Agenda and draft minutes

Council - Wednesday 7 February 2024 2.00 pm

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

Contact: Paul Robinson, Democratic Services  Email:


No. Item


Apologies for Absence

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Exclusion of the Press and Public

To identify items where resolutions may be moved to exclude the press and public.


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Declarations of Interest pdf icon PDF 86 KB

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

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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.



(NOTE: There is a time limit of one hour for the above item of business.  In accordance with the arrangements published on the Council’s website, questions/petitions are required to be submitted in writing, to, by 9.00 a.m. on Monday 5 February 2024. Questions/petitions submitted after the deadline will be asked at the meeting subject to the discretion of the Chair.)



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Members' Questions pdf icon PDF 518 KB

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


6.2      Questions relating to the discharge of the functions of the South Yorkshire Joint Authorities (under the provisions of Section 41 of the Local Government Act 1985) and of the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority – Council Procedure Rule 16.6(i).


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



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Housing Revenue Account (HRA) Business Plan and HRA Budget 2024/25 pdf icon PDF 80 KB

To approve, with or without amendment, the recommendations made by the Strategy and Resources Policy Committee, at its meeting held on 24th January 2024, in relation to the Housing Revenue Account Business Plan and Budget for 2024/25, as set out in the report of the Executive Director, Neighbourhood Services, published with this agenda.


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Notice of Motion Regarding "Extending the Household Support Fund" - Given by Councillor Dawn Dale and to be Seconded by Councillor Ruth Milsom

That this Council:-


(a)      notes that the Government has decided to end funding for the Household Support Fund from the end of March 2024, and further notes with concern that the Government did not use the Autumn Statement or the Local Government Finance Settlement to confirm an extension of the Fund;


(b)      notes that Sheffield received £10.4m from the Household Support Fund in 2023/24 which is used to provide financial support to low-income and vulnerable households who are struggling to afford the essentials;


(c)      notes that the Fund is used to provide Free School Meal vouchers to 32,000 households during the school holidays;


(d)      notes that the support that the Council has provided through the Household Support Fund has helped tens of thousands of households in Sheffield who have struggled to afford energy, food, and other essentials;


(e)      notes that the Household Support Fund is a key part of the Council’s Cost of Living response which has brought together partners from the public sector, business, and the voluntary, community and faith sector to help those in need;


(f)       notes that the average number of Household Support Fund applications received per day in November 2023 is 112, which is a 148% increase on the same month last year, and that in 2023 there was an overall 47% increase in applications compared to 2022;


(g)      notes that the Chair of the Education, Children and Families Policy Committee has written to the Government to call for the Household Support Fund to be extended;


(h)      believes that ending the Household Support Fund will reduce vital support for people in our city who need it most;


(i)       believes that a cliff-edge in welfare provision in March 2024 must be avoided; and


(j)       calls on the Government to urgently provide clarity and reassurance to households in Sheffield, and to extend the Household Support Fund beyond March 2024.



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Notice of Motion Regarding "Tackling Empty Homes" - Given by Councillor Sophie Thornton and to be Seconded by Councillor Mike Levery



This Council notes:-


(a)      the national housing crisis, with the housing shortage elevating private rent costs;


(b)      housing becoming increasingly unaffordable, particularly for lower-income, vulnerable and younger households;


(c)      concern for the numerous families currently in temporary accommodation;


(d)      the Council’s current policy which applies the Long-Term Empty Premium to Council Tax (LTEP) on properties left empty;


(e)      that in Sheffield, 1317 properties have been empty for 1-2 years, 973 properties are currently subject to the LTEP, and 295 properties are second homes;


(f)       the lack of incentives to renovate and retrofit empty properties;


(g)      the need for considered and sensitive policy-setting, considering complex circumstances that can leave homes empty for long periods, including: bereavement, declining or ill-health, diminished capacity, a building’s listed status and delays in planning permission;


(h)      the hard work of teams across the Council working to ensure fit and proper private rental property in the city, supporting credible and responsible landlords;


This Council believes:-


(i)       the housing crisis requires urgency and a strategic approach to prevent wasted property;


(j)       this Council has a duty as a responsible local authority to increase affordable rental accommodation;


(k)      incentives and support should be developed to encourage renovating and retrofitting empty homes;


(l)       that people purchasing empty homes should not be liable for increased council tax rates predating their ownership;


(m)     that tackling empty homes is vital for tangible climate action, with the benefits of retrofitting existing properties over the pressures on land use and materials that come with new builds;


This Council therefore resolves to:-


(n)      support responsible and credible landlords;


(o)      request the Strategy and Resources Policy Committee to consider adding to its work programme:-


(i)       investigation of ways to increase council tax on empty properties and second homes, ensuring thorough consideration for complex circumstances; and


(ii)       formulating policy to incentivise the renovation and retrofit of empty homes, such as resetting to standard council tax rates upon sale;


(p)      request the Transport, Regeneration and Climate Policy Committee to consider adding to its work programme, investigation of ways to tackle unnecessary delays in obtaining planning permission in the city; and


(q)      write to the Government to:-


(i)       advocate for reform to end discounts for empty and derelict properties;


(ii)       seek support for the Liberal Democrat policy of restricting the sale of newbuilds as second homes; and


(ii)       request support for local authorities to ensure they have the skills and resources to maximise economic benefits from tackling empty homes.



