Agenda, decisions and minutes

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 current restrictions and limits on the socially distanced venue capacity, any members of the press or public wishing to attend this meeting are encouraged to do so via the live webcast. The link to access the webcast can be found on the agenda front sheet or via the Live Streaming page of the Council's Democracy website 

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Mayors Introductory Statement & Order of Business

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Mayor welcomed everyone to the first in person Full Council which it had been possible to hold since the start of the Covid 19 pandemic.  Before consideration of the formal agenda, the Mayor informed members of a change to the order of business. Given that some members were unable to attend the meeting in person due to underlying health conditions or other issues relating to Covid-19, she intended to move the order of items so that the report listed as item 18 on the agenda (Approval of resolution for reason of member non-attendance at meetings) was taken as the first item of business.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED that:

 

(1)        The business to be considered at the meeting be re-arranged in the following order:

 

Agenda Item 18 be considered as Agenda Item 1 – (Approval of resolution for reason of member non-attendance at meetings);

 

(2)        The remaining items of business to follow in the same order as listed in the agenda.

2.

Approval of resolution for reason of member non-attendance at meetings pdf icon PDF 203 KB

1.1            To receive a report from the Director of Legal, HR, Audit & Investigations seeking approval to extend the reasons under which a waiver may be granted for the non-attendance of any member at a meeting of the Council, Cabinet or any committee or sub-committee of the Council within a 6 month period for circumstances related to Covid-19.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Council RESOLVED to approve in relation to each member of the Council, in accordance with Section 85 of the Local Government Act 1972, the following reason set out below in respect of non-attendance of any member until the Council’s annual meeting in May 2022:

 

The councillor has been unable to attend as a member (including remote attendance during the period that the Local Authorities and Police and Crime Panels (Coronavirus) (Flexibility of Local Authority and Police and Crime Panel Meetings) (England and Wales) Regulations 2020 were in force) any relevant meeting (as defined within paragraph 3.1 of the report) throughout a 6-month period due to the circumstances set out in section 3.4 of the report.

Minutes:

Having agreed to the change in the order of business, the Mayor then invited Councillor M Butt (Leader of the Council) to introduce the report from the Director of Legal, HR, Audit & Investigations seeking approval to extend the reasons under which a waiver might be granted for the non-attendance of any member at a meeting of the Council, Cabinet or any committee or sub-committee of the Council within a six-month period, for circumstances related to Covid-19.

 

As no members indicated they wished to speak on the item, the Mayor put the recommendations in the report straight to the vote and they were unanimously declared CARRIED.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED to approve in relation to each member of the Council (in accordance with Section 85 of the Local Government Act 1972) the following reason in respect of the non-attendance of any member until the Council’s Annual meeting in May 2022:

 

“The councillor has been unable to attend as a member (including remote attendance during the period that the Local Authorities and Police and Crime Panels (Coronavirus) (Flexibility of Local Authority and Police and Crime Panel Meetings) (England and Wales) Regulations 2020 were in force) any relevant meeting (as defined within paragraph 3.1 of the report) throughout a 6-month period due to the circumstances set out in section 3.4 of the report.”

3.

Apologies for Absence

Additional documents:

Decision:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Abi, Akram, Colwill, Conneely, Crane, Daly, Denselow, Dixon, Donnelly-Jackson, Lloyd, R.Patel, Perrin and Shah.

 

An apology for lateness was received from Councillor Chan.

Minutes:

The Mayor reported that apologies for absence had been received from Councillors Abi, Akram, Colwill, Conneely, Crane, Daly, Denselow, Dixon, Donnelly-Jackson, Lloyd, R.Patel, Perrin and Shah.

 

An apology for lateness was received from Councillor Chan.

4.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 348 KB

To confirm as a correct record, the minutes of the Annual Council meeting held on Thursday 29 April 2021.

Additional documents:

Decision:

The minutes of the Annual Council meeting held on Thursday 29 April 2021 were approved as a correct record.

Minutes:

It was RESOLVED that the minutes of the Annual Council meeting held on 29 April 2021 be approved as a correct record.

5.

Declarations of Interest

Members are invited to declare at this stage of the meeting, the nature and existence of any relevant disclosable pecuniary or prejudicial 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.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

6.

Mayor's Announcements (including any petitions received)

To receive any announcements from the Mayor.

Additional documents:

Decision:

NOTED

 

1.         The statement made by the Chief Executive prior to the start of the Mayors Announcements relating to the scenes around Wembley Stadium in the build up to the UEFA Championship final on Sunday 11 July 21.  Referring to the unacceptable nature of the scenes witnessed, the Chief Executive advised of the work being undertaken with partners at the FA, Police and within the Wembley Safety Advisory Group to review what had happened in order to avoid anything similar being experienced and improve the management of future major events at Wembley.  Turning to the more positive nature of the championships, the opportunity was also taken to congratulate the England Team for their achievements and inspiration provided both off and on the pitch and to thank all those involved for the work in ensuring the overall tournament was delivered successfully.

