Agenda and minutes

South Thames Gateway Building Control Joint Committee
Thursday, 11 December 2014 10.00am

Venue: Meeting Room 2 - Level 3, Gun Wharf. View directions

Contact: Michael Turner, 01634 332817 

Items
No. Item

11.

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Burden and Lewin.

 

The Chairman welcomed Councillor Mulhern who was attending in place of Councillor Lewin and also Councillor John Gilbey (Canterbury City Council) who was attending as an observer.

12.

Record of meeting pdf icon PDF 61 KB

To approve the record of the meeting held on 2 October 2014.

Minutes:

The record of the meeting held on 2 October 2014 was agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman. 

13.

Declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests and other interests

A member need only disclose at any meeting the existence of a disclosable pecuniary interest (DPI) in a matter to be considered at that meeting if that DPI has not been entered on the disclosable pecuniary interests register maintained by the Monitoring Officer.

 

A member disclosing a DPI at a meeting must thereafter notify the Monitoring Officer in writing of that interest within 28 days from the date of disclosure at the meeting.

 

A member may not participate in a discussion of or vote on any matter in which he or she has a DPI (both those already registered and those disclosed at the meeting) and must withdraw from the room during such discussion/vote.

 

Members may choose to voluntarily disclose a DPI at a meeting even if it is registered on the council’s register of disclosable pecuniary interests but there is no legal requirement to do so.

 

Members should also ensure they disclose any other interests which may give rise to a conflict under the council’s code of conduct.

 

In line with the training provided to members by the Monitoring Officer members will also need to consider bias and pre-determination in certain circumstances and whether they have a conflict of interest or should otherwise leave the room for Code reasons. 

Minutes:

Disclosable pecuniary interests

 

There were none.

 

Other interests

 

There were none.

 

  

14.

Urgent matters by reason of special circumstances

The Chairman will announce any late items which do not appear on the main agenda but which she has agreed should be considered by reason of special circumstances to be specified in the report.  

Minutes:

There were none. 

15.

Proposed Expansion of South Thames Gateway Building Control Partnership to include Canterbury City Council pdf icon PDF 31 KB

A report was taken to Joint Committee on 2 October 2014 detailing the appraisal undertaken to demonstrate the benefits and implications of expanding the partnership with the inclusion of Canterbury City Council’s building control service. On 18 November 2014, Canterbury’s Executive approved the principle of their building control service joining the partnership and this report seeks Joint Committee’s approval for this expansion.

Minutes:

Discussion:

 

The Director of the South Thames Gateway Building Control Partnership introduced a report which advised that Canterbury City Council’s Cabinet had agreed in principle that its building control service should join the partnership. The report sought the Joint Committee’s approval for this expansion. Subject to the partner Councils agreeing that Canterbury City Council should join the Partnership, it was expected that the new Partnership would be in operation by 1 April 2015

 

The Director clarified that the figures in Appendix 1 to the report showing the contributions from Medway Council and Swale Council for 2016/17 were incorrect. This would be amended before the report was sent to each Council’s Cabinet.

 

A member referred to paragraph 3.9 and asked how the southern side of Sittingbourne had been defined. The Director replied that this had not yet been decided but it was likely to be the existing South Thames Gateway boundary.

 

Decision: 

 

The Joint Committee agreed to delegate authority to the Director of the South

Thames Gateway Building Control Partnership, in consultation with the Officer Steering Group and the Heads of Legal departments at the partner authorities, to take all the necessary actions to enable the proposal of Canterbury City Council being included within the South Thames Gateway Building Control Partnership by 1 April 2015.

16.

South Thames Gateway Building Control Business Plan 2015/2018 pdf icon PDF 760 KB

The report sets out revised proposals for the South Thames Gateway Building Control Draft Business Plan and Delivery Plan for 2015-2016 following consultation. It seeks agreement to refer the revised documents to the Cabinet of each partner authority.

Minutes:

Discussion:

 

The Director of the South Thames Gateway Building Control Partnership introduced a report which set out revised proposals for the South Thames Gateway Building Control Draft Business Plan and Delivery Plan for 2015-2016 following consultation. Members’ agreement was sought to refer the revised documents to the Cabinet of each partner authority.

 

In response to a question the Director clarified that no changes would be made to existing teams as they had developed good relationships in their areas but there was the flexibility to move people to different teams to provide temporary support where this was needed.

 

Decision:

 

The Joint Committee:

 

a)                 approved the updated version of the Business Plan and agreed to refer it to the Cabinet of each partner authority to approve the Final Draft Business Plan.

 

b)                 noted the final contributions figures, which will be included in each authority’s budget planning process for 2015/16.

17.

South Thames Gateway Building Control Annual Audit and Inspection Letter pdf icon PDF 2 MB

The report presents the external auditor’s certificate and opinion in respect of the Joint Committee’s accounts for 2013/2014. 

Minutes:

Discussion:

 

The Joint Committee discussed a report which presented the external auditor’s certificate and opinion in respect of the Joint Committee’s accounts for 2013/2014.

 

Decision:

 

The Joint Committee noted the external auditor’s certificate and opinion as presented.

18.

Administrative Arrangements pdf icon PDF 17 KB

This report asks the Joint Committee to consider a provisional programme of meetings for the 2015/2016 municipal year and to agree the replacement of the Partnership’s Section 151 Officer.

Minutes:

Discussion:

 

Members considered a report which asked the Joint Committee to consider a provisional programme of meetings for the 2015/2016 municipal year and also to agree the replacement of the Partnership’s Section 151 Officer. 

 

Decision:

 

The Joint Committee:

 

a)           noted the provisional timetable of meetings for the 2015/2016 municipal year.

 

b)           agreed to the appointment of Phil Watts (Medway Council) as S151 Officer from 28 February 2015.

19.

Exclusion of the Press and Public pdf icon PDF 9 KB

This report summarises the content of agenda item 10, which, in the opinion of the proper officer, contains exempt information within one of the categories in Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972. It is a matter for the Committee to determine whether the press and public should be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the document. 

Minutes:

Decision:

 

The Joint Committee agreed to exclude the press and public during consideration of agenda item 10 (Monitoring Report: September 2014 to November 2014) because consideration of this matter in public would disclose information falling within paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972, as specified in agenda item 7 and the Joint Committee considered that the public interest in maintaining the exemption, outweighed the public interest in disclosing the information. 

20.

Monitoring Report: September 2014 to November 2014

The report updates the Joint Committee on the current forecast for the 2014/15 financial year and gives details against the progress of the objectives of the Business Plan 2012/2017. 

Minutes:

Discussion:

 

The Joint Committee discussed the report which set out the current forecast for the 2014/15 financial year and gave details against the progress of the objectives of the Business Plan 2012/2017. 

 

The Chairman asked how the Partnership’s fees compared to the private sector. The Director replied that in most cases the Partnership’s fees were lower. He also clarified that the Partnership received good co-operation from each Council’s planning department and continued to notify applicants for planning permission at an early stage of its services.

 

Decision:

 

The Joint Committee noted the contents of the report.