Agenda, decisions and minutes

Cabinet
Tuesday, 11th June, 2019 7.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber Area B, Rushcliffe Arena, Rugby Road, West Bridgford

Contact: Helen Tambini  0115 9148320

Items
No. Item

1.

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

Councillor Upton declared a non-pecuniary interest in respect of Item 7 Marketing Options Lutterell Hall as the Vice - Chair of the Nottinghamshire Building Preservation Trust.

2.

Minutes of the Meeting held on 12 March 2019 pdf icon PDF 230 KB

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on Tuesday, 12 March 2019 were declared a true record and were signed by the Chairman.

3.

Opposition Group Leaders' Questions

To answer questions submitted by Opposition Group Leaders on items on the agenda.

Minutes:

Question from Councillor R Jones to Councillor A Edyvean.

 

"Given the closure of the Police Station and therefore of the Council’s Contact Centre, and given that Lutterell Hall, used by a range of adults and children, is the only available publicly owned Community Hall in the heart of West Bridgford, for what service reasons is the Cabinet contemplating marketing the site?"

 

Councillor Edyvean responded by stating that as a responsible Council, it was ensuring that it understood the value of its assets. The Council’s aim remained to support the local community and the taxpayers of Rushcliffe. The report outlined that the users were not currently meeting the cost of running and maintaining the hall. The report did not propose that there would be no community facilities available in West Bridgford.

 

Councillor R Jones asked a supplementary question to Councillor A Edyvean.

 

“Given the Council’s sale of other assets inherited from West Bridgford Urban District Council how can we justify marketing and selling the only remaining asset of community value when in stark contrast you were unable to do this to other community halls in the many other areas of Rushcliffe where town and parish councils run them?”

 

Councillor Edyvean responded by stating that the Council had not decided to sell Lutterell Hall.

 

 

Question from Councillor B Gray to Councillor A Edyvean.

 

“The report acknowledges Lutterell Hall as a community asset and given the Council’s aims to maintain and enhance our residents’ quality of life; can Cabinet explain why user groups of the hall, some of whom have been users for 50 years, were not consulted on the proposal?”

 

Councillor Edyvean responded by stating that this report provided the first opportunity to engage with user groups. The Council could not consult before the Cabinet had approved the exercise to explore options.

 

Councillor B Gray asked a supplementary question to Councillor A Edyvean.

 

“Considering the upset caused which can be shown from the 2,800 signatures on line and 900 more collected from St Giles pre-school, can the Cabinet advise how they will demonstrate their commitment to fully represent and consider the views of the community before they even think about putting Lutterell Hall om the market?” 

 

Councillor Edyvean responded by stating that the Council was fully committed to full consultation with all users and stakeholders.

 

4.

Citizens' Questions

To answer questions submitted by citizens on the Council or its services.

Minutes:

There were no questions.

5.

Revenue and Capital Outturn 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 1 MB

The report of the Executive Manager – Finance and Corporate Services is attached.

Decision:

It was RESOLVED that:

 

a)    The 2018/19 revenue position and efficiencies identified in Table 1 be noted, and the associated changes to the earmarked reserves as set out in paragraph 4.5 Supporting Information and Appendix B be approved;

 

b)    The re-profiled position on capital be noted and the capital carry forwards outlined in Appendix Cand the additional spend required for the project outlined at paragraph 4.8 (including the commercial loan of £400k to Streetwise and £100k for works to Cotgrave Leisure Centre) be approved; and

 

c)    The update on the Cricket Club loan in Section 5 be noted.

 

Minutes:

The Portfolio Holder for Finance and Contracts presented the report of the Executive Manager – Finance and Corporate Services setting out the year-end financial outturn position for 2018/19, linked to the closure of the accounts process and previous financial update reports.

 

The Portfolio Holder for Finance and Contracts advised that the report represented the final outturn position for the 2018/19 accounts and related to the Council’s financial statement which had been signed off in draft form by the Executive  Manger – Finance and Corporate Services on 31 May 2019 and would be finally signed off by the Governance Scrutiny Group on 23 July 2019.

 

The Portfolio Holder for Finance and Contracts stated that the overall report presented a positive financial position for the Council in a very challenging financial environment.  The overall revenue position showed a transfer to reserves of £1.3m against a projected transfer of just over £1m.  The overall variation of £220,000 represented a relatively small 2.06% of the net budget.  The report highlighted key areas of underspend and those amounts were recommended to be carried forward to 2019/20.  The Council had assisted 243 local businesses with discretionary rate relief of over £193,000.  Overall, whilst the level of earmarked reserves was a healthy £11.82m, there were significant risks going forward both locally with the future decommissioning of the power station and also nationally.  In respect of the Capital Programme 2018/19 outturn, there was an £18m underspend against the £24.7m which had been predicted throughout the year, with most of that being carried forward, as schemes continued, with asset investment remaining as a high priority.  The most significant area of capital underspend was £9.561m on Council asset investments, with £4.8m of that sum already committed on known investments.  The Council had agreed to pause on such investments in the future, to allow it to focus more on assets in the Borough.  One investment undertaken was the continuation of the loan to Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club that had enabled the club to develop the venue, which as an international sports ground continued to bring in considerable income to the Borough.

 

In seconding the recommendation, Councillor Upton referred to the strong financial outturn for 2018/19 that illustrated the sound financial management of the Council, in particular the increased transfer to the reserve.  The support given to the 243 businesses was also very positive.

 

Councillor Robinson referred to the timeliness of the loan to Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club.  The use of the venue for the current Cricket World Cup continued to highlight the venue’s importance on the world stage and provide significant economic benefits to the local community and the Council’s pivotal role in that was acknowledged.

 

Councillor Robinson referred to the challenging financial environment and stated that the Council remained debt free, which was a considerable achievement.

