Agenda and minutes

Cabinet - Monday, 21st February, 2022 6.00 pm

Venue: 0.02, The Chamber, Quadrant, The Silverlink North, Cobalt Business Park, NE27 0BY

Contact: Yvonne Harrison  Email: democraticsupport@northtyneside.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

CAB94/21

To Receive any Declarations of Interest and Notification of any Dispensations Granted

You are invited to declare any registerable and/or non-registerable interests in matters appearing on the agenda, and the nature of that interest.

 

You are also invited to disclose any dispensation in relation to any registerable and/or non-registerable interests that have been granted to you in respect of any matters appearing on the agenda.

 

Please complete the Declarations of Interests card available at the meeting and return it to the Democratic Services Officer before leaving the meeting.

 

Minutes:

Councillor S Graham declared a registerable personal interest in agenda Item 11: North Tyneside Trading Company-Strategic Business Plan 2021-2025 (CAB103/22), as she was a Director of North Tyneside Trading Company Limited and its subsidiaries.

 

Councillor C Johnson declared a registerable personal interest in agenda Item 11: North Tyneside Trading Company-Strategic Business Plan 2021-2025 (CAB103/22), as he was a Director of North Tyneside Trading Company Limited and its subsidiaries.

 

CAB95/21

Minutes

To confirm the minutes of the meetings held on the 24 January 2022 (Ordinary meeting), 31 January 2022 (Extraordinary meeting), and 7 February 2022 (Extraordinary meeting) (previously circulated).

Minutes:

Resolved that the Minutes of the previous meetings held on 24 January (Ordinary Meeting), 31 January and 7 February 2022 (Extraordinary Meetings) be confirmed and signed by the Chair.

 

CAB96/21

Report of the Young Mayor

To receive a verbal report on the latest activities of the Young

Mayor and Young Cabinet.

Minutes:

In the absence of the Young Mayor who was unable to attend the meeting, it was agreed that her report would be noted and circulated to all parties for information.

 

The Elected Mayor took the opportunity to praise the work of the young people for their amazing work.

 

CAB97/21

Determination of School Admission Arrangements September 2023 pdf icon PDF 245 KB

To seek approval for the proposed admission arrangements for all Community Schools in North Tyneside for the 2023/2024 academic year including the

co-ordinated admissions schemes.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a report detailing the proposed admission arrangements for all Community Schools in North Tyneside for the 2023/2024 academic year including the coordinated admissions schemes.

 

All Local Authorities were required to formulate and consult on a scheme for each academic year for co-ordinating admission arrangements for all maintained schools within their area.   Co-ordinated schemes were intended to simplify the admission process for parents whilst reducing the likelihood of any child being left without a school place.  Co-ordination established a mechanism that ensured that, as far as was practicable, every child living in a Local Authority (LA) area who had applied in the normal admissions round received one, and only one, offer of a school place on the same day.  While it was for each LA to decide the scheme that best suited its residents and its schools, authorities must ensure that they:

 

a)    complied with law and regulations, including all the process requirements; and

b)    did not disadvantage applications to their schools from families resident in other local authorities.

 

The Scheme applied to applications received from September 2022 for entry into maintained schools in September 2023. The School Admissions (Admission Arrangements and Co-ordination of Admission Arrangements) (England) Regulations 2012 required the LA to exchange specified information on applications with neighbouring Authorities.

 

The purpose of the Scheme was to co-ordinate admissions into all mainstream maintained first and primary, middle and high schools in North Tyneside. The Regulations also placed a duty on all local authorities to make arrangements within their Scheme for cross-Authority border co-ordination of admissions.  The Co-ordinated Admissions Schemes were attached as Appendices 1 and 2 to the report. 

 

All schools had to have an admission number for each ‘relevant age group’. Admission Authorities of maintained schools must set admission numbers with regard to the capacity assessment for the school under the Regulations.  The Planned Admission Numbers were detailed in Appendix 3 to the report.

