Agenda and draft minutes

County Council
Thursday, 21st March, 2019 10.00 am

Venue: Council Chamber, Sessions House, County Hall, Maidstone. View directions

Contact: Denise Fitch  03000 416090

Webcast: View the webcast

Items
No. Item

121.

Apologies for Absence

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The General Counsel reported apologies from Mr Butler, Mr Kite, Mr Lake, Mr Murphy and Mr Wright.

 

 

122.

Declarations of Disclosable Pecuniary Interests or Other Significant Interests in items on the agenda

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(1)         Mr Lewis declared an interest as his wife was employed by the County Council.

 

(2)           Dr Sullivan declared an interest, as her husband was employed by the County Council in the Early Help and Prevention Team.

 

 

 

123.

Minutes of the meeting held on 14 February 2019 and, if in order, to be approved as a correct record pdf icon PDF 124 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 14 February 2019 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman, subject to:

 

Minute no 120 - Capital Programme 2019-22, Revenue Budget 2019-20 and Revenue Medium Term Financial Plan 2019-22 - Growth, Environment and Transport Directorate, being amended by the addition of the following to the beginning of paragraph (13) (page 12) –

 

“The Leader in response to a request for clarification from Mrs Dean regarding the budget line “Highways Maintenance, Reviewing the level of spend on verges, as well as lit signs and bollards, maintenance” (Appendix A (ii) of the draft Budget Book page 63), gave an assurance on behalf of the Cabinet Member for Planning, Highways, Transport & Waste that the totality of that budget for highways maintenance would be used intelligently to keep the roads as safe as possible)”

 

124.

Chairman's Announcements

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(a)  Mr Peter Hart

 

(1)           The Chairman stated that it was with regret that he had to inform Members of the death of Mr Peter Hart, former Conservative Member for Gravesham Number 3 Division from 1977 to 1981. Mr Hart’s service of thanksgiving had taken place on Friday 15th March 2019.

 

(2)        Ms Marsh and Dr Sullivan paid tribute to Mr Hart.

 

(b)        Mr John Frisby

 

(3)           The Chairman stated that it was with regret that he had to inform Members of the death of Mr John Frisby, former Liberal Democrat Member for Maidstone Central Division from 1989 to 2005. Mr Frisby’s service of thanksgiving would take place on Friday 22nd March 2019.

 

(4)        Mrs Dean and Mr Daley paid tribute to Mr Frisby.

 

(5)           Following all of the tributes, all Members stood in silence in memory of Mr Hart, Mr Frisby and the victims of the recent terror attacks in Christchurch, New Zealand.

 

(6)           After the one-minute silence the Chairman moved, the Vice-Chairman seconded, and it was resolved unanimously that:

 

“This Council records the sense of loss it feels on the sad passing of Mr Hart and Mr Frisby and extends to their family and friends our heartfelt sympathy to them in their sad bereavements.”

 

(c)        75th Anniversary of D Day Landings

 

(7)           The Chairman reminded Members that Thursday 6 June 2019 would mark the 75th anniversary of the D-Day Landings.

 

(8)           To mark this momentous occasion, the Royal British Legion and Arena Travel had chartered a ship to enable 300 veterans to sail to Normandy and take part in the commemorations. The ship would leave port at Dover on Sunday 2 June 2019 and travel to Poole and Portsmouth for ceremonial events before moving on to Le Havre and a coach trip to the Operation Overlord beaches, SWORD and GOLD. 

 

(9)           The Chairman stated that he was delighted to announce that one of Kent’s veterans, Stanley Elliss, had been successful in securing a place on the chartered ship.

 

(d)        The Kent Foundation

 

(10)       The Chairman reminded Members that he was a trustee of The Kent Foundation which delivered a range of free business support services to Kent’s Young Entrepreneurs and Business Owners. The Foundation prided itself on delivering a bespoke service. Kent Foundation Staff met every young person on a one to one basis to find out more about them, their business ideas and their vision for the future.

 

(11)       The Chairman welcomed the Kent Foundation Chairman, Julian Kirkness, and Ellie Cachia and Miranda Haston, young entrepreneurs, who had benefited from The Kent Foundation services.

