastings.

 

Full Council asks the Leader and relevant Cabinet Member, Cllr Pitt, to publish a report as soon as practicable to assure the residents of Portsmouth that Portsmouth City Council arts funding will be spent only on the arts in Portsmouth and not put at risk by the Guildhall Trust's officer time, legal obligations and resources being diverted to this new project.

Minutes:

It was

 

Proposed by Councillor Matthew Atkins

Seconded by Councillor Simon Bosher

 

That notice of motion (g) as set out on the agenda be adopted.

 

Upon being put to a vote, the motion was declared LOST.

35.

Addressing Failures in Portsmouth Major Project Delivery

Proposed by Councillor Matthew Atkins

Seconded by Councillor Simon Bosher

 

This council believes that the Liberal Democrat Administration has failed to deliver the major regeneration and housing projects Portsmouth desperately needs.

 

This council notes that the Major Projects Board hasn't met since 2021.

 

As a council, we recommend that:

 

(i)         The Scrutiny Management Panel should be asked to produce a report on steps the City Council can take to ensure planned major regeneration schemes can be financed and investigate prioritising those major projects that will best serve our regeneration aims as a city; and

 

(ii)        The Cabinet should devote more time to considering how to encourage major schemes and long-term planning in the city.

Minutes:

It was

 

Proposed by Councillor Matthew Atkins

Seconded by Councillor Simon Bosher

 

That notice of motion (h) as set out on the agenda be adopted.

 

Following debate and upon being put to a vote, the motion was declared LOST.

 

The Lord Mayor adjorned the meeting at 7.01pm

 

The Lord Mayor reconvened the meeting at 7.16pm.

36.

The Crisis in Local Authority Funding pdf icon PDF 13 KB

Proposed by Councillor Graham Heaney

Seconded by Councillor George Fielding

 

The extent of the crisis in the funding of local government is now clear.

 

Evidence from surveys of local authorities by organisations including the Local Government Association (1), the County Councils network (2) and the Local government Information Unit (3) show the extent to which a wide range of local authorities are concerned that they will not be able to produce a balanced budget in future years.

 

This means that a range of generally well managed local authorities face the prospect of having to declare, through issuing a section 114 report, that further emergency measures are required to balance their budgets. In our area Hampshire County Council have warned that they face this prospect and Southampton city Council have requested permission from government to use ‘capitalisation’ to ease their budget situation. While Portsmouth is not in this situation the recent council budget meeting needed savings of £2 million for 2024/25 and a further projected deficit of £3 million over the next three financial years which will have to be met.

 

The immediate causes of this situation include increasing demands for services in adult social care, children’s services, and the cost of temporary accommodation for the homeless. General inflation, affecting supplies and employment, energy costs in recent years plus rising interest rates have added to the pressures.

 

Local government also had significant cuts to its funding during the five years from 2010 when the coalition government implemented its austerity programme. In Portsmouth the council lost 30% (£44m) of its central government funding between 2011/12 and 2014/15. The Conservative government also continued to reduce funding for local government.

 

The challenge for the government is to deal with the developing crisis and this is likely to require some immediate financial support, but local government funding must be put on a more sustainable footing.

 

The City Council therefore calls on the government to:

 

(i)         Move away from annual financial settlements and introduce multi-year financial settlements for local government;

 

(ii)        End the delay in progressing the fair funding review and ensure that any new funding system is transparent;

 

(iii)       Ensure that measures of deprivation are included in any new funding formula for local government;

 

(iv)      Review and then develop proposals to reform the system of Council Tax as a main source of local government funding. This should address the imbalance in council tax raised between different local authorities and the regressive impact on taxpayers of the current system; and

 

(v)        End the reliance on councils having to competitively bid for significant new resources and new initiatives.

 

While a few local authorities have mismanaged their financial situation this does not explain the extent of the current crisis in funding for local government and we reject attempts to sow division by trying to score partisan points against other councils now struggling to balance their budgets.

 

The motion if passed to be sent to the Secretary of State for DLUHC and the two Portsmouth MP’s.

