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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, Town Hall, Pinstone Street, Sheffield, S1 2HH

Contact: Paul Robinson, Democratic Services  Email: paul.robinson@sheffield.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

2.

Declarations of Interest pdf icon PDF 65 KB

Members to declare any interests they have in the business to be considered at the meeting.

Minutes:

3.

Minutes Of Previous Council Meeting pdf icon PDF 339 KB

To receive the record of the proceedings of the meeting of the Council held on 5th November 2014 and to approve the accuracy thereof.

Minutes:

4.

Public Questions and Petitions and Other Communications

To receive any questions or petitions from the public, or communications submitted by the Lord Mayor or the Chief Executive, and to pass such resolutions thereon as the Council Procedure Rules permit and as may be deemed expedient.

Minutes:

5.

Members' Questions pdf icon PDF 94 KB

5.1       Questions relating to urgent business – Council Procedure Rule 16.6(ii).

 

5.2       Supplementary questions on written questions submitted at this meeting   – Council Procedure Rule 16.4.

 

5.3       Questions on the discharge of the functions of the South Yorkshire Joint Authorities for Fire and Rescue and Pensions – Section 41 of the Local Government Act 1985 – Council Procedure Rule 16.6(i).

 

            (NB. Minutes of recent meetings of the two South Yorkshire Joint Authorities have been made available to all Members of the Council via the following link -

            http://sheffielddemocracy.moderngov.co.uk/ecCatDisplay.aspx?sch=doc&cat=13165&path=0)

 

 

 

Minutes:

6.

Representation, Delegated Authority and Related Issues pdf icon PDF 40 KB

To consider any changes to the memberships and arrangements for meetings of Committees etc., delegated authority, and the appointment of representatives to serve on other bodies.

Minutes:

7.

Director of Public Health Report for Sheffield 2014 pdf icon PDF 102 KB

To receive a presentation by Dr. Jeremy Wight, Director of Public Health, on his annual report for 2014 on the health of the people of Sheffield.

 

A background report is attached.  Electronic versions of the Director’s Annual Report and a Summary Report have been published with this agenda, and a copy of the Summary Report will be provided to all Members of the Council prior to the meeting.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

8.

Notice of Motion given by Councillor Joe Otten

That this Council:

 

(a)       notes the growing recognition of "agglomeration economics" and its role in helping London and the South East to grow faster than the north of England;

 

(b)       notes that journey times, by road and rail, between northern cities are slower than comparable journeys in the south east of England or in comparable regions such as the Randstad, Netherlands or Rhein-Ruhr, Germany;

 

(c)        notes that the UK is one of the most centralised states in Europe, with decision-making and investments spending dominated by London and the South-East;

 

(d)       believes that investment in transport connections across the north of England is vital to the goal of rebalancing the economy and bringing more investment and jobs to the north;

 

(e)       believes that devolution of economic levers to city regions and combined authorities is a small but essential part of a more comprehensive devolution agenda including public services, rural areas and devolved assemblies;

 

(f)        welcomes broadly the 'Devo Manc' settlement for Greater Manchester, in particular including the power to regulate the bus network, but has reservations about the elected Mayor model;

 

(g)       calls for the current Administration to back similar devolution of powers to Sheffield City Region;

 

(h)       however, recognises that the domination of local authorities and combined authorities by any one party out of proportion to its share of the vote would inevitably weaken governance, and therefore calls for electoral reform in local government to prevent one-party fiefdoms;

 

(i)         calls for the Government to adopt fiscal rules such that borrowing for investment that brings a direct economic return is to be exempt from a balanced budget rule;

 

(j)         backs the "One North" transport proposals, in particular:

 

(i)            a new 125mph trans-pennine rail route linking Manchester with Leeds, Sheffield and Hull, serving passengers and freight;

 

(ii)        bringing forward commencement of the Sheffield-Leeds section of HS2;

 

(iii)         further investment in the Hope Valley line in addition to the 'northern hub' improvements;

 

(iv)       better highway connectivity between Sheffield and Manchester; and

 

(v)        welcomes the increasing rate of transport investment by Central Government outside of London, and calls for this to be accelerated; and

 

(k)        calls for work towards the adoption of a single Oyster-style card for public transport across the north of England and agrees with the comments of the Chair of the City Region Transport Group that “only London-style franchising gives you London–style simple Oyster ticketing”.

Minutes:

9.

Notice of Motion given by Councillor Julie Dore

That this Council:

 

(a)       notes the recent report by the London School of Economics “Were we really all in it together? The distributional effects of the UK Coalition Government’s tax-benefit policy changes”;

 

(b)       notes that the analysis from the report shows:

 

(i)         the outcome for those in the bottom half of incomes is in contrast to those in the top half of incomes, who gained from direct tax cuts, with the exception of most of the top 5 per cent – although within this 5 percent group, those at the very top gained, because of the cut in the top rate of income tax;

 

(ii)        in total, the changes have not contributed to cutting the deficit; rather, the savings from reducing benefits and tax credits have been spent on raising the tax-free income tax allowance and lowering the top rate of income tax allowance giving tax cuts to millionaires; and

 

(iii)       the analysis challenges the idea that those with incomes in the top tenth have lost as great a share of their incomes as those with the lowest incomes;

 

(c)        believes that this report conclusively proves that we are not all in it together and the Government have made these cuts not to reduce the deficit but to redistribute money from the poorest to the wealthiest in society; and

 

(d)       is extremely concerned about the impact that these policies are having in Sheffield and is concerned that child poverty is rising as a result and inequalities are increasing.