 

(12)       Mr Kirkness, Ms Cachia and Ms Haston were invited to address the County Council and briefly explained the role of the Kent Foundation and the benefit provided to young entrepreneurs in Kent.

 

(e)  Platinum Award to KCC from the KM Charity Partnership

 

(13)      The Chairman announced that the KM Charity Partnership Awards had been held on Thursday 7 March 2019. The awards were a celebration and recognition of KM  ...  view the full minutes text for item 124.

125.

Questions pdf icon PDF 114 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

In accordance with Procedure Rule 1.17(4), 9 questions were asked and replies given. A record of all questions put and answers given at the meeting are available online with the papers for this meeting.

 

 

 

126.

Report by Leader of the Council (Oral)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(1)          Mr Carter, the Leader of the Council, highlighted the significance of items 7 and 8 on the County Council agenda (Select Committee: Loneliness & Social Isolation and Brexit Preparedness: Kent County Council Update) and stated that his report would focus on addressing budgetary matters, asylum issues in Kent, high needs funding and business rate retention.

 

(2)           Mr Carter referred to the full Council Budget debate on 14 February 2019 and predicted a modest underspend for the current financial year. A Budget Monitoring report would be submitted to Cabinet on 25 March 2019.

 

(3)           Mr Carter emphasised the importance of addressing substantial recurring unmet costs to Kent County Council by The Home Office in relation to young people seeking asylum in Kent. He acknowledged Kent County Council’s impeccable track record in supporting many extremely vulnerable young people seeking asylum in Kent. He expressed his concerns in relation to the misleading statements that had been made by cross-party immigration ministers regarding funding to address asylum-seeking issues. He stated that he had urged the Home Secretary, Sajid Javid, to respond to his recent letter which had comprehensively set out the scale of the underfunding in relation to supporting asylum-seeking young people and the impact on the national dispersal system.

 

(4)           Mr Carter referred to the national issue regarding high needs funding and the impact that it had on the budget of all mainstream schools as a consequence of the changes made by the Children and Families Act 2014. He said that schools had seen an 8% reduction in their revenue budgets over recent years and that they were under significant pressure due to the ever-increasing demand for high needs funding. Mr Carter stated that the significant increase in applications for Education, Health and Care Plans across the country had led to greater demands for special school placements and raised parental expectations.

 

(5)           Mr Carter commended a recent report by ISOS for the Local Government Association on enabling school improvement. This report provided expansive detail on the national impact that the changes to the Children and Families Act 2014 had brought, the impact on mainstream schools and budgets and the statistics of the significant rise in the demand for high needs funding.  He emphasised the need for government to devise an appropriate solution to funding the consequences which had arisen from the changes made by the Children and Families Act 2014

 

(6)           Mr Carter referred to the new Fair Funding Formula and business rate retention and confirmed that Mr Shipton (Head of Finance (Policy, Planning and Strategy) would provide comprehensive briefings to all groups which would highlight future plans in relation to the piloted business rate retention split.

 

(7)           Mr Bird, the Leader of the Opposition, started by congratulating Kent County Council’s Finance officers for the balanced budget for 2019-20 despite cutbacks in monies from central government.

 

(8)           Mr Bird supported Mr Carter’s comments in relation to addressing unmet asylum funding issues with The Home Office. He reminded Members of their duty to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 126.

127.

Select Committee: Loneliness and Social Isolation pdf icon PDF 1 MB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(1)  Mr Gibbens moved and Mr Pugh seconded the following motion:

 

(a)  “The Select Committee be thanked for its work and for producing a relevant and balanced document.

 

(b)  The witnesses and others who provided evidence and made valuable contributions to the Select Committee be thanked.

 

(c)  County Council’s comments on the report be noted and the report endorsed.”

 

(2)  Following debate the motion was agreed without a formal vote.

 

(3)        RESOLVED that:

 

a)    the Select Committee be thanked for its work and for producing a relevant and balanced document;

 

b)    the witnesses and others who provided evidence and made valuable contributions to the Select Committee be thanked; and

 

c)  County Council’s comments on the report be noted and the report be endorsed.