 

 

(1) Section 114 fear for almost 1 in 5 council leaders and chief executives after cashless Autumn Statement | Local Government Association

(2) Councils warn they are ‘running out of road’ to prevent financial insolvency, as in-year overspends top £600m - County Councils Network

(3) The State of Local Government Finance in England 2024 - LGiU

Additional documents:

Minutes:

It was

 

Proposed by Councillor Graham Heaney

Seconded by Councillor George Fielding

 

That notice of motion (i) as set out on the agenda be adopted.

 

As an amendment it was

 

Proposed by Councillor Darren Sanders

Seconded by Councillor Lee Hunt

 

To add "and the Labour Party," to the end of the sentence prior to the recommendations "The City Council therefore calls on the government to:"

 

As an amendment it was

 

Proposed by Councillor Matthew Atkins

Seconded by Councillor Daniel Wemyss

 

To insert new paragraph 2 after the word ‘clear’ as follows:

 

"The first councils to fall victim to bankruptcy in recent years were administrations such as Labour run Nottingham, Slough, Croydon, and most recently Birmingham, along with Conservative run Thurrock. While central government funding pressures were a factor, all these failures involved significant financial mismanagement by cabinet members, high levels of debt, poor decision making, and the inability to take difficult decisions at the appropriate time. Residents in these areas are now facing significant increases in tax to pay for the mistakes of their elected officials."

 

In paragraph 3 after the words ‘While Portsmouth is not in this situation,’ insert the following:

 

thanks to the skill of our financial officers and the prudence of the Conservative run administration from 2014 to 2018 and the subsequent Liberal Democrat administration,

 

In paragraph 5 at the end after the words ‘local government’ insert the words as follows:

 

in real terms due to high inflation.”

 

At the end of the recommendation section add the following new recommendation:

 

“(vi) Urgently bring forward national reform to the care system in order to ensure that a proper and sustainable funding system is established for both adult and children’s social services.”

 

After the recommendation section add the following new paragraph:

 

“Members of Portsmouth City Council recognise it is their primary obligation to be responsible stewards of the finances of the residents of Portsmouth and to ensure Portsmouth council tax payers are never forced to pay for our mistakes. We therefore commit to avoid unsustainable levels of debt, pursue savings and efficiencies in council budgets wherever possible, and continue to make prudent decisions in relation to council spending, investment, and annual budgets.”

 

As an amendment it was

 

Proposed by Councillor Simon Bosher

Seconded by Councillor Lewis Gosling

 

To add after paragraph 6 (Local Government also had…..)

 

"Published figures show that under the Labour Government (1997-2010), the average council tax paid per dwelling rose from £564 in 1997-98 to £1,195 in 2010-11, an increase of 112 percent.  When measured as the Band D average, another common indicator, bills have increased from £688 in 1997-98 to £1,439 in 2010-11, a rise of 109 percent.

 

For Portsmouth, the Band D average increased by 108.4% under the Labour Government from 1997 to 2010 and by 50.7% under the Coalition and Conservative Governments from 2010 to 2024."

 

Following debate, the proposer of the original motion, Councillor Graham Heaney agreed to subsume the amendment in the name of Councillor Darren Sanders into the motion, but not the amendments in the name of Councillor Matthew Atkins or Councillor Simon Bosher.

 

Upon being put to a vote, the amendment in the name of Councillor Matthew Atkins was declared LOST.

 

Upon being put to a vote, the amendment in the name of Councillor Simon Bosher was declared LOST.

 

Upon being put to a vote, the substantive notice of motion incorporating the amendment in the name of Councillor Darren Sanders was declared CARRIED.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that:

 

The extent of the crisis in the funding of local government is now clear.

 

Evidence from surveys of local authorities by organisations including the Local Government Association (1), the County Councils network (2) and the Local government Information Unit (3) show the extent to which a wide range of local authorities are concerned that they will not be able to produce a balanced budget in future years.

