Agenda and minutes

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Venue: Council House

Contact: Democratic Advisor  Email: democraticsupport@plymouth.gov.uk

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Items
No. Item

1.

To Note the Appointment of the Chair and Vice Chair

The Committee will be asked to note the appointment of the Chair and Vice Chair for the municipal year 2021/22.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee noted the appointment of Councillor Bingley as Chair and Councillor Dr Buchan as Vice Chair of this Committee for the forthcoming municipal year 2021/22.

 

2.

Appointment of Vice Chair

Additional documents:

Minutes:

In the absence of Councillor Dr Buchan (Vice Chair), Councillor Penberthy was appointed as Vice Chair for this particular meeting.

 

 

3.

Declarations of Interest

Councillors will be asked to make any declarations of interest in respect of items on the agenda.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

In accordance with the code of conduct, Councillor Dann declared a personal interest in minute 8, due to her role as Lady Mayoress in 2020/21 and Councillor Jordan declared a personal interest in minute 9, as he was Chair of a Charity.

4.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 108 KB

To confirm the minutes of the previous meeting held on 10 March 2021.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

 

The Committee agreed that the minutes of the meeting held on 10 March 2021 are a correct record.

 

5.

Chair's Urgent Business

To receive reports on business which in the opinion of the Chair, should be brought forward for urgent consideration.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chair took this opportunity (on behalf of the Committee) to congratulate –

 

(a)

the Council on its award of £9.5m from the National Lottery Heritage Fund ‘Heritage Horizon Award’ for the Plymouth Sound National Marne Park; Plymouth City Council had been the only local authority to be successful in winning this award twice; this demonstrated the strength and creativity in the city;

 

 

(b)

David Draffan (Service Director for Economic Development) who had been awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List for ‘Services to Local Government’.

 

Councillor Dann formally endorsed Councillor Bingley’s comments. She had been the former Cabinet Member that had driven the National Marine Park project which had formed part of the Labour Party’s manifesto.  The Council had collaborated with a large number of stakeholders in order to progress this initiative.  The National Marine Park would be a fantastic legacy for the city.

 

In accordance with Section 100(B)(4)(b) of the Local Government Act, 1972, the Chair brought forward the above item for urgent consideration because of the need to advise Members for information).

 

6.

Terms of Reference for the Scrutiny Committee pdf icon PDF 103 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee considered its terms of reference.

 

Councillor Salmon queried the membership, in terms of the number of Councillors that were appointed to the Committee.  The terms of reference stated nine but there were 10 members on this Scrutiny Committee.

 

The Democratic Support Officer advised that the terms of reference were incorrect (the correct number of Members was 10).  The terms of reference would need to be amended at the next City Council meeting.  The number of Councillors had changed following the recent local elections.

 

The Committee requested that the terms of reference be amended to reflect the change in the number of Councillors appointed to this Committee.

 

 

7.

Policy Update pdf icon PDF 148 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

 

Sophie Tucker (Senior Support and Research Assistant) provided an update to the briefing that had been circulated with the agenda, which included –

 

(a)

EU Settlement Scheme and Immigration -

 

 

?

the deadline for applications to the EU Settlement Scheme had been 30 June 2021; new statistics showed that there was a total of six million applications for the scheme which secured EU citizens’ right in the UK;

 

 

 

?

there had been a surge in applications which included more than 400,000 in June; this had resulted in approximately 570,000 pending applications; the Government had assured those who had applied prior to the deadline, that they would have their rights protected until their applications had been decided (as set out in law); they would also have the means of proving their protected rights if required;

 

 

 

 

?

the latest figures for Plymouth (as of 31 March 2021) was 10,820; the vast majority of which had received an outcome of either settled for pre-settled status; the figures were broken down as follows -

 

 

 

 

 

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6,390 settled status (increased by 430 was 5,960);

 

 

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3,570 pre settled status (increased by 400 was 3,170);

 

 

?

300 other (increased by 80 was 220);

 

 

 

 

 

?

due to the end of the EU Settlement Scheme, there had been changes to the right to work checks from 1 July 2021; EU passports or ID cards were no longer valid proof of the right to work; an online right to work check would now be required;

 

 

 

(b)

the Graduate Route -

 

 

 

 

?

this immigration route opened on 1 July 2021 and allowed international graduates to start their careers in the UK, after they had finished their studies at a UK university;

 

 

 

 

?

this provided an opportunity for talented international graduates, who had graduated from a UK university, to stay in the UK and either work, or look for work at any skill level for a period of at least two years;

 

 

 

(c)

EU adopted ‘adequacy’ decisions -

 

 

 

 

?

the decisions mean that UK businesses and organisations would be able to continue to receive personal data from the EU and EEA without the need to put additional arrangements in place with European counterparts;

 

 

 

 

?

the European Scrutiny Committee had launched an enquiry into the new bodies set up to manage the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement and to examine the Government’s approach to maximising its influence on them;

 

 

 

(d)

to date, there were 67 total trade agreements in effect (at varying stages); 37 fully ratified, 26 provisional applications and 4 bridging mechanisms;

 

 

 

(e)

a new Subsidy Control Bill had been introduced to Parliament on 30 June 2021; the bill sets out the Government’s legislative proposal for a new UK subsidy control regime and covered a number of key areas including -

 

 

 

 

?

providing a legal framework for public authorities to award subsidies in line with the subsidy control principles; there would be a statutory duty for public authorities to consider these principles and only award a subsidy if it was consistent with these principles;

 

 

 

 

?

the introduction of a number of prohibitions to prevent  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.