 

2.         The announcements which followed from the Mayor in relation to:

 

·                The thanks expressed on behalf of members to all staff and partners involved in the safe delivery of the UEFA Euro 2020 Championship matches at Wembley Stadium.

·                The result of the Brondesbury Park by-election and welcoming Councillor Grahl as the newly elected member to the Council.

·                The Queen’s Birthday Honours List & MBE awarded to Councillor Southwood

·                The Royal British Legion 100th Anniversary

·                The Garden Studios Tour

·                The Visit to Vaccine Centres and delivery events

·                The Windrush Day celebrations

·                The NHS Social Care & Frontline Workers Day

·                The Srebrenica Memorial Event

·                Petitions

Minutes:

Prior to the Mayor’s Announcements, the Mayor invited Carolyn Downs (as Chief Executive) to make a statement on the scenes witnessed around Wembley Stadium in the build up to the UEFA European Championship final on Sunday 11 July 21.

 

Referring to the unacceptable nature of the scenes witnessed, the Chief Executive advised of the work being undertaken with partners at the FA, Police and within the Wembley Safety Advisory Group to review what had happened in order to avoid anything similar being experienced and improve the management of future major events at Wembley.  Turning to the more positive nature of the championships, the opportunity was also taken to congratulate the England Team (including Brent’s Raheem Sterling) for their achievements and inspiration provided both on and off the pitch and to thank all those involved for the work in ensuring the overall tournament, during which Brent had hosted eight matches at Wembley Stadium, was delivered successfully.  This was highlighted as a particularly achievement given the extent to which the borough had also been impacted by the Covid pandemic and work which had needed to been undertaken in response. The subsequent racist abuse received by players within the England squad was also condemned on behalf of the Council in the strongest possible terms.

 

Members fully endorsed the statement made by the Chief Executive and the Mayor then moved on to make the following announcements:

 

(i).        UEFA European 2020 Championship

 

The Mayor thanked all staff involved for their efforts in supporting the safe delivery of the UEFA European 2020 Championship tournament during the previous month. Whilst England had not won the tournament, she felt it was still a great achievement to have reached the final.  She also recognised the work that had been undertaken to deliver the testing arrangements at the Civic Centre and by the Council’s Highways, Regulatory Services, Community Safety and Enforcement teams as well as Veolia in supporting each match been hosted at Wembley Stadium.

 

(ii).            Brondesbury Park by-election – Welcome to Councillor Grahl

 

The Mayor then took the opportunity to formally welcomed Councillor Grahl to her first Full Council meeting as the newly elected ward member for Brondesbury Park following a by-election held on 7 May.  She thanked the Returning Officer and all staff involved for the safe and efficient delivery of both the by-election and the London Mayoral and Assembly elections.

 

(iii).             Queen’s Birthday Honours List

 

The Mayor congratulated Councillor Southwood, who she advised had received an MBE in the recent Queen’s Birthday Honours List. The award was given for Councillor Southwood’s service to charity and local government, and in particular her leadership of and campaigning for the Royal National Institute of the Blind and her time as an elected member.

 

(iv).             Royal British Legion – 100th Anniversary

 

The Mayor advised that she had been honoured to attend a small wreath laying ceremony at Barham Park to mark the 100th Anniversary of the founding of the Royal British Legion. She felt the event had demonstrated  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

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 along with the appointments of Chairs/Vice Chairs (if any) in accordance with Standing Order 30(g).

Additional documents:

Decision:

No change in the appointments to Committees or Outside Bodies were submitted for approval at the meeting.

Minutes:

The Mayor advised that there were no membership changes to be considered at the meeting so moved straight on to the next item.

8.

Deputations (if any)

To hear any deputations received from members of the public in accordance with Standing Order 32.

Additional documents:

Decision:

No deputations were received at the meeting.

Minutes:

The Mayor advised that no requests for any deputations had been received for consideration at the meeting.

9.

Questions from Members of the Public & Brent Youth Parliament

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

 

Members are asked to note that no public questions have been received for response at this meeting.

 

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

 

Members are asked to note that no questions have been received from Brent Youth Parliament for response at this meeting.

Additional documents:

Decision:

NOTED

 

1.          That no questions had been submitted for response by members of the public.

 

2.          That no questions had been submitted for response by the Brent Youth Parliament.

Minutes:

The Mayor advised that no questions had been received from members of the public or from representatives of the Brent Youth Parliament.

10.

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 Scheme and Standing Order 66.

