Agenda item

Questions by Councillors

Questions to the Leader, Cabinet Members and Committee Chairs covering aspects for their areas of responsibility or concern by councillors in accordance with Part B, paragraph 12 of the constitution.







Cllr Nigel Churchill

Cllr Jonathan Drean

Electric Vehicle Charging Points for Maritime Industry: had the Council considered this?

Response: Two EV water taxis were currently running in the city and the pontoons had charging points on them; this was something the Council was hoping to install more of in the future.


Cllr Dylan Tippetts

Cllr Jonathan Drean

Compton Roads: would the Cabinet Member and relevant officers consider going on a site visit with Cllr Tippetts to Compton, specifically Hartley Avenue, to assess the road surface and consider options for repair?

Response: The Cabinet Member confirmed he was happy to attend a site visit and discuss available options for repair if necessary.


Cllr Chaz Singh

Cllr Richard Bingley

Licensed Drivers: what plans were in place if more licensed drivers made a decision to move out of the city for work?

Response: A lot of consultation had taken place regarding the taxi service and licensed drivers in the city. It was suggested that concerns were directed towards Councillor Riley as his scrutiny panel ‘Growth and Infrastructure’ were scheduled to consider taxi licensing as part of a select review.


Cllr Ian Tuffin

Cllr Bill Wakeham

Sea swimming: did the Cabinet Member agree that those wishing to swim in the sea were as safe as possible?


Supplementary question: would the Cabinet Member back Luke Pollard MP’s campaign to have the waters around Devils Point and Firestone Bay designated as official bathing water subject to regular testing for water quality?

Response: The Cabinet Member agreed that those wishing to swim in the sea should be as safe as possible and confirmed that he would support anyone who wanted to improve the quality of the local waters.


Cllr Sarah Allen

Cllr Bill Wakeham

Weeds and overgrown grass: what had gone wrong with this years’ programme of maintenance?

Response: Staffing and resourcing issues were affecting this department however road sweeper vehicles were to be converted to allow weeds to be cut when out maintaining roads.


Cllr Patrick Nicholson

Cllr Pat Patel

Letters to residents: Several residents in Plympton had received a letter from the Council threatening to remove their ability to pay their council tax or housing benefit by direct debit – would the Cabinet Member seek to review standard letters to ensure they treated customers with respect?

Response: The Cabinet Member confirmed he would instruct a review of standard letters to be undertaken.



Cllr Mark Deacon

Cllr Pat Patel

20,000 people attended SailGP 2021 with a global audience of millions, would the administration seek to bring this back for the City in 2023?

Response: Once economic data had been received for SailGP 2022 the Council would then decide whether to progress and bid for 2023.


Cllr Neil Hendy

Cllr Richard Bingley

There had been reports of taxis leaving the city centre and refusing to undertake multiple jobs for females in one complete journey. Drivers would complete one job before returning to the city centre to start the next job. Drivers had complained about the cost of fuel.

Response: The quality of taxi provision in the City had been acknowledged to be well behind compared to other cities, despite a number of hardworking drivers in the City.


The Violence Against Women and Girls (VAWG) commission had been looking at the public transport system within the city and the review would include taxi provision. There would be a violent crime audit specifically looking at protection and safeguarding, Cllr Bingley would be meeting with the Chairs of the Taxi Licensing and Licensing committees to seek way that progress could be made through the licensing process.


Cllr Bingley requested Cllr Hendy to provide more detail in the case he had highlighted so he could follow this up.



Cllr Mark Coker

Cllr Johnathan Drean

The signage of white and yellow lines had become problematic. What was the identified reason behind this and why had it taken 18 months in an accident black spot to get double yellow lines replaced?

Response: Cllr Drean had been progressing the quality of white and yellow lines in the City since the end of 2021. A second crew would be trained by South West Highways who would catch up on the work. Cllr Drean noted the problems with North Cross roundabout and Manadon roundabout. Cllr Drean would be happy to look into the issues being raised by Cllr Coker should the area had been under a Traffic Regulation Order.


