Agenda and minutes

Special, Full Council - Wednesday 21st February 2024 6.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, at the Arun Civic Centre, Maltravers Road, Littlehampton, BN17 5LF

Contact: Jane Fulton 


No. Item





Apologies for Absence



Declarations of interest

Members and Officers are invited to make any declarations of pecuniary, personal and/or prejudicial interests that they may have in relation to items on this agenda, and are reminded that they should re-declare their interest before consideration of the item or as soon as the interest becomes apparent.


Members and Officers should make their declaration by stating:


a)  the item they have the interest in

b)  whether it is a pecuniary, personal and/or prejudicial interest

c)  the nature of the interest

d) if it is a pecuniary or prejudicial interest, whether they will be exercising their right to speak under Question Time


The Declaration of Interest Sheet set out below confirms those Members who had made a declaration of their personal interest as a Member of a Town or Parish Councillor or a West Sussex County Councillor, as confirmed in their Register of Interest as these declarations could apply to any of the issues to be discussed at the meeting:



Town or Parish Council or West Sussex County Council [WSCC]

Councillor Kenton Batley

Bognor Regis

Councillor Trevor Bence


Councillor Paul Bicknell


Councillor Carol Birch


Councillor Billy Blanchard-Cooper


Councillor Jim Brooks

Bognor Regis

Councillor Alan Butcher


Councillor Andy Cooper


Councillor Alison Cooper

Rustington and WSCC

Councillor Roger Elkins

Ferring and WSCC

Councillor Steve Goodheart

Bognor Regis

Councillor Keir Greenway

Bersted and WSCC

Councillor Thomas Harty


Councillor Shirley Haywood


Councillor David Huntley


Councillor Lesley-Anne Lloyd


Councillor Jill Long


Councillor Martin Lury


Councillor Maralyn May


Councillor Roger Nash

Bognor Regis

Councillor Claire Needs

Bognor Regis

Councillor Mike Northeast


Councillor Peggy Partridge


Councillor Jacky Pendleton

Middleton-on-Sea and WSCC

Councillor Matt Stanley

Bognor Regis

Councillor Freddie Tandy


Councillor Sue Wallsgrove

Barnham and Eastergate

Councillor Jeanette Warr

Bognor Regis

Councillor Christine Wiltshire


Councillor Bob Woodman


Councillor Amanda Worne

Ford and Yapton

Councillor Amelia Worne


Councillor Gillian Yeates

Bersted and Bognor Regis


The following Councillors asked for their details to be updated on the declaration sheet displayed to the meeting, as set out below:


·         Councillor Bence – to add that he was a Member of Aldwick Parish Council;

·         Councillor Lawrence – to add that she was now a Member of Aldingbourne Parish Council;

·         Councillor Birch – to have removed that she was no longer a member of Aldwick Parish Council; and

·         Councillor McAuliffe – to add that he was a Member of Walberton Parish Council


No additional Declarations of Interest were made.


The Chair then reminded Members of the restrictions on voting outlined in Section 106 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992.  This confirmed that where a Member had at least two months arrears of Council tax they must not vote on any other matter relating directly to the setting of the next year’s Council Tax, though they could remain in the meeting and could speak.


Public Question Time pdf icon PDF 127 KB

To receive questions from the public (for a period of up to 15 minutes)


The Chair confirmed that five public questions had been submitted for the meeting. These questions have been very briefly summarised below:


(1)  From Mr Chester to the Planning Committee, Councillor Hamilton regarding the 112 Bo Klok homes in Littlehampton. In the absence of the Chair of the Planning Committee, Councillor Hamilton, a response was provided by the Vice-Chair, Councillor Wallsgrove. A supplementary question was asked and it was confirmed that a written response would be provided.

(2)  Mr and Mrs Smith to the Chair of the Policy & Finance Committee, Councillor Stanley regarding the payment of Council Tax and other options available for the payment of Council Tax. A supplementary question was asked and it was confirmed that a written response would be provided.

(3)  Mr Neathercote to the Chair of the Policy & Finance Committee regarding the Council’s finances. 

(4)  Mr and Mrs Smith to the Chair of the Corporate Support Committee, Councillor Opper regarding electoral registration. A supplementary question was asked and it was confirmed that a response would be provided in writing.

(5)  Mr Neathercoate to the Chair of the Environment Committee, Councillor Wallsgrove regarding landowners undertaking their riparian responsibilities with regard to ditch clearing.


The Chair in drawing Public Question to a close confirmed that a  schedule of the full questions asked, and the responses provided would be uploaded to the Full Council Public Question Time Web page within ten working days of the meeting.




Questions from Members with Pecuniary/Prejudicial Interests

To receive questions from Members with pecuniary/prejudicial interests (for a period of up to 15 minutes)


            No questions were asked.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 219 KB

To approve as a correct record the Minutes of the Meeting of the Council held on 10 January 2024, which are attached.