Additional documents:

Decision:

No petitions were received for debate at the meeting.

Minutes:

The Mayor advised that no requests for any debates on petitions had been received for consideration at the meeting.

11.

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 matters within the responsibility of the Cabinet.

Additional documents:

Decision:

NOTED the report and update provided at the meeting by Councillor M. Butt, Leader of the Council, highlighting the ongoing work being undertaken across each Cabinet portfolio in response to the Covid 19 recovery programme and delivery of ongoing support and services to residents.  Members were also asked to note the list of urgent Executive decisions taken since the last Council meeting.

Minutes:

The Mayor then invited Councillor M Butt, Leader of the Council, to introduce the report updating members on the work undertaken by the Cabinet and significant issues identified within their remit.  In presenting the report, Councillor M Butt highlighted the extent of work being undertaken across a number of key service areas including housing & welfare support, environment, planning & regeneration, public health, schools, employment, social care and community safety and thanked the Lead Members for their work and efforts to support continued service provision for residents during both the pandemic and recovery process.  Finally, members were asked to note the list of Executive decisions tabled at the meeting which had been taken under the Council’s urgency procedures.

 

The Mayor thanked the Leader for his report and it was RESOLVED to formally note the update provided.

12.

Questions from the Opposition and other Non-Cabinet Members pdf icon PDF 505 KB

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

 

Members are asked to note that 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 to ask questions of Cabinet Members.

Additional documents:

Decision:

NOTED

 

1.      The written and supplementary verbal response provided by the Deputy Leader to a question submitted by Councillor Ahmed regarding the continued support being provided for local residents and businesses as part of the Covid-19 recovery programme.

 

2.      The written and supplementary verbal response provided by the Lead Member for Environment to a question submitted by Councillor Hylton in relation to the progress being made in building back better as part of the commitments contained within the Council’s Climate Emergency Strategy and involvement of local businesses in the Brent Environmental Network.

 

3.      The written and supplementary response provided by the Lead Member for Housing & Welfare Reform regarding progress in addressing the findings contained within the report from the Independent Poverty Commission and with specific reference to food poverty.

 

4.      The written and supplementary verbal response provided by the Lead Member for Environment to a question submitted by Councillor Maurice regarding representations being made to TfL on extension of the ULEZ and its impact on residents accessing the Household Waste and Recycling Centre  at Abbey Road.

 

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 Kelcher regarding residents’ concerns around noise and pollution from the funfair in Roundwood Park.

·                Councillor Georgiou regarding the support available to help home-based small and micro businesses during the pandemic.

·                Councillor Kennelly regarding the support available to leaseholders affected by the cladding scandal and efforts to ensure it did not happen again.

·                Councillor Thakkar regarding what had been learned from the vaccination rollout and concerns around the effects of Long Covid.

·                Councillor Afzal regarding how the Council would be working with its partners to tackle discrimination and abuse in football on social media.

·                Councillor Mahmood regarding the introduction of ULEZ charges in the borough.

·                Councillor Choudhary regarding the actions being taken by the Council to provide a Covid-19 economic recovery programme.

·                Councillor Long regarding how the Council would be working with Thames Water to resolve rainwater drainage issues across the borough and specifically within Willesden Green.

·                Councillor Kennelly regarding the funding available to tackle violent crime within hotspots identified in the north of the borough.

·                Councillor Georgiou regarding whether the Deputy Leader would be willing to meet with residents who had felt excluded from pandemic-related grant funding.

Minutes:

Before moving on to consider the questions submitted by non-Cabinet members, the Mayor reminded Members that a total of 30 minutes had been set aside for this item, which would begin with consideration of the written questions submitted in advance of the meeting along with any supplementary questions. Once these had been dealt with, the remaining time available would then be opened up for any other non-Cabinet members to question Lead Members (without the need for advance notice) on matters relating to their portfolio.

 

The Mayor advised that four written questions had been submitted in advance for response by the relevant Lead Member. The written responses supplied had been circulated within the agenda. The Mayor invited supplementary questions from the Members who had submitted the written questions.  The following questions were raised and responses provided:

 

10.1   Without raising any specific supplementary question Councillor Ahmed took the opportunity to thank Councillor McLennan, as Deputy Leader, for her response to his question and noted the continued support being provided for local residents and businesses as part of the Covid-19 recovery programme.

 

10.2   Councillor Hylton thanked Councillor Krupa Sheth, as Lead Member for Environment, for the written response in relation to her question on the Council’s efforts to build back better from the pandemic and deliver on its climate emergency commitments.  Councillor Hylton then asked a supplementary question seeking details on the involvement of local businesses as part of the Brent Environment Network.

