Agenda and minutes

Regeneration, Culture and Environment Overview And Scrutiny Committee
Thursday, 13 June 2019 7.00pm

Venue: Meeting Room 9 - Level 3, Gun Wharf, Dock Road, Chatham ME4 4TR

Contact: Ellen Wright, Democratic Services Officer 

Items
No. Item

62.

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Browne and Tranter.

63.

Record of Meeting and Joint Meeting of Committees pdf icon PDF 367 KB

To approve the Record of the Meeting held on 28 March 2019 and the Record of the Joint Meeting of Committees held on 22 May 2019.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The record of the meeting held on 28 March 2019 and the record of the Joint Meeting of Committees held on 22 May 2019 were agreed and signed by the Chairman as correct.

 

64.

Urgent matters by reason of special circumstances

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

Minutes:

There were none.

65.

Disclosable Pecuniary Interests or Other Significant Interests and Whipping pdf icon PDF 212 KB

Members are invited to disclose any Disclosable Pecuniary Interests or Other Significant Interests in accordance with the Member Code of Conduct.  Guidance on this is set out in agenda item 4.

 

Minutes:

Disclosable pecuniary interests

 

There were none.

  

Other significant interests (OSIs)

 

There were none.

 

Other interests

 

Councillor Stamp referred to item 6 – Household Waste Recycling Centres: Response to Kent County Council Policy Change and informed the Committee that whilst he worked for the Environment Agency, he had not had any involvement in this issue and therefore he would remain in the meeting.

 

Councillor Williams referred to item 5 – Member’s Item on Strood Development Works and informed the Committee that whilst he knew the member of the public who was in attendance to address the Committee on behalf of residents, he had not made his views known on the issue and would therefore remain in the meeting.

66.

Member's item: Strood Development Works pdf icon PDF 306 KB

This report sets out responses to issues raised by Councillor Hubbard, concerning the impact of the regeneration in Strood, both the Strood Waterfront Project and Strood Town Centre Project.

 

Mr Haywood, a resident will be also be in attendance to address the Committee on this issue.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Discussion:

 

The Committee considered a Member’s item placed on the agenda at the request of Councillor Hubbard concerning the impact of various regeneration projects in Strood.

 

Mr Haywood, a resident of Commissioners Road, Strood was present at the meeting and was invited to address the Committee on residents’ concerns regarding works at Commissioner’s Pit.

 

Mr Haywood informed the Committee that he was representing residents in Commissioner’s Road, Wingrove Drive, Cranmere Court and Kingswear Gardens who were affected by the development works in Strood. He also referred to the impact of the works on local businesses.

 

He stated that having two major redevelopment works carried out simultaneously had exacerbated the adverse impact on local residents, affecting their daily lives and reducing their quality of life and their health and wellbeing. A copy of his statement to the Committee had been circulated at the meeting.

 

The most common issues related to noise, vibration and dust and he outlined the problems being experienced by residents, supported by photographs and video footage. 

 

The Head of Planning informed the Committee that prior to the commencement of the meeting, he had agreed to meet with Mr Haywood to discuss matters of concern raised by residents.

 

In response to questions, Mr Haywood stated that as a way forward, he would like to see a meaningful plan for the future of the development sites so that they were not left as dust bowls, more rigorous enforcement of the planning conditions at the Commissioner’s Pit site requiring damping down and the introduction of an effective complaints procedure.

 

He advised that residents had previously submitted complaints to the Council on a range of issues at the development sites, including working hours and vibration but overall, residents were not satisfied with the Council’s response.

 

Residents had also contacted the contractors direct where possible but the Commissioner’s Pit site was too dangerous for residents to enter.

 

Councillor Hubbard then addressed the Committee on his Member’s item and in particular referred to the impact of the recent works in Strood Town Centre and the development brief for Strood Waterfront and its impact upon the residents of Kingswear Gardens. He submitted a number of proposals for consideration by the Committee.

 

The Director Regeneration, Culture, Environment and Transformation and Deputy Chief Executive thanked both Mr Haywood and Councillor Hubbard for attending the meeting and speaking on behalf of local residents.

 

He stated that the development works in Strood were a critical part of the regeneration of Medway and, given the scale of the works, it was inevitable that there would be an element of disruption and congestion, and he apologised for this.

 

Referring to the works in Strood Town Centre, he advised that prior to these works, an extensive communications programme had been undertaken to ensure that individuals were fully aware of the road closures. The works were now almost complete and there would be no further daytime or weekend closures of the High Street. In addition, he advised that discussions concerning mitigation  ...  view the full minutes text for item 66.

67.

Household Waste Recycling Centres: Response to Kent County Council Policy Change pdf icon PDF 228 KB

This report updates the Committee on Medway’s response to the introduction of charges for DIY waste at the Kent County Council (KCC) Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs).

Minutes:

Discussion:

 

The Committee received a report providing an update on Medway’s response to the introduction of charges for DIY waste at the Kent County Council (KCC) Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs) which came into effect from 3 June 2019.

 

As there were no charges or restrictions imposed on waste materials disposed through Medway’s HWRC network, in the light of KCC’s change of policy, it had been necessary for officers to consider the potential impact of KCC’s decision on usage of Medway’s HWRCs.

 

Following discussions with KCC, a new cross-boundary payment had been agreed for 2019/20 which meant that KCC residents could continue to use Medway’s sites free of charge, with all costs for KCC waste being paid to Medway Council by KCC.