 

This means that a range of generally well managed local authorities face the prospect of having to declare, through issuing a section 114 report, that further emergency measures are required to balance their budgets. In our area Hampshire County Council have warned that they face this prospect and Southampton city Council have requested permission from government to use ‘capitalisation’ to ease their budget situation. While Portsmouth is not in this situation the recent council budget meeting needed savings of £2 million for 2024/25 and a further projected deficit of £3 million over the next three financial years which will have to be met.

 

The immediate causes of this situation include increasing demands for services in adult social care, children’s services, and the cost of temporary accommodation for the homeless. General inflation, affecting supplies and employment, energy costs in recent years plus rising interest rates have added to the pressures.

 

Local government also had significant cuts to its funding during the five years from 2010 when the coalition government implemented its austerity programme. In Portsmouth the council lost 30% (£44m) of its central government funding between 2011/12 and 2014/15. The Conservative government also continued to reduce funding for local government.

 

The challenge for the government is to deal with the developing crisis and this is likely to require some immediate financial support, but local government funding must be put on a more sustainable footing.

 

The City Council therefore calls on the government and Labour Party to:

 

(i)         Move away from annual financial settlements and introduce multi-year financial settlements for local government;

 

(ii)        End the delay in progressing the fair funding review and ensure that any new funding system is transparent;

 

(iii)       Ensure that measures of deprivation are included in any new funding formula for local government;

 

(iv)      Review and then develop proposals to reform the system of Council Tax as a main source of local government funding. This should address the imbalance in council tax raised between different local authorities and the regressive impact on taxpayers of the current system; and

 

(v)        End the reliance on councils having to competitively bid for significant new resources and new initiatives.

 

While a few local authorities have mismanaged their financial situation this does not explain the extent of the current crisis in funding for local government and we reject attempts to sow division by trying to score partisan points against other councils now struggling to balance their budgets.

 

The motion if passed to be sent to the Secretary of State for DLUHC and the two Portsmouth MP’s.

 

(1) Section 114 fear for almost 1 in 5 council leaders and chief executives after cashless Autumn Statement | Local Government Association

(2) Councils warn they are ‘running out of road’ to prevent financial insolvency, as in-year overspends top £600m - County Councils Network

(3) The State of Local Government Finance in England 2024 - LGiU

37.

Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care Board

Proposed by: Councillor Matthew Winnington

Seconded by: Councillor Mark Jeffery

 

This council notes that:

 

Portsmouth City Council has for many years valued its good relationships with the different parts of the NHS including Solent NHS Trust, Queen Alexandra Hospital and GP practices in the city. This has led to the creation of Health & Care Portsmouth, bringing together the Council and all those organisations alongside others to work together to provide better services for the residents of Portsmouth. The biggest area of integration was between the City Council and the Portsmouth Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), where we shared a post where the holder was both Head of Adult Social Care at the council and Operations Director of the CCG, alongside the Council Chief Executive being the nominated officer for the CCG. In July 2022 Portsmouth CCG was abolished, alongside all others nationwide, and the responsibilities being taken over by Integrated Care Boards, the budget-holding and decision-making bodies within the new Integrated Care Systems. In Portsmouth's case these responsibilities were taken on by the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care Board (ICB). 

 

From the beginning the ICB has been under severe financial pressure due to carried-over budgetary difficulties in preceding NHS organisations elsewhere in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. Together with the central NHS mandated redundancy drive and action to tackle the underlying deficit (one of the worst in the country) this has had a severely detrimental impact on the working of the ICB. Locally this has had a significant impact on the efficacy of the ICB Portsmouth Place team, including losing the Place Director, the main conduit between the ICB and the rest of Health & Care Portsmouth, and the significant reduction of the autonomy of local ICB staff to make decisions on funding and partnership working compared to when the CCG existed. 

 

Despite this Portsmouth continues to have significant levels of integration, far in excess of elsewhere in the ICB, and the City Council is a proactive partner in integration with the NHS. Additional to this, senior members of staff take the lead both locally, via Health & Care Portsmouth, and in some areas ICB wide, via joint funded posts  and via the Integrated Care Partnership, in delivering on Portsmouth's Health & Wellbeing Strategy and the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care Strategy. 