Supplement – Cllr Coker had reported various incidents and had been responded to advising that it had been on a list but had not been supplied with a date in which it would be dealt with. Cllr Coker had been unable to inform residents fully.


Response: Councillor Drean would take this forward and advised Councillors that any report submitted would be responded to within 28 days.



Cllr Evans OBE

Cllr Wakeham

Trees within the Ham ward had been in close proximity of residents windows. North Prospect had few street lights and trees had been overhanging over existing street lights which had left many parts of North Prospect in darkness. When would this be sorted?

Response: Trees had been inspected on a regular basis and defects would be noted. Cllr Wakeham would respond to Cllr Evans OBE.


Supplement: Cllr Evans OBE highlighted two trees causing significant damage to a roof on one of the buildings at Riverside Business Park, could this be dealt with as a matter of urgency. 


Response: Cllr Wakeham would meet with Cllr Evans OBE to look into the issues raised.


Cllr Loveridge

Cllr Wakeham

Would grass cutting be treated as a priority around children’s play areas and cut more frequently?

Response: This would be under constant review during the season and would be reviewed further at the end of the season. 


Cllr Laing

Cllr Bingley

How had the Leader been reassuring himself that Cllr Collins and Cllr Burden had been serving residents in their respective ward properly, considering living outside of the Council boundaries. How would the Leader decide that positions are no longer tenable?

Response: Cllr Burden and Collins had been pro-active for their respective wards. Cllr Bingley re-affirmed that he had been confident that Cllrs Burden and Collins had been doing good jobs as Councillors; attending meetings, undertaking casework and Cllr Bingley informed Council he had been comfortable with the situation. 


Supplement: Would Cllr Bingley be happy should another Councillor win an election and subsequently move out of the city boundaries.


Response: Cllr Bingley would not speculate on the medium and long term.



Cllr Hulme

Cllr Drean

There had been on-going problems with pavement parking in the Ham ward. Had there been any movement on legislation?

Response: Cllr Drean shared Cllr Hulme’s frustration and had been requesting the Council’s teams to progress action against those parking on pavements. Cllr Drean had discussed a steer from Johnny Mercer MP for additional legislation. The Council team had been out in the community and issuing tickets to those that had been parking on pavements. 


Supplement: Cllr Hulme had been reporting cars parking on pavements but residents would contact back to advise nothing had been done.


Response: If cars had been parked across yellow lines, the team would be able to issue tickets. The team had been instructed to deal with this issue and Cllr Drean had been attempting to bring down powers and legislation from London. Once Cllr Drean receives timelines he would share with Cllr Hulme.



Cllr wheeler

Cllr Drean

Since Plymouth City Council’s Bus Service Improvement bid had been unsuccessful, how had plans been progressing for the provision for bus services from next October? 

Response: Council teams had been progressing this and had been in contact with operators locally to see how things could be progressed. Cllr Drean had been in contact with Johnny Mercer MP for services in the north of the city and to make representation to the Department for Transport.


Supplement: Is there still a prospect of funding and if so, is the bid plan being progressed.


Response: Cllr Drean would check with the Council team but is assured that all avenues had been attempted to improve bus services and conversations had taken place with Johnny Mercer MP for additional funding.



Cllr Singh

Cllr Bingley

Whether the process for public consultation for the road signs being reinstated at ‘Jack Leslie Square’ would be started?

Response: The Council called for a motion for public consultation on the matter. This now sits with the Courts and Cllr Bingley had been unable to comment further.


Cllr Collins

Cllr Drean

On new housing estates tarmac had not and would not be laid thick enough to enact a repair as it wouldn’t meet the 40mm policy to repair potholes, what work had been done to address this?