 

Pupils would be able to go to their preferred school unless there were more applications to that school than there were places available. If there were more applications than places available at a school, oversubscription criteria would be used to allocate places after any children with a Statement of Special Educational Needs or an Education, Health and Care Plan had been provided for where the Statement or the Education, Health and Care Plan named a specific school.  Admissions Policies for admission to North Tyneside Community Schools and Nurseries for which the Local Authority was the Admissions Authority; and the oversubscription criteria used by the LA where there were more applications than places available were set out in Appendices 4 and 5 to the report.

 

Where a secondary school operated a sixth form and admitted pupils from other schools at age 16, for instance, an admission number would be required for Year 12 as well as for the main year or years. Admission numbers must refer to pupils being admitted to the school for the first time and not transferring from earlier age groups.  ...  view the full minutes text for item CAB97/21

CAB98/21

Proposed Acceptable Use of Authority Owned Land Policy pdf icon PDF 237 KB

To seek approval for the development of a new borough wide policy to outline how permission to use Authority owned land can be applied for and to set out the various activities that will be prohibited or restricted on land owned by the Authority.

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a report seeking approval for the development of a new Borough wide Policy to outline how permission to use Authority owned land can be applied for and to set out the various activities that would be prohibited or restricted on land owned by the Authority.

 

The Authority’s Strategic Property Team had noted a considerable increase in enquiries to use land owned by the Authority for miscellaneous activities. There had also been a correlated rise in Members Enquiries and complaints from members of the public about inappropriate activities taking place in public open spaces such as beaches and parks that are owned by the Authority.  An example was the noticeable increase in the use of drones at St Mary’s Lighthouse Nature Reserve, which is part owned by the Authority and classed as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) by Natural England. This increase had caused multiple disturbances and a potential danger to wildlife. Other activities such as balloon and sky lantern releases could be harmful to the environment and can also pose a fire risk.

 

It was therefore appropriate for the Authority to consider the implementation of a borough wide Policy that would set out how individuals could apply for permission to use Authority owned land where appropriate, and the factors that would be taken into account when assessing such applications, as well as specifying the activities that would not be permitted on Authority owned land.

 

An officer working group was established in response to a number of activities of concern who were working together to draw up a draft Policy. The service areas represented on the Group, including the Community and Public Space Protection Team, had examples of activities that had been brought to their attention either by Members, or members of the public, in addition to those that officers had observed themselves, which could be considered inappropriate and unacceptable for a number of reasons. Those reasons could include health and safety issues, potential damage to property as well as environmental and wildlife issues.  Examples of the activities that would be considered as part of the development of the Policy and that would be consulted on (if considered appropriate) as activities that would either be prohibited or restricted include: -

 

·         Use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) or drones on SSSI sites (unless approved by the Authority and Natural England)

·         Setting off fireworks/firework displays

·         The release of balloons and/or sky lanterns

·         Camping

·         Bonfires or firepits

·         The riding or racing of quadbikes and/or motorbikes

·         Metal detecting

 

The officer working group would continue to formulate the draft Policy and consult with the Deputy Mayor before it was published and made available for public consultation. The working group, amongst other things, were considering the following principles when shaping the draft policy and considering whether the activities such as those listed above are likely to: -

 

·         Disturb wildlife

·         Damage the environment

·         Reduce the value of an asset

·         Be considered as anti-social or cause a nuisance to the general public

 

If there was  ...  view the full minutes text for item CAB98/21

CAB99/21

Delivering 5,000 Affordable Homes and Reducing Derelict Properties in North Tyneside pdf icon PDF 610 KB

To receive progress of phase one delivering in 2021/22 and the planned delivery for 2022/2023 to deliver 4,000 affordable homes by 2032; and

formally request the North Tyneside Trading Company Limited and its subsidiaries to consider options to support the Authority’s priorities within the Our North Tyneside Council Plan and increase their delivery of affordable homes and support the reduction of derelict properties.

 

 

Minutes:

Cabinet received a report on progress of phase one delivery in 2021/22 and the planned delivery for 2022/23 to deliver 4,000 affordable homes by 2032: and to formally request the North Tyneside Trading Company Limited and its subsidiaries to consider options to support the Authority’s priorities within the Our North Tyneside Council Plan and increase their delivery of affordable homes and support the reduction of derelict properties.