Minutes:

10.

Notice of Motion given by Councillor Mary Lea

That this Council:

 

(a)       notes that in a report by the Times newspaper in October 2014, it was claimed that the Government did not understand its own NHS reforms and that the top-down reorganisation which cost £3 billion was a “total car crash” and a “huge strategic error”;

 

(b)       notes that the Government’s catastrophic project of NHS reorganisation, which cut 6,000 nurses has been criticised by experts and senior doctors, who say that A&E departments are operating without safe staffing levels;

 

(c)        condemns the crisis in A&E which has meant that for the last 12 months, the Government has allowed almost one million people to wait more than 4 hours to be seen in A&E, more to wait on hospital trolleys before being admitted and more to be kept in ambulance queues outside of our hospitals;

 

(d)       condemns the cuts to elderly care, putting even greater pressure on A&E when their essential care is unavailable at home;

 

(e)       notes that more than 4,000 NHS staff have been laid off, only to be rehired by the Government, many on six figure salaries;

 

(f)        notes that under this Government more patients are waiting for longer due to the scrapping of the previous Government’s guarantee for a GP appointment in 48 hours, and now 60% of patients are unable to see their GP within 2 days;

 

(g)       believes that the previous Government rescued the NHS after years of Conservative Party neglect; and

 

(h)       welcomes Ed Miliband’s promise to invest an extra £2.5 billion in a new Time to Care Fund to support 20,000 more nurses, 8,000 more GPs, 5,000 more caseworkers and 300 more midwives.

Minutes:

11.

Notice of Motion given by Councillor Roger Davison

That this Council:

 

(a)       believes that local authorities should be transparent and accountable;

 

(b)       believes that authorities dominated by a single political party are in particular danger of slipping into bad practices, weak governance and reduced scrutiny;

 

(c)        regrets the changes made by this Administration in recent years that have resulted in it exercising greater control over a reduced scrutiny resource;

 

(d)       regrets the changes to the order of notices of motion introduced by this Administration which significantly restricted the opportunities for the Administration's policies relating to Sheffield to be debated in full Council;

 

(e)       believes that it is important for backbench Councillors of all parties to have effective roles within the Council, and for decisions to be made in public fora accessible to members of the community, and regrets much of this has been lost with the abolition of Community Assemblies; and

 

(f)        believes that the holding of Council meetings in the daytime makes them inaccessible to most members of the public, noting that Community Assembly meetings were successfully held in the evening, and therefore calls upon the Leader of the Council to bring forward proposals for more meetings to be held in the evenings.

Minutes:

12.

Notice of Motion given by Councillor Geoff Smith

That this Council:

 

(a)       notes that 5th December is International Volunteer Day and places on record its gratitude for the tremendous contribution volunteers and voluntary sector groups make to the city and welcomes the opportunity through National Volunteer Day to recognise their efforts;

 

(b)       welcomes that there are many opportunities to volunteer in the city, and welcomes the work of groups such as the Sheffield Volunteer Centre, Volunteers Supporting Families, Sheffield Help Yourself and the National Volunteering Database  for the work they do to promote volunteering in the city;

 

(c)        notes that there are a number of volunteering opportunities with Council projects in local parks, libraries, schools, sporting events and projects and Criminal Justice Panels and places on record its thanks to all volunteers who support this work; and

 

(d)       thanks everyone involved in voluntary work for their efforts and resolves to continue to work closely in partnership with the voluntary sector.

Minutes:

13.

Notice of Motion given by Councillor Brian Webster

That this Council:

 

(a)       welcomes that a renewed debate around the UK's constitutional settlement, including the devolution of powers to regional and local authorities, is taking place following the seismic shock to the political establishment of the close-run Scottish referendum;

 

(b)       notes that in a ComRes poll published on 5th November, 82% of respondents supported greater devolution of powers over tax raising, education and policing to local areas, indicating overwhelming public support for substantial devolution;

 

(c)        believes that local and regional government are the proper home for many powers that are currently held at Westminster, and that these powers should be devolved to the local or regional bodies that are best placed to exercise them;

 

(d)       believes that local and regional government provides unique opportunities for public participation, transparency and accountability;

 

(e)       therefore believes that nothing should be done centrally if it can be done equally well, or better, locally;

 

(f)        however believes that the only way to ensure that devolution is effective and legitimate is to open up the process to public scrutiny and participation;

 

(g)       therefore notes with deep concern that 'devolution deals' for the Sheffield City Region and other areas of England are being rushed through without public input or democratic oversight;

 

(h)       calls upon the Administration to ensure that any ‘devolution deal’ that includes Sheffield is not struck behind closed doors, but is instead subject to input and scrutiny by the public and elected members from the earliest stage; and

 

(i)         calls upon the Government to establish a Constitutional Convention to consider the future constitutional structure of the United Kingdom and its constituent nations, regions, and local authorities, in an open and comprehensive way.