 

It was RESOLVED that:

 

a)    The 2018/19 revenue position and efficiencies identified in Table 1 be noted, and the associated changes to the earmarked reserves as set out in paragraph 4.5 Supporting Information  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

Marketing Options: Lutterell Hall pdf icon PDF 265 KB

The report of the Executive Manager – Operations and Transformation is attached.

Decision:

It was RESOLVED that:

 

a)    Expressions of interest for Lutterell Hall be invited from third parties at the same time that Nottinghamshire Police market the adjacent plot; and

 

b)    Cabinet receive a full report to consider any expressions of interest as detailed in resolution a) that then can be appraised alongside the options to retain Lutterell Hall for community use.

Minutes:

The Portfolio Holder for Business and Transformation presented the report of the Executive Manager – Transformation, to consider future options for Lutterell Hall.       

 

The Portfolio Holder for Business and Transformation confirmed that the Police had given the Council a notice to quit the Police Station by August 2020.  The Council currently shared the building with the Police and operated the Contact Centre from there.  The Council was continually reviewing its assets and how best to provide community facilities.  The report had illustrated that Lutterell Hall was currently underutilised as a community facility, with usage declining by 25% over the last year. The Council was initially considering the market value of the property, particularly given the proposed disposal of the Police Station, it was not considering its disposal.  In beginning the process, the Cabinet would be presented with future options, following a full consultation process with user and community groups.  The Council had an exemplary record of providing community facilities throughout the Borough and would continue to do so.  

 

The Portfolio Holder for Business and Transformation advised that in order to better reflect the spirit of the report, he proposed that the recommendations in the report be amended as follows:

 

a)    Cabinet agrees that expressions of interest for Lutterell Hall be invited from third parties at the same time that Nottinghamshire Police market the adjacent plot; and

 

b)    Cabinet receive a full report to consider any expressions of interest as detailed in resolution a) that then can be appraised alongside the options to retain Lutterell Hall for community use.

 

In seconding the recommendation, Councillor Mason stated that she was pleased that Cabinet had received the report to allow the consultation process to commence.

 

Councillor Robinson stated that it was good practice and in the best interest of all residents, that the Council reviewed its assets to ensure that local communities were provided with the best facilities, and given value for money and the report formed part of that process.  The Borough was fortunate to have many execptional community assets and all of those projects began with a review by Cabinet, followed by extensive consultation with all stakeholders.  The Council was extremely proud of its assets and did not readily dispose of them, as the Council’s records highlighted.  Lutterell Hall was a significant asset to the local community and the Borough, and it was vital that it was reviewed to ensure that it was fit for purpose, and no options had been ruled out.  It was a legal requirement that a report be submitted to Cabinet and agreed before the consultation process could commence and the Cabinet had made a commitment that all stakeholders would be consulted.  The revised recommendations better reflected the needs of the Council to review its assets and to work with the community to provide a positive outcome.

 

It was RESOLVED that:

 

a)    Cabinet agrees that expressions of interest for Lutterell Hall be invited from third parties at the same time that Nottinghamshire Police market the adjacent  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

Streetwise Relocation pdf icon PDF 47 KB

The report of the Executive Manager – Operations and Transformation is attached.

Decision:

It was RESOLVED that:

 

The relocation of Streetwise Environmental Ltd from the Abbey Road site to part of a unit and land owned by the Council at Chapel Lane, Bingham, under a market rate lease for a period of 3 years be endorsed.

Minutes:

The Portfolio Holder for Business and Transformation presented the report of the Executive Manager – Transformation, providing an update on relocation options for Streetwise Environmental Ltd.       

 

The Portfolio Holder for Business and Transformation advised that Streetwise would be moving out of the Abbey Road depot, fulfilling a long held desire to progress the redevelopment of the site for a purpose commensurate with its surroundings.  The report outlined the steps undertaken to identify a suitable location for Streetwise, and having considered a number of options, it was recommended that it be relocated to Chapel Lane, Bingham, on a short-term lease.  The short-term lease would allow Streetwise the flexibility to review its location, should other properties become available. 

 

In seconding the recommendation, Councillor Inglis stated that the proposed relocation complemented the recent relocation of recycling and waste services and would release land for residential development, resulting in a positive effect for neighbouring housing.  If circumstances changed, the three-year lease would allow flexibility and it was noted that other potential sites had been considered but not found suitable.

 

Councillor Robinson reiterated that the site had the potential to provide essential housing; in particular, social housing to West Bridgford and it was necessary to find a suitable site for Streetwise to ensure the continued delivery of essential services.

 

Councillor Upton confirmed that alternative locations had been considered and a three-year lease seemed appropriate. It should be noted that if the Abbey Road site was not vacated by March 2020, the Council would be liable to loose £300,000 of land release funding which could be used for investment.  It was encouraging that an outline planning application for the Abbey Road site had been submitted and would be considered at the next Planning Committee.   

 

Councillor Mason stated that the site would provide an excellent interim solution, with considerable work having been undertaken to identify possible sites for relocation. 

 

It was RESOLVED that:

 

The relocation of Streetwise Environmental Ltd from the Abbey Road site to part of a unit and land owned by the Council at Chapel Lane, Bingham, under a market rate lease for a period of three years be endorsed.

 

Reasons for Decision

 

a)    The Council has a long-held ambition to vacate the Abbey Road depot site in West Bridgford, which is in a residential area, in order to develop the site for housing.

 

b)    Following an extensive search for a suitable location, the site at Chapel Lane, Bingham has been identified as suitable for Streetwise Environmental Ltd (SEL).

 

c)    The short term length of the lease will enable SEL to continue to review the property market and if an opportunity should come along which better complements its business requirements, it might relocate to another location.