Agenda and decisions

Venue: This will be held as an online virtual meeting

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 in Brent page on the Council's website or through the link on the agenda frontsheet. 

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for Absence

Decision:

None.

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.

3.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 212 KB

To approve the minutes of the previous meeting held on 08 March 2021 as a correct record.

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED that the minutes of the previous meeting held on 8 March 2021 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.

5.

Petitions (if any)

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

 

Members are asked to note that the following petition is due to be received at the meeting:

 

Divest Brent Council from Fossil Fuel Companies – Brent Divest

 

The Lead Petition (or their nominated representative) will have up to 5 minutes to present the petition.

Decision:

Cabinet received a petition submitted by Brent Divest, which members noted contained nearly 1,400 signatures.  The petition called on Brent Council to make a public divestment statement committing the Brent Pension Fund to fully divest from fossil fuel companies and shift these funds to lower risk ethical investments.

 

The petition was presented by Councillor Kelcher, on behalf of Simon Erskine (Brent Divest) who highlighted what he felt to be the strong policy, democratic and economic case supporting an immediate commitment and move towards divestment.

 

The Leader of the Council advised that he had also agreed to accept an additional request to speak at the meeting on this issue.  The request was from Councillor Choudhary, as Chair of the Brent Pension Fund Sub Committee, who highlighted the strategy already established by the Pension Fund to diversify their investment portfolio away from fossil fuel companies and towards more sustainable and low carbon funds.  The approach taken was designed to balance the legal and fiduciary duties on the Fund against the need to manage the overall level of risk whilst also taking account of the size of the Fund and resources available.  The strategy, he pointed out, was also linked to the approach being led through the London CIV on behalf of London Councils.

 

In response to the petition, Councillor McLennan (as Deputy Leader and Lead Member for Resources) felt there was a need to recognise the progress being made by the Pension Fund in relation to their divestment strategy, linked to the approach being co-ordinated through the London CIV.  Whilst recognising this was on a longer term basis than the action being sought by the petitioners, members were advised of the Council’s commitment towards progressing the divestment strategy, with a clear roadmap being developed as part of the work on delivery of the Climate Emergency Strategy balanced against the mitigation of risk to the Pension Fund.

 

Having noted the progress made to date, Councillor Krupa Sheth (as Lead Member for Environment) supported by the Leader of the Council closed the discussion by re-emphasising the Council’s commitment towards delivery of a responsible divestment strategy closely linked to the overall approach being co-ordinated through the London CIV and Council’s Climate Emergency Strategy.  It was felt this would provide the necessary transparency whilst also mitigating risk to deliver the best outcome for all.

6.

Reference of item considered by Scrutiny Committees (if any)

There are no items to be considered at this meeting.

Decision:

There were no references from Scrutiny submitted for consideration at the meeting.

7.

Brent Climate and Ecological Emergency Strategy 2021-30 pdf icon PDF 268 KB

This report presents the final version of Brent’s Climate and Ecological Emergency Strategy (2021-2030) for adoption following a further period of public consultation between November 2020 and January 2021. The Climate and Ecological Emergency Strategy includes the key objectives, themes and areas of focus that will ensure Brent works towards its goal of carbon neutrality by 2030.  

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED

 

(1)      To approve the final Brent Climate and Ecological Emergency Strategy (2021-2030) following a further period of public consultation and following further officer consideration (updated strategy document provided as Appendix A of the report).

 

(2)     To note that a more detailed breakdown of the consultation process, a short illustrative version and an easy-read version for people with disabilities would be made available on the Climate Emergency section of the council’s website (www.brent.gov.uk/climateemergency).

8.

Streamlining of the Brent Black Community Action Plan pdf icon PDF 200 KB

This report presents a streamlined version of the Brent Community Action Plan for review. The proposed plan has incorporated ongoing feedback and recommendations from the recent LGA peer review. It also presents a Year One Delivery Plan that had been established to outline priority areas to be delivered within the next financial year.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED

 

(1)      To note the content of the report.

 

(2)     To note and endorse the following appendices within the report:

 

·                Appendix 2: Streamlined Brent Black Community Action Plan; and

 

·                Appendix 3: Year One Delivery Plan

9.

Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme - Energy Efficiency - Works in Brent Corporate Buildings pdf icon PDF 449 KB

This report outlines a project which sets out to improve the energy efficiency of the Brent Council retained buildings with the highest energy consumption, creating energy and cost savings to the Council.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED:

 

(1)      To approve the project to improve the energy efficiency of selected Brent Council retained buildings with the highest energy consumption as detailed in Table 1 within section 3.8 of the report.

 

(2)      To delegate authority to the Assistant Chief Executive, in consultation with the Lead Member for the Environment, to make further adjustments to the building and technology selection for the project referred to in (1) above to ensure best value for the reasons detailed in section 3.7 of the report.

 

(3)      To approve the Council entering into a grant agreement with the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy to fund the project referred to in (1) above in the sum of £3,234,000.

 

(4)      To note that officers will undertake procurements to appoint a range of consultants and contractors using powers delegated under Part 3 of the Constitution to achieve the aims of the project referred to in (1) above.

10.

Corporate Performance - Q3 2020/21 Performance pdf icon PDF 330 KB

This report provides a corporate overview of performance information in the third quarter of 2020/21 linked to the Borough Plan priorities.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED:

 

(1)      To note the performance information contained in the report.

 

(2)      To note the challenge process along with current and future strategic risks associated with the information provided and approve actions being undertaken on strategic risks, as appropriate.

 

(3)      To note the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the organisation. During Quarter 3 the Council continued to work intensively to respond to Covid-19.  Members recognised, however, the impact of the pandemic on all services throughout the organisation, including on a number of performance indicators across priority areas with 34% currently rated red compared with 24% at the same point last year.

