Agenda and minutes

County Council - Thursday, 29th March, 2012 10.00 am

Venue: Council Chamber, Sessions House, County Hall, Maidstone

Contact: Peter Sass  01622 694002


No. Item


Apologies for Absence

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The Director of Governance and Law reported apologies from the following Members:


Mr Chris Capon

Mr Keith Ferrin

Mr Tom Gates

Mr Richard King

Mr John Kirby

Mr Richard Pascoe

Mr Malcolm Robertson

Mrs Julie Rook

Mr James Scholes

Mr Martin Vye


Declarations of Interest

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(1)               Mr Cowan declared a personal interest as a registered foster carer for KCC should this relate to any items that may come up during the meeting.


(2)               Ms A Hohler declared a personal interest in Item 12 (Petition Scheme Debate: Grammar School for Sevenoaks) as some of the petitioner’s children were at school with her children and her children attend grammar schools locally.


(3)               Mr Gough declared a personal interest in Item 9 (Health Inequalities Action Plan) as a co-opted Member of the Kent and Medway NHS Cluster Board.


Minutes of the meeting held on 9 February 2012 and, if in order, to be approved as a correct record pdf icon PDF 111 KB

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Resolved: that the minutes of the meetings held on Thursday, 9 February 2012, be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.


Chairman’s Announcements

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(a)       Death of Edwin Boorman Esq OBE DL


The Chairman informed Members of the death of Edwin R P Boorman Esq OBE DL.  Mr Boorman was well known within the County for his roles as managing director, chief executive, chairman and president of the family-owned Kent Messenger Group, which owns a portfolio of weekly newspapers, websites and radio stations across Kent.  He was also a tireless charity champion, supporting many of the County’s leading charities.  He was particularly well known for his support and leadership of the Royal British Legion and in fact received an OBE in 2002 for his services to them. 


Mr Boorman served as High Sheriff of Kent in 1997-98, became a Deputy Lieutenant of Kent in 2001 and also served as a Kent Ambassador.  He received the Spirit of Kent Award from HRH The Prince of Wales in 2007 in recognition of his contribution to the County.


Mr A King and Mr Daley gave tributes to Mr Boorman.


At the end of the tributes, all Members stood in silence in memory of Mr Boorman.


After the silence, it was moved by the Chairman, seconded by Mr A King and:


Resolved unanimously: that this Council desires to record the sense of loss it feels on the sad passing of Mr Edwin Boorman and extends to his family and friends our heartfelt sympathy to them in their sad bereavement.


(b)       Kent Invicta Award


The Chairman stated that, later in the meeting, it would be her great pleasure to present the 2012 Kent Invicta Award to Radio Kent’s John Warnett and that she envisaged the Awards Ceremony beginning at approximately 12.45pm.


(c)        Customer Service Strategy


The Chairman advised Members that members of staff from the Customer Relationship team would be in the Darent Room and on the balcony during lunch to talk through the themes of the Customer Services Strategy with Members.


(d)       Timing of speeches and possible extension of the meeting


The Chairman stated that she would like if possible to conclude the business on the agenda by 4.30pm, but that she wanted to ensure that as many Members as possible had the opportunity to speak on the governance report (item 7) and the three petitions from members of the public. She therefore proposed and Mr Carter seconded that, with the exception of the speeches on the Leader’s oral report (item 6) and the Cabinet Members’ responses to the Petition debates (item 12), speeches on all remaining items were limited to 3 minutes, instead of the usual 5 minutes.



(e)       Election of Committee Chairmen


The Chairman advised Members that, subject to the approval of the report on revised governance arrangements at item 7 on the agenda, there would be a number of formal Committee meetings on the rising of the County Council meeting for the sole purpose of electing chairmen for the new Committees.  She requested that all Members remain in the Council Chamber after the close of business so that these meetings could take  ...  view the full minutes text for item 106.


Questions pdf icon PDF 41 KB

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Under Procedure Rule 1.18 (4), 8 questions were asked and replies given.


Report by Leader of the Council (Oral)

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(1)       The Leader stated that it was his great pleasure to announce that the Head of Finance was predicting an outturn under spend for the financial year 2011/12 of over £12m.  He stated that equally as important, the quality of our services had been preserved and enhanced with significant improvements in Highways and Children’s Services being just two examples.


