Agenda and minutes
Venue: Council Chamber, - Swale House. View directions
Contact: Democratic Services, 01795 417330 Senior Democratic Services Officer
Fire Evacuation Procedure
The Chairman will advise the meeting of the evacuation procedures to follow in the event of an emergency. This is particularly important for visitors and members of the public who will be unfamiliar with the building and procedures.
The Chairman will inform the meeting whether there is a planned evacuation drill due to take place, what the alarm sounds like (i.e. ringing bells), where the closest emergency exit route is, and where the second closest emergency exit route is, in the event that the closest exit or route is blocked.
The Chairman will inform the meeting that:
(a) in the event of the alarm sounding, everybody must leave the building via the nearest safe available exit and gather at the Assembly points at the far side of the Car Park; and
(b) the lifts must not be used in the event of an evacuation.
Any officers present at the meeting will aid with the evacuation.
It is important that the Chairman is informed of any person attending who is disabled or unable to use the stairs, so that suitable arrangements may be made in the event of an emergency.
The Chairman drew attention to the fire evacuation procedure.
To approve the Minutes of the Meeting held on 25 October 2017 (Minute Nos. 295 - 302) as a correct record.
The Minutes of the Meeting held on 25 October 2017 (Minute Nos. 295 – 302) were taken as read, approved and signed by the Chairman as a correct record.
Declarations of Interest
Councillors should not act or take decisions in order to gain financial or other material benefits for themselves or their spouse, civil partner or person with whom they are living with as a spouse or civil partner. They must declare and resolve any interests and relationships.
The Chairman will ask Members if they have any interests to declare in respect of items on this agenda, under the following headings:
(a) Disclosable Pecuniary Interests (DPI) under the Localism Act 2011. The nature as well as the existence of any such interest must be declared. After declaring a DPI, the Member must leave the meeting and not take part in the discussion or vote. This applies even if there is provision for public speaking.
(b) Disclosable Non Pecuniary (DNPI) under the Code of Conduct adopted by the Council in May 2012. The nature as well as the existence of any such interest must be declared. After declaring a DNPI interest, the Member may stay, speak and vote on the matter.
(c) Where it is possible that a fair-minded and informed observer, having considered the facts would conclude that there was a real possibility that the Member might be predetermined or biased the Member should declare their predetermination or bias and then leave the room while that item is considered.
Advice to Members: If any Councillor has any doubt about the existence or nature of any DPI or DNPI which he/she may have in any item on this agenda, he/she should seek advice from the Monitoring Officer, the Head of Legal or from other Solicitors in Legal Services as early as possible, and in advance of the Meeting.
No interests were declared.
The Committee is asked to consider the Visitor Economy Strategy.
The Cabinet Member for Regeneration and the Economy and Community Services Manager have been invited to attend for this item.
The Chairman welcomed the Cabinet Member for Regeneration, the Interim Head of Economy and Community Services and the Economy and Community Services Manager to the meeting.
The Cabinet Member for Regeneration introduced the report and referred to the recommendations made by the Scrutiny Committee’s Leisure and Tourism Task and Finish Group. He explained that producing the document had been a complicated exercise and a number of officers across the Council had been involved. He added that the document was a framework, not a strategy, and highlighted the small tourism budget. Lastly, he explained that the pattern of tourism was changing and Swale Borough Council (SBC) wanted to lead rather than react and improved marketing and intelligence was needed. The Interim Head of Economy and Community Services said that SBC were working with a number of external partners.
The Economy and Community Services Manager explained that the framework reflected the three distinctive geographical areas in Swale; that the estuary and coastline were the main theme; and that the five year action plan would respond to the six themes within the framework as outlined on page 5 of the document.
A Member welcomed the document, which he considered had potential and included many positive aspects of the Borough, but highlighted that rural villages were not included. He asked about the Council’s current heritage strategy and how Members could become involved in encouraging tourism? In response, the Economy and Community Services Manager explained that heritage was a significant part of the economy and work was on going with Planning Services. She added that the Cambridge Model was a useful tool to monitor success and the Visit Kent website also looked at measuring specific areas.