11.

Water Charges and Brent Council Tenants pdf icon PDF 206 KB

This report outlines the proposed approach to issuing refunds to current and former Brent Council residents in relation to previous arrangements for the billing and collection of water charges.

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED to note the content of the report and approve the following approach regarding the payment of refunds in respect of water charges:

 

(1)      Refunds for both current and former tenants being calculated from the contractual start dates i.e. Thames Water Utilities 2003 and Affinity Water from 2005.

 

(2)      Refunds for current tenants being issued to their rent accounts with those in credit able to apply for the amount to be debited to their bank accounts, and if in arrears, the refund being used to offset the arrears owed.

 

(3)      Refunds for former tenants being:

 

(i)        issued to their rent accounts where former tenants have rent arrears to offset any arrears owed to the Council;

(ii)       paid into leaseholders accounts (who were tenants at the time) if they are currently in occupation; and

(iii)      to establish a process for former tenants (with no current relationship with Brent Housing Management) to apply for a refund and ensure this was publicised with a cut-off date of two years from the point of launching the application process.

12.

Authority to Commission Community Equipment Provider pdf icon PDF 368 KB

This report sets out the details of the award of a call-off contract for the community equipment provider. It requests authority to award contracts as required by Standing Order 88 and summarises the process undertaken in tendering the framework from which it is proposed to call off.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED:

 

(1)      To note officers involvement in the procurement of a framework for Community Equipment let by the London Borough of Barnet.

 

(2)     To approve the award of a call-off contract from the framework referred to in (1) above for Community Equipment to Milbrook Healthcare Limited for a period of 5 years from the 1st July 2021 until 30 June 2026 with optional break clauses exercisable at the ends of years 3 and 4 of the contract.

13.

South Kilburn Regeneration Programme: Approval of Procurement Processes for Future Phases and Associated Matters pdf icon PDF 233 KB

This report outlines and seeks approval for a number of procurement processes for future phases and associated matters of the ongoing South Kilburn Regeneration Project.  

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED:

 

(1)      To approve the procurement of a delivery partner for the NWCC site including,  1-8 Neville House, 1-64 Winterleys, 113-128 Carlton House and Carlton Hall; through inviting tenders using a Competitive Procedure with Negotiation under the Public Contracts Regulations 2015.

 

(2)      To approve the procurement of delivery partners/contractors for the remaining Phases (3b-8) of the South Kilburn Programme sites.

 

(3)      To delegate authority to the Strategic Director of Regeneration & Environment in consultation with the Lead Member of Regeneration, Property and Planning, to select the appropriate procurement route and pre-tender considerations for those remaining sites within Phases 3b-8 and to evaluate such tenders.

 

(4)      To delegate to the Strategic Director of Regeneration and Environment in consultation with the Lead Member Regeneration, Property and Planning authority to award the contract for Delivery Partners to progress the comprehensive redevelopment of the remaining sites from Phase 3b-8 within the South Kilburn Programme.

 

(5)      To delegate to the Strategic Director of Regeneration and Environment in consultation with the Lead Member Regeneration, Property and Planning the decision on alternative development routes if procurement was unsuccessful in relation to the remaining sites from Phase 3b-8 within the South Kilburn Programme.

 

(6)      To approve the setting of rent levels for the affordable homes at all remaining sites within the Programme (Phases 3b-8) at the South Kilburn Social rent levels.

 

(7)      To approve capital funding (strategic community infrastructure levy) of £4.9m to deliver the infrastructure and public realm works within the NWCC Project.

14.

Roe Green Infant School Kitchen & Improvement Works - Approval of Capital Funding pdf icon PDF 266 KB

This report concerns the extension to kitchen facilities at Roe Green Infant School. It requests approval to assign capital funding to deliver a kitchen extension project at the school.

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED to approve £538,280.36 from the Council’s Basic Need Allocation to deliver the kitchen and £189,300.64 s106 funding, as detailed within sections 4.5 and 4.6 of the report.

15.

Debt Write-Off Procedure pdf icon PDF 257 KB

This report outlines the changes to the debt write-off procedure and details those debts over £3,000 that had been written off, as required by the Council’s Constitution. It also provides an updated version of the Council’s Ethical debt Recovery policy.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Cabinet RESOLVED:

 

(1)      To note the revised arrangements for the write-off of bad debts, as set out in Appendix 2 of the report.

 

(2)      To note the debt write-offs over £3,000 listed in Appendix 3 of the report and that these largely related to old debts from 1994 to 2010.

 

(3)      To note that while there was a requirement to report write-offs over £3,000 to Cabinet this was the first report of this kind since the recommendation in the Council’s Internal Audit report of June 2019 as set out in Appendix 1 of the report.

 

(4)      To note the revised debt policy referred to as Ethical Debt Policy that had been updated and approved by the Strategic Director for Customer and Digital Services to include reference to the new Breathing Space requirements as set out in Appendix 4 of the report.

16.

Exclusion of Press and Public

The following items are not for publication as they relate to the following category of exempt information as specified under Part 1, Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972, namely: “Information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information)"

 

Item 12:          Authority to Commission Community Equipment Provider – Appendix 1 (List of Contractors)

 

Item 13:          South Kilburn Regeneration Programme: Approval of Procurement Processes for Future Phases and Associated Matters – Appendix 4 (Funding Agreement)

 

Item 14:          Debt Write-Off Procedure – Appendix 3 (Debt Write Off)

Decision:

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

17.

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 his representative before the meeting in accordance with Standing Order 60.

Decision:

None.