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Notice of Motion Regarding "Five Years Since Declaring A Climate Emergency" - Given by Councillor Paul Turpin and to be Seconded by Councillor Alexi Dimond



This Council notes:-


(a)      Sheffield City Council (SCC) has declared a Climate Emergency and has an ambition to become a zero-carbon city by 2030;


(b)      in 2019, The Tyndall Centre produced a report stating that Sheffield City Council must reduce its carbon emissions by 14% each year to achieve zero carbon by 2030;


(c)      the latest 2022 CO2e emissions data indicates that Sheffield City Council has reduced emissions by 3% since 2019, and needs to reduce emissions by a further 77% by 2030 to be in line with the Sheffield-wide 80% reduction on 2019 emissions that the Pathways to Decarbonisation Report suggested could be achievable by 2030;


This Council believes:-


(d)      Green involvement in the Council Administration has been central to the climate action the Council has taken: from introducing Climate Impact Assessments, to the creation of the Ten Point Plan for Climate Action, to ensuring major schemes like Connecting Sheffield and the Clean Air Zone progress in the face of political opposition;


(e)      that unrelenting action to tackle the climate emergency is the only way to achieve zero carbon by 2030, and the Council should be working at all Policy Committees on urgently reducing emissions;


This Council resolves to:-


(f)       ask the Transport, Regeneration and Climate Policy Committee to consider adding to its work programme, implementation of a workplace parking levy to leverage funding for active and public transport at comparable levels to Nottingham City Council, who raised around £680 million over 10 years;


(g)      request the Strategy and Resources Policy Committee to consider adding to its work programme, development of an advertising policy which does not support high carbon industries and products harmful to people and nature, such as promoted by Adfree Cities;


(h)      request the Economic Development and Skills Policy Committee to consider adding to its work programme, the completion of the Green Jobs and Skills Strategy initiated by Greens during the Cooperative Executive;


(i)       call on the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority to make more funding available for Green Skills;


(j)       remind all Policy Committees to ensure the Climate Impact Assessment is used to develop all SCC decisions and actions;


(k)      ask the Transport, Regeneration and Climate Policy Committee to consider adding to its work programme, an update on progress against the Renewable Energy strategy proposed by Greens in November 2022’s full Council meeting;


(l)       ask the Strategy and Resources Policy Committee to consider adding to its work programme as a matter of urgency,  investigation of the practicalities of issuing Green Bonds to raise extra funding to support climate action;


(m)     ensure that all Councillors undertake Climate Literacy training, and to ask the Member Development Working Group to oversee the delivery of that training; and


(n)      ask the Strategy and Resources Policy Committee to consider adding to its work programme, requiring all Policy Committees to set targets and prove they are reducing emissions across the portfolio, including publication of any increases.



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Notice of Motion Regarding "Increasing the Number of Council Homes and the Quality of Existing Stock" - Given by Councillor Tony Damms and to be Seconded by Councillor Dianne Hurst

That this Council:-


(a)      notes that decent housing is linked closely to physical and mental wellbeing and that in a cost of living crisis people depend even more on the comfort, decency and security of their home, yet increasing numbers of residents are losing their homes because their landlords can no longer afford the mortgage or they themselves can no longer afford to pay increased private rents or mortgages; and further notes that 3,020 people presented as homeless between April and December 2023, and of these, 584 were assessed as being owed a full homelessness duty;


(b)      notes that in Sheffield we need to build 3,018 net new homes a year to satisfy increasing demand and yet, through right to buy and disposals, social housing stock is decreasing each year, and further notes that regeneration is good for the local economy, it brings in business, creates jobs and generates pride in the local economy;


(c)      deplores that because of increasing building costs, our Housing Service bought homes off plan this municipal year and struggled to maintain the decency of existing stock; notes that many tenants are living in homes with damp, mould and leaking roofs and this affects their mental and physical health; and further notes that during the current municipal year disrepair claims cost the Council dearly;


(d)      notes that during a climate emergency the Council has a role to play and, as a local authority, has pledges to meet by 2030, yet is still talking about devising a route map to invest in bringing homes up to a C grade of environmental efficiency and has a programme to retrofit just 355 homes by external cladding on the principle of worst first and this will draw to an end next financial year;


(e)      asserts that this catalogue of failure displays a lack of ambition that is unworthy of our citizens; and


(f)       therefore resolves to:-


(i)       re-commit to building council homes;


(ii)       invest in existing council stock to improve warmth, security and energy efficiency; and


(iii)      ask the Strategy and Resources Policy Committee to consider for its work programme consideration of the performance of the Housing Policy Committee against these aims.



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Review of the Procedure for Dealing with Standards Complaints and Councillor Code of Conduct pdf icon PDF 118 KB

To approve, with or without amendment, the recommendations in the report of the General Counsel (and Monitoring Officer), published with this agenda, regarding changes proposed to be made to the Procedure for Dealing with Standards Complaints and to the Councillor Code of Conduct.



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Appointment of Independent Persons and Co-Opted Members of Audit and Standards Committee pdf icon PDF 119 KB

To approve, with or without amendment, the recommendations in the report of the General Counsel (and Monitoring Officer), published with this agenda, regarding the proposed appointment of two Independent Persons (that assist the Monitoring Officer in dealing with Standards complaints) and one non-voting Co-opted Member to join the Audit and Standards Committee.



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Minutes Of Previous Council Meetings pdf icon PDF 830 KB

To receive the records of the proceedings of the meetings of the Council held on 1st November and 6th December 2023 and to approve the accuracy thereof.


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Memberships of Council Bodies, Representatives to Serve on Other Bodies and Related Issues pdf icon PDF 57 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, which may be proposed at the meeting.



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