 

In response, Councillor Krupa Sheth advised that a number of local businesses had signed up to the Brent Environment Network and that the Council had regular meetings with these businesses to support them to fulfil their climate obligations.

 

10.3   Councillor Grahl thanked Councillor Southwood, as Lead Member for Housing and Welfare Reform, for the written response to her question in relation to the Council’s efforts to tackle poverty within the borough. Councillor Grahl then asked a supplementary question on the work being undertaken to tackle food poverty.

 

In response, Councillor Southwood highlighted the extent to which food poverty was an issue providing the example locally of food banks within Brent having supported over 13,000 residents.  She advised that the Council would continue to work alongside foodbanks to ensure relevant support could be accessed. Moving forward, she also highlighted the work being undertaken by the Council to support fresh food projects and community gardens as an additional means of promoting healthy and sustainable food sources.

 

10.4   Councillor Maurice thanked Councillor Krupa Sheth, as Lead Member for Environment, for the written response to his question in relation to the impact of the Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) charge on users of the Household Waste and Recycling Centre at Abbey Road.  Councillor Maurice then asked a supplementary question seeking further clarification on the answer provided and whether the Council would make representations to Transport for London seeking an exemption from the charge for Brent residents using the Household and Recycling Centre.

 

In response, Councillor Krupa Sheth advised that Brent had made a commitment to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 12.

13.

Report from Chairs of Scrutiny Committees pdf icon PDF 390 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 remits of their Committees.

Additional documents:

Decision:

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

 

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

 

·                Councillor Thakkar regarding the changes that had been made to maternity services at Northwick Park as an outcome of the recent CQC Inspection and discussions between the Community and Wellbeing Scrutiny Committee and relevant partners.

Minutes:

Before being presented with the updates from each Scrutiny Committee Chair, the Mayor reminded members the time set aside for this item was 12 minutes, with each Chair having up to three minutes in which to highlight any significant issues arising from the work of their Committees.  Once these updates had been provided, the remaining time available would then be opened up for any other non-Cabinet members to question (without the need for advance notice) the Scrutiny Committee Chairs on matters relating to the work of their Committee.

 

Councillor Mashari was then invited to introduce the update report on the work being undertaken by the Resources and Public Realm Committee, with the following issues highlighted:

 

·             The wide ranging remit of the Committee and its work programme which included waste and recycling, welfare and benefits, employment and skills, planning and regeneration, climate and community safety.

·             The wide scope of work undertaken by the Panel over the previous year which, amongst other issues had included a focus on the impact of pandemic on employment, fly tipping, the future of high streets and local business support.

·             The Committee’s engagement with a range of stakeholders and external witnesses at their meetings including the business representatives as well as the voluntary and community sector.  It was felt this had provided an interesting and diverse perspective to the Committee’s work.

·             The Committee’s intention to include a review at its next meeting of the safety concerns already referred to at the meeting in relation to the scenes witness in and around Wembley Stadium in the build up to the UEFA European Championship Final.

·             As outlined in the Committee’s Work Plan for 2021/22, future focus would be on a range of topics including fire safety, CCTV provision and collaboration and consultation with members of the public on a range of issues including the budget.

 

The Mayor thanked Councillor Mashari for her update.

 

Councillor Ketan Sheth was then invited to introduce the update report on the work being undertaken by the Community & Wellbeing Scrutiny Committee, with the following issues highlighted:

 

·             Members were advised of the establishment by the Committee of a Scrutiny Task Group to review GP access, chaired by Councillor Daly.  The Task Group review was currently ongoing with three wide ranging evidence gathering sessions having been held to date.

·             Following publication of the recent Care Quality Commission (CQC) review of maternity services at Northwick Park Hospital, the Committee had agreed to convene a special meeting in order to consider the report and areas for improvement which had been identified.

 

The Mayor thanked Councillor Ketan Sheth for his update and it was RESOLVED that the contents of both update reports be noted.

 

Following the updates provided, the Mayor advised that the remainder of time available would be open for questions from non-cabinet members to the Scrutiny Chairs. The Mayor reminded members of the need to ensure that questions raised were focused on the updates provided or the work being undertaken by each Committee. The following questions were raised  ...  view the full minutes text for item 13.

14.

Report from the Vice-Chair of the Audit & Standards Advisory Committee pdf icon PDF 225 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.

Minutes:

The Mayor invited Councillor Lo, as Vice-Chair of the Audit & Standards Advisory Committee, to introduce the report updating members on the work of the Committee.

 

In terms of issues highlighted, Councillor Lo drew members attention to the important role which the Committee had in reviewing and approving the Council’s Annual Statement of Accounts and commended Finance officers for the significant work undertaken to ensure the accounts had been completed and submitted on time for review by the Council’s External Auditors.