(2)       He focussed on the outturn of the Council’s capital programme over the last three/four years.  He stated that this was an immensely complex programme including Building Schools for the Future contracts, PFI contracts, Academy contracts, entrepreneurial land swaps, acquisitions and sales.  Over the last three/four years of the capital programme, the investment programme had been over £1bn with projects delivered very much on time and on budget such as Turner Contemporary and the Ashford, Sevenoaks and Gravesham Libraries.  There had also been a massive investment in the school improvement programme; new special, primary, high and wide ability schools but there had been a markedly lower proportion of money going into grammar schools.  Of the 30 new secondary schools that had been delivered, only one has been a grammar school, Dane Court in Thanet, and he felt that it was time to invest a little bit in the grammar school estate in West Kent.


(3)       The Leader announced that in recent weeks KCC had received over £30m of the money deposited in Iceland, with the officers and advisers expecting the recovery of all of the remaining outstanding balance.


(4)       He stated that as the authority moved into the new financial year, there were ambitious plans and solutions to deliver a challenging medium term budget very much embracing the principles of localism and community based budgeting, joined up, customer focused, coherent customer service, free markets and open competition.  He also spoke about the health commission work in Dover and Shepway joining up health and social care as a good example of community based budgeting.


(5)       He also spoke about the campaign to support more young people into employment – ‘Kent Jobs for Kent Young People’ an intensive marketing campaign, aimed at getting employers, both from the private and public sector, to open their doors, offering more young people apprenticeships and long term employment opportunities.  The aim was to create 1000 new jobs opportunities for young people in Kent.


(6)       He spoke about the launch of the £35m Regional Growth Fund stating that this was a massive opportunity to support and grow the East Kent business economy.  He explained that the message would be simple, ‘Want to grow a business?  We are here to help with significant enterprise loans/grants and business support’ with the ambition being to create 5000 jobs over the medium term.


(7)       Finally, he stated that he looked forward to the new financial year ahead with optimism and realism and delivering an ambitious agenda to the residents of Kent.


New Governance Arrangements for Kent County Council pdf icon PDF 260 KB

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(1)               Mr Carter proposed, Mr A King seconded that the Council agree the recommendations as set out below:


(a)       approve the proposals for the implementation of the new governance arrangements as described in this report, including the disbandment of the Policy Overview and Scrutiny Committee suite with effect from 31 March 2012 and the creation of the new Cabinet Committees and the Scrutiny Committee suite from 1 April 2012;


(b)       having considered the recommendations of the Independent Remuneration Panel, to formally adopt the Members’ Allowances Scheme for the period 1 April 2012 to the Annual Council meeting in May 2013, as set out in Appendix 12 to this report;


(c)        ask the Selection and Member Services Committee to develop a new Annual Review template and process in consultation with the three Group Leaders and the Head of Democratic Services and then share with the Independent Remuneration Panel before submitting to the County Council for approval


(d)       note on the Independent Remuneration Panel and Standards Committee’s views on the proposed changes to the Member Role Descriptions and approve them accordingly;


(e)       delegate authority to the Monitoring Officer to make any consequential changes to the Constitution necessary to implement the new governance arrangements from 1 April 2012;


(f)         agree:


(i)                 that KCC will be the lead authority for the Police and Crime Panel (PCP) for the purposes of planning and delivery of the PCP’s work programme


(ii)               the provision of accommodation and officer support, as described in paragraph 5(5) of the report


(iii)             that a Shadow PCP be established by July 2012


(iv)              that KCC, in consultation with Medway Council, draft the procedure rules and panel arrangements for the PCP for discussion and refinement by the Shadow PCP, with a view to reporting back the detailed operating arrangements to a future meeting of the Kent Forum for endorsement, subject to each local authority approving this via their own decision-making processes at the appropriate time; and


(v)                the establishment of the Police and Crime Panel for Kent as a formal Joint Committee with Medway Council and the 12 District Councils in Kent, and note that the Panel will have two independent members appointed following a public advert.


(2)               Following a debate on the new governance arrangements Mrs Dean proposed, and Mr Carter agreed that a separate vote be taken on recommendations a) and b).


