To consider the recommendations from the meeting(s) of the Cabinet held on 23rd October 2019.
Wyre Forest Local Plan – BDC Response to Pre Submission Plan
Councillor A. Kent, Portfolio Holder for Planning and Regulatory Services, proposed the recommendations in respect of the Wyre Forest Local Plan Response and these were seconded by Councillor K. May.
In presenting the report Councillor Kent highlighted that the response was similar to that already provided at the earlier stage of the process and that he was disappointed that Wyre Forest had not taken on board the comments from that initial stage. However, he was able to confirm that since the report had been prepared officers had met with Worcestershire County Council (WCC) and Wyre Forest District Council, although there was some way to go with these discussions and there continued to be a lack of evidence in respect of the modelling. This lack of evidence has left the Council with no option other than to raise the possibility of non-compliance with the duty to co-operate.
During the following debate Members discussed a number of issues, including:
· Concerns around the impact on the Hagley area in particular.
· Disappointment with the timescales, which had meant that the response had been sent prior to agreement at Council.
· The impact on the eastern side of the District and in particular Whitford Road, where there was currently a major development under consideration.
· The ongoing issues with WCC in respect of highways issues and the need to look at the traffic flows and the impact on them throughout the town centre.
· Whether this provided further evidence to support the need for a western relief road.
· The impact on the public in general and the lack of engagement from Wyre Forest. It was questioned whether it should go back out to consultation as there appeared to have been limited consultation as far as Members were aware.
Councillor Kent thanked Members for their comments and assured them that he would do everything within his power to ensure that this was dealt with satisfactorily and would be lobbying those involved at every opportunity at both District and County Council levels and he had taken the concerns raised on board.
a) the Officer response to the Wyre Forest Local Plan Review Pre Submission Plan as its formal response and that it is confirmed with Wyre Forest District Council as such be approved; and
b) Delegated Authority be given to the Head of Planning and Regeneration to ensure that BDC is represented at the Examination in Public element of the Wyre Forest Local Plan review.
Local Council Tax Reduction Scheme 2020/21
Councillor G. Denaro, the Portfolio Holder for Finance and Enabling proposed the recommendation and this was seconded by Councillor K. May.
In proposing the recommendation Councillor Denaro explained that the Council was obliged to bring this Scheme forward to Council each year, last year there had been a consultation which had resulted in 85% of the Council Tax being covered and it was proposed that there would be no change for 2020/21. He further commented that the Overview and Scrutiny Board, who had pre-scrutinised the report, had asked for different levels of support to be considered in the future and it was confirmed that a full review would take place in the following year with all options being considered with a business case being brought forward in support of the different options.
Members asked that 100% be included within the business case going forward for 2021/22.
RESOLVED that no changes be made to the Council Tax Reduction Scheme for 2020/21 other than the uprating of allowances, disregards and other financial limits be approved.