 

Focussing specifically on the Committee’s role in relation to compliance and control he also outlined and commended the robust nature of the work being undertaken in relation to various governance matters including internal audit activity, the regulatory framework and members’ standards of conduct.

 

Finally, Councillor Lo also took the opportunity to draw members attention to the Corporate Risk Register and Annual Governance Statement, which had both been subject to review and approval by the Committee.  The Committee had focussed on a number of risks including the ongoing pressure on local government finance and recovery from the pandemic and identified the need to ensure these risks were keep under review and that members were aware of the importance of both documents given their significance to the Councils overall control and governance arrangements.

 

The Mayor thanked Councillor Lo for the update provided and it was RESOLVED that the report be noted.

15.

Non Cabinet Members' Debate pdf icon PDF 214 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 any reports from Cabinet Members, as required, on issues previously raised.

 

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

 

Housing: Somewhere to Call Home

 

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

Additional documents:

Decision:

The following motion was agreed as an outcome of the non-cabinet member debate:

 

Somewhere to call Home

 

This Council understands that housing is amongst this city’s greatest social and economic challenges.

 

This Council recognises that there are no quick fixes or easy options, but remains nonetheless determined to make things better.

 

This Council can be proud of how far it has come in tackling the many problems afflicting the borough’s many housing markets and systems.

 

This Council notes its record of:

 

·             Helping deliver more than 11,000 new homes, almost 30% of which at social or affordable level, including more than 1,000 brand new council homes;

 

·             Bringing council housing services back in-house, leading to improvements in performance;

 

·             Beginning the process of properly regulating and responding to the needs of people living in this borough’s substantial private rental market; and

 

·             Tackling homelessness by developing i4B, an ethically managed, council-owned private rental service.

 

That said, this Council is of course alive to the fact that there is obviously much more to do if housing is to be made universally affordable, readily available, and of the highest possible standards.

 

To that end, this Council is determined to build on its proud record, and is committed to continue:

 

·             Pressing government on giving us the powers we need to roll out landlord licensing across the borough;

 

·             Campaigning against government plans to strip local residents of their democratic rights to participate in and contribute to the planning process;

 

·             Intervening earlier when residents are at risk of homelessness, giving them the best possible chance of getting back on their feet;

 

·             Helping every resident who loses their home find another they can afford;

 

·             Working with other London boroughs and local partners to provide guaranteed emergency shelter to anyone forced to sleep rough;

 

·             Growing i4B, changing the nature of the rental market from the inside, making it a fairer, more affordable, and decent place to live;

 

·             Developing a new generation of Key Worker housing;

 

·             Making it easier for those residents who need help to downsize, relocate or find a more suitable home;

 

·             Encouraging and supporting the formation of independent Tenants and Residents Associations in the homes that we provide and manage, calling on Housing Associations to do the same; and

 

·             Pressuring government to properly fund and support essential fire safety works across the public and private sectors.

Minutes:

In accordance with Standing Order 34, the Mayor advised that the next item on the agenda was the non-cabinet member debate, with the subject chosen for consideration being the Council’s commitment to solving the housing crisis.

 

Members were advised that the motion submitted as the basis for debate had been circulated with the agenda and that the time available for the debate was 25 minutes.

 

The Mayor then invited Councillor Johnson to introduce the motion. As context for the debate, Councillor Johnson highlighted the importance secure and affordable housing provided for residents.  In outlining his own experiences, he felt it was important to recognise the impact created by the lack of universally affordable, readily available and high quality accommodation within London.  To that end, Councillor Johnson urged all members to support the motion submitted as the basis for the debate and the Council in its efforts to build on its record of delivering affordable homes through its own delivery programme and regulation of the borough’s private rental market.

 

The Mayor then opened up the debate to other members, with the following comments made during the discussion that followed:

 

Councillor Choudhary, speaking in support of the motion, felt it was important to recognise the Council’s impressive record on providing affordable housing despite the Government’s programme of austerity. He spoke in support of a range of planned developments across the borough such as in Neasden and Alperton, highlighting the positive impact they would have not only in providing much needed social and affordable housing but also various improvements to the public realm.

 

Councillor Miller also expressed his support for the motion, citing the difficulties being experienced by many in becoming homeowners and the resulting over reliance on the private rented sector.  As a result, he felt there was need to continue encouraging central government to recognise the provision of social and affordable housing as a key means of addressing the housing crisis, which he felt could provide not only permanent solutions for residents but also the necessary assistance for those looking to be able to afford a permanent home.

 

Councillor Georgiou, whilst supporting the sentiments expressed in the motion, questioned the types of housing being delivered within his ward in Alperton.  He felt that too many new developments were high-rise, offered too few affordable units and were being let under what he felt was a flawed leaseholder model.