Order of Business

With the permission of the Chair the order of business was changed and is reflected in the minutes.

Additional documents:

8.

Mayflower 400 Update pdf icon PDF 163 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor Mark Deacon (Cabinet Member for Culture, Leisure and Sport) and Charles Hackett (Charles Hackett (Chief Executive Officer Mayflower 400) provided an update on the Mayflower 400 which highlighted the following –

 

(a)

the Mayflower 400 had delivered successfully across a huge range of activities, through strong partnership and with determination and adaptability to drive Plymouth and partner objectives, despite the challenges;

 

 

(b)

whilst the pandemic had significantly impacted the delivery of the programme, the majority of the original cultural programme had been successfully rescheduled and had been taking place through late 2020 where appropriate and through the summer of 2021;

 

 

(c)

projects had been rescheduled to new dates, or had been redesigned for different delivery such as through digital means; only a small number had been cancelled, such as the Four Nations Ceremony on 11 July 2021;

 

 

(d)

Mayflower 400 had continued to -

 

 

 

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promote the city regionally, nationally and internationally;

 

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engage residents and give different communities varied ways to take part;

 

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deliver a cultural programme, whilst also supporting the cultural producers and performers involved during this highly challenging period for their sector;

 

?

lay foundations for the visitor sector recovery and future international travel and cruises;

 

 

 

(e)

some individual events from the Mayflower 400 programme, led by partners and funded through grants from bodies such as the Arts Council England would now take place after September 2021 due to the pandemic (such a ‘This Land’ by the Theatre Royal and Illuminate led by Real Ideas Organisation);

 

 

(f)

the 2021 events had built on the success of the content delivered to date which had reached a cumulative audience of over four billion people through associated communications activity, which had supported Plymouth’s positioning as a vibrant destination and Britain’s Ocean City;

 

 

(g)

national and international marketing activity supporting the wider Plymouth destination activity would continue through to the end of 2021 and beyond; Mayflower 400 had exceeded its targeted visitor sector growth by 10%, as of 2019; the programme had been aligned with the wider pandemic recovery activity to ensure it made a full contribution to the city’s recovery as it transitioned out of lockdown.

 

The Committee discussed the following key issues –

 

(h)

whether the impact of the media coverage was known (given that this would have been impacted by the pandemic) and the financial impact this had on the city;

 

 

(i)

whether the £16m committed by the Arts Council England into Plymouth’s core arts and culture capacity over five years, was part of the Mayflower 400 project and if the funding would be ongoing;

 

 

(j)

the importance of building on the success of the Mayflower 400 project and continuing to maintain the momentum with future projects/events;

 

 

(k)

the importance of not only recognising the community involvement in the events that had taken place but also the unity of cross party working in order to continue to secure funding streams;

 

 

(l)

the level of international engagement with the Mayflower 400 project and whether there was an international appetite to travel  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

Climate Emergency Action Plan 2021 and Corporate Carbon Reduction Plan 2021: July 2021 Progress Reports pdf icon PDF 158 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor Maddie Bridgeman (Cabinet for Environment and Street Scene), Councillor Jonathan Drean (Cabinet Member for Transport), Paul Barnard (Service Director for Strategic Planning and Infrastructure), Philip Robinson (Service Director for Street Services) and Paul Elliott (Low Carbon City Manager) presented the reports which highlighted the following -

 

(a)

Climate Emergency Action Plan 2021 (CEAP) -

 

 

 

?

the report sets out the progress, as at July 2021 and outlined the actions in the Plan as agreed by City Council at its meeting held on 25 January 2021;

 

 

 

 

?

the overall outcome of the plan was to strive to achieve net zero in the city by 2030; the Council intended to lead by example and was putting in place a number of activities this year to demonstrate this leadership and engage with residents, young people and the business community;

 

 

 

 

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as of July 2021, 88 actions out of 89 had been started and activities were underway in order to achieve their respective targets; eight actions were already achieved;

 

 

 

 

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90% of all actions were achieved in part and were progressing well; the actions reported as ‘underway’ were ongoing activities taking place throughout 2021; these actions were currently on course to be achieved in 2021;

 

 

 

 

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eight actions had been completed (9%), 80 actions underway (90%) and not yet progressing 1 (1%) (89 in total);

 

 

 

 

?

one action had been identified as being at risk of not being fully achieved in this calendar year; this related to exploring mortgages for sustainable energy with South West Mutual; this option was raised informally with South West Mutual however, the Mutual was still applying for its banking licence and envisaged launching the bank in 2022; it was therefore likely that this action would not be achieved in 2021;

 