 

The Affordable Homes Programme (AHP) was approved by Cabinet on the 14 May 2013 and by the end of 2021/22 would have delivered over 1,900 new affordable homes across North Tyneside.  In January 2021, the Mayor and Cabinet set out their policy intentions by increasing the AHP target to 4,000 affordable homes by 2032. This included a new ten-year Authority delivery plan called ‘Supporting the Ambition for the Borough through Housing Growth’ that would see the Authority invest circa £50m and directly deliver an additional 350 new homes.  The ‘Our North Tyneside Plan’ approved by full Council in November 2021, included within it as a priority the delivery by the Authority of “5,000 affordable homes” and a plan to “reduce the number of derelict properties”.  

 

The need for more affordable housing was clear. The Strategic Housing Market Assessment (SHMA) 2014 provided a robust evidence base on the level of housing need within the Borough, including the need for affordable housing.  In addition, the Affordable Housing Needs Assessment tool brings together a range of information (e.g., SHMA, Census data, Market Position Statement, demand from the Authority’s housing register) and was used to assess the type and size of affordable housing needed across the Borough.  The current AHP had been a success, and by end of 2021/22 would have delivered over 1,900 new affordable homes in eight years which constituted a 135% improvement on the ten years prior to the programme starting.

 

The Authority had an outstanding track record of building high-quality homes with all homes built above the current Decent Homes Standard and Building Regulations, utilising a fabric first approach. Alongside new build development, the Authority also prioritised bringing back long-term empty homes into use as affordable homes. This approach, coupled with the Authority working with private landlords, had been a significant success, with the number of long-term empty properties reducing from 1,326 in January 2019 to 912 in September 2021.  Acting in a strategic enabling role, the Authority had successfully worked with a wide range of partners including Homes England, Registered Providers (RPs) and developers to meet a range of housing needs, including the needs of vulnerable groups. 

 

North Tyneside Trading Company (Development) Ltd had continued to invest in affordable housing using “Section106” funding the Authority has available. The Company had used a purchasing strategy since 2018, to buy homes in-line with housing need to let at an affordable rent from the open market. This strategy had been successful with the Company now owning 73 affordable homes with firm plans to bring its asset base up to 100 homes in 2022.

 

The Authority  ...  view the full minutes text for item CAB99/21

CAB100/21

An Ambition for North Tyneside - update pdf icon PDF 355 KB

To receive an update on the delivery of the Council’s ‘Ambition for North Tyneside’ as a framework for the regeneration of the borough in line with the then Our North Tyneside Plan.

 

Minutes:

Cabinet received an update report on the delivery of the Council’s ‘Ambition for North Tyneside’ which was agreed by Cabinet on the 26 November 2018 as a framework for the regeneration of the of the borough in line with the then Our North Tyneside Plan.

 

An Ambition for North Tyneside considered the borough as four areas namely:

 

·         The South West area around Wallsend, including the communities who lived in Howdon, Willington Quay, Hadrian Park, High Farm and Battle Hill;

 

·         The North West including Benton and Longbenton, Forest Hall and Killingworth, Dudley, Weetslade, Burradon, Camperdown and Fordley;

 

·         The North East area around Whitley Bay, including Monkseaton and Earsdon, Shiremoor, Backworth and West Allotment; and

 

·         The South East area around North Shields, including Cullercoats and Tynemouth, Chirton and Percy Main.

 

The Elected Mayor and Cabinet’s ambitions for the Borough were set out in the Our North Tyneside Plan.  Specific commitments had been made and were being met in terms of a thriving, family-friendly, caring, secure and green promises.

 

To deliver the ambition and pay for delivery, the Authority had allocated £2m per year for five years (2021-26) through its budget setting process.  This had enabled the Authority to use this as ‘match funding’ and attract external funding from the North of the Tyne Combined Authority, the North East Local Enterprise Partnership, Government and the private sector.