 

Councillor Tatler, Lead Member for Regeneration, Property and Planning, also felt it was important to recognise the impact of the housing crisis not only within the borough but across London as a whole.  In supporting the motion she expressed her pride in the Council’s record of delivering affordable housing.  She also called on all members, including those from the Conservative Group, to support the stance within the motion being taken against the Government’s proposed national planning reforms, which she felt would remove the democratic right of residents to participate in the planning process and ability of the Council, as local planning authority, to support  ...  view the full minutes text for item 15.

16.

Interval

Additional documents:

Minutes:

In accordance with Standing Order 24 the Mayor agreed to take a short 2 minute break at this stage in proceedings.

 

The meeting reconvened at 7:36pm

17.

Recovery from Covid-19 pdf icon PDF 294 KB

To receive a report from the Director of Finance presenting a sustainable and inclusive Covid-19 recovery programme for the Borough.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Council RESOLVED:

 

(1)     To agree the establishment of a £17m reserve as detailed in the report as part of the Borough’s COVID-19 recovery plan.

 

(2)     To agree that the new £17m reserve be established through re-designation of existing reserves that were set aside to manage the financial impact of COVID-19 and, where dealing with health inequalities, the ring fenced Public Health reserves.

Minutes:

The Mayor then invited Councillor McLennan, Deputy Leader and Lead Member for Resources, to introduce the report from the Director of Finance presenting members with a sustainable and inclusive Covid-19 recovery programme for the borough.  In introducing the report, Councillor McLennan advised members that Brent’s response had highlighted the strengths in its approach to cross-sector engagement and partnership working.  Whist the recovery programme had been designed to build on the successes to date it also recognised those areas on which there was a need to refocus attention moving into the pandemic recovery phase in order to ensure the process was equitable, inclusive and environmentally sustainable and was able to address issues exacerbated by the pandemic in relation to health inequality and poverty.  In concluding her introductory comments, attention was also drawn to the way in which the proposals in the report had been designed to provide a sustainable recovery process which was fully aligned to the Council’s Borough Plan priorities.

 

The Mayor then opened the debate inviting other members to speak on the report.

 

Councillor Shahzad in supporting the proposals within the report took the opportunity to thank the NHS, the Council and all partner organisations for their hard work in supporting residents during the pandemic, which he commended as having brought the best out of everyone within the borough.

 

As no other members indicated they wished to speak on the item and Councillor McLennan had confirmed she did not need to exercise her right of reply, the Mayor then put the recommendations in the report to the vote and they were unanimously declared CARRIED.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED:

 

(1)        To agree the establishment of a £17m reserve as detailed in the report as part of the borough’s COVID-19 recovery plan.

 

(2)        To agree that the new £17m reserve be established through re-designation of existing reserves that were set aside to manage the financial impact of Covid-19 and, where dealing with health inequalities, the ring fenced Public Health reserves.

18.

Treasury Management Outturn Report 2020-21 pdf icon PDF 211 KB

To receive a report from the Director of Finance updating members on Treasury Management activity and confirming that the Council has complied with its Prudential Indicators for 2020/21.

 

Members are asked to note that this report was received and noted by the Audit & Standards Advisory Committee on 11 May 2021 and Cabinet on 14 June 2021. It has been forwarded to Council in compliance with CIPFAs Code of Practice on Treasury Management.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Council RESOLVED:

 

(1)        To note and approve, following its consideration by Audit & Standards Advisory Committee on 11 May 2021 and Cabinet on 14 June 2021 the the 2020/21 Treasury Management outturn report, in compliance with CIPFA’s Code of Practice on Treasury Management (the Code).

 

(2)        To note that for 2020/21 the Council had complied with its Prudential Indicators which were approved by Full Council on 19 February 2020 as part of the Council’s Treasury Management Strategy Statement and Capital Strategy Statement.

Minutes:

The Mayor then invited Councillor McLennan, Deputy Leader and Lead Member for Resources, to introduce the report from the Director of Finance on Treasury Management activity and confirming the Council’s compliance with its Prudential Indicators for 2020/21.  In introducing the item members were advised that the report was being presented following its consideration by the Audit & Standards Advisory Committee on 11 May 2021 and Cabinet on 14 June 2021.

 

As no members indicated they wished to speak and Councillor McLennan had confirmed she did not need to exercise her right of reply the Mayor then put the recommendations in the report to the vote and they were unanimously declared CARRIED.

 

It was RESOLVED:

 

(1)        To note and approve the 2020/21 Treasury Management outturn report, in compliance with CIPFA’s Code of Practice on Treasury Management (the Code).

 

(2)        To note that for 2020/21 the Council had complied with its Prudential Indicators which were approved by Full Council on 19 February 2020 as part of the Council’s Treasury Management Strategy Statement and Capital Strategy Statement.