(3)       The Chairman put to the vote the two separate recommendations as set out in (1) a) and b) above, when the voting was as follows:


For (60)


Mrs A Allen, Mr M Angell, Mr R Bayford, Mr A Bowles, Mr D Brazier, Mr R Brookbank, Mr R Bullock, Mr R Burgess, Miss S Carey, Mr P Carter, Mr A Chell, Mr N Collor, Mr G Cooke, Mr B Cope, Mr H Craske, Mr A Crowther, Mr J Cubitt, Mrs V Dagger, Mr M Dance, Mr J Davies, Mr G Gibbens, Mr R Gough, Mr W Hayton, Mr C Hibberd, Mr M Hill, Mr D Hirst, Ms A  ...  view the full minutes text for item 109.


Kent Safeguarding Children Board - Overview Update Report [March 2012] and Annual Report 2010-11 pdf icon PDF 51 KB

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(1)       Mrs Whittle proposed, Mr Lake seconded that the Council agree the recommendations in the report as follows:


(a)               comment on the progress that has been made since the inspection and the challenges that remain in relation to performance management, project management and business planning;

(b)               note Business plan priorities for 2012/13 KSCB Business Plan as outlined in the progress report; and

(c)               note the 2010-11 Annual report


(2)       The Chairman put to the vote the above recommendations and all Members voted unanimously in their agreement.


Resolved: that the recommendations as set out above be approved.


Health Inequalities Action Plan pdf icon PDF 57 KB

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(1)               Mrs Peachey gave a presentation on the Health Inequalities Action Plan. 


(2)               Mr Gibbens proposed, Mrs Whittle seconded that the Council agree the recommendations of the report as follows;


(a)               to adopt the report as the Health Inequalities Action Plan for Kent County Council;

(b)               to note that the Health Inequalities Action Plan will support the Health Inequalities agenda for the Health and Wellbeing Strategy and Ambition Board 2, Tackling Disadvantage;

(c)               to agree that the Kent Health Inequalities Steering Group be responsible for overseeing performance and report progress to the Public Health Directorate Management Team on a quarterly basis;

(d)               support and agree that Districts use the template of this Action Plan to develop localised specific Health Inequalities Action Plans relevant to each District.  The template can also be adopted for specific subject areas such as Housing and Mental Health if required; and

(e)               agree to the development of mainstreaming a single assessment tool for policy, planning and commissioning.  This process (the 4 point approach) will screen for impact on health inequalities and demonstrate that the County Council has considered and addressed health inequalities at every available opportunity.


Resolved: that the recommendations as set out above be approved.


Member Development Policy pdf icon PDF 125 KB

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(1)       Mr A King proposed, Mr Bowles seconded that the Council approve the draft updated Member Development Policy for incorporation in the Constitution.


Resolved: that the recommendation be approved.


Localism Act: Openness and accountability in local pay pdf icon PDF 85 KB

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(1)       Mr Gough proposed, Mr Pugh seconded that the Council endorse the Pay Policy Statement.


Resolved: that the recommendation be approved.


Kent Invicta Award

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(1)       The Chairman of the County Council presented the Kent Invicta Award to John Warnett, Radio Kent presenter.


(2)       The County Council heard that John Warnett had been presenting on Radio Kent since 1989.  He was known as the voice of cricket and as pretty much the voice of Kent.  A great supporter of charity, he is also a keen cricketer and golfer and has run in a number of marathons, raising £10,000 running the London marathon in 2009 for Demelza House, who the £5000 Kent Invicta Award money will go to.


(3)       Members noted that John supported Produced in Kent, Visit Kent and Locate in Kent and other organisations that are all working to help and support the economies of the county. 


(4)       It was noted that he had also made a significant contribution to broadcasting and with his radio partner Clare McDonnell was the winner of the EDF Award for Best Broadcasting in Kent and the South East of England last year.  John has a phenomenal knowledge of the county and, in partnership with whoever he is working with, he scrutinises both the public and private sectors and the Council’s operations reporting with a straight bat to offer a fair and balanced view. 


(5)       In his address to the County Council, John said that the county is very important to him and that he tries to offer a snapshot of the county to people who tune in to hear him in the mornings.