Chair's Announcements

To receive such announcements as the Chair may desire to lay before the Council.


            The Chair confirmed that there were no announcements to be made.



Urgent Matters

To deal with business not otherwise specified in the Council summons which, in the opinion of the Chairman of the Council (in consultation with the Chief Executive), is business of such urgency as to require immediate attention by the Council.



Arun District Council Budget - 2024-2025 pdf icon PDF 991 KB

The Council is asked to consider the Revenue and Capital Budgets for the 2024/25 financial year for both the General Fund and Housing Revenue Account.


A report from the Group Head of Finance and Section 151 Officer is attached and considers the recommendations made by the Policy and Finance Committee following its meeting held on 8 February 2024 in respect of the Council’s Budget for 2024/25. The minutes from this meeting will be circulated separately to this agenda.


The associated statutory resolutions have been received from West Sussex County Council and the Sussex Police and Crime Commissioner in terms of precepts.


This item will be presented using the order below in line with Council Procedure Rule 4.3 [Procedure for Debate at Special Meetings]:


(i)             Welcome by the Chair

(ii)            Presentation by the Leader of the Council to deliver his Budget Statement – Councillor Stanley will make his Budget Statement and will propose the recommendations, including the associated statutory resolutions required in agreeing the Budget.

(iii)          To be moved by – Councillor Stanley

(iv)          Councillor Nash to second (may reserve his right to speak)

(v)           Questions to be responded to by invited speaker(s) and/or Officers from:

(a) Members and

(b) Any other persons permitted by the Chair

(vi)     Statements may then be made by:

(vi)          Councillor Gunner to respond on behalf of the Conservative Group

(vii)         Councillor Northeast  to respond on behalf of the Labour Group

(viii)       Councillor Wallsgrove to respond on behalf of the Green Group

(ix)          Councillor Huntley to respond on behalf of the Independent Group

(x)           Councillor Goodheart to respond on behalf of the Arun Independent Group

(xi)          Any other person permitted by the Chair

(xii)         Open debate

(xiii)       Councillor Nash to respond as seconder

(xiv)       Councillor Stanley to respond as proposer

(xv)        Recorded Vote required [in line with Council Procedure Rule 20.6

(xvi)       Chair to conclude the debate

Additional documents:


            The Chair confirmed that this Special Council Meeting had been called to consider the Budget for 2024/2025 and to set the Council Tax for Arun District Council. Councillors were referred to eight recommendations set out within the agenda papers for them to consider as well as the need to note four further recommendations and the minutes from the meeting of the Policy & Finance Committee held on 8 February 2024. These minutes had been circulated to Members and published to the Council’s web pages on 20 February 2024.


            Before inviting the Leader of the Council, Councillor Stanley, to present his Budget Statement, the Chair reminded Councillors of the procedure for this meeting as confirmed in the Constitution at Council Procedure Rule 4.3 and as set out in the covering agenda for the meeting.


            Councillor Stanley stated that he had great pleasure in presenting the first Budget Statement to be made under the new administration. Firstly, he wished to extend his gratitude to all who had contributed to its development, from Officers to Members and not forgetting the invaluable input from residents. All had been instrumental in producing the budget to be considered. During its journey, through the committee system, there had been more briefings; meetings; and more information being made available than ever before. The Council had even embarked upon a public consultation exercise which would be expanded and enhanced in forthcoming years. Throughout its development Councillors had had the opportunity to scrutinise; ask questions and present counter proposals. Members from all sides of the Chamber had chosen to support the budget through its journey and thanks were extended to them for doing so.


            Councillor Stanley highlighted that there were significant challenges impacting the finances of local government and Arun was not immune to this situation. Coastal communities had been underfunded for years and more  recently Councils had seen Central Government moving away from providing consistent long term funding resulting in the need for Councils to use their precious resources to develop bids and compete against each other for short term investment, this could not be a long-term solution for front line community services. Councillor Stanley stated that he wished to reaffirm that the Council was in a good financial position. Much work had been undertaken to address internal culture and member behaviour; the essential review of the Local Plan had been launched; and the Arun Flood Forum had been established despite Arun not being the lead responsible authority for this area and the multiple associated issues. Councillor Stanley stated that he fully appreciated that there were individual items within the budget that Members might not wish to support. Due to the economic environment imposed onto the Council it was necessary to have to make difficult decisions and the budget being presented was the responsible option as it sought to tackle the challenges being faced by looking at operational savings and managerial realignment whilst focusing on preserving community facing services. At the same time, there was a lot to be excited  ...  view the full minutes text for item 662.



To consider any Motions submitted in accordance with Council Procedure 15.