Agenda and minutes
Economic and Community Development Policy Development and Scrutiny Panel
Thursday, 12th July, 2012 1.00 pm
Venue: Council Chamber - Guildhall, Bath. View directions
Contact: Jack Latkovic 01225 394452
WELCOME AND INTRODUCTIONS
The Chairman, Councillor Robin Moss, sent his apology for this meeting. The Chair for this meeting only was taken by Councillor Ben Stevens who welcomed everyone to the meeting.
EMERGENCY EVACUATION PROCEDURE
The Chair will draw attention to the emergency evacuation procedure as set out under Note 6.
The Democratic Services Officer drew attention to the emergency evacuation procedure.
APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND SUBSTITUTIONS
Councillors Lisa Brett and Robin Moss had sent their apologies to the Panel. Councillor Ian Gilchrist was substitute for Councillor Brett.
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST UNDER THE LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT 1972
Members who have an interest to declare are asked to:
a) State the Item Number in which they have the interest
b) The nature of the interest
c) Whether the interest is personal, or personal and prejudicial
Any Member who is unsure about the above should seek advice from the Monitoring Officer prior to the meeting in order to expedite matters at the meeting itself.
Councillor Patrick Anketell-Jones declared personal and non-prejudicial interest in any agenda item that has Bath city centre mentioned in the report, in particular items from Economic Development, as he is owner of the shop located in Bath city centre.
TO ANNOUNCE ANY URGENT BUSINESS AGREED BY THE CHAIRMAN
The Chairman informed the Panel that he agreed to include Cabinet Member update, from Councillor David Dixon, on the agenda for this meeting straight after confirmation of the minutes of last meeting.
ITEMS FROM THE PUBLIC OR COUNCILLORS - TO RECEIVE DEPUTATIONS, STATEMENTS, PETITIONS OR QUESTIONS RELATING TO THE BUSINESS OF THIS MEETING
At the time of publication no notifications had been received.
There were none.
To confirm the minutes of the above meeting as a correct record.
The Panel confirmed the minutes of the previous meeting as a true record and they were duly signed by the Chairman.
Members asked that the Panel be kept up to date with the superfast broadband provision in Bath. According to Cabinet Member for Sustainable Development the Government put forward criteria for small cities broadband fund and it appears that Bath did not qualify under those criteria considering that Bath has only 38,000 residencies/dwellings (out of 45,000 required).
Members of the Panel also asked what Council’s interest in Roman Bath Kitchen is. Councillor David Dixon (Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods) replied that Council is a land owner of that site.
Cabinet Member update
The Panel will receive an update from Councillor David Dixon (Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods).
The Chairman invited Councillor David Dixon to give an update to the Panel (attached as Appendix 1 to these minutes).
The Panel asked the following questions:
Councillor Gilchrist and Councillor Anketell-Jones asked what needs to be done, or what criteria need to be fulfilled, to get the CCTV in particular areas and on particular locations
Councillor Dixon replied that the Council would need to assess the location need, what are the costs of installations and what are the expectations of having the CCTV in particular areas. The Council will also use evidence they currently have on particular area needs.
Councillor Simmons asked about the progress of looking at a new leisure centre for Keynsham and which sites were considered.
Councillor Dixon replied that the Council considered the site in Wellsway School and also around Ashton Way. Both of the sites will be subject of the feasibility costs before the decision is made. Nevertheless, the Cabinet is committed to maintain their plans for Keynsham regeneration.
Councillor Evans asked if the reason for not receiving £80,000 grant for the Community Safety is to finance the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) and what our future community safety role might be
David Trethewey (Divisional Director of Policy and Partnerships) responded that the specific grant received by the Council transfers to the commissioner, there are still some uncertainties about how the Councils responsibilities around Crime and Disorder reduction partnerships will develop in the light of the PCC.
Councillor Dixon also suggested that the Panel pay a visit to the new CCTV Control Room in near future.
The Panel AGREED to visit the new CCTV Control Room in near future.
It was also RESOLVED to note the update.
This report highlights how the work of the Community Safety Partnership helps support the most vulnerable in our communities.
The Panel is requested:
· To note the work of the Community Safety Partnership to support and reassure vulnerable people.
· To examine and test this work and its outcomes and wider impacts.
· To note the Government’s proposed new tools and powers for anti-social behaviour and crime.
· To make any recommendations to Cabinet or the Responsible Authorities Group.
The Chairman invited Sue Dicks (Community Manager Partnership Delivery) to introduce the report.
Sue Dicks took the Panel through the following priorities of the Community Safety Plan:
Increase protection of the most vulnerable victims of crime – domestic violence and abuse, sexual abuse and hate crime
Sue Dicks highlighted the work that Southside Family Project’s Independent Domestic Violence Advisor (IDVA) Service did last year. They supported over 3,800 vulnerable people a year.
The Panel asked how we compare nationally, or West of England, on referral figures.
