Agenda item

Members' Questions

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 18th July. Questions/petitions submitted after the deadline will be asked at the meeting subject to the discretion of the Chair.)





Urgent Business




With the permission of the Lord Mayor (Councillor Sioned-Mair Richards), Councillor Shaffaq Mohammed asked the following question relating to urgent business, under the provisions of Council Procedure Rule 16.6(ii):-




What steps does the Leader of the Council intend to take to help secure the future of Doncaster Sheffield Airport?




In response, Councillor Terry Fox (the Leader of the Council) stated that since the recent announcement regarding the future of the Airport, which took the Council by surprise, an emergency meeting was called with the South Yorkshire Leaders and the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority. Councillor Fox had also met with the other South Yorkshire Leaders, the Mayor of South Yorkshire, local Members of Parliament, including Louise Haigh (Shadow Secretary of State for Transport), to discuss the implications of the Airport closing down.  All the South Yorkshire Authorities were working hard to seek answers following the announcement as it was not clear what the exact position was.  There was currently a six-week consultation period, and a request had been made for this to be extended.  Councillor Fox referred to other planned meetings with interested parties, including meetings to discuss the potential job losses if the Airport was to close.  The Council was continuing to work with the other South Yorkshire Authorities and the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority to see if they could offer any assistance.  Councillor Fox expressed sympathy and concern regarding the adverse effects of a possible closure, which included inconvenience to people who had booked flights there, damage to the regeneration of the region and the potential loss of around 800 jobs.  He stated that he would ensure that Members and local residents were kept fully informed of any progress made following the various meetings.  




South Yorkshire Joint Authorities




The Lord Mayor (Councillor Sioned-Mair Richards) referred to the unprecedented heat wave being experienced in the country and to the fact that a state of emergency had been operating within South Yorkshire’s emergency services in recent days, and she invited Councillor Tony Damms, the Chair of the South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Authority, to comment on the response of the local fire and rescue services. 




Councillor Damms commended the work undertaken by firefighters in such exceptionally demanding circumstances over the past few days, and also acknowledged the assistance provided by support staff of the Fire and Rescue Service and he proposed that a letter of thanks, from the Lord Mayor, on behalf of the Council, be sent to the Chief Fire Officer expressing thanks and appreciation for the work of the South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service over the past few days.  Councillor Paul Turpin seconded that proposal.




The Lord Mayor suggested that the thanks of this Council should also be extended to the South Yorkshire Police and Ambulance services, and to Council services who had been involved in the emergency responses in recent days.  This suggestion was supported by the Council.




There were no questions relating to the discharge of the functions of the South Yorkshire Joint Authorities for Fire and Rescue and Pensions and of the South Yorkshire Mayoral Combined Authority, under the provisions of Council Procedure Rule 16.6(i).




Written Questions




A schedule of questions to Chairs of Policy Committees, submitted in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 16, and which contained written answers, was circulated.  Supplementary questions, under the provisions of Council Procedure Rule 16.4, were asked and were answered by the appropriate Policy Committee Chairs until the expiry of the time limit for Members’ Questions (in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 16.7).




(NOTE: During the proceedings of item 4.3, Councillor Douglas Johnson drew the attention of the meeting to an administrative error on page 3 of the schedule of questions and answers, which contained answers purporting to be from himself.  He stated that the questions concerned were also repeated on page 27 of the document and his answers to those questions were correctly stated on page 27, not on page 3.  The Members’ Q&As document, as published on the Council website, has been corrected accordingly.)








At this point in the proceedings, the Lord Mayor (Councillor Sioned-Mair Richards) left the meeting, and it was RESOLVED: That, in the absence of both the Lord Mayor and Deputy Lord Mayor, Councillor Anne Murphy be appointed as chair for the remainder of the meeting.