 

All this work is being put at risk by the fact that responsibility for NHS commissioning and funding is now part of this bigger structure that is not focussed on the needs of the people of Portsmouth and where the autonomy of the local system has been compromised.

 

This council therefore believes that:

 

·       The priorities of Health & Care Portsmouth and the Portsmouth Health & Wellbeing Strategy should be facilitated by the ICB. 

·       The Leader, the Chief Executive and the Cabinet Member for Community Wellbeing, Health and Care of Portsmouth City Council should continue to push for place based priorities to come first in the ICB alongside their counterparts at Southampton City, Isle of Wight and Hampshire County Councils. 

 

·       The Health and Care system of Portsmouth should be properly funded by central government and that the integrated work between statutory and Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise organisations in the city should be prioritised and be under as much local control as possible. 

 

This council resolves that:

 

These points will then be put into a letter from the Chief Executive of the City Council to the Chair and Chief Executive of the ICB and all group leaders are welcome to sign the letter as well on behalf of their groups and the residents they represent. It will be copied also to the Secretary of State for Health & Social Care. 

Minutes:

It was

 

Proposed by Councillor Matthew Winnington

Seconded by Councillor Mark Jeffery

 

That notice of motion (j) as set out on the agenda be adopted.

  

Following debate and upon being put to a vote, the motion was declared CARRIED.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that:

 

This council notes that:

 

Portsmouth City Council has for many years valued its good relationships with the different parts of the NHS including Solent NHS Trust, Queen Alexandra Hospital and GP practices in the city. This has led to the creation of Health & Care Portsmouth, bringing together the Council and all those organisations alongside others to work together to provide better services for the residents of Portsmouth. The biggest area of integration was between the City Council and the Portsmouth Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), where we shared a post where the holder was both Head of Adult Social Care at the council and Operations Director of the CCG, alongside the Council Chief Executive being the nominated officer for the CCG. In July 2022 Portsmouth CCG was abolished, alongside all others nationwide, and the responsibilities being taken over by Integrated Care Boards, the budget-holding and decision-making bodies within the new Integrated Care Systems. In Portsmouth's case these responsibilities were taken on by the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care Board (ICB). 

 

From the beginning the ICB has been under severe financial pressure due to carried-over budgetary difficulties in preceding NHS organisations elsewhere in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight. Together with the central NHS mandated redundancy drive and action to tackle the underlying deficit (one of the worst in the country) this has had a severely detrimental impact on the working of the ICB. Locally this has had a significant impact on the efficacy of the ICB Portsmouth Place team, including losing the Place Director, the main conduit between the ICB and the rest of Health & Care Portsmouth, and the significant reduction of the autonomy of local ICB staff to make decisions on funding and partnership working compared to when the CCG existed. 

 

Despite this Portsmouth continues to have significant levels of integration, far in excess of elsewhere in the ICB, and the City Council is a proactive partner in integration with the NHS. Additional to this, senior members of staff take the lead both locally, via Health & Care Portsmouth, and in some areas ICB wide, via joint funded posts and via the Integrated Care Partnership, in delivering on Portsmouth's Health & Wellbeing Strategy and the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Integrated Care Strategy. 

 

All this work is being put at risk by the fact that responsibility for NHS commissioning and funding is now part of this bigger structure that is not focussed on the needs of the people of Portsmouth and where the autonomy of the local system has been compromised.

 

This council therefore believes that:

 

·     The priorities of Health & Care Portsmouth and the Portsmouth Health & Wellbeing Strategy should be facilitated by the ICB. 

 

·     The Leader, the Chief Executive and the Cabinet Member for Community Wellbeing, Health and Care of Portsmouth City Council should continue to push for place based priorities to come first in the ICB alongside their counterparts at Southampton City, Isle of Wight and Hampshire County Councils. 

 

·     The Health and Care system of Portsmouth should be properly funded by central government and that the integrated work between statutory and Voluntary, Community and Social Enterprise organisations in the city should be prioritised and be under as much local control as possible. 

