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Agenda, decisions and minutes

Venue: Delyn Committee Room, County Hall, Mold CH7 6NA

Contact: Maureen Potter / 01352 702322  Email: maureen.potter@flintshire.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

20.

Declarations of Interest (Including Whipping Declarations)

To receive any Declarations and advise Members accordingly.

Decision:

Minutes:

21.

Budget 2019/20 Stage 2 proposals pdf icon PDF 82 KB

Decision:

(a)       That the Committee endorsed the portfolio pressures and investments; and

 

(b)       That the Committee endorsed the portfolio efficiency options.

Minutes:

                        The Chief Officer (Streetscene and Transportation) introduced a report on the stage 2 budget proposals for Streetscene and Transportation Portfolio and part of the Planning, Environment & Economy Portfolio for 2019/20.  He provided background information and referred to the workshop held on 11 October, which had provided Members with the opportunity to understand portfolio budgets in more detail and the risks and resilience levels of service areas.  The Chief Officer reported on the portfolio pressures and investments and Portfolio business planning efficiencies as detailed in the report concerning Streetscene and Transportation. 

 

Councillor Paul Shotton referred to the reduction in income from waste recycling.  The Chief Officer explained that the income from recycling waste, and cited plastic, card and paper as an example, had dropped significantly due to the loss of international markets and referred to the initiatives which were taking place to sustain the market.

 

In response to a question from Cllr Paul Shotton regarding the potential to use plastic as a replacement for Bitumen to repair road surfaces and potholes, the Chief Officer Streetscene and Transportation advised that discussion was taking place with a local company regarding this and it was intended that a sample batch of material would be provided for trial in the near future.  Members would be invited to visit the company to look at the product and when further information was available a report would submitted to scrutiny on the findings.

 

Councillor Mike Peers raised a number of queries.  He referred to the income from external works (Fleet Workshop) which was recorded as £0.010m in the report, and said on page 3 of the resilience statement it was stated as £10.00.  He also asked for clarification as to whether 3 weekly waste collections were part of the proposals at the current time.  Councillor Peers referred to the saving for 2015/16 of £30k on the closure of the information centre at Mold bus station, and said that it appeared the money was being spent processing the grant funding.  The Chief Officer confirmed that the bus station grant was from the Welsh Government and that the £30k referred to was a revenue saving from closure of the small Information centre at Mold Bus Station. 

 

Councillor Carolyn Thomas advised that a decision had not been made yet regarding a 3 weekly waste collection service but commented that due to the latest budget settlement and further reductions in funding it was not possible to rule out as a potential budget saving at the present time.  She added that changing to a 3 weekly waste collection service could realise a saving of £800k.

 

In response to a question from Councillor Owen Thomas regarding side waste, the Chief Officer referred to the procedures used to address the problem of side waste which was left for collection.  He advised that 1,400 warning letters had been issued to residents and businesses and said that only 30-40 cases had progressed to the second stage to warn of a notice being issued.  The Chief Officer reported  ...  view the full minutes text for item 21.

22.

Review of Highway and Car Park Safety Inspections and Intervention Levels and Response to Policy. pdf icon PDF 94 KB

Additional documents:

Decision:

That the Committee recommends Cabinet approves the revised Highway and Car Park Inspection Policy (as in Appendix 1) which outlines the Council’s approach to all safety inspections, defect identification criteria, and response times.

Minutes:

The Chief Officer (Streetscene and Transportation) introduced a report to review the above Policy in line with the revised national guidelines following the implementation of the new code of practice in October 2018.  He provided background information and commented on the recognition in the recent budget announcement of the importance of the highway network in the delivery of economic and sustainable growth and said it was envisaged that 3 year funding would be made available for the resurfacing of roads.  The Chief Officer invited the Highways Network Manager to give an overview of the main considerations, as detailed in the report. 

 

Councillor Mike Peers commented on the Council’s statutory duty as a ‘Highway Authority’ to maintain all adopted highways including highway structures within the County and the potential for claims arising against the County from highway users for personal injury or loss arising from incidents or accidents in the event of a breach of that duty.  He commented that the priority must be public safety not ‘class’ of potholes.  He asked if the Authority referred to its inspection reports when dealing with claims arising from incidents or accidents which had occurred on the adopted highway network and were they available for Members to view. 