           

The report explained in more detail progress that had been made on the Elected Mayor and Cabinet’s ambitions for each part of the Borough. It sets out what had been achieved over the last 12 months, what was currently planned and what would happen next (subject to funding) and what the Authority would do if it could and when it could.

 

An update was last provided to the Cabinet in September 2020.  Since then, the Deputy Mayor and officers had been working closely with a range of partners to unlock potential and opportunity. In summary, the following had been delivered:

 

·         In North Shields the Authority acquired the former Co-op building and had prepared it for demolition.

 

·         The Authority also acquired and demolished the Unicorn House office building which would be brought forward for new family housing.

 

·         Work had commenced improving the public realm in Northumberland Square and on Howard Street.

 

·         Planning Applications had now been for a new transport hub in North Shields and a walkway between the Town Centre and Fish Quay.

 

·         Supported North Shields Fish Quay Development Company and the Port of Tyne to begin work to repair and extend the Protection Jetty.

 

·         In Whitley Bay the Authority continued work on the Northern Promenade with works around the Rendezvous Café.

 

·         In Wallsend the Authority had continued to work with the new owners of the Swan Hunter Site (Shepherd Offshore Limited) to bring the site forward for employment purposes.

 

·         The Authority had also completed the refurbishment of residential properties in Charlotte Street, Wallsend which had seen them brought forward for family housing following their acquisition from a private landlord.

 

In the next  ...  view the full minutes text for item CAB100/21

CAB101/21

Aligning Child Arrangements Order Allowances, Adoption Order Allowances and Special Guardianship Allowances pdf icon PDF 431 KB

To seek approval for an updated policy for the calculation and payment of Child Arrangements Order Allowances and Adoption Order Allowances.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a report which sought approval of the Aligning Child Arrangements

Order Allowances, Adoption Order Allowances and Special Guardianship Allowances.

 

Child Arrangements Orders (which replaced Contact Orders and Residence Orders) secured a child’s living arrangement with a connected person and would provide the holder with parental responsibility to be shared with anyone else who held parental responsibility such as birth parents. These orders were an alternative to adoption and long-term foster care or residential care and allowed the child to have contact with their birth family. 

 

Special Guardianship Orders secured a child’s living arrangement with a connected person, and primary parental responsibility was given to the Special Guardians however, parental responsibility would be retained by anyone else who held it.  These orders were an alternative to adoption and long-term foster care or residential care and allowed the child to have contact with their birth family. Special Guardianship Orders were accompanied by an additional support plan for which the Authority is responsible for. 

 

Adoption Orders allowed a child to legally become part of the adoptive family, with parental responsibility removed from birth parents and given to the adoptive parents.  From a legal perspective, the Authority had a duty to financially assess Special Guardians and ‘may’ assess carers in receipt of Child Arrangements Order Allowances or Adoption Order Allowances.  There was therefore no legal requirement to revise the allowances however, there was no legal barrier to doing so either.  The current method for assessing Child Arrangements Order Allowances and Adoption Order Allowances was dependent on the specific qualities / needs of the child, which could be a subjective assessment.  For example, in the case of trauma resulting in the need for ongoing therapeutic support, or how a disability impacted the child and family. 

 

Unequal provision of financial support, coupled with an additional support plan, was likely to result in increased applications for Special Guardianship Orders, where a Child Arrangements Order would be more appropriate to meet the needs of the child and maintain shared parental responsibility.  Delivering extra support plans would have both a financial and resource impact on the Authority.   To ensure financial equality between carers and children subject to Child Arrangements Orders and Adoption Orders in North Tyneside,the Authority required a clearly defined assessment process which aligned allowances and strengthens support given to carers and adoptive parents by revising criteria to ensure it was based upon a means tested calculation.

