Agenda and minutes

Venue: Guildhall

Contact: Committee Administration 01905 722027, 722006, 722085 

Items
No. Item

61.

Appointment of Substitutes

To receive details of any Members appointed to attend the meeting instead of a Member of the Committee.

Minutes:

Councillor J. Squires for Councillor Denham.

62.

Declarations of Interest

To receive any declarations of interest.

Minutes:

None.

63.

Public Participation

To receive details of any Members appointed to attend the meeting instead of a Member of the Committee.

 

Minutes:

Vivienne Williams-Hewitt on behalf of Worcester County Swimming Association spoke regarding the swimming pool at Perdiswell Leisure Centre. In summary, she was concerned that the Association were unable to use the pool for County Championships and other events. She requested the Committee to consider what can be done to assist the Association in hiring the pool for at least 2 weekends per year, plus 2 single days, for competitions. In response, the Chairman thanked her for her comments and stated that Officers would provide her with a full written response to all of the points raised.

64.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 62 KB

Of the meetings held on 30th January 2019 and 4th February 2019 to be approved and signed.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

With reference to minute 52 (Strategic Housing Transformation Temporary Accommodation Supply), Councillor Johnson stated that he had proposed at the 4th February 2019 meeting that a record be kept of the difference between the subsidy loss from operating these properties and the subsidy loss if the occupants had been in hotel/B&B accommodation. However this was not recorded in the minutes. The Chairman acknowledged this comment and Councillor Johnson was advised that his request would be recorded in the minutes of this meeting.

 

RESOLVED: That the minutes of the meetings held on 30th January and 4th February 2019 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

65.

Proposed Committee Performance Scorecard for 2019/20 pdf icon PDF 86 KB

That the Communities Committee consider the proposed content of the Communities Performance Scorecard for 2019/20.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered the proposed content of the Communities Performance Scorecard for 2019/20.

 

In response to a question about capturing information on the number of properties licensed as Houses in Multiple Occupation as a result of enforcement action, Officers advised that the quarterly narrative will include information on how the licence was achieved.

 

RESOLVED: That the Committee note the proposed content of the Communities Performance Scorecard for 2019/20.

66.

Integrated use of the Increased Better Care Fund - Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG) Allocation pdf icon PDF 148 KB

To note the allocation of £75,600 received by the Council for ‘In-year Disabled Facilities Grant Funding’ from Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government to Worcestershire County Council to support the ongoing delivery of Minor Adaptions work.

Minutes:

The Committee received a report on the continued delivery of the Worcestershire Home Improvement Agency (WHIA) contract, which ends in March 2020. The Head of Strategic Housing presented the report and summarised the main points, including the receipt of an additional in-year allocation of Disabled Facilities Grant Funding in 2018/19 and the reallocation of grant funding originally allocated to the City Council to Worcestershire County Council. Members were advised that this will not create a negative impact on the Council’s ability to deliver DFGs, whilst ensuring there is continuity of service for minor adaptations work.

 

In the ensuing discussion, Officers advised that a report will be presented to a future meeting of the Committee on the outcome of the “Promoting Independent Living Project” work and a new model of delivery, approach to co-design/procurement and service commencing on 1st April 2020.

                                                                

RESOLVED: That the Committee note the allocation of £75,600 received by the Council for ‘In-year Disabled Facilities Grant Funding’ from Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government to Worcestershire County Council to support the ongoing delivery of Minor Adaptions work.

67.

Management Options - Tennis in Parks pdf icon PDF 182 KB

That the Committee:

 

1.1 Approves the provision of tennis court usage at Cripplegate and Gheluvelt Parks to be changed from open access provision to an operator led ‘pay & play’ bookable facility (in line with fees and charges agreed by the Policy and Resources Committee in February 2019) with a level of designated free to use sessions to be confirmed;

 

1.2 Authorises the Corporate Director (Homes and Communities) to enter into a grant and loan agreement with the Lawn Tennis Association for the Worcester Tennis Networks up to a maximum sum of £214,000;

 

1.3Authorises the Corporate Director (Homes and Communities) to commence a procurement process for the appointment of a commercial operator to manage the tennis facilities at Cripplegate and Gheluvelt parks on behalf of the Council in order to implement the Worcester Tennis Networks scheme; and

 

1.4Receives a further report for approval, on the outcome of the procurement negotiations set out at recommendation 1.3 above, before any contracts are concluded, in order to determine the final arrangements for the implementation of the Worcester Tennis Networks scheme.

Minutes:

The Committee were informed of the outcome of a bid submitted as part of a Worcester Tennis Network to improve tennis facilities in Cripplegate and Gheluvelt Parks. The Community Engagement Team Manager presented the report and explained that the Lawn Tennis Association had approved the bid, which included capital improvements to tennis courts in City parks, the Sixth Form College and the Royal Grammar School. The report set out potential options for the management and operation of the courts at Cripplegate and Gheluvelt Parks. The preferred option was to accept the LTA grant and loan offer and to commission an operator to run the tennis courts, providing both paid and free access to courts and coaching, on terms which are compatible with the LTA’s requirements.

 

Officers responded to questions from Members on the details of the proposal and also commented on the benefits over any alternative options.

 

Committee Members expressed support for the proposals, as set out in the report.