 

This council resolves that:

 

These points will then be put into a letter from the Chief Executive of the City Council to the Chair and Chief Executive of the ICB and all group leaders are welcome to sign the letter as well on behalf of their groups and the residents they represent. It will be copied also to the Secretary of State for Health & Social Care.

38.

Safer Recruiting Council

Proposed by: Councillor Hannah Brent

Seconded by: Councillor Lewis Gosling

 

To protect the public and community and implement best practice this council will become a 'safer recruiting council'. DBS checks may be undertaken if staff or any person who is paid by Portsmouth City Council are in continued contact with members of the public, examples would be, say community wardens or persons interacting with vulnerable groups (children and or adults).

 

Currently it is not mandatory for elected members to have DBS checks, but many councillors would have one in the interests of openness and transparency. This motion seeks to provide reassurance to our Portsmouth community by ensuring that all members are themselves made aware as to the process to obtain a check upon taking office.Due to the varied roles and responsibilities of being a councillor, there is regular contact between elected members and the public, including one-to-one contact in private spaces.

Therefore, this Council:

(i)      Notes that the safeguarding of children and other vulnerable individuals within the community is of paramount importance to all who hold public office;

(ii)    Recommends that all public facing members of Portsmouth City Council who have regular contact with the community in public spaces are encouraged to obtain an appropriate level of DBS check;
 

(iii)   Notes that officers and elected members equally have a responsibility to ensure that vulnerable children and others potentially at risk in the community are protected by appropriate policies and procedures, and elected members themselves set an appropriate leadership example in exercising their duties and responsibilities; and

(iv)   Resolves to encourage DBS checks for all newly elected and existing councillors as part of its onboarding processes and continuing focus upon member engagement/training, with all councillors being encouraged to consent to undertaking such checks.

Minutes:

It was

 

Proposed by Councillor Hannah Brent

Seconded by Councillor Lewis Gosling

 

That notice of motion (k) as set out on the agenda be adopted.

 

In accordance with Standing Order 48b, eight councillors stood to request a recorded vote.

 

Upon the motion being put to a vote:

 

The following members voted in favour of the motion:

 

Councillor Yinka Adeniran

Councillor Dave Ashmore

Councillor Matthew Atkins

Councillor Chris Attwell

Councillor Kimberly Barret

Councillor Simon Bosher

Councillor Hannah Brent

Councillor Ryan Brent

Councillor Stuart Brown

Councillor Peter Candlish

Councillor Cal Corkery

Councillor Raymond Dent

Councillor Chris Dike

Councillor Jason Fazackarley

Councillor George Fielding

Councillor Charlotte Gerada

Councillor Lewis Gosling

Councillor Graham Heaney

Councillor Ian Holder

Councillor Suzy Horton

Councillor Lee Hunt

Councillor Mark Jeffery

Councillor Leo Madden

Councillor Brian Madgwick

Councillor Hugh Mason

Councillor Kirsty Mellor

Councillor Leonie Oliver

Councillor Darren Sanders

Councillor Russell Simpson

Councillor John Smith

Councillor Judith Smyth

Councillor Emily Strudwick

Councillor Benedict Swann

Councillor Mary Vallely

Councillor Gerald Vernon-Jackson

Councillor Matthew Winnington

 

 

No members voted against the motion.

 

 

 The following member abstained from voting:

 

Councillor Tom Coles (Lord Mayor).

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that:

 

To protect the public and community and implement best practice this council will become a 'safer recruiting council'. DBS checks may be undertaken if staff or any person who is paid by Portsmouth City Council are in continued contact with members of the public, examples would be, say community wardens or persons interacting with vulnerable groups (children and or adults).

 

Currently it is not mandatory for elected members to have DBS checks, but many councillors would have one in the interests of openness and transparency. This motion seeks to provide reassurance to our Portsmouth community by ensuring that all members are themselves made aware as to the process to obtain a check upon taking office.Due to the varied roles and responsibilities of being a councillor, there is regular contact between elected members and the public, including one-to-one contact in private spaces.

