Venue: Council Chamber & Blue Room - CC & PG. View directions
Contact: Jane Fulton (Ext 37611)
Note: Item 9 - onwards adjounred to 18 November 2020
The Chairman welcomed Councillors, representatives of the public, press and officers to the Council Meeting. A special welcome was extended to Honorary Aldermen Mrs Stinchcombe and Mr Norman Dingemans.
Armistice Day - Minute's Silence
The Chairman confirmed that to mark the fact that it was Armistice Day she felt it appropriate for the Council to reflect and remember those who had fallen in all conflicts. She therefore asked the Council to join her in a minute silence to those who had given the ultimate sacrifice to their country.
The Council then stood in silence to their memory.
Apologies for Absence
Apologies for absence had been received from Councillors Mrs Staniforth and from Honorary Aldermen Mrs Goad, MBE and Mrs Morrish.
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
Councillor Coster confirmed that he wished to declare a Personal Interest in Agenda Item 9 [Motions] in relation to Motion 1 and that he would make a statement at the commencement of that item.
Councillor Dixon also declared a Personal Interest in Item 9 and Motion 1. He confirmed that prior to his role as a District Councillor he had been very involved and engaged with the local community through the Bognor Regis Civic Society in terms of regeneration and that that engagement and understanding gained from the Civic Society had partly driven the decision to present this Motion. These had been his views held at the time and so he wished to make it clear that he had an open mind regarding these items and that he would listen and consider all the relevant issues and interests presented and would then reach his decision on merit.
Councillor Blanchard-Cooper declared a Personal Interest in Agenda Item 9 [Motions] in relation to Motion 6 in his capacity as a Member of the Littlehampton Musical and Comedy Society.
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.
Councillor Mrs Erskine confirmed that she wished to declare a Personal Interest in Motion 3 as she had a family member who had made use of the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower scheme.
Public Question Time
To receive questions from the public (for a period of up to 15 minutes)
The Chairman invited questions from members of the public who had submitted their questions in advance of the meeting in accordance with the rules of the Council’s Constitution and the Virtual Meeting Procedure Rules amended by the Council on 15 July 2020.
The Chairman confirmed that two questions had been submitted, as detailed below. Both questions were for the Leader of the Council, Councillor Dr Walsh, to respond to and both questions related to the Arundel By-Pass and the recent route confirmation from Highways England.
The first questioner asked if the Council had considered the deleterious impact of building an elevated dual carriageway 50 m away from a 12th century church [the Grey route] would have and the destructive social effect on the community of Binsted who had nowhere else to gather or bury its dead.
The Leader of the Council, Councillor Dr Walsh confirmed that the Council had supported the Magenta option and that Highways England (HE) had chosen the grey route as its preferred option. As Leader of the Council he would be invited to consider a Local Impact Report on the details of the road and its impacts that HE would be providing and at that time the Council would be able to consider what stance it wished to present at a formal examination of the road scheme. The Leader of the Council provided an assurance that effects this route would have to be considered as part of that process.
The questioner asked a supplementary question which was that West Sussex County Council has stated in its submission to the consultation in 2019 that the impacts associated with regard to the Grey route have been under estimated because the environmental assessment has not taken into account the impacts on the Avisford Grange area of Walberton or the impacts this would have on the historic environment the latter included Binsted St Mary’s Church and also severance of the view along the Binsted rock valley. Did the Leader agree with WSCC that the environmental impacts of Grey had been underestimated by Highways England?
Councillor Dr Wash responded confirming that he had not seen a statement nor had formed an opinion as the local impact survey had not been received. On receipt, the Council would be able to discuss and consider and come to an opinion on that survey which would be important in making sure that gret as possible mitigation measure would be put in to place if the grey route was proceeded with.
The second questioner raised concerns of the welfare of his two sons who attended the Walberton and Binsted CofE Primary School. The Council was asked ow it ensure that the children in attendance would ot be subjected to the damaging health and attainment effects of increased noise and air pollution caused by the new bypass and the 3 years of construction that would take place.
