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Agenda and minutes

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No. Item


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 22 March 2018 (Minute Nos. 561 - 571) as a correct record.



The Minutes of the Meeting held on 22 March 2018 (Minute Nos. 561 – 571) 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.


Presentation by the Waste Team pdf icon PDF 42 KB

The Cabinet Member for Environmental and Rural Affairs and the Head of Commissioning and Customer Contact have been invited to attend for this item.


The Chairman welcomed the Cabinet Member for Environment and Rural Affairs, the Interim Head of Commissioning and Customer Contact, and the Senior Contracts Monitoring Officer to the meeting.


The Cabinet Member reminded Members that the collection of waste was the responsibility of Swale Borough Council (SBC) but the disposal of waste was a matter for Kent County Council (KCC).  He spoke of the benefits of the Mid Kent Waste Partnership with Maidstone, Ashford and KCC, and the tremendous efforts that were made to provide the waste collection service although there was always room for improvement.


The Interim Head of Commissioning and Customer Contact gave a presentation on waste collection, focusing in particular on recycling as this was an area where Key Performance Indicators had been of concern to Members.


The presentation covered:


·        national policy and focus, referring to the increasing importance and emphasis on recycling following the Blue Planet series; the recycling targets for 45% kerbside collection to be recycled by 2015 and 50% by 2020; and the success of national schemes such as the introduction of a charge for carrier bags. 


·        the arrangements in place across the county which gave opportunities for good practice to be shared; the areas that KCC were responsible for, namely Household Waste Recycling Centres and transfer stations.  The presentation also identified the ‘end destinations’ for waste collected under the SBC service.


·        The reasons why the recycling performance statistics were low in 2013 and the steady improvements that had been made since that time (except for a slight dip in 2015/16)  with partnership arrangements and a new contract, as well as a new post of Environmental Projects Officer to focus on educational campaigns to promote recycling in a variety of ways and to different groups.


·        Food waste recycling had been introduced in 2014 and the garden waste service, which subscribers paid an additional £37 a year for, had increased from approximately 7000 in 2013, to over 13,000 now.


·        Statistics to compare SBC to other authorities in Kent which showed that the recycling rate for SBC was 43%, which was below the target for 2017/18.  The target was to reach 50% by 2020.


·        The issues and setbacks that had led to the current performance indicator being under-target which included closure of recycling sites; the days on which public holidays fell during the year (mainly Christmas); inclement weather and contamination of recycling.


·        The measures that were being taken to address this, which included a waste and recycling communications plan; a focus on reducing contamination as well as encouraging recycling; the promotion of the garden waste service; consideration of changing collection methods in areas not currently on a wheeled bin system; and learning from other authorities.


Members were then invited to ask questions, the responses to which are summarised below.


Household waste and recycling sites – these were managed by KCC, and Swale was fortunate to have three sites in the Borough, although the goods taken there for recycling were not included in SBC’s recycling statistics.  Suggestions were  ...  view the full minutes text for item 614.


Reviews at Follow-up Stage and Log of Recommendations pdf icon PDF 187 KB

The Committee is asked to review the updated log of recommendations (attached).






The Policy and Performance Officer introduced the report, and suggested that recommendation 3 of the Sittingbourne Town Centre (STC) Regeneration review could be marked as implemented, given that regular updates were being provided.


In respect of the Housing Services review, the Policy and Performance Officer advised that there were no updates, but there were several new strategies due to be considered by the Cabinet (as set out on the Forward Plan).  The notes on the Leisure and Tourism review had been updated, following the discussion at the last meeting of the Committee.


Sittingbourne Town Centre Regeneration Review


There was some discussion as to whether the updates given were comprehensive enough, and the Chairman reminded Members that they had the opportunity to ask questions of the Cabinet Member, officers and representatives from the Spirit of Sittingbourne when they attended meetings. 


Members also referred to the information requested at the last Committee meeting, in particular the critical path analysis/timetable of the scheme, the GANTT chart and how would SBC manage the assets? As the information had not been provided, it was agreed that this would be followed up.


Leisure and Tourism Review


Members asked for the relevant Cabinet Member and officers to be invited to the next meeting, to give an update regarding progress of the implementation of the recommendations, in particular which of the recommendations were being incorporated into the Leisure and Tourism Plan.


Housing Services Review


Members asked for the relevant Cabinet Member and officers to be invited to the next meeting, to give a further update with progress on the implementation of the recommendations, in particular recommendation 7 as Members had not been provided with a copy of the letter referred to.



Other Review Progress Reports

The Committee is asked to consider updates on other reviews.


Development Management


The Chairman reminded Members that this was due to be submitted to Cabinet on 30 May 2018, and the Cabinet would give their response at a subsequent Cabinet Meeting.


Other Regeneration Projects


The Task and Finish Group was due to meet on 26 April 2018.  During discussion on this item, the Democratic and Electoral Services Manager agreed to seek clarification regarding the advice for Members on use of email addresses and personal email addresses.







Cabinet Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 90 KB

The Committee is asked to consider the Forward Plan with a view to identifying possible items for pre-decision scrutiny.


In response to a question, Members were advised that the report on Shellness Local Council Tax Discount would be removed from the Forward Plan.  It was also confirmed that the Discretionary Housing Payment Policy had been discussed by the Policy Development and Review Committee on 10 April 2018.


Urgent Business Requests

The Committee is asked to consider any requests from Committee Members to commence a review.


There were no urgent business requests.


Committee Work Programme

The Committee is asked to note the Committee’s Work Programme for the remainder of the year:


 - proposed review of infrastructure.


The Chairman sought views from Members regarding the proposed review of infrastructure for public utilities.


It was agreed that the review should start with water, given the problems experienced earlier in the year, and the review should look at how services could be safeguarded for the future and how they responded to emergencies.


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