Petition Scheme Debates pdf icon PDF 399 KB

Grammar School for Sevenoaks


Save Ramsgate Youth Clubs


Closure of Richborough Household Waste Recycling Centre

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Grammar School for Sevenoaks


(1)       The Chairman announced that the above debate would be recorded by BBC Radio 4 and BBC 5 Live. 


(2)       Mr and Mrs Shilling addressed the County Council on the above petition.


(3)       The Chairman invited local Members to address the meeting on the subject of the petition.  Mr Parry was the first Member to speak and he proposed, Mr Gough seconded the following motion:


that Kent County Council recommends to the Cabinet Member for Education, Learning & Skills that he pursues proposals to provide a 2 form entry of selective secondary provision for boys and a 2 form entry of selective secondary provision for girls in or close to Sevenoaks Town for students resident in the Sevenoaks area, that would meet legal requirements.


(4)       Other local Members, Mr Lake, Mr Chard, Mr Brookbank, Ms Hohler and Mr Brazier, then addressed the meeting on the subject of the petition.


(5)       The Chairman then opened up the debate to the floor and a number of other Members spoke on the petition.


(6)       Mr Christie moved, Mr Cowan seconded the following amendment to Mr Parry’s Motion:


First line – after “Kent County Council” insert “agrees to review the admission process and places, including costings, for selective secondary education in Kent and consult with other affected schools before it…”


(7)       The Chairman put to the vote the amendment to the motion as set out in (6) above, when the voting was as follows:


For (5)


Mr I Chittenden, Mr L Christie, Mr G Cowan, Mrs E Green, Mr G Koowaree


Abstain (2)


Mrs T Dean, Mr T Prater


Against (60)


Mrs A Allen, Mr M Angell, Mr A Bowles, Mr D Brazier, Mr R Brookbank, Mr R Bullock, Mr R Burgess, Miss S Carey, Mr P Carter, Mr N Chard, Mr A Chell, Mrs P Cole, Mr N Collor, Mr G Cooke, Mr B Cope, Mr H Craske, Mr A Crowther, Mr J Cubitt, Mrs V Dagger, Mr D Daley, Mr M Dance, Mr J Davies, Mr T Gates, Mr G Gibbens, Mr R Gough, Mr M Harrison, Mr W Hayton, Mr M Hill, Mr D Hirst, Ms A Hohler, Mrs S Hohler, Mr P Homewood, Mr E Hotson, Mr M Jarvis, Mr J Kite, Mr P Lake, Mr J London, Mr R  Long, Mr K Lynes, Mr R Manning, Mr A Marsh, Mr M Northey, Mr J Ozog, Mr R Parry, Mr K Pugh, Mr L Ridings, Mr A Sandhu, Mr J Simmonds, Mr C Smith, Mr K Smith, Mr M Snelling, Mr B Sweetland, Mr R Tolputt, Mrs E Tweed, Mrs C Waters, Mr J Wedgbury, Mr M Whiting, Mrs J Whittle, Mr A Wickham, Mr A Willicombe




(8)       The Chairman put to the vote the original motion as set out in (3) above, when the voting was as follows:


For (67)


Mrs A Allen, Mr M Angell, Mr A Bowles, Mr D Brazier, Mr R Brookbank, Mr R Bullock, Mr R Burgess, Miss  ...  view the full minutes text for item 115.


Quarterly Report on Urgent Key Decisions - Sheerness Gateway pdf icon PDF 60 KB

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Mr Carter proposed, Mr A King seconded that this report be noted.


Resolved: that the recommendation above be noted.


Minutes for Approval pdf icon PDF 69 KB

Governance and Audit Committee – 29 November 2011

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Resolved: that the Minutes of the meeting of the Governance and Audit Committee held on 29 November 2011 be noted.


Minutes for Information pdf icon PDF 77 KB

Planning Applications Committee – 6 December 2011 and 17 January and 14 February 2012


Regulation Committee – 24 January 2012


Superannuation Fund Committee – 18 November 2011 and 10 February 2012

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Pursuant to Procedure Rule 1.10(8) and 1.24(4), the minutes of the Planning Applications Committee meetings held on 6 December 2011 and 17 January and 14 February 2012, the Regulation Committee meeting held on 24 January 2012 and the Superannuation Fund Committee meetings held on 18 November 2011 and 10 February 2012 were noted.