Councillor Dr Walsh responded stating that as Leader of the Council, he welcomed the announcement that HE were supporting ... view the full minutes text for item 295.
Questions from Members with Pecuniary/Prejudicial Interests
To receive questions from Members with pecuniary/prejudicial interests (for a period of up to 15 minutes)
There were no questions asked.
To consider any petitions received from the public.
The Chairman confirmed that no Petitions had been received.
To approve as a correct record the Minutes of the Meeting of the Council held on 16 September 2020, which are attached.
The minutes from the Full Council Meeting held on 16 September 2020 were approved as a correct record by the Council, subject to a very slight amendment to the end time of the meeting being amended to 12.37 am from 11.37 pm.
The Chairman confirmed that these would be signed at the earliest opportunity available to her.
To receive such announcements as the Chairman may desire to lay before the Council.
In view of the size of this agenda, the Chairman has confirmed that if it is necessary she will adjourn the meeting at a set time if there are still many items that have not been considered in line with Council Procedure Rule 15 [Motions without Notice[ (i) to adjourn a meeting. All remaining items will be considered at a further Full Council meeting to be held on 18 November 2020 at 6.00 pm.
The Chairman firstly confirmed that she was delighted to announce that the following residents in the Arun District had received the following recognition in the Queen’s Birthday Honours:
§ Caroline Alexander – who received a CBE as Chief Nurse at Barts Health NHS Trust and for her services to nursing
§ Deborah Cropanese – who received and OBE as Delivery Director for National Business Centres, HM Courts and Tribunals Service for her public service
§ Adam Smith – an MBE for his services to the community during Covid-19 as a food delivery driver for Iceland Foods and for services to the community; and
§ Finally, to John Thompson a member of our Independent Remuneration Panel and Independent Person to the Standards Committee – who had received an MBE for his service to the community in Bognor Regis.
The Chairman passed on her congratulations for all of their outstanding service and she asked the Council to join with her in giving a virtual round of applause or a thumbs up to the screen in recognition of their services.
The Chairman referred to her activities undertaken since the last Full Council Meeting held on 16 September 2020, these had been emailed to all Councillors earlier.
Finally, the Chairman made a statement explaining her voting at Council meeting outlining that was in line with the Constitution.
Councillor Edwards raised a Point of Order and asked the Council if congratulations could also be passed onto Mrs Julie Budge, a resident of Bognor Regis who had recently won the Women of the Year Award in recognition of establishing “My Sister’s House” charity that supported women in need.
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.
The Chairman confirmed that there were no urgent items requiring the consideration of the Council.
The following Motions have been received in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 14.1 and 14.2, the details of which are set out below:
This is from the Independent Group.
Proposer – Councillor Dixon
Seconder – Councillor Coster
BOGNOR REGIS REGENERATION
This Council NOTES that:
a) Place St Maur refurbishment has been agreed and is awaiting only confirmation of external funding
b)Sunken Gardens proposals are being brought to Cabinet on 16 November 2020
It further RESOLVES THAT
Phase 2 will aim to
2(a) Deliver a hotel
2(b) Deliver a permanent multi-purpose entertainment centre
Site for 2(a): South east corner of the Regis Centre site (includes the old Fire Station)
Opportunity: Hotel (preferably with bar and restaurant)
Objective: Use the land in order to drive economic regeneration in the centre of Bognor Regis. Both the execution of the project and upon completion, will create employment in the area, create a destination for tourists and residents alike, and drive footfall both into the town centre and the seafront.
Potential Funding: Capital borrowing and/or joint project
Indicative Timescale: Proposals and operational models to be worked up and delivered to Cabinet for approval by February 2021.
Site for 2(b): Sunken Gardens children’s play area – town centre site adjacent to Hothamton car park and Sunken Gardens
Opportunity: Permanent multi-purpose entertainment centre
Objective: Create a permanent multi-purpose indoor entertainment centre –complementary to, and not competing with, the Alexandra Theatre.
Potential Funding: Capital borrowing, capital receipts, revenue receipts, possible additional match funding from government or grants, potential for sponsorship.