Therefore, this Council:

(i)      Notes that the safeguarding of children and other vulnerable individuals within the community is of paramount importance to all who hold public office;

(ii)    Recommends that all public facing members of Portsmouth City Council who have regular contact with the community in public spaces are encouraged to obtain an appropriate level of DBS check;
 

(iii)   Notes that officers and elected members equally have a responsibility to ensure that vulnerable children and others potentially at risk in the community are protected by appropriate policies and procedures, and elected members themselves set an appropriate leadership example in exercising their duties and responsibilities; and

 

(iv)   Resolves to encourage DBS checks for all newly elected and existing councillors as part of its onboarding processes and continuing focus upon member engagement/training, with all councillors being encouraged to consent to undertaking such checks.

39.

Questions from Members under Standing Order No 17. pdf icon PDF 98 KB

Minutes:

Seven questions from members had been received under Standing Order No17.

 

The first question was from Councillor George Fielding.

 

"Can the cabinet member please provide a full and comprehensive update on the current crisis affecting EV charging points and users of the same across the city?"

 

This and supplementary questions were answered by the Cabinet Member for

Transport, Councillor Gerald Vernon-Jackson CBE.

 

The second question was from Councillor Yinka Adeniran.

 

"At the July 2023 Full Council meeting, Full Council unanimously voted for a motion to improve accessibility in Portsmouth taxis for disabled people. One of the resolutions was to ask the Licensing Committee to commission a review into the level and availability of wheelchair accessible taxis in Portsmouth within the municipal year - with the aim of improving licensing policy to increase accessibility in taxis for disabled people. Can the Chair of the Licensing Committee confirm whether this has taken place?"

 

This question was answered by the Chairman of the Licensing Committee, Councillor Jason Fazackarley.

 

The third question was from Councillor Matthew Atkins.

 

"Is the cabinet member aware of ongoing road safety concerns at Medina Road Primary School, Portsdown Primary School and Court Lane Junior and Infant Schools?"

 

This and supplementary questions were answered by the Cabinet Member for

Transport, Councillor Gerald Vernon-Jackson CBE.

 

The fourth question was from Councillor Graham Heaney.

 

"Will the Leader of the council review, and consider reducing, the number of cabinet positions if he is forming an administration after the May elections?"

 

The Lord Mayor advised that a written answer would be provided, as the Leader had given apologies for the meeting and was therefore not in attendance to answer.

 

The fifth question was from Councillor Benedict Swann.

 

"Would the Cabinet Member confirm what checks and balances are in place by Portsmouth City Council to protect residents and ensure the highest standards of work and outcomes from property developers working in the city?"

 

 

This and supplementary questions were answered by the Cabinet Member for Planning Policy and City Development, Councillor Hugh Mason.

 

The sixth question was from Councillor George Fielding.

 

"Can the Cabinet Member confirm how frequently the council monitors sewage discharges in the Solent and surrounding waters, and what specific parameters are assessed during these monitoring activities?"

 

This and supplementary questions were answered by the Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Greening the City, Councillor Kimberly Barrett.

 

The seventh question was from Councillor George Fielding.

 

"Can the Cabinet Member advise where the remainder of the funding for the Bransbury Park New Leisure Centre, Pool, Sports Facility and GP surgery is coming from, as the current budget sets aside £22 million for this and new facilities of this sort cost substantially more with an average cost being at least £50 million, not including the ongoing running and overhead costs?"

 

The Lord Mayor advised that a written answer would be provided, as the Leader/relevant cabinet member had given apologies for the meeting and was therefore not in attendance to answer.

 

At the conclusion of the meeting the Lord Mayor thanked those Councillors who were standing down at the May 2024 elections for their excellent service to the Council.

 

The Deputy Leader of the Council thanked the Lord Mayor for his work during his term of office and was joined in this by Councillor Simon Bosher, Councillor Charlotte Gerada and Councillor Brian Madgwick.

 

In addition, Councillor Kirsty Mellor took the opportunity to thank the Lady Mayoress for her work during her term of office.