 

128.

Brexit Preparedness - Kent County Council Update pdf icon PDF 174 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(1)         Mr Carter moved and Mr Hotson seconded the following motion:

 

“The County Council is asked to:

 

(a)         note Government’s preferred option of an orderly withdrawal from the EU, and support for responsible and prudent local authority preparations for a no-deal scenario.

 

(b)         note Kent County Council’s preparations for a potential no-deal Brexit scenario.

 

(c)         agree Kent County Council’s call for clarity from Government on specific preparations and funding for a no-deal Brexit.”

 

(2)        Following the debate, the motion was agreed without a formal vote.

 

(3)        RESOLVED that County Council:

 

(a)       notes Government’s preferred option of an orderly withdrawal from the EU, and support for responsible and prudent local authority preparations for a no-deal scenario;

 

(b)       notes Kent County Council’s preparations for a potential no-deal Brexit scenario; and

 

(c)          agrees Kent County Council’s call for clarity from Government on specific preparations and funding for a no-deal Brexit.

 

129.

Treasury Management 6 Month Review 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 216 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(1)         Mr Oakford highlighted an error within paragraph 6 of the report and confirmed that the Treasury Management Advisory Group was not a sub-committee of Cabinet, it was a cross party Advisory Board to the Cabinet Member and the Director.

 

(2)        Mr Oakford moved and Mrs Crabtree seconded the following motion:

 

            “Members are asked to consider and comment on the report. “

 

(3)     The motion was agreed without a formal vote.

 

(4)      RESOLVED that the report and comments made by Members be noted.

 

130.

Pay Policy Statement 2019-20 pdf icon PDF 85 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(1)        Mr Hotson moved and Mr Carter seconded the following motion:

 

            “County Council endorses the attached Pay Policy Statement.”

 

(2)         The motion was agreed without a formal vote.

 

(3)        RESOLVED that the Pay Policy Statement 2019 – 20 be endorsed.

 

131.

Functions Delegated by the Council to Officers - Amendments and Updates pdf icon PDF 49 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(1)         Mr Hotson moved and Mr Whiting seconded the following motion:

 

“That County Council approve the revised and updated Schedule of Council Functions (Appendix 2 Part 3 of the Constitution) as set out in Appendix A to the report.”

 

(2)       The motion was agreed without a formal vote.

 

(3)   RESOLVED that the revised and updated Schedule of Council Functions (Appendix 2 Part 3 of the Constitution) as set out in Appendix A to the report, be endorsed.

 

132.

Motions for Time Limited Debate

1.               Modern Slavery

 

Proposer: Mr Farrell   Seconder: Dr Sullivan

 Though slavery was abolished in the UK in 1833, there are more slaves today than ever before in human history. Figures from the International Labour Organisation (ILO) suggest that there are more than 40 million people in modern slavery across the world, with nearly 25 million held in forced labour.

There were 3805 victims of modern slavery identified in the UK in 2016. A rising number but still well below the 10,000 and 13,000 potential victims estimated by the Home Office.

Modern Slavery is happening nationwide. Traffickers and slave masters use whatever means they have at their disposal to coerce, deceive and force individuals into a life of abuse, servitude and inhumane treatment. This can include sexual and criminal exploitation.

 

This council believes

 

That action needs to be taken to raise awareness of modern slavery and the fact that it is happening all over the UK.

That the current support for victims is not sufficient and needs to go beyond the 45 days they are currently given by the government.

That councils have an important role to play in ensuring their contracts and supplies don’t contribute to modern day slavery and exploitation.

 

This council resolves

To adopt the Co-operative Party’s Charter against Modern Slavery to ensure our procurement practices don’t support slavery.

The Charter:

[Kent County Council] will:

 

1. Train its corporate procurement team to understand modern slavery through the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply’s (CIPS) online course on Ethical Procurement and Supply.

 

2. Require its contractors to comply fully with the Modern Slavery Act 2015, wherever it applies, with contract termination as a potential sanction for non-compliance.