Minutes:

14.

Notice of Motion given by Councillor Jack Clarkson

That this Council:

 

(a)       believes that this Council should give preference in respect of social housing allocations to local people, whose parents or grandparents have lived in the area for a considerable time;

 

(b)       is concerned that young families, especially young single parents, are being allocated Council properties through the bidding process, that involves them having to travel very long distances away from their native communities and employment, when immediate family and close friends could indeed assist with child care arrangements and emotional support where necessary;

 

(c)        believes the housing bidding process should take into account local people’s connections to the area that they reside in, the distance of their employment, and family connections;

 

(d)       is appalled that residents with a history of anti-social behaviour and other undesirable activities, are often re-allocated properties in local communities in preference to local residents who have been on the housing waiting list for long periods of time, and believes this is unfair and a more robust approach should be enforced to ensure fairness;

 

(e)       is saddened that many of the age banded properties are being sacrificed for the sake of general needs allocations, and that many elderly tenants’ lifestyles and health will be drastically affected by this new policy, and believes that elderly people should be entitled to peace and quiet; and

 

(f)        notes that UKIP would encourage housing authorities to be more open and transparent in relation to housing allocations.

Minutes:

15.

Notice of Motion given by Councillor Andrew Sangar

That this Council:

 

(a)       notes that there is an indicative £1.9m contained in the Council’s Medium Term Financial Strategy for the assumed Council Tax Freeze Grant expected to be offered by the Coalition Government for 2015/16;

 

(b)       further notes that Council Tax remains one of the most regressive taxes in the country and that increasing Council Tax puts proportionally more costs onto lower income households;

 

(c)        believes that freezing Council Tax is a straight forward method of helping households across Sheffield; and

 

(d)       urges all groups on the City Council to take up the Council Tax Freeze Grant when submitting their Council budget proposals for the Financial Year 2015/16.

Minutes:

16.

Notice of Motion given by Councillor Sarah Jane Smalley

That this Council:-

 

(a)       affirms its commitment to Sheffield City Council’s Vision for Excellent Transport in Sheffield: We need to change the culture of how we use our roads, so that people are no longer afraid to cycle or allow their children to do so.  Our streets, roads and local communities need to become places for people, where cycling and walking are safe and normal;

 

(b)       regrets that only 11% of Sheffield City Councillors have signed up to support the Space for Cycling campaign, making Sheffield the lowest ranked of eight major English cities committing to space for cycling, as per the recent report from the national cycling charity CTC;

 

(c)        notes that other core cities including Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle, spend in excess of £10.00 per head on capital funding for cycling including Highways, as they were successful in winning Cycle City Ambition Grants, which Sheffield City Council decided not to bid for;

 

(d)       regrets that Sheffield City Council spends only £1.89 per head on capital funding for cycling, including Highways, which is significantly lower than the £10.00 per head recommended by the All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group’s report;

 

(e)       commits to responding positively to the Government’s Cycling Delivery Plan (expected early December) which invites local authorities to submit expressions of interest in partnering with the Government to deliver ambitious growth in cycle use;

 

(f)        welcomes feedback from Cycle Sheffield, CTC and individuals heralding Sheffield City Council’s Cycle Inquiry as a good practice example of capturing evidence, input and expertise;

 

(g)       is concerned that policy agreement is not turning into action, as demonstrated by slippage against the recommendations and delivery milestones agreed by the Cabinet in July 2014 relating to the Cycling Inquiry Report as follows:

 

(i)         the Sheffield Cycle Group with Cycle Sheffield and in consultation with partners and the public, and/or a cross-departmental Council working group chaired by Transport Planning consulting with partners has not been established;

 

(ii)        the drawing up of the revised Sheffield Cycle Action Plan, plan of the strategic cycling network and delivery plan by the groups in paragraph (g)(i) above was timetabled to take place Sept-Nov 2014 but haven’t been carried out, making ……

 

(iii)       ….. consultation on the Cycling Action Plan and Delivery Plan and Consultation on Network Plan due in January 2015, with approval April – June 2015 unlikely, based on current performance;

 

(h)       is further concerned that some recommendations from the report have not been carried out in earnest, or in full consultation with partners, organisations and others as per the report’s commitment, indicated by the following:

 

(i)         the Cycling Champions have not regularly attended Cycle Forum meetings or established regular diarised meetings with partners such as Cycle Sheffield or CTC to ensure that the recommendations from the report are being progressed;

 

(ii)        the Council did not seek input to any response to the DfT consultation on Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions 2015 (TSGRD) despite commitment to helping to  ...  view the full agenda text for item 16.

Minutes: