Agenda and decisions

Venue: Grand Hall - Brent Civic Centre, Engineers Way, Wembley, HA9 0FJ. View directions

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

Note: Due to the current limits on meeting venue capacity at the Civic Centre any press and public wishing to attend this meeting are encouraged to follow proceedings via the live webcast. The link to follow the meeting is available via the Livestreaming page on the Democracy in Brent section of the Council's website or link on the front page of the published meeting agenda. 

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for Absence

Additional documents:

Decision:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Muhammed Butt, Chappell, Choudhary, Choudry, Denselow, Hassan, Hector, Kelcher, Kennelly, Lloyd, Long, Mashari, Ramesh Patel, Perrin, Southwood & Tatler.

2.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 449 KB

To confirm as a correct record, the minutes of the previous meeting of the Council held on Monday 20 September 2021.

Additional documents:

Decision:

The minutes of the previous Full Council meeting held on Monday 20 September 2021 were approved as a correct record.

3.

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.

Additional documents:

Decision:

No declarations of interest were made at the meeting.

4.

Mayor's Announcements (including any petitions received)

To receive any announcements from the Mayor.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Noted the announcements from the Mayor in relation to:

 

·                Holding a minutes silence in memory of Sir David Amess MP and former councillor Mike Grabiner CBE

·                Remembrance Sunday

·                Visit by Navel Clarke

·                100th birthday celebration – Bertina Brown

·                Outline of recent events attended

·                Mayor’s Civic Ceremony

·                Zadie Smith’s play “The wife of Willesden”

·                Petitions

5.

Appointments to Committees and Outside Bodies and Appointment of Chairs/Vice Chairs (if any)

To agree any appointments to Committees, Joint Committees, Forums, Panels and Outside Bodies in accordance with Standing Order 30(g).

Additional documents:

Decision:

There were no appointments to be agreed at the meeting.

6.

Deputations (if any)

To hear any deputations requested by members of the public in accordance with Standing Order 32.

Additional documents:

Decision:

No deputations were received at the meeting.

7.

Questions from Members of the Public & Brent Youth Parliament pdf icon PDF 439 KB

7.1   To receive questions submitted by the public to Cabinet Members, in accordance with Standing Order 33.

 

Members are asked to note that four public questions have been receive, which have been attached along with their written response.

 

7.2   To receive questions submitted from Brent Youth Parliament to Cabinet Members, in accordance with Standing Order 33 (c).

 

One question has been received under this item, which has been attached along with the written response provided.

Additional documents:

Decision:

NOTED

 

1.         The written and supplementary verbal response provided by the Lead Member for Environment to a public question submitted by Martin Francis regarding a review of flood management arrangements within the borough.

2.         The written response provided jointly by the Deputy Leader & Lead Members for Environment to a public question submitted by Rimal Shah regarding the impact of Council Tax increase and traffic fines on levels of poverty across the borough. No supplementary question was received.

3.         The written response provided by the Lead Member for Regeneration, Property & Planning to a public question submitted by Julia Lefene regarding the impact of planning developments on infrastructure, sewers and access to housing across the borough.  No supplementary question was received.

4.         The written response provided by the Lead Member for Regeneration, Property & Planning to a public question submitted by Philip Grant regarding the level of affordable housing being provided within the development on the former Copland School site on the corner of Cecil Avenue and Wembley High Road.  A supplementary question was received regarding use of grant funding to support the provision of affordable housing and justification for the approach adopted in relation to the former Copland School site and elsewhere across the borough.  The Mayor advised that a written response would be provided on the supplementary question as the Lead Member had needed to submit her apologies for the meeting.

5.      The written and supplementary verbal response provided by the Lead Member for Children’s Safeguarding, Early Help and Social Care to a question submitted by Ben Maher on behalf of Brent Youth Parliament regarding the OFSTED review of sexual harassment in schools and colleges and the approach being adopted in Brent to address the issues identified.

8.

Petitions (if any)

For Members to consider any petitions with more than 200 signatures on which a debate has been requested, in accordance with the Council’s Petition Rules and Standing Order 66.

Additional documents:

Decision:

No petitions were presented at the meeting.

9.

Reports from the Leader and Cabinet pdf icon PDF 17 KB

To receive a report from the Leader of the Council in accordance with Standing Order 31 providing an update on any key or significant issues arising from any matter within the responsibility of the Cabinet.

Additional documents:

Decision:

NOTED the report and update provided at the meeting by Councillor McLennan, as Deputy Leader, highlighting the ongoing work being undertaken across each Cabinet portfolio in order to provide ongoing support and services to residents across the borough.  As part of the update the Lead Member for Public Health, Leisure & Culture provided an update on the progress being made with the roll out of the covid and winter flu vaccination programmes across the borough including use of the vaccine bus and drop in vaccination clinics being used to support the programme.  Members also noted the list of urgent Executive decisions taken since the last Council meeting.

10.

Questions from the Opposition and other Non-Cabinet Members pdf icon PDF 426 KB

For questions to be put to members of the Cabinet by Opposition and Non-Cabinet Members in accordance with Standing Order 35.

 

Four advance notice questions have been received under this item, which have been attached along with the written responses provided.

 

Members are asked to note that this session will also include an opportunity (within the time available) for other Non-Cabinet members and the Opposition to ask questions of Cabinet Members.

Additional documents:

Decision:

NOTED

 

1.      The joint written response provided by the Lead Members for Community Safety & Engagement and Regeneration, Property & Planning to a question submitted by Councillor Kelcher regarding the action being taken to prevent the proliferation of Adult Gaming Centres across the borough. As Councillor Kelcher had submitted his apologies for absence no supplementary question was raised.

 

2.      The written and supplementary verbal response provided by the Deputy Leader and Lead Member for Resources to a question submitted by Councillor Johnson in relation to the social value commitments being generated through the Council’s Procurement Strategy and way in which the Strategy was being used to support the response to the Climate and Ecological Emergency in conjunction with other London Boroughs.

 

3.      The written and supplementary response provided by the Lead Member for Schools, Employment and Skills to a question submitted by Councillor Sangani regarding measures being undertaken by the Council to expand SEND school places and provision across the borough and to lobby the Government to ensure the necessary level of funding was provided to support this process.

 

4.      The written response provided by the Lead Member for Regeneration, Property & Planning to a question submitted by Councillor Maurice regarding the planning consent and development work on the Preston Library site.  In response to a supplementary question the Director of Legal, HR, Audit & Investigation clarified the position in relation to the outcome of the legal challenges regarding the granting of planning consent for the development.

 

Responses were also provided by the relevant Lead Members on the following additional questions raised during the open session of this part of the meeting:

 

·                Councillor Mahmood regarding the Council’s response to the Nationality and Border Bill currently being considered by Parliament.

·                Councillor Agha regarding problems being experienced with delays in the notification of covid test results and difficulties in being able to clarify these by phone.

·                Councillor Chan regarding the support available from the Council in seeking to address, with TfL, concerns raised following a local campaign by residents in Kensal Green and parents of children who attend Kenmont Primary School about the crossing and traffic related issues at the Harrow Road junction with Wrottesley Road.

·                Councillor Georgiou regarding the Council’s policy on development of tall buildings, with specific concerns identified in relation to Alperton, how the policy impacted on the measures being taken to address the Climate and Ecological Emergency and response to the GLA Planning & Regeneration Committee’s review in relation to the impact of Tall buildings.

·                Councillor Miller regarding the steps being taken to address the issues highlighted in the findings of a recent Ombudsman complaint regarding a case involving disabled accessibility within temporary accommodation.  The Mayor advised that as the Lead Member for Housing and Welfare Reform had needed to submit her apologies for the meeting a written response would be provided.

·                Councillor Chan regarding the process undertaken in developing the Council’s tree felling and replanting programme.

·                Councillor Kansagra seeking further clarification on the outcome of the legal challenges in relation to the  ...  view the full decision text for item 10.

11.

Report from Chairs of Scrutiny Committees pdf icon PDF 395 KB

To receive reports from the Chairs of the Council’s Scrutiny Committees in accordance with Standing Order 36.  The reports have been attached as follows:

 

11.1    Resources & Public Realm Scrutiny Committee

 

11.2    Community & Wellbeing Scrutiny Committee

 

Members are asked to note that this session will include an opportunity (within the time available) for Non-Cabinet Members to ask questions of relevant Scrutiny Chair’s in relation to the remit of their Committees.

Additional documents:

Decision:

NOTED the update reports provided by the Chairs of the Community and Wellbeing and Resources & Public Realm and Scrutiny Committees.

 

No additional questions were raised during the open session of this part of the meeting.

12.

Report from the Vice-Chair of the Audit & Standards Advisory Committee pdf icon PDF 210 KB

To receive a report from the Vice-Chair of the Audit & Standards Advisory Committee, in accordance with Standing Order 37.

Additional documents:

Decision:

NOTED the update report provided by the Vice Chair of the Audit & Standards Advisory Committee.

13.

Non Cabinet Members' Debate pdf icon PDF 218 KB

To enable Non Cabinet Members to raise an issue of relevance to Brent for debate on which notice has been provided in accordance with Standing Order 34 and to receive reports from Cabinet members, as required, on any issues previously raised.

 

Members are asked to note that the subject identified for debate at this meeting is as follows:

 

Tackling violence against women and girls in Brent

 

The motion put forward as the basis for this debate has been attached.

Additional documents:

Decision:

The following motion was unanimously AGREED as the outcome of the non-cabinet member debate:

 

Tackling violence against Women and Girls in Brent

 

“This Council notes:

 

Violence against women and girls (VAWG) is an unacceptable and preventable issue which needlessly blights millions of lives. Crimes of violence against women and girls are many and varied. They include rape, sexual assault, stalking, domestic abuse, ‘honour based’ abuse (including female genital mutilation and forced marriage and ‘honour’ killings), ‘revenge porn’ and ‘upskirting’, as well as many other heinous acts. While different types of violence against women and girls have their own distinct causes and impacts on victims and survivors, what these crimes share in common is the way that they cut across society regardless of background or circumstance.

 

The crimes committed in Fryent Park are appalling beyond comprehension. We send our thoughts, prayers and solidarity to Mina Smallman. We will keep Bibaa and Nicole at the forefront of all our work to redress the injustices this tragedy has cruelly exposed.

 

VAWG must be an urgent priority for this government and institutions of all kind.

 

To this end, Brent Council believes in meeting words, with action.

 

We have:

 

·                Incorporated the VAWG strategy into the safer Brent Community Safety Partnership Strategy. This strategy (for all agencies in Brent) will focus on tackling all forms of violence and abuse that disproportionally affect women in Brent.

 

·                Signed the Mayor of London’s Women’s Night Safety Charter, and continue to work alongside local night-time economy venues to improve the safety of female customers and staff within their premises. We are developing and commissioning bespoke vulnerability training for businesses in Brent to help identify and support women as a result.

 

·                Developed and continue to develop various services and projects to support victims of VAWG and their families. These include the Brent Chrysalis Centre, Advance, NIA, Global thinking and the Brent domestic abuse housing team.

 

·                Coordinated the IRIS project – which offers direct support to GPs for identification and referral of patients who may be victims of abuse and trafficking. In consultation with specialist support organisations, Brent Council has developed guidance on appropriate VAWG language, encouraging its use whenever there are discussions or communications regarding those impacted by VAWG.

 

·                Provided additional funding and investment into independent domestic violence advisor (IDVA) services and the Brent perpetrator program in partnership with Barnet and Enfield. The Council is liaising with the Home Office to increase local support to address gaps in culturally appropriate services for perpetrators of domestic abuse in minorities and/or marginalised groups.

 

·                Commissioned three Women’s Refuges of 19 units, with work underway to procure further spaces as soon as possible.

 

In light of the deeply disturbing figures showing that in 2020, only 1.5% of all rape cases led to charge or summons this Council believes that much more urgent work is needed to eradicate violence against women in all its forms.

 

With this in mind, the Council pledges to:

 

·                Make the safety and support of victims of any form of gender-based violence  ...  view the full decision text for item 13.

14.

Brent Black Community Action Plan - Annual Report pdf icon PDF 290 KB

To receive a report from the Assistant Chief Executive providing an update on the Brent Black Community Action Plan (BCAP), including activity undertaken during 2021/22 to deliver the priority themes.  The report also outlines the challenges identified in delivering the BCAP during its first year along with the approach to overcome these in year two.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Council RESOLVED:

 

(1)    To note the progress against the Black Community Action Plan delivery plans 2021/22.

 

(2)    To note the identified challenges and action planned to overcome them.

 

(3)    To note the emerging areas of focus for the Black Community Action Plan in 2022/23.

15.

Proposed renewal of the Council's Current Gambling Act 2005 Statement of Principles (Policy Statement) pdf icon PDF 407 KB

To receive a report from the Strategic Director, Regeneration & Environment seeking approval to renew the council’s existing Gambling Policy in its current form for a maximum of a further 24 months until 31st January 2024.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Council RESOLVED to approve the renewal of the current Gambling Policy and Statement of Principles for a maximum period of 2 years until 31st January 2024, as recommended by Cabinet.

16.

Motions pdf icon PDF 212 KB

To debate the motions submitted in accordance with Standing Order 41.

 

Members are asked to note that the motions submitted have now been republished with the agenda.

(Agenda republished to include motions on 17 November 2021)

Additional documents:

Decision:

(1)      The following motion submitted by the Conservative Group was declared lost:

 

Granville New Homes Independent Inquiry

 

“This Council notes with grave concern the issues raised by the Ridge Report on the Granville New Homes build by Brent Council.

 

This matter was briefly discussed at the Community & Wellbeing Scrutiny Committee and Audit and Standards Advisory Committee.  Because of time constraints, the matter has not been fully aired. There still remains very large and serious questions the Administration needs to answer, for example:

 

·                When and who commissioned the Ridge Report?

 

·                When did the serious defects in the structure of the construction come to light?

 

·                What was the Building Contractors and Councils Building Control Department’s involvement during construction and issue of Completion Certificate?

 

There are various estimates circulating as to the amount of money required to remedy the defects. One source reports that £18.4 million will be required. This amount is larger than the Council potentially lost by investment in Icelandic Banks.

 

This Council therefore agrees to request that the Cabinet commissions an independent inquiry into the matter.”

 

Councillors Colwill, Kansagra and Maurice voted in favour of the above motion.

 

All other members present at the meeting voted against the above motion.

 

(2)      The following Motion submitted by the Labour Group was AGREED:

 

The Big Issue Campaign – Stop mass homelessness

 

“This Council notes:

 

Thatthousands offamilies arefacing evictionsand repossessionsas measuresto protectresidents put in place during Covid-19, end; Universal Credit is reduced; the furlough scheme ends; and electricity, gasand the cost of living rises at pace.

 

This Council believes that:

 

Now is not the time to unravel the interventions that the government has introduced to protectpeople during this unprecedented period.

 

Unless urgent action is taken by this government, the UK will face a homelessness crisisthis winter, on ashameful scale.

 

Over the last year, nearly 6,000 residents approached Brent Council because they feared being made homeless. While our officer’s work tirelessly to offer assistance to as many residents as possible, the sheer scale of demand sadly outstrips supply. The pandemic has shown that mass homelessness is a political choice – the government averted it once with the Everybody In initiative and they can do so again; simply by making additional funding available to this Council.

 

This Councilresolves to:

 

1.         Support the Big Issue’s plan to Stop Mass Homelessness and call on the Lead Member for Housing & Welfare Reform to write to the relevant Secretaries of State asking them to keep people in their homes and in sustainable jobs. They could do this by committing to pay off £360m in rent arrears; suspend no fault evictions until a Renters’ Reform Act is passed; make permanent the £20 Universal Credit uplift; improve access to Discretionary Housing Payment; unfreeze Local Housing Allowance; improve support for financial literacy education and invest to create new green jobs.

 

2.         Express its support for a Wellbeing of Future Generations Act requiring public bodies to consider how decisions made  ...  view the full decision text for item 16.

17.

Urgent Business

At the discretion of the Mayor to consider any urgent business, in accordance with Standing Order 37 (r).

Additional documents:

Decision:

No urgent items of business were raised at the meeting.