Response: Plymouth would be doing some trials for roads that wouldn’t meet the intervention level, once completed a review would take place as to whether this would be taken forward.



Cllr Tuffin

Cllr Shayer 

Should the Council maintain public facilities and the Corporate estate to keep people safe and prevent future costs being incurred?

Response: The Council’s responsibility would be to maintain corporate property.


Supplement: For two years Councillors had been told that the sea wall at Firestone Bay would be repaired, when would the Council be undertaking the urgent work that had been promised


Response: Cllr Shayer would enquire as to when the work would be undertaken and push forward a programme for repairs as quickly as possible




Cllr Mrs Bridgeman


Cllr Bingley



Can the Leader give an assurance that he would be treating Commitment 54 with the highest priority?


Response: Cllr Bingley re-affirmed the administration’s commitment to acquire the leasehold interests of Plymouth Airport from Sutton Harbour Holdings with the objective of making the airport operational. Quality transport links had been required by the city and there had been serious engagement from sizeable companies to have an airport and aviation services. This is a core priority but there had and continued to be a commercial and legal process under this.



Cllr Rennie


Cllr Bingley

Would a CCTV system be setup within the Sutton and Mount Gould Ward due to the increase of anti-social behaviour in the area? Would the relevant cabinet member arrange a meeting to discuss the issue with all ward members?

Response: Keeping the city and neighbourhoods safe had been and continued to be a core priority for the administration. It had been acknowledged that the city required up to date and quality CCTV which would be co-ordinated with partners and other agencies across the city within legal parameters.


Councillor Bingley would meet with all ward councillors from Sutton and Mount Gould to discuss the increasing anti-social behaviour in the area.  



Cllr Poyser

Cllr Wakeham


Could Councillors and residents feedback on suggestions regarding grass cutting schedules and other areas left for nature. Could residents become involved in managing those wildling areas.


Response: The Council would be reviewing grass cutting schedules and how the re-wilding had been progressing over the season. The Council would like to see as much wilding as possible and appropriate signage needed to be placed for those designated areas. The city of Plymouth needed to educated as much as possible on the effects of biodiversity. Wilding had never been so important due to the loss of land from the construction of new houses in the area. 


Supplement: How do residents and Councillors constructively feedback at the end of the season would be welcome.  


Response: Cllr Wakeham would listen to Cllr Poyser feedback when the review of the season took place.    


Cllr Coker

Cllr Wakeham

There had been an increase in the amount of vegetation coming out of the drains and gulley’s, what had the Cabinet Member for Environment and Street Scene and the Cabinet Member for Transport been doing to address this productively?

Response: Cllr Drean and Cllr Wakeham had been working together closely and had met out in the communities to gain more understanding of the concerns and the Council would be doing its best to combat this. 


Supplement: When would residents see action, Cllr Coker advised that he would be unable to report every drain in his area.


Response: Cllr Wakeham had a meeting arranged for the coming week and would be discussing the issues of drains at this meeting and would be doing whatever he could to fight this problem. 



Cllr Singh

Cllr Bingley

Would the Drake ward be receiving covert CCTV to aid a zero tolerance policy on fly tipping?

Response: The Leader re-affirmed his desire for a modern web based CCTV system that would cross communicate with business, Local Authority and the Police within privacy regulations. The Leader also re-affirmed the Councils favour for enforcement processes.


The Leader recommended a need to have a cross party taskforce that worked closely with the Police force that would target crime and enforcement and would create an implementation plan in conjunction with the VAWG commission implementation plan. 



Cllr Tuffin

Cllr Bingley

Residents had been complaining about noisy exhausts, would the Leader represent Council to Devon and Cornwall Police to look into this problem and prosecute where necessary. Would the Leader support Luke Pollard MP and Cllr Penberthy’s campaign to sight and install a noise camera.

Response: Cllr Bingley would conduct investigations around this technology.




Please note that questions, answers, supplementary questions and supplementary answers have been summarised.