 

3. Challenge any abnormally low-cost tenders to ensure they do not rely upon the potential contractor practising modern slavery.

 

4. Highlight to its suppliers that contracted workers are free to join a trade union and are not to be treated unfairly for belonging to one.

5. Publicise its whistle-blowing system for staff to blow the whistle on any suspected examples of modern slavery.

 

6. Require its tendered contractors to adopt a whistle-blowing policy which enables their staff to blow the whistle on any suspected examples of modern slavery.

 

7. Review its contractual spending regularly to identify any potential issues with modern slavery.

 

8. Highlight for its suppliers any risks identified concerning modern slavery and refer them to the relevant agencies to be addressed.

 

9. Refer for investigation via the National Crime Agency’s national referral mechanism any of its contractors identified as a cause for concern regarding modern slavery.

 

10. Report publicly on the implementation of this policy annually.

 

2          Reducing plastic use in Kent

 

Proposer: Mr Hook   Seconder: Ida Linfield

 

The County Council notes:

 

1.    That plastic waste is a major global environmental problem, especially affecting communities like Kent where the sea and coastline are important; and

2.    The national campaign for Plastic Free Communities, in which communities commit to a reduction of single use or disposable plastics.

 

The  ...  view the full agenda text for item 132.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

a)    Modern Slavery
 

(1)      Mr Farrell moved and Dr Sullivan seconded the following motion:

 

1.1“Though slavery was abolished in the UK in 1833, there are more slaves today than ever before in human history. Figures from the International Labour Organisation (ILO) suggest that there are more than 40 million people in modern slavery across the world, with nearly 25 million held in forced labour. There were 3805 victims of modern slavery identified in the UK in 2016. A rising number but still well below the 10,000 and 13,000 potential victims estimated by the Home Office.

 

1.2Modern Slavery is happening nationwide. Traffickers and slave masters use whatever means they have at their disposal to coerce, deceive and force individuals into a life of abuse, servitude and inhumane treatment. This can include sexual and criminal exploitation.

 

1.3This Council notes:

 

(i)    That action needs to be taken to raise awareness of modern slavery and the fact that it is happening all over the UK.

 

(ii)  That the current support for victims is not sufficient and needs to go beyond the 45 days they are currently given by the government.

 

(iii)That councils have an important role to play in ensuring their contracts and supplies don’t contribute to modern day slavery and exploitation.

 

1.4    This Council resolves:

(i)    To adopt the Co-operative Party’s Charter against Modern Slavery to ensure our procurement practices don’t support slavery.

 

1.5    The Charter:


[Kent County Council] will:

(i)    Train its corporate procurement team to understand modern slavery through the Chartered Institute of Procurement and Supply’s (CIPS) online course on Ethical Procurement and Supply.

 

(ii)  Require its contractors to comply fully with the Modern Slavery Act 2015, wherever it applies, with contract termination as a potential sanction for non-compliance.

 

(iii)Challenge any abnormally low-cost tenders to ensure they do not rely upon the potential contractor practising modern slavery.

 

(iv)Highlight to its suppliers that contracted workers are free to join a trade union and are not to be treated unfairly for belonging to one.

 

(v)  Publicise its whistle-blowing system for staff to blow the whistle on any suspected examples of modern slavery.

 

(vi)Require its tendered contractors to adopt a whistle-blowing policy which enables their staff to blow the whistle on any suspected examples of modern slavery.

 

(vii)    Review its contractual spending regularly to identify any potential issues with modern slavery.

 

(viii)   Highlight for its suppliers any risks identified concerning modern slavery and refer them to the relevant agencies to be addressed.

 

(ix)Refer for investigation via the National Crime Agency’s national referral mechanism any of its contractors identified as a cause for concern regarding modern slavery.

 

(x)  Report publicly on the implementation of this policy annually.”

 

(2)      Mr Long proposed and Ms Rankin seconded the following amendment:

 

1.1    “Though slavery was abolished in the UK England in 1772 833, there are more people held in conditions of slaverys today than ever before in human history. Figures from the International Labour Organisation (ILO)  ...  view the full minutes text for item 132.