 

RESOLVED: That the Committee agree to:

 

1.    approve the provision of tennis court usage at Cripplegate and Gheluvelt Parks to be changed from open access provision to an operator led ‘pay & play’ bookable facility (in line with fees and charges agreed by the Policy and Resources Committee in February 2019) with a level of designated free to use sessions to be confirmed;

 

2.    authorise the Corporate Director (Homes and Communities) to enter into a grant and loan agreement with the Lawn Tennis Association for the Worcester Tennis Networks up to a maximum sum of £214,000;

 

3.    authorise the Corporate Director (Homes and Communities) to commence a procurement process for the appointment of a commercial operator to manage the tennis facilities at Cripplegate and Gheluvelt parks on behalf of the Council in order to implement the Worcester Tennis Networks scheme; and

 

4.    receive a further report for approval, on the outcome of the procurement negotiations set out at recommendation 3 above, before any contracts are concluded, in order to determine the final arrangements for the implementation of the Worcester Tennis Networks scheme.

68.

Worcester Community Trust Progress and Business Plan Update pdf icon PDF 120 KB

That Committee notes the progress that has been made by Worcester Community Trust, including an update of its Business Plan with financial and management assistance from this Council.

Minutes:

The Committee had previously received a report on progress around Worcester Community Trust’s Business Plan development in March 2018 and a report relating to the Council’s Management Agreement with WCT in July 2018. The Head of Community Services presented an update in relation to the progress made by WCT to date. Faith Sanderson, Chief Executive Officer, WCT was in attendance to answer questions from Committee Members. An update of the Business Plan and a separate summary sheet overview for key finance and governance were provided in the exempt part of the agenda.

 

RESOLVED: That the Committee note the progress that has been made by Worcester Community Trust, including an update of its Business Plan with financial and management assistance from this Council.

69.

Review of the Hosting of Whippet Racing at Perdiswell pdf icon PDF 102 KB

That the Committee note the findings of the review and actions set out at Appendix 1 and delegate authority to the Corporate Director (Homes and Communities) to agree the terms of a licence with the Whippet Club to regulate the ongoing use of the Perdiswell site for whippet racing.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received a report on a review of whippet racing at Perdiswell. The Head of Community Services presented the report and explained that, following three recent complaints relating to concerns for the welfare of the dogs, Officers had undertaken a review to determine whether it was appropriate for racing to continue on this site beyond the end of March 2019. The report summarised the findings of the review, with a more detailed review report appended. Following the review, it was proposed that whippet racing should continue on the designated course with appropriate licence and monitoring arrangements in place.

 

In the ensuing discussion, Committee expressed support for the grant of a licence, as proposed in the report. A request was made for a follow-up report to be submitted to the Committee in 12 months.

 

Committee Members requested that a follow-up report on implementation of the recommendations of the review be submitted in 12 months’ time.

 

RESOLVED: That the Committee note the findings of the review and actions set out at Appendix 1 and  delegate authority to the Corporate Director (Homes and Communities) to agree the terms of a licence with the Whippet Club to regulate the ongoing use of the Perdiswell site for whippet racing.

70.

Freedom Leisure - Transfer of Creche to Perdiswell Leisure Centre pdf icon PDF 107 KB

1.     That Committee notes the transfer of crèche facilities provided by Freedom Leisure from St Johns Sports Centre to Perdiswell Leisure Centre; and

 

2.     That Committee recommend to Council on 26th March 2019 the fees & charges proposed for the crèche facility at Perdiswell Leisure Centre as set out in this report at para 2.11 – 2.12.

Minutes:

The Chairman agreed to consider this item as a matter of urgent business as Freedom Leisure had informed the Council of its intention to close the crèche at St Johns Sports Centre and transfer it to Perdiswell Leisure Centre with effect from the 1st April 2019.

 

The Committee considered a report on the transfer of the crèche facility from St Johns Sports Centre to Perdiswell Leisure Centre as a result of decline in usage. The Corporate Director – Homes and Communities presented the report and explained that, to achieve this, Freedom Leisure propose to implement new crèche prices at Perdiswell Leisure Centre subject to approval from the Council, details of which were set out in the report.

 

In the ensuing discussion, Committee Members were advised that the crèche facilities were included with the cost of membership at St. John’s Sports Centre. There was currently no crèche provision at Perdiswell and the proposals and fees would allow casual use or provide a “bolt-on” to membership.

 

RESOLVED: That the Committee:

 

1.    note the transfer of crèche facilities provided by Freedom Leisure from St Johns Sports Centre to Perdiswell Leisure Centre; and

 

2.    agree to recommend to Council on 26th March 2019 the fees & charges proposed for the crèche facility at Perdiswell Leisure Centre as set out in this report at para 2.11 – 2.12.

71.

Any Other Business

Which in the opinion of the Chairman is of sufficient urgency as to warrant consideration.

Minutes:

None.

72.

Item Involving the Disclosure of Exempt Information

The Committee is invited to pass the following resolution:-

 

That under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of information as defined in Schedule 12A of the said Act.

Minutes:

RESOLVED: That under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following item of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of information as defined in Schedule 12A of the said Act.

73.

Worcester Community Trust Progress and Business Plan Update

To consider an update of the Business Plan (Appendix 1) with a separate summary sheet overview for key finance and governance (Appendix 2). 

Minutes:

The Committee noted an update of the Business Plan and summary sheet overview for key finance and governance.