 

Councillor Peers referred to the proposed policy for highway and car park safety inspections, interventions criteria and response times which was appended to the report.  He commented on the defect identification criteria and expressed concerns that the category a defect would fall into was in the main down to interpretation.  He said more detail needed to be provided on the red category.

 

Councillor Peers expressed concerns around the response times and feedback to issues raised by Members and residents concerning defects and cited an example of a defect which had been reported regarding a pothole in his Ward.  He drew attention to the response time stated in the proposed policy.  The Highway Network Manager responded to the queries raised by Councillor Peers and explained that risk assessments were undertaken by the Streetscene Area Co-ordinator in line with code of practice.  He agreed to provide records on a case by case basis to Councillor Peers.  Councillor Peers asked that regular updates be provided by the Streetscene Area Coordinator to Members on the condition of the roads, footways and car parks in their Wards.  

 

Councillor Paul Shotton asked if consideration could be given to the use of drones to aid the Streetscene Area Co-ordinators to carry out their safety inspections or mend potholes.  The Chief Officer confirmed that electronic equipment was already used to assist in safety inspections and agreed to look into the possible use of drones.

 

Referring to the inspection of structures and retaining walls, Councillor David Evans commented on the problem of damaged railings and asked if this was included in the inspections.  He also said there were no timescales detailed in the proposed policy for the repair or replacement of any defects identified during the inspection of structures and walls. 

 

Councillor Evans referred to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 22.

23.

Forward Work Programme (Environment) pdf icon PDF 72 KB

Additional documents:

Decision:

(a)       That the Forward Work Programme be amended; and

 

(b)       That the Facilitator, in consultation with the Chair of the Committee be authorised to vary the Forward Work Programme between meetings as the need arises. 

Minutes:

            The Environment Overview & Scrutiny Facilitator presented the Forward Work Programme for consideration. 

 

The Facilitator sought the views of the Committee on holding an additional meeting in December due to the number of items which were to be considered at the meeting to be held on 27 November.  Members agreed that an additional meeting be held on 11 December to start at 9.00 a.m.

           

RESOLVED:

 

(a)       That the Forward Work Programme be amended; and

 

(b)       That the Facilitator, in consultation with the Chair of the Committee be authorised to vary the Forward Work Programme between meetings as the need arises. 

24.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT (ACCESS TO INFORMATION) ACT 1985 - TO CONSIDER THE EXCLUSION OF THE PRESS AND PUBLIC

Minutes:

            RESOLVED:

 

            That the press and public be excluded for the remainder of the meeting for the following item by virtue of exempt information under paragraph(s) 12 and 13 of Part 4 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended).  

25.

Information report - Update on Greenfield Valley Heritage Park

Decision:

That the update be noted.

Minutes:

                        The Chief Officer (Planning, Environment & Economy) introduced a report to provide an update on the current position of Greenfield Valley Heritage Park.  He provided background information and referred to the key considerations, as detailed in the report, and progress on the Flintshire Internal Audit recommendations as detailed in the appendix to the report.  He invited the Access and Natural Environment Manager to give an update on site operations.

 

                        The Access and Natural Environment Manager reported on the educational activities undertaken by 12 schools during the Summer term said more than 100 events had been delivered this season.  He commented on the increase in visitor numbers and social media interest and explained that the improvement of general presentation and maintenance standards had resulted in Greenfield Valley maintaining the Greenflag Award and securing the gold standard visitor award from Visit Wales. 

 

The Access and Natural Environment Manager referred to the improvement and repair works, and new signage which had been undertaken on walkways, woodland trails, priority paths, and steps.  He advised that a user survey of Play offer within the site was completed during the Summer and the results would be analysed during Autumn.  Meetings had also been held with the Active Travel Team to discuss the potential of a multi-user path through the Valley.  Sustrans were also currently undertaking a feasibility study of potential routes. 

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the update be noted.

26.

Members of the Press and Public in Attendance

Minutes:

There was one member of the press and no members of the public in attendance.

 

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