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Agenda item

Public Questions and Petitions

To receive any questions or petitions from members of the public.

Minutes:

6.1

The Committee received the following questions from members of the public who were in attendance to raise them: -

 

 

(a)      Public Questioner 1:

 

Can regular, seasonal clearing of leaves from footpaths in the Firth Park area be funded via the North East Local Area Committee?

 

In response, the Chair stated that he was aware of ‘hotspots’ within the area and this issue would be addressed within newly established working groups. The working groups would give the opportunity to work collectively and collate information about issues of concern. The Chair also asked that members of the public continue to report incidents to their local Councillor who would liaise with Amey as appropriate.

 

Councillor Abtisam Mohamed added that she had been in discussions with Amey with the aim of forward planning for clearing of leaves.

 

(b)      Public Questioner 2:

 

Can some of the North East Local Area Committee budget be used towards investing in rodent control in the Firth Park area?

 

The Chair noted that this was an issue that also affects other areas within the North East Area Committee. He advised the speaker that he had raised these concerns with Yorkshire Water and that ward councillors continued to flag incidents with the Council’s Pest Control Service where necessary.

 

(c)      Public Questioner 3:

 

A member of the public echoed concerns about rodent problems at a number of locations within the Firth Park ward.

 

The Chair noted these concerns and re-iterated that all issues raised would be considered within the new working groups.

 

Councillor Abtisam Mohamed added that Firth Park councillors are working collectively for constituents and wished to reassure the questioner that pest control was a key priority. She confirmed that she would be liaising with local TARA’s to discuss options.

 

Lindsey Hill added that an enquiry sheet was available for all those present to put forward their issues and also fill in the survey which would be fed into the North East Local Area Committee Community Plan.

 

(d)      Public Questioner 4:

 

Neglect and lack of regeneration is an issue in the Parson Cross area. What can be done to address this and to provide some positive outcomes for young people in the area? Local councillors had failed to respond to her concerns during ‘lockdown’.

 

In response, the Chair noted that anti-social behaviour had become a concern in the area and advised that youth services had been stretched across the whole of Sheffield. He offered assurance that the new working groups would provide a forum to consider this issue. In particular, he expressed his wish to work with local schools and involve Councillor Jayne Dunn (Ward Councillor for Southey and Executive Member for Education, Children and Families) in considering priorities for young people. He also reminded those present of how to contact the North East Local Area Committee team to report concerns.

 

(e)      Public Questioner 5:

 

Can prior notice be given of grass cutting on Council owned land? Litter pickers are often faced with broken bottles and tins, which is dangerous to pick.

 

The Chair expressed his thanks to local litter picking groups for their hard work and commitment and noted his disappointment in still seeing litter problems across the local area. He highlighted a number of options available to tackle such issues, including a recent initiative to identify flytipping ‘hotspots’, consideration of a ‘bring out your rubbish day’ and also ensuring contractual obligations for street cleaning are met within the local area.

 

(f)       Public Questioner 6:

 

Can some of the North East Local Area Committee funding be used towards providing free ‘grass roots’ sessions for 14-18 year olds, rather than relying on funding from grants? The questioner had previously felt a disconnect with the Council and welcomed the opportunity to change that.

 

In response, the Chair agreed that it was important to engage with young people and consider options. Such issues would be discussed at working groups and considered for inclusion in the North East Local Area Committee Community Plan, due to be launched in early 2022.

 

(g)      Public Questioner 7:

 

What can be done to tackle the damage to grass verges on Bowfield Road and other local roads caused by parked cars?

 

In response, the Chair reiterated the role of working groups in discussing and prioritising local issues.

 

(h)      Public Questioner 8:

 

Can a multi-agency approach be used to tackle the issue of people who are congregating outside shops on Ellesmere Road? Practical action is needed to assist local businesses alongside supporting these vulnerable people.

 

The Chair noted that he was already aware of this issue and that a solution was being sought through different agencies, including health and social care teams and South Yorkshire Police.

 

(i)       Public Questioner 9:

 

Why aren’t committee changes taking place until next year as this needs action now, especially for those who aren’t digitally included?

 

In response, the Chair advised that ward councillors continued to be available to pick up local issues of concern. These issues would be considered and would help to form the North East Local Area Committee Community Plan. Full contact details for North East Local Area Community team had been made available at the meeting.

 

Councillor Jayne Dunn noted that the views of all sectors of the local community were valuable, including those that weren’t digitally included. She hoped to help rebuild communities by reaching out and listening to views from all sectors, including schools, retirement homes and disability groups.

 

Councillor Dawn Dale noted that this was a process for a long term plan and that ward councillors wished to understand all the issues and represent those in the North East Local Area Committee Community Plan.

 

The Chair summarised by stating that the North East Local Area Committee was an opportunity to make change. He noted his thanks to all those who attended and looked forward to working with the community and partner organisations.

 

(Note:  At the conclusion of the formal business, there was an interactive session where members of the public were able to meet, liaise and discuss issues with Councillors, partner organisations and the North East Local Area Committee Team).