19.

Changes to the Constitution pdf icon PDF 157 KB

To receive a report from the Director of Legal, HR, Audit & Investigations seeking approval to a number of changes to the Constitution.  The report proposes the re-designation of two statutory posts and also asks the council to consider whether extended officer delegations agreed on a temporary basis at the Annual Council meeting should be continued.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Council RESOLVED:

 

(1)        To agree the designation of the Operational Director, Adult Social Care as the council’s statutory Director of Adult Social Services (DASS).

 

(2)    To agree the designation of the Senior Lawyer, Constitution and Governance as the council’s Data Protection Officer (DPO).

 

(3)    To agree that the delegation of council functions in Appendix 1 of the report remain in place until the next meeting of Full Council in September 2021.

 

(4)    To note that the delegation of executive functions in Appendix 1 of the report would remain in place until the next meeting of Full Council in September 2021, unless otherwise determined by the Leader.

 

(5)    To note that, to the extent that the changes set out in this report relate to executive functions of the Council, they had been approved by the Leader.

 

(6)    To authorise the Director of Legal, HR, Audit & Investigations to amend the Constitution accordingly, including making any necessary incidental or consequential changes.

Minutes:

Moving on, the Mayor invited Councillor M Butt, Leader of the Council, to introduce the report from the Director of Legal, HR, Audit & Investigations detailing a number of recommended changes to the Constitution.  Members were advised that these included the proposed re-designation of two statutory posts and potential further extension of officer delegations, which had been agreed on a temporary basis at the last Council meeting should they be felt to be required.

 

As no other members indicated that they wished to speak on the item and Councillor M.Butt had confirmed he did not need to exercise his right of reply, the Mayor put the recommendations in the report straight to the vote and they were unanimously declared CARRIED.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED:

 

(1)        To agree the designation of the Operational Director, Adult Social Care as the council’s statutory Director of Adult Social Services (DASS).

 

(2)    To agree the designation of the Senior Lawyer, Constitution and Governance as the council’s Data Protection Officer (DPO).

 

(3)    To agree that the delegation of council functions in Appendix 1 of the report remain in place until the next meeting of Full Council in September 2021.

 

(4)    To note that the delegation of executive functions in Appendix 1 of the report would remain in place until the next meeting of Full Council in September 2021, unless otherwise determined by the Leader.

 

(5)    To note that, to the extent the changes set out within the report related to executive functions of the Council, they had been approved by the Leader of the Council.

 

(6)    To authorise the Director of Legal, HR. Audit & Investigations to amend the Constitution accordingly, including the making of any necessary incidental or consequential changes.

20.

Financial Regulations and Scheme of Virements and Transfers pdf icon PDF 171 KB

To receive a report from the Director of Finance seeking approval, following review, to updated Financial Regulations and the Scheme of Virements and Transfers.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Council RESOLVED:

 

(1)      To agree the proposed Financial Regulations as set out within Appendix A of the report to replace the current Financial Regulations in the constitution.

 

(2)      To agree the proposed Scheme of Virements and Transfers as set out within Appendix B of the report to replace the current Scheme of Virements and Transfers in the constitution.

Minutes:

The Mayor then invited Councillor McLennan, Deputy Leader and Lead Member for Resources, to introduce the report from the Director of Finance which members were advised detailed a number of proposed changes to the current Financial Regulations and Scheme of Virements and Transfers following the release of a new Financial Management Code and an updated Code of Audit Practice.

 

As no other members indicated they wished to speak on the item and Councillor McLennan had confirmed she did not need to exercise her right of reply, the Mayor then put the recommendations in the report to the vote and they were unanimously declared CARRIED.

 

It was therefore RESOLVED:

 

(1)        To agree the proposed Financial Regulations as set out within Appendix A of the report to replace the current Financial Regulations in the constitution.

 

(2)        To agree the proposed Scheme of Virements and Transfers as set out within Appendix B of the report to replace the current Scheme of Virements and Transfers in the constitution.

21.

Motions pdf icon PDF 207 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 on 7 July 2021

Additional documents:

Decision:

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

 

Protect Our Environment

 

This Council notes the concerns of Brent Residents Against Asphalt Pavements, namely:

 

a.      The basis for the Council’s policy adopted in May 2016 to replace paving slabs by asphalt when footways are being renewed; and 

 

b.      The implementation and apparent further evolution of the policy up to the present time.

 

This Council believes that:

 

·                The programme is atheistically ugly.

 

·                The programme is environmentally harmful.

 

The programme is costly in comparison to replacing and repairing existing slab and or block paving.

 

·                The Residents were not and are not properly consulted and their views are ignored.