A Member welcomed the initiative and spoke of the diverse areas in Swale. He said that marketing the area was very important and that visitors might visit Swale for a variety of reasons so more lateral thinking was required. Another Member agreed that there should be a more clear identification as many people did not know where Swale was. She added that more investment in tourism was required; suggested that cycle routes should be encouraged; and added her support that rural villages should be marketed.
The Cabinet Member for Regeneration advised that whilst there were some issues with the Visit Kent website, it provided good networks and links for only a small fee.
A Member said that the document was heading in the right direction but commented that it lacked detail and gave examples of some rural tourist attractions that could be included such as Oad Street Craft Centre, Borden. He warned that some proposed actions might require infrastructure improvements which were out of SBC’s control and asked if there had been benchmarking against other Kent districts? In response, the Cabinet Member for Regeneration advised that more work was required and there was regular monitoring of ‘hits’ on the website. The Economy and Community Services Manager advised that there had been one to one meetings with other Kent districts ... view the full minutes text for item 441.
The Committee is asked to consider the Active Lives Framework.
The Cabinet Member for Housing and Wellbeing and the Community (Sport and Physical Activity) Officer have been invited to attend for this item.
The Chairman welcomed the Cabinet Member for Housing and Wellbeing and the Community Sport and Physical Activity Officer to the meeting.
The Cabinet Member for Housing and Wellbeing introduced the report and explained that the Active Lives Framework built on the previous Sport and Physical Activity Framework (SPAF) for Swale which had expired in 2017. He added that the document was coming to the end of an 8 week consultation and highlighted the 6 objectives from the SPAF on page 4 of the document.
The Interim Head of Economies and Communities said that this was the opportunity to address some of the stark health inequalities by using assets in the Borough such as sports centres and open spaces. She added that they would be working with a variety of people, from those that did no activity at all to top athletes.
In response to a question from the Chairman, the Community Sport and Physical Activity Officer confirmed that over 200 partners linked with the Active Swale network had the opportunity to be involved in the consultation, from national governing bodies of sports and local leisure trusts to community clubs and charities. He added that there were consultation days in March 2017 and partners were invited to submit online surveys.
A Member drew attention to the out-of-date information on page 13 of the document and the Community Sport and Physical Activity Officer agreed to update the information.
A Member feared that the obesity message was getting lost as there was duplication from other organisations and said that SBC had not done enough to support sports facilities. He added that SBC should have its own initiatives and cycle paths should be included in planning applications for development. In response, the Cabinet Member for Housing and Wellbeing said that tackling obesity was a priority for many organisations and the framework was linked to the National Health Service (NHS) and Clinical Commissioning Groups to allow SBC to improve.
A Member welcomed the discussions with other organisations and highlighted the work carried out by Swale Community Leisure.
There was a discussion around the lack of budget and the Community Sport and Physical Activity Officer confirmed that funding was not being sought; the costs were only officer time and a £20k sports grant had been received. He said that the framework was looking to continue the work already being carried out and advise how to engage and get people active. In response, a Member highlighted the savings that could be made as a more active lifestyle could be less of a strain on the NHS. The Cabinet Member for Housing and Wellbeing advised that they were working closely with the NHS and monitoring referrals that should save money in the long term.
The Interim Head of Economies and Communities clarified that funding to improve the Active Lives website was from an underspend.
In response to a question from a Member on why there was no mention of disabled sports and activities, the Cabinet Member for Housing ... view the full minutes text for item 442.
The Committee is asked to review and discuss the Committee’s Work Programme (attached) for the remainder of the year.
The Policy and Performance Officer drew attention to the updated work programme and advised that an additional Policy Development and Review Committee meeting might be required.
Adjournment of Meeting
The meeting was adjourned at 9.04pm and reconvened at 9.10pm.
Suspension of Standing Orders
At 10pm Members agreed to the suspension of Standing Orders in order that the Committee could complete its business.