 

It was confirmed that usage by KCC residents would be closely monitored through the new on-site ID checks and should usage or tonnages increase above the 28% throughput threshold or the impact on the sites becomes unsustainable, then the cross-boundary agreement permitted the level of fee payable to be re-negotiated with KCC. In addition, negotiations would commence with KCC in November 2019 for any extension of the cross-border agreement for 2020/21.

 

The Committee noted that a comprehensive communications campaign had been put in place to inform Medway residents that usage of Medway’s HWRCs would remain free of charge but that from 3 June 2019, residents would be required to bring proof of ID. The Head of Environmental Services confirmed that since the new ID checks had been put in place, only a small percentage of users of the facilities had not been aware of the requirement to provide ID.

 

In response to a question as to the current ID checks, the Head of Environmental Services advised that the requirement for Medway residents to provide ID at HWRCs was necessary to enable officers to maintain an accurate record of usage by Kent residents. This information would be used to support any further negotiations which may be required with KCC.

  

The Head of Environmental Services also informed the Committee that KCC was in the process of providing a new HWRC and that once this site was operational, the cross-boundary agreement for KCC residents to use Medway’s sites would likely cease. For this reason, Medway was continuing to undertake works at its HWRCs in preparation for this eventuality, and to safeguard the future use of its HWRCs without the implementation of charges for Medway residents. Discussions were also taking place with officers in Transformation with a view to the possible future introduction of a pre-registration scheme for Medway residents at a future date, so that they would have quicker access to HWRC sites without the need for ID checks.

 

The Committee discussed the report and in response to questions, the Head of Environmental Services confirmed that Medway had been able to re-coup the additional costs incurred by Medway following the temporary closure of the Pepperhill site by KCC in 2018.

 

The Committee expressed its appreciation to the Head of Environmental Services  ...  view the full minutes text for item 67.

68.

Update on CCTV Audit pdf icon PDF 134 KB

This report provides information on the progress of the CCTV improvement programme being carried out by Medway Council.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Discussion:

 

The Committee received a report setting out information on the progress of the CCTV improvement programme being carried out by the Council.

 

The Committee discussed the report and in response to questions, the Director Regeneration, Culture, Environment and Transformation and Deputy Chief Executive agreed that subject to the agreement of the Portfolio Holder, a list of all CCTV camera locations on a Ward by Ward basis would be circulated. However, he stressed that this information was required to be treated as confidential and should not be shared or circulated for crime prevention purposes.

 

The Head of Regulatory Services informed the Committee that when determining the removal or replacement of individual CCTV cameras, officers were required to have regard to the Information Commissioner’s Guidance on the location of CCTV cameras, the activity and functionality of each camera and whether they breached privacy regulations by virtue of their location. He advised that some cameras had been in place for many years and their location meant that they now breached privacy regulations as a result of recent nearby developments and, as such, were required to be removed.

 

He informed the Committee that both the Police and the Community Safety Partnership had worked with officers in reviewing the need for each CCTV camera, based on individual merits. He stated that even if a CCTV camera had been removed, the infrastructure had been left in place so that a rapid deployment camera could be provided if there was a spike in anti-social behaviour or criminal activity. The priority areas for the use of CCTV cameras were the High Streets, those areas with a night-time economy and transport hubs.

 

Any cameras that were not functioning were required to be removed in accordance with the Information Commissioner’s Guidance.

 

The Head of Regulatory Services gave an assurance that the CCTV improvement programme had been completed within budget.

 

A Member referred to Minute 593 of the meeting of the Committee on 6 December 2018 and asked whether Medway Commercial Group (MCG) had provided copies of the information that it claimed to have supplied to

the Council in 2017 on the condition of the CCTV camera stock.

 

In response, the Assistant Director Frontline Services informed the Committee that whilst correspondence had been provided by MCG, this did not include the information referred to by MCG in December 2018. Officers had therefore submitted a further request to MCG for the information but owing to the review currently taking place this information had not yet been provided.

 

A Member referred to discussions at the meeting of the Committee on 28 March 2019 and confirmed that those issues concerning the cost of the CCTV improvement programme, the lack of information from MCG and the scope of the project had now been addressed and he thanked officers for the work undertaken to resolve these issues. However, he expressed concern that there was currently insufficient information to enable the Committee to scrutinise Priority 4 of the improvement programme covering Rainham, Strood, Luton,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 68.

69.

Petitions pdf icon PDF 142 KB

This report advises the Committee of any petitions received by the Council which fall within the remit of this Committee including a summary of the response sent to the petition organisers by officers.

Minutes:

Discussion:

 

The Committee received a report advising of petitions received by the Council which fell within the remit of this Committee, including a summary of the response sent to petition organisers by officers.

 

Decision:

 

The Committee noted the petition responses and appropriate officer action in paragraphs 3 and 4 of the report.

70.

Work programme pdf icon PDF 86 KB

This item advises Members of the current work programme and allows the Committee to adjust it in the light of latest priorities, issues and circumstances. It gives Members the opportunity to shape and direct the Committee’s activities over the year. 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Discussion:

 

The Committee received a report setting out the Committee’s work programme for 2019/20.

 

The Democratic Services Officer advised that the latest Forward Plan had been published on 10 June 2019 and she provided an update on items relevant to the work of this Committee.

 

Decision:

 

The Committee noted the report.