 

This Council therefore calls on the Leader of the Council and the Cabinet to halt the roll out of this programme forthwith and revert to repair and replace the pavement like for like.

 

Councillors Georgiou, Kansagra and Maurice voted in favour of the above motion.  All other members present at the meeting voted against the motion.

 

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

 

The road to recovery

 

This Council recognises how deeply the pandemic has impacted on the lives and livelihoods of the people of Brent.

 

This Council acknowledges the toll taken on all residents, not least those already enduing, pre-COVID19, the enormous difficulties of poverty and deprivation.

 

This Council commends the huge civic effort that enabled the speedy and sustained provision of essential support to those prevented by various lockdown restrictions from meeting their own needs.

 

This Council applauds communities that have come together in these difficult times, and commends key workers that have given so much of themselves in keeping vital services running.

 

This Council notes:

 

·                The implementation of the invaluable Resident Support Fund through which thousands of households could access desperately needed financial assistance

 

·                The delivery of the Covid-19 Winter Grant Scheme supporting families in need over the winter period

 

·                The provision of nearly £100m for local business impacted by Covid-19

 

·                Its ability to help meet the third highest level of demand in England for self-employment support packages

 

·                The enhancement of Brent Start and Brent Works to ensure that Brent’s workforce remains connected to nearby employment opportunities

 

·                The outstanding help and support provided to high numbers of clinically extremely vulnerable residents

 

·                The public health partnerships that have enabled the large scale and ongoing roll out of vaccinations

 

This Council commits itself to continue building on these successes and embraces the fact that there remains much to be done on this borough’s road to recovery.

 

To that end, this Council is determined to:

 

·                Deliver on its Climate and Ecological Emergency pledge to become a carbon neutral borough.

 

·                Launch the Business Support Fund and Additional Grant Scheme, providing local enterprise with access to a wide range of financial and advisory resources.

 

·                Collaborate locally to provide affordable and creative co-working space in response to people’s new working patterns.

 

Councillors Kansagra and Maurice abstained from voting on the above motion.

Minutes:

Before moving on to consider the motions listed on the summons, the Mayor advised members that a total of 20 minutes had been set aside for the consideration of the two motions submitted for debate, based on an initial allocation of 10 minutes per motion. Should the time taken to consider the first motion be less than 10 minutes she advised that the remaining time available would be rolled forward for consideration of the remaining motion.

 

1st Motion (Conservative Group) – Protect Our Environment

 

The Mayor invited Councillor Kansagra to move the first motion which had been submitted on behalf of the Conservative Group.  Councillor Kansagra, in moving the motion, began by highlighting the detrimental impact which he felt hard landscaping, in particular asphalt paving, was having on water run-off and flooding in the borough.  Referring to a number of concerns raised by the recently established alliance Brent Residents against Asphalt Pavements in an email to the Resources & Public Realm Scrutiny Committee, he supported the request made for a detailed review to be undertaken of the current policy and the return in its place of like for like repair and renewal of pavements.

 

The Mayor then invited other members to speak on the motion, with the following contributions received.

 

Councillor Long, speaking against the motion, advised she did not support the view that asphalt paving increased flooding and instead highlighted what she felt to be the benefits of asphalt pavements in terms of them providing an easier, safer and more cost effective method of maintenance, repair and renewal than existing slab or block paving.  For these reasons she advised that she would not be supporting the motion.

 

Councillor Georgiou, speaking in support of the motion, highlighted his concerns regarding the sustainability and environmental impact of the policy, which he felt not only served to increase the Council’s carbon footprint but also directly contradicted the Council’s Climate Emergency Strategy.  He also highlighted the extent of local residents opposition to the policy and concerns which had been raised by Brent Residents against Asphalt Pavements.

 

As a further contribution Councillor Mashari, as Chair of the Resources and Public Realm Scrutiny Committee, took the opportunity to confirm that a detailed response had been requested by the Committee on the email from Brent Residents against Asphalt Pavements in order to address the issues raised.

 

Councillor Kelcher, also speaking against the motion, outlined what he also felt to be the safety benefits from the use of asphalt rather than more traditional slab and block paving along with its more cost effective maintenance and repair.  He also highlighted that not all local residents were objecting to the policy with many he had engaged with expressing their support.

 

As no further members had indicated that they wished to speak the Mayor invited Councillor Kansagra to exercise his right of reply.

 

In summing up, Councillor Kansagra advised that given the concerns raised by local residents regarding consultation on the policy and programme he would be seeking a formal  ...  view the full minutes text for item 21.

22.

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.

Minutes:

There were no urgent items of business raised at the meeting so the Mayor, in closing the meeting, thanked all members for their co-operation and support and advised that she looked forward to seeing everyone again in person at the next Full Council meeting on Monday 20 September 2021.