? Commission design work and financial modelling immediately.
? Public Consultation – by close of 2021
? Commence build – target March 2023
This Council also notes that:
Other sites: Longer term opportunity, to be informed by the recently agreed process for gathering ideas.
This Motion is from the Conservative Group:
Proposer – Councillor Gunner
Seconder – Councillor Dendle
Motion of No Confidence
A. That under Part 5, Section 1, Paragraph 15 (m) of the Constitution the procedure for voting in respect of the vote of no confidence set out in Part B of this motion shall be by Secret Ballot, and not subject to the right to seek a recorded vote, that is, each Member present shall record their vote confidentially for, against or abstaining.
B. That this Council has no confidence in the current administration and calls for their immediate resignation.
C. That this Council henceforth appoints Councillor Shaun Gunner as Leader of the Council to form a new unity administration.
This is from the Conservative Group.
Proposer – Councillor Edwards
Seconder – Councillor Mrs Pendleton
Many businesses, emergency services and local authorities have recognised the Hidden Disabilities Sunflower and I would like Arun District Council to embrace this too. Anyone with a hidden disability which does not have physical signs, including learning disabilities, lung conditions and chronic illnesses can opt to wear a Hidden Disability Sunflower to show they may require additional help, understanding ... view the full agenda text for item 301.
The Chairman confirmed that six Motions had been received and accepted as valid in accordance with Council Procedure Rules 14.1 and 14.2.
Councillor Miss Seex moved a Motion without Notice in line with Part 5 – Rules of Procedure (Meetings) – Section 1 – Council Procedure Rule 15 C to change the order of business in the agenda to move Motion 2 [the Motion of No Confidence] to be considered as the first Motion as it was her view that this would shape other discussions in the agenda.
Councillor Mrs Daniells seconded this Motion without Notice.
A point of Order was then raised by Councillor Coster as it was his view that this Motion without Notice was contrary to Part 5 [Rules of Procedure (Meetings) Section 1, Rule 14.2 [Motions Set out in the Agenda] and Part 2 [Articles of the Constitution] – Article 13.2 [Principles of Decision Making]. Councillor Coster then quoted Article 13.2 from the Constitution stating that to accept this Motion without Notice, would be breaching the Constitution.
The Interim Monitoring Officer provided advice and Councillor Miss Seex was invited to provide an expanded explanation as to why she wished to change the order of the agenda. She explained that this was because the outcome of the Motion with No Confidence could result in the Council having a change in administration and a new Leader of the Council which could shape debate and so such an important item should be considered as the first priority.
Following comments made by Councillors, the Interim Monitoring Officer provided further advice and asked Councillors to not speak adversely in relation to the character of another Councillor. They were reminded that if they had grounds to consider a complaint, this should be dealt with using the process in place through the Member Code of Conduct mechanisms, not at this meeting.
The Chairman invited debate on the Motion without Notice. Councillors spoke against it stating that the public would consider the regeneration of the Districts Towns as a more pressing matter and so they could not accept the rationale to agree to the Motion without Notice. Others confirmed that they would be voting for it as the No Confidence Motion was of such significant importance that it should be moved forward as this did represent the whole of the District and the future of the Council.
Councillor Ms Thurston then moved “to proceed to the next business” and this was seconded by Councillor English.
Having heard briefly from Councillor Mrs Daniells, as seconder to the Motion without Notice and then from Councillor Miss Seex as the proposer, the Chairman confirmed that she wished to proceed with the vote.
A request had been made that the voting on this Motion without Notice be recorded.
Those voting for the Motion without Notice were Councillors Mrs Baker, Bicknell, Bower, Mrs Caffyn, Chapman, Charles, Clayden, Mrs Cooper, Cooper, Mrs Daniells, Dendle, Edwards, Elkins, English, Goodheart, Gunner, Hughes, Kelly, Mrs Madeley, Northeast, Oliver-Redgate, Mr Pendleton, Miss Rhodes, Roberts, ... view the full minutes text for item 301.