Agenda, decisions and minutes

Venue: First Floor, Willesden Green Library, 95 High Road, Willesden, NW10 2SF. View directions

Contact: James Kinsella, Governance Manager  Tel: 020 8937 2063; Email:  james.kinsella@brent.gov.uk

Note: The press and public are welcome to attend this as an online virtual meeting. The link to view proceedings can be accessed via the Live Streaming section on the Democracy page of the Council's website or through the link on the agenda frontsheet 

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for Absence

Decision:

The Leader of the Council advised that apologies for absence had been received from Councillor Mashari (Chair of the Resources & Public Realm Scrutiny Committee) who had been due to attend to speak in relation to Agenda Item 6a (References from Scrutiny Committee) and Item 9 (Procurement Strategy).

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council advised that apologies for absence had been received from Councillor Mashari (Chair of the Resources & Public Realm Scrutiny Committee) who had been due to attend to speak in relation to Agenda Item 6a (References from Scrutiny Committee) and Item 9 (Procurement Strategy).

 

2.

Declarations of Interest

Members are invited to declare at this stage of the meeting, the nature and existence of any relevant disclosable pecuniary or personal interests in the items on this agenda and to specify the item(s) to which they relate.

Decision:

None.

Minutes:

None.

3.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 97 KB

To approve the minutes of the previous meeting held on 7th September 2020 as a correct record.

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED to approve the minutes of the previous meeting held on Monday 7 September 2020 as an accurate record.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the minutes of the previous meeting held on 7th September 2020 be approved as an accurate record of the meeting.

4.

Matters Arising (if any)

To consider any matters arising from the minutes of the previous meeting.

Decision:

None.

Minutes:

None.

5.

Petitions (if any)

To discuss any petitions from members of the public, in accordance with Standing Order 66.

Decision:

None.

Minutes:

None.

6.

Reference of item considered by Scrutiny Committees & Request to Speak (if any)

To consider any reference reports from any of the Council’s two Scrutiny Committees.

Decision:

The Leader of the Council advised that he had agreed to accept an additional request to speak at the meeting from Councillor Kennelly regarding the Healthy Neighbourhood proposals.

 

Cabinet noted the comments made by Councillor Kennelly who, whilst supportive of the environmental and public health aims supporting Healthy Neighbourhoods, highlighted concerns regarding local community engagement in the design and introduction of the trial schemes and requested further details in relation to:

·                The response from the Emergency Services to the consultation on the proposals;

·                The criteria under which the outcome of each trial would be assessed prior to any final decision being taken about their introduction on a permanent basis;

·                How the proposals had been risk assessed and account taken of comments submitted as part of the Active Travel interactive consultation;

·                The process for seeking to engage the local communities in the design and implementation of the trial schemes; and

·                The funding bids submitted in relation to the scheme.

 

It was agreed that details of the information being sought would be submitted to the Lead Member Regeneration, Property & Planning.  Cabinet also noted the comments made in response, highlighting the context in which the proposals had been introduced and consultation and engagement undertaken with local ward councillors, which had been developed to include regular feedback on each scheme.

Minutes:

The Leader of the Council advised that he had agreed to accept an additional request to speak at the meeting from Councillor Kennelly regarding the Healthy Neighbourhood and School Street Scheme proposals.

 

Councillor Kennelly thanked Cabinet for the opportunity to speak. Whilst emphasising that the proposals outlined in the scheme were positive, especially in light of the climate emergency, he was concerned that ward councillors and residents felt they had not been sufficiently engaged, which he felt  would have addressed some of the concerns being raised and enabled them to have been resolved collaboratively. In drawing attention to these concerns, he sought clarity on the following:  

 

·                The response from the Emergency Services to the consultation on the proposals;

·                The criteria under which the outcome of each experimental trial would be assessed prior to any final decision being taken about their introduction on a permanent basis;

·                How the proposals had been risk assessed and account taken of comments submitted as part of the Active Travel interactive consultation;

·                The process for seeking to engage the local communities in the design and implementation of the trial schemes; and

·                The funding bids submitted in relation to the scheme.

 

Councillor Butt thanked Councillor Kennelly for his comments, and invited Councillor Tatler, as Lead Member for Regeneration, Property & Planning, to respond.

 

Prior to inviting a response, Councillor Butt felt it was important to recognise the context within with the Low Traffic and Healthy Neighbourhood proposals had need to be implemented, in terms of the conditional funding being made available by central government.  In her response, Councillor Tatler (within the overall context outlined by the Leader of the Council) highlighted the consultation that had taken place prior to the introduction of the Healthy Neighbourhood scheme, and the involvement of ward councillors in its formation.  The Council were committed to ensuring resident involvement throughout the trials and to ensure that consultation was ongoing, with feedback to be sought at two, four and six month intervals from implementation. The Council were committed to addressing poor air quality and to tackling the climate emergency and it was necessary that schemes be trialled to address those issues. In concluding her response, Councillor Tatler requested that Councillor Kennelly submit the details of the information being sought in writing in order to form the basis for further discussions and response.

 

6a

Recommendations from Resources & Public Realm Scrutiny Committee and Draft Executive Response - Public Realm and The Brent Economy pdf icon PDF 117 KB

This report seeks endorsement of the proposed executive response to the recommendations made from the Resources and Public Realm Scrutiny Committee at their meeting on 14 July 2020 on the Public Realm in Brent and the Brent economy.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED to note the recommendations made by the Resources & Public Realm Scrutiny Committee at its meeting on the 14 July 2020 relating to the Public Realm in Brent and the Brent Economy and to approve the Executive Response provided on both set of recommendations, as detailed in Appendix 1 and 2 of the report.

Minutes:

Whilst noting that Councillor Mashari, Chair of the Resources and Public Realm Scrutiny Committee had given her apologies, and was no longer able to present the recommendations of the committee, the Leader of the Council, Councillor Butt, expressed a desire that other members of the scrutiny committee be invited to introduce scrutiny recommendations in the future, if the Chair were unable to attend.

 

Cabinet received a report from the Assistant Chief Executive presenting two sets of recommendations made by the Resources and Public Realm Scrutiny Committee on 14 July 2020 in relation to the Public Realm in Brent and Brent Economy, for Executive response.

 

The Cabinet Member for Regeneration Property and Planning, Councillor Shama Tatler, introduced the proposed response to the scrutiny recommendations that related to her portfolio in relation to both issues. Cabinet heard that consideration would be given to all the recommendations, however in assessing the viability of those with associated costs there was a need to be mindful of the wider budgetary context and expenditure related to the pandemic.

 

The Cabinet Member for the Environment, Councillor Krupa Sheth, responded to the recommendations that related to her portfolio, noting that officers were currently investigating the ways in which it would be possible to ensure that it remained cheaper to use a bike hanger than obtain a parking permit and emphasising the commitment of the Council to addressing the climate emergency within the wider financial pressures faced by the Council as a result of the pandemic

 

As a result of the responses provided, Cabinet RESOLVED to note the recommendations made by the Resources & Public Realm Scrutiny Committee at its meeting on the 14 July 2020 relating to the Public Realm in Brent and the Brent Economy and to approve the Executive Response provided on both set of recommendations, as detailed in Appendix 1 and 2 of the report.

 

7.

Extension of Borough Wide Public Space Protection Order pdf icon PDF 110 KB

This report seeks approval for the extension of the borough wide street drinking Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) for three additional years to October 2023.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED to extend the Borough wide street drinking Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) for a future three years, commencing from 20 October 2020 to 19 October 2023 on the grounds that it was necessary to prevent an increase in the frequency or seriousness of those activities.

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member for Community Safety and Engagement, Councillor Promise Knight, introduced the report seeking approval for the extension of the existing Borough-Wide Street Drinking Public Space Protection Order for a further three years. The report outlined how the order allowed for a proactive and interventionist approach to street drinking and gave a focus to both enforcement and education.  Members’ attention was drawn to the support given to the extension by the police and the Safer Neighbourhood Board (SNB). Councillor Knight also clarified that in relation to paragraph 6.2 of the report, the legal test in relation to deciding to renew a Public Space Protection Order is that the Cabinet needs to be satisfied on reasonable grounds that doing so is necessary to prevent an increase in the frequency or seriousness of street drinking activities after the expiry of the original Public Space Protection Order.

 

In welcoming the report Cabinet noted the timeliness of the extension and whole system approach identified in terms of tackling street drinking, especially given the additional issues associated with the early closure of pubs and venues due to the pandemic restrictions.

 

In considering the recommendation Cabinet noted the need to be satisfied on reasonable grounds that the extension was necessary to prevent an increase in the frequency or seriousness of street drinking activities after the expiration of the current order, and considering that this requirement had been met RESOLVED to extend the Borough wide street drinking Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) for a future three years, commencing from 20 October 2020 to 19 October 2023.

 

 

8.

Application for the re-naming of the eastern section of Meadow Garth to Pramukh Swami Road pdf icon PDF 130 KB

This report seeks a decision regarding the renaming of the eastern section of Meadow Garth Road to Pramukh Swami Road, following an application from the local community, and outlines the conditions and associated costs.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Having noted:

·                the comments made by a representative of the Shree Swaminarayan Temple and Councillor Hirani in support of the name change;

·                the comments made by a local resident objecting to the name change; and

·                the finely balanced nature of the decision to be made.

 

 Cabinet RESOLVED to:

 

(1)      Confirm and approve the making of an order to change the name of the eastern part of Meadow Garth to Pramukh Swami Road.

 

(2)      Delegate authority to the Strategic Director, Regeneration & Environment to implement the proposed order.

 

(3)      Delegate authority to the Strategic Director, Regeneration & Environment to enter into a legal agreement to ensure that the applicant covered the reasonable costs that were incurred by the Council and occupiers affected as a result of the change to the street name at the eastern section of Meadow Garth, plus to the occupiers of the properties, an inconvenience fee.

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Property and Planning, Councillor Shama Tatler, introduced the report which detailed an application received from the Shree Swaminarayan Temple for the renaming of the eastern section of Meadow Garth Road to Pramukh Swami Road.

 

Councillor Butt welcomed Councillor Hirani, ward councillor for Dudden Hill Ward, and Giresh Patel, a representative from the Shree Swaminarayan Temple (“the Temple”) who had requested to speak in support of the application.

 

Councillor Hirani begun his representation by outlining his support for the name change, noting the positive contribution the Temple had made to the borough, as well as the cultural and global significance of the request. In also recognising the objections that had been received, Councillor Hirani praised the balanced nature of the report and recommendation.

 

Giresh Patel, representative from the Shree Swaminarayan Temple, thanked the Leader for the opportunity to also speak in support of the application. Members’ attention was drawn to the high visitor numbers the Temple received from all religious denominations and the impact the temple had had on regenerating the area and creating a secure and safe neighbourhood for local residents. The application was in line with many similar approvals for roads to be renamed in memory of other inspiring and historic figures. He also felt it important to highlight that in order to minimise inconvenience the application was only to rename the part of Meadow Garth for which the majority was occupied by the temple and fact that the Temple were offering to provide compensation to local residents for the inconvenience of the name change.

 

Councillor Butt thanked Councillor Hirani and Mr Patel for taking the time to address the committee and welcomed Mrs Fontaine-Waldron, a resident of Meadow Garth, to the meeting, who had requested to speak in objection to the application.

 

Mrs Fontaine-Waldron began her representation by noting that she was a long term resident of the area and had settled at her current address. She objected to the change of name given the impact on the postal address for those residents directly affected, highlighting the significant harm and inconvenience this would cause not only to herself but also her family. She noted the offer of compensation but felt this did not negate the inconvenience and negative impact to her health and wellbeing given the stress and disruption that would be caused as a result and her current state of health.

 

Councillor Butt thanked Mrs Vadney-Waldron for attending and making her views known to the committee.

 

In discussing the recommendation to approve the change of name Members highlighted the positive contribution which the Temple made to the borough and emphasised that the cultural diversity of Brent was an asset to be celebrated. Cabinet noted and took into consideration the concerns raised in opposition to the application during this item in the meeting and in the report and praised the report for balancing both sides of the issue.

 

 Cabinet RESOLVED to:

 

(1)      Confirm and approve the making of an order to change the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

Procurement Strategy 2020-2023 pdf icon PDF 254 KB

This report seeks approval for the Procurement Strategy 2020-2023, which outlines the Council’s procurement priorities under five pillars: community wealth building, sustainability, circular economy, social value and ethical policy, and active procurement.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Having noted the intention to incorporate the recommendations made by the Resources & Public Realm Scrutiny Committee when considering the strategy at their meeting on 1 October 2020, Cabinet RESOLVED to approve the Procurement Strategy 2020-2023 as set out in Appendix A of the report.

Minutes:

The Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Resources, Councillor Margaret McLennan introduced the report seeking approval for the 2020-2023 procurement strategy. Cabinet heard that the strategy not only maintained the previous commitment to ensuring value for money but also added a greater focus to how procurement could support residents and enhance the services they received. This would be achieved through the five core pillars of sustainable procurement, community wealth building, active procurement, circular economy and social value. Members noted that the strategy had been presented and discussed in depth at the Resources and Public Realm Scrutiny Committee meeting on 1st October 2020, with their recommendations accepted and incorporated as part of the development of the strategy. In concluding her introduction, Councillor McLennan thanked officers for their commitment to ensuring procurement worked for Brent residents. 

 

In giving their endorsement to the strategy and its aims, Cabinet expressed support for the alignment of the strategy with the remaining term of the Borough Plan along with the focus on recent significant events including the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the local economy and supplier base as well as the Black Community Action Plan, Climate Emergency Action Plan and other key Council priorities including how the outcomes would support the recommendations of the Poverty Commission. Members also noted the potential for the strategy to promote Brent Works, as a local jobs brokerage scheme, and in supporting the Council’s commitment to community wealth building and revival of the local economy.

 

Having noted the intention to incorporate the recommendations made by the Resources & Public Realm Scrutiny Committee when considering the strategy at their meeting on 1 October 2020, Cabinet RESOLVED to approve the Procurement Strategy 2020-2023 as set out in Appendix A of the report.

 

10.

ICT Work with the Local Government Association pdf icon PDF 83 KB

This report seeks approval to enter into further arrangements to partner with the Local Government Association (LGA) for a period of 3 years for the provision of ICT services. The contract includes the hosting of LGA ICT services at Brent Data Centres, the provision of ICT support services, and the implementation of new hardware where required.

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED to:

 

(1)        Note the current arrangements for partnership working with the Local Government Association in relation to the provision of ICT services, as set out in sections 3.1 and 3.2 of the report.

 

(2)    Approve the Council entering into further arrangements to partner with the Local Government Association for a period of 3 years with an optional 2 year extension for the provision of ICT services, to include the hosting of its ICT services at the Brent Data Centres, and the ongoing provision of ICT support services and the implementation of new hardware where necessary.

 

(3)    Delegate authority to the Strategic Director of Customer and Digital Services in consultation with the Director of Finance and the Director of Legal, HR, Audit and Investigations to agree the full terms of the legal agreements required to deliver the partnering arrangements referred to in (2) above and thereafter to enter into such agreements.

Minutes:

The Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Resources, Councillor Margaret McLennan introduced the report which sought approval for the extension of the partnership with the Local Government Association (LGA) for the provision of ICT services for a further three years, with the option of an additional two years. Cabinet noted the recognition which it was felt the extension of the partnership arrangement demonstrated in terms of the level and standard of ICT service being provided and success of the overall digitalisation strategy especially during the pandemic.

 

In expressing their support for the extension, members highlighted the importance of stability of services during the ongoing pandemic, and thanked the officers involved in the provision of ICT services.

 

Cabinet RESOLVED to:

 

(1)      Note the current arrangements for partnership working with the Local Government Association in relation to the provision of ICT services, as set out in sections 3.1 and 3.2 of the report.

 

(2)     Approve the Council entering into further arrangements to partner with the Local Government Association for a period of 3 years with an optional 2 year extension for the provision of ICT services, to include the hosting of its ICT services at the Brent Data Centres, and the ongoing provision of ICT support services and the implementation of new hardware where necessary.

 

(3)     Delegate authority to the Strategic Director of Customer and Digital Services in consultation with the Director of Finance and the Director of Legal, HR, Audit and Investigations to agree the full terms of the legal agreements required to deliver the partnering arrangements referred to in (2) above and thereafter to enter into such agreements.

 

 

11.

Shared Ownership Sales and Marketing Policy pdf icon PDF 108 KB

This report seeks approval for the Shared Ownership and Sales Marketing Policy, developed to set out the Council’s approach to selling shared ownership homes and to raise awareness of the scheme to potential applicants.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED to

 

(1)        Note the contents of the report.

 

(2)        Approve the content of the draft Shared Ownership and Sales Marketing Policy.

 

(3)        Delegate Authority to the Strategic Director for Community Well Being in consultation with the Lead Member for Housing and Welfare Reforms to make relevant changes to the Shared Ownership and Marketing Policy arising from any relevant changes to legislation or statutory guidance made by central Government.

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member for Housing and Welfare Reform, Councillor Eleanor Southwood, introduced the report which sought approval for a Shared Ownership Sales and Marketing Policy. Whilst the Council was not currently intending to develop their own shared ownership properties as part of its New Council Homes Programme, it was noted there may be an option to do so in the future depending on the outcome of the government’s current consultation on affordable housing. The approach towards shared ownership was, however, recognised as an affordable housing product, with a policy therefore needing to be in place to support any future acquisitions.   In addition, Cabinet noted that the Council had acquired a s106 scheme (Grand Union, Alperton) which included shared ownership properties to which the policy would need to apply along with any other potential acquisitions through s106 schemes.

 

Whilst noting the policy, had been designed to meet the regulatory requirements set out by Homes England and the Greater London Authority Affordable Housing Capital Funding Guide Members’ attention was drawn to the eligibility criteria detailed within the report and the way this would also be applied in relation to elected members, staff and their relatives.

 

In considering the options relating to length of lease available under the policy, Cabinet noted the preference to offer a 125 year lease, which was seen as a compromise between providing stability and ensuring affordability for potential purchasers and preventing the need for residents to pay for costly lease extensions.

 

In outlining their support for the policy and clarification provided in relation to the length of lease being offered, Cabinet RESOLVED to

 

(1)      Note the contents of the report.

 

(2)      Approve the content of the draft Shared Ownership and Sales Marketing Policy.

 

(3)      Delegate Authority to the Strategic Director for Community Well Being in consultation with the Lead Member for Housing and Welfare Reforms to make relevant changes to the Shared Ownership and Marketing Policy arising from any relevant changes to legislation or statutory guidance made by central Government.

 

12.

Authority to Tender for a Framework Agreement for Housing Refurbishment Works & a Framework Agreement for Technical Consultancy Services pdf icon PDF 234 KB

This report seeks approval to commence procurement of two multi-supplier, multi-lot framework agreements for housing works and technical consultancy services as required by Contract Standing Orders 88 and 89.  

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED to

 

(1)      Approve inviting tenders for a framework agreement for Housing Refurbishment Works,on the basis of the pre - tender considerations set out in section 3.11 of the report.

 

(2)     Approve inviting tenders for a framework agreement for Technical Consultancy Services to support the asset management and refurbishment programmes,on the basis of the pre - tender considerations set out in section 4.8 of the report.

 

(3)     Approve Officers evaluating the tenders referred to in (1) and (2) above, on the basis of the evaluation criteria set out in section 3.11 of the report.

 

(4)     Delegate to the Strategic Director for Community Wellbeing, in consultation with the Lead Member for Housing Welfare Reforms, authority to appoint contractors and consultants to the framework agreements referred to in (1) and (2) above for a term of 4 years.

 

(5)     That in line with the Council Procurement Rules, specific contract awards would be as set out in paragraphs 5.6 – 5.10 of the report.

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member for Housing and Welfare Reform, Councillor Eleanor Southwood, introduced the report seeking approval to tender for two framework agreements that would provide greater capacity for technical consultancy and practical delivery of housing refurbishment works. The agreements would support the delivery of the council’s commitment to expand its social housing provision alongside development of its Asset Management Strategy.  

 

Cabinet RESOLVED to

 

(1)      Approve inviting tenders for a framework agreement for Housing Refurbishment Works, on the basis of the pre - tender considerations set out in section 3.11 of the report.

 

(2)     Approve inviting tenders for a framework agreement for Technical Consultancy Services to support the asset management and refurbishment programmes, on the basis of the pre - tender considerations set out in section 4.8 of the report.

 

(3)     Approve Officers evaluating the tenders referred to in (1) and (2) above, on the basis of the evaluation criteria set out in section 3.11 of the report.

 

(4)     Delegate to the Strategic Director for Community Wellbeing, in consultation with the Lead Member for Housing Welfare Reforms, authority to appoint contractors and consultants to the framework agreements referred to in (1) and (2) above for a term of 4 years.

 

(5)     That in line with the Council Procurement Rules, specific contract awards would be as set out in paragraphs 5.6 – 5.10 of the report.

 

13.

Q2 Financial Report 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 193 KB

This report presents the council’s current forecast of income and expenditure against the approved revenue budget for 2020/21.

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED to note the overall financial position and actions being taken to manage the issues highlighted, as outlined within the report.

Minutes:

The Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Resources, Councillor Margaret McLennan introduced the report which set out the Council’s current forecast of income and expenditure against the revenue budget for 2020/21 and other key financial data.. Cabinet noted the update provided in relation to the ongoing financial impact of Covid-19, which had resulted in a total forecast overspend of £9.6 million.  It was hoped that the upcoming spending review by the Treasury would help to alleviate the pressures identified with the Council having also submitted its first claim for expenditure and loss of income due to Covid-19, totalling £6million.

 

In noting the financial position of the Council, Members highlighted the need for an information strategy to be developed to inform residents of the situation and the difficult financial decisions that would need to be taken in the future. 

 

Cabinet RESOLVED to note the overall financial position and actions being taken to manage the issues highlighted, as outlined within the report.

 

14.

Exclusion of Press and Public

No items have been identified in advance of the meeting that will require the exclusion of the press or public.

 

Decision:

There were no items that required the exclusion of the press or public.

Minutes:

There were no items that required the exclusion of the press or public.

 

15.

Any other urgent business

Notice of items to be raised under this heading must be given in writing to the Head of Executive and Member Services or her representative before the meeting in accordance with Standing Order 60.

Decision:

None.

Minutes:

None.