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Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Council Chamber - Swale House. View directions

Contact: Democratic Services, 01795 417330  Democratic Services Officer

No. Item

Audio Recording


Emergency 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.  Nobody must leave the assembly point until everybody can be accounted for and nobody must return to the building until the Chairman has informed them that it is safe to do so; 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 emergency evacuation procedure.


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.


Housing Delivery Test Action Plan pdf icon PDF 61 KB

The Cabinet is asked to agree the Housing Delivery Test Action Plan, which has been updated following consideration by the Local Plan Panel at its meeting on 25 July 2019.


(Report added 31 July 2019).



Additional documents:


The Leader introduced the item by referring to the discussion at the Local Plan Panel meeting on 25 July 2019.  He explained that the extraordinary meeting of the Cabinet had been convened to ensure that the Plan could be considered by Cabinet prior to the deadline for its submission to the Secretary of State. 


The Deputy Leader outlined the report, advising that the Council was required to produce the document as it had scored below 95% in the Government’s Housing Delivery Test.  The Plan set out the Council’s position;  how the Council was trying to meet the target; and the problems that the Council faced in doing this.  He encouraged Members to support the Plan.


A Member welcomed the report but questioned the actions the Council was taking and the risks involved in not meeting the target.  The Leader responded by saying that all Kent Councils were in a similar position in terms of not meeting housing targets and so he considered it was unlikely that the Government would intervene.  He also spoke of the need to comply with the allocations in the Local Plan, and referred to market conditions which prevented new houses from being built.


The Deputy Leader drew attention to the need to look at alternative options, and referred to the visits being made to view Park Homes. 


Another Member asked for the axis in the graphs to be clearly labelled and suggested that more reference should be made to ‘land banking’, however, it was suggested that in some circumstances developments with planning permission were not built as they were not considered viable by developers.


Another Member advised of some factual corrections to the Plan, referring to paragraph 3.26 which referred to Moat Housing instead of Moat Homes, and advised that the site hadn’t been remediated yet.  The Leader asked Officers to amend the Plan to correct this.


In response to comments made during the debate, the Head of Planning Services advised that there were only around four or five volume house builders operating within the area and they would usually operate with one opening, at best two, on a site in any one year delivering 50 to 75 dwellings.




(1) That the content of the Action Plan as appended to the report (incorporating amendments suggested by the Local Plan Panel and as outlined in the above Minute) be agreed for submission to the Secretary of State by the deadline of 19 August 2019.



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