 

 

 

?

a number of departments of the Council were working proactively with partners and residents to offer meaningful engagement activities this year which included -

 

 

 

 

 

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action 2.62: engage with the Youth Parliament to ensure that the voice of the children and young people was heard in relation to the Climate Emergency;

 

 

 

 

 

 

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action 2.63: organising an annual Climate Emergency Summit for young people;

 

 

 

 

 

 

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action 2.64: organise a themed day at Plymouth Libraries on the topic of climate change;

 

 

 

 

(b)

Corporate Carbon Reduction Plan 2021 (CCRP2) -

 

 

 

 

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the report described the position, after six months, in relation to the actions set out in the CCRP2, agreed by the City Council at its meeting on 25 January 2021; it highlighted the successful progress of all the actions and described some of the key achievements to date;

 

 

 

 

?

the overall outcome of the plan was to strive to reduce corporate carbon emissions to zero by 2030; the Council intended to lead by example and was putting in place a number of activities this year to demonstrate leadership combining behaviour change with hands on actions to remove sources of emissions;

 

 

 

 

?

as at July 2021 and six months into the second CCRP, all of the 25 actions had been started with activities underway to achieve their respective targets; whilst all the actions  ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.

10.

Plymouth and South Devon Freezone pdf icon PDF 174 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Leader (Councillor Nick Kelly), David Draffan (Service Director for Economic Development) and Richard May (Head of Oceansgate and Marine Investment) presented the report which highlighted the following –

 

(a)

the Plymouth and South Devon Freezone would help the city to bounce back from the Covid pandemic and grow the local economy; the Freezone was expected to generate thousands of new jobs and over £100m of new investment over the next 10 years;

 

 

(b)

as Britain’s Ocean City, with its natural harbour and direct deep water access to the English Channel and the Atlantic Ocean, Plymouth was ideally located for accessing European and global markets; the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development had predicted that the global ocean economy would be worth more than £2 trillion by 2030;

 

 

(c)

the Freezone would build on the city’s strengths to drive growth across the region; this would harness the power of Plymouth’s marine economy to drive economic growth and working with Devon as the Local Transport Authority, fund road network improvements and unlock under-utilised employment land at Sherford and Langage;

 

 

(d)

the proposal directly targeted key growth areas such as marine manufacturing, wind and wave energy and marine autonomy; the success would bring in an immediate injection of at least £20m of capital; with the locally raised matched element being funded through the business rates uplift that the Freezone would generate, there would be no diversion of Council funding from other priorities;

 

 

(e)

it would provide an opportunity to deliver clean growth and the high quality jobs the city needed for the future, whilst protecting its unique historic and natural infrastructure;

 

 

(f)

in the early stages, delivering the Freezone required the Council to pass through a series of ‘gates’; in each case the Council had to evidence that certain criteria had been met, in order to unlock some benefit; the first of these related to having governance structures in place; these had been agreed by the Ministry for Housing Communities and Local Government;

 

 

(g)

the next requirement would be to submit a capacity funding application setting out the city’s budget for 2021/22; following a process of negotiation, a budget would be submitted which would take the Council up to the point of submitting an outline business case; it was anticipated that there would be a further opportunity to submit a capacity funding claim once that milestone had been reached; an initial payment of £300k had been received in late June 2021; whilst this had been welcomed, the Council also needed to maximise the use of internal existing resource to support the development of the outline business case;

 

 

(h)

the next steps would be to establish an implementation plan and deliver the outline business case in the autumn; currently, the implementation plan included seven projects each of which had a lead officer who would be responsible for an overall programme board for delivery;

 

 

(i)

each of these projects encompassed a number of discreet work streams and small groups of officers with relevant skills  ...  view the full minutes text for item 10.

11.

Work Programme pdf icon PDF 127 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee discussed its work programme for 2021/22 and agreed to include the following items on its programme -

 

(a)

September 2021 meeting -

 

 

 

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Bus Improvement Plan;

 

?

Economic update (Recovery and Start Ups and an Analysis the Impact of the Pandemic);

 

 

(b)

December 2021 meeting -

 

 

 

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National Marine Park;

 

?

Plymouth Culture Plan Annual Update;

 

?

Visitor Plan Annual Update;

 

?

Climate Emergency Action Plan (CEAP) 2022 (scrutiny prior to Full Council);

 

?

Corporate Carbon Reduction Plan 2022 (CCRP) (scrutiny prior to Full Council);

 

 

 

(c)

February 2022 meeting -

 

 

 

 

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Mayflower 400 Wrap Up (including international engagement);

 

?

Box Opening Review and 2022 Programme;

 

?

Plymouth Plan Annual Report;

 

?

Planning Reform Bill;

 

?

Corporate Carbon Reduction Plan 2021 Outturn Report (six month update);

 

?

Climate Emergency Action Plan 2021 Outturn Report (six month update);

 

 

 

(d)

items to be scheduled -

 

 

 

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Plymouth and South Devon Freezone;

 

?

sustainable transport in the city (including taxi provision);

 

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Environment Bill;

 

?

Corporate Plan.