Sue Dicks replied that the service provision is excellent in comparison with other areas in Avon and Somerset. Sue Dicks said that she could provide national figures at the next meeting.
The Panel asked about the percentage of men who are victims of the domestic violence and abuse and hate crime.
Sue Dicks replied that 22% of victims are men and that the number is increasing. Sue Dicks said that there is a close working relationship with Sirona on this matter.
The Panel asked how many hate crimes are registered in a year.
Sue Dicks replied that fortunately the number is quite low and that is including universities, schools, etc.
Sue Dicks informed the Panel that she will soon meet with the partnership organisations about ‘Safe Zones’ for people with learning disabilities. Councillor Rigby suggested that Twerton Park should be included in the ‘Safe Zones’ area as well. Sue Dicks welcomed that suggestion.
Reducing antisocial behaviour – putting victims, witnesses and communities first
Sue Dicks informed the Panel that 21,000 calls, related to antisocial behaviour, were recorded last year with Police, Curo (previously known as Somer Housing Trust), and Environmental Services. The support is provided straight away to victims.
Councillor Simmons commented that he was involved, in his Ward Councillor capacity, in 3 antisocial behaviour cases and the response from the Community Safety Team was quick and excellent. Councillor Simmons wished that the service continue to exist and do not disappear in near future.
Create a safe, strong and vibrant night time economy
Sue Dicks highlighted that Bath city centre gained a ‘Purple Flag’ award (the first one in the country) and the excellent work of Taxi Marshall Service. Taxi Marshall Service sees around 150,000 people home safely every year. They dealt with 421 incidents last year (between Sep 2011 and May 2012) out of which 82 needed Police intervention. The paramedics were also provided to free up A&E and out of 80 people treated, 77 did not need to go to A&E. Sue Dicks also highlighted the value of the Midsomer Norton Community Alcohol Partnership.
Councillor Rigby said that more people need to know about this good news because the perception from people is that Bath city centre is not the best place to be after certain hours.
Sue Dicks also highlighted partnership work with the British Transport Police and its positive effect on the night time economy.
Minimise harm from substance misuse
Sue Dicks highlighted the work of the Project ... view the full minutes text for item 23.
In March 2012 a study was commissioned to provide an evidence-based insight into the ‘Independent Business Sector’ in Bath and North East Somerset’s economy.
The ‘Independent Business Sector’ is defined as the sector of the economy which comprises all those private sector businesses which are not owned or controlled by another company.
The study aims to explore the direct contribution of the Independent Sector to Bath and North East Somerset’s economy in terms of economic output, employment and incomes as well as some information about indirect contributions through the supply chain.
The study will also provide an insight into how much ‘leakage’ exists within the independent and non-independent sectors e.g. the amount of their economic contribution which ‘leaks out’ of the B&NES economy and into economies located elsewhere.
This report invites the panel to hear the detail of the study and discuss options for supporting the independent sector going forward.
The Chairman invited John Wilkinson (Economic Enterprise & Business Development Manager) to give the presentation.
John Wilkinson gave the presentation named ‘Locally owned businesses in BANES’ in which he highlighted the following points:
• Aims of the study
• Headlines (1)
• Headlines (2)
• Headlines (3)
• Draft Conclusions
• Draft potential actions
A full copy of the presentation is available on the minute book in Democratic Services.
The Panel made the following points:
The Panel welcomed the information and good news in this area and asked if a press release was going to be issued.
John Wilkinson responded that nothing had been developed yet for the press because the research had only been received last Friday and there is a need for thorough analysis of information. In due course the press release will be issued because it is a good story.
The Panel commented that the creative industry seemed to be fastest growing industry and asked if that is because the sector is fast growing in general or because people who come here want to do business in that industry.
John Wilkinson replied that it is definitely a fast growing sector and there are far more opportunities and possibilities now than it was 10 years ago. John Wilkinson also said that he would like to think that there are also people who are choosing Bath because of its growing reputation for this sector. The great combination of the Universities, existing creative companies and quality of life, makes it particularly appealing as a business destination. The evidence shows that we are getting a higher proportion of these companies than one would expect for a place of this size.
The Panel asked if we are prepared to take those extra numbers of people interested in creative sector and whether there is the right infrastructure.
John Wilkinson replied that it is a top priority and there is on-going work in that area. The Council is aware that this is such a good opportunity for employment that we can’t afford to miss it.
Some Members of the Panel suggested that because independent sector contribute so much to the economy some other Committees, such as Development Control Committee, should know about that.
John Wilkinson agreed with the view and said that there is a role for the other Committees and bodies to play on this area.
It was RESOLVED to note the report and presentation.
This report presents the latest workplan for the Panel.
It was RESOLVED to note the workplan with the following additions:
· Community Safety Plan: Student watch – September 2012
· Police Commissioner update – March 2013 (tbc)
· X-media Lab – September 2012 (tbc)
· River Corridor Group Scrutiny Inquiry Day Terms of Reference – September 2012