 

The Authority’s current policy Residence Orders and Residence Order Allowances Operational Guidance (April 2011) was out of date as Child Arrangements Orders had now replaced Residence Orders.  This allowance was means tested against the cost of an average family taken from the National Family Expenditure Survey.  Any allowance paid by the Authority was up to two-thirds of the recommended rate for a child suggested by Fostering Network (which was the equivalent of the assessment of the cost of caring for a child within a family) and was payable on a sliding scale dependent on the outcome of the  ...  view the full minutes text for item CAB101/21

CAB102/21

Exclusion Resolution

This is to give further notice in accordance with paragraphs 5(4) and 5(5) of the Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Meetings and Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2012 of the intention to consider items (11) and (12) below in private.

 

Cabinet is requested to consider passing the following resolution:

 

Resolved that under Section 100A (4) of the Local Government Act1972 (as amended) and having applied a public interest test as defined in Part 3 of Schedule 12A of the Act, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Act.

 

Reasons for taking the items in private: The reports in items (11) and (12) below contain information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding the information).

 

 

Minutes:

Resolved that under Section 100A (4) of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended) and having applied a public interest test as defined in Part 3 of Schedule 12A of the Act, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraph 3 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Act.

 

 

 

CAB103/21

North Tyneside Trading Company - Strategic Business Plan 2021-2025

To seek approval for the North Tyneside Company – Strategic Business Plan

2021-2025.

 

Minutes:

Cabinet considered a report seeking approval to the North Tyneside Trading Company – Strategic Business Plan 2021-2025.

 

The North Tyneside Trading Company was established in December 2012 and through its subsidiaries, Aurora Affordable Homes and Aurora Properties, had continued to support the Authority’s Strategic Priorities of delivering affordable homes and supporting key regeneration projects across the borough, at no additional cost to the Authority.

 

A new “Our North Tyneside Plan” was approved in September 2021 and it was important the Trading Company’s Strategic Business plan was aligned to this new ambitious Council Plan.  The Plan attached as Appendix 1 to the report demonstrated how the Trading Company would do this.

 

Cabinet considered the following decision options: to accept the recommendations set out in paragraph 1.2 of the report, or alternatively, to not approve the recommendations.

 

Resolved that The North Tyneside Company’s Strategic Business Plan 2021-2025, be approved.

 

(Reasons for decision:  It will support the delivery of the Elected Mayor and Cabinet’s commitments within the “Our North Tyneside Plan” to deliver more quality affordable homes, tackle derelict properties and support the ambition for North Tyneside to be carbon neutral by 2030.)

 

 

CAB104/21

131 Bedford Street, North Shields

To seek approval to declare land at 131 Bedford Street, North Shields, surplus to the Authority’s requirements and to make it available for freehold sale for development.

 

 

Minutes:

Cabinet considered report which sought approval for the disposal of the land at 131 Bedford Street, North Shields and to declare the land shown on the plan (within the area in dark outline) attached at Appendix 1 to the report, surplus to the Authority’s requirement and agree the sale subject to the main terms detailed in section 1.5.3 of the report.

Cabinet considered the following decision options: to accept the recommendations as set out in paragraph 1.2 of the report, or alternatively, to not approve the recommendations.

 

Resolved that (1) the land at 131 Bedford Street, North Shields on the property plan (within the area in dark outline) attached at Appendix 1 to the report, be declared surplus to the Authority’s requirements and the sale of it to Bidder 2, subject to the main terms detailed in Section 1.5 of the report, be approved;

(2) the Director of Commissioning and Asset Management, be authorised to agree any reasonable revisions to the terms of the sale of the Property in consultation with the Elected Mayor, the Director of Resources and the Director of Law and Governance;

(3) the Director of Law and Governance, be authorised to negotiate a sale contract, together with associated documents and complete the freehold transfer of the Property in accordance with all relevant legal requirements, the Authority’s Constitution and Financial Regulations, and;

(4) the Director of Commissioning and Asset Management, be authorised to deal with all ancillary matters arising that are consistent with the preceding recommendations.

(Reason for decision: It is considered to be the best way to ensure that the Property is brought back into a beneficial use which complements the Authority’s ambition to create a cultural quarter in this part of North Shields.)

 

CAB105/21

Date and Time of Next Meeting

Monday 28 March 2022 at 6.00pm.

Minutes:

6.00pm on Monday 28 March 2022.