Agenda and draft minutes

Council
Thursday, 20 February 2020 6.00 pm

Venue: The Fountain Conference Centre, Howbery Park, Crowmarsh Gifford

Contact: Steven Corrigan  Democratic Services Manager

Items
No. Item

68.

Declarations of disclosable pecuniary interest

To receive any declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests in respect of items on the agenda for this meeting.  

Minutes:

None.

69.

Urgent business and chairman's announcements

To receive notification of any matters which the chairman determines should be considered as urgent business and the special circumstances which have made the matters urgent, and to receive any announcements from the chairman. 

Minutes:

The chairman provided general housekeeping information and advised there were no items of urgent business.

 

70.

Public participation

To receive any questions or statements from members of the public that have registered to speak. 

Minutes:

No members of the public had registered to address Council.

 

71.

Petitions

To receive any petitions from the public. 

Minutes:

No petitions were submitted from members of the public. 

 

72.

Council tax 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 202 KB

To consider the report of the interim head of finance on the setting of the council tax for the 2020/21 financial year - report to follow.

 

 

Minutes:

Council considered the report of the interim head of finance on the setting of the Council Tax for the 2020/21 financial year.

 

In accordance with regulations requiring councils to record the names of those councillors voting in favour, against or abstaining from any vote on the council tax the chairman called for a recorded vote which was carried with the voting being as follows:

 

For

Against

Abstain

Councillors

Councillors

Councillors

Pieter-Paul Barker

 

 

David Bartholomew

 

 

Robin Bennett

 

 

David Bretherton

 

 

Sam Casey-Rerhaye

 

 

Sue Cooper

 

 

Peter Dragonetti

 

 

Stefan Gawrysiak

 

Elizabeth Gillespie

 

Sarah Gray

 

Victoria Haval

 

Simon Hewerdine

 

 

Lorraine Hillier

 

 

Alexandrine Kantor

 

 

 

 

Mocky Khan

 

 

George Levy

 

 

Lynn Lloyd

 

 

Axel Macdonald

 

 

Andrea Powell

 

 

Leigh Rawlins

 

 

Jo Robb

 

 

Sue Roberts

 

 

David Rouane

 

 

Anne-Marie Simpson

 

 

Alan Thompson

 

 

David Turner

 

 

Ian White

 

 

Celia Wilson

 

 

 

28

 

0

 

0

 

RESOLVED: 

 

1.    To note that at its meeting on 19 December 2019 the council calculated the council tax base 2020/21:

(a)    for the whole council area as 57,848.5 [Item T in the formula in Section 31B of the Local Government Finance Act 1992, as amended (the “Act”)]; and

 (b)   for dwellings in those parts of its area to which a parish precept relates as in column 1 of appendix 1.

2.    That the council tax requirement for the council’s own purposes for 2020/21 (excluding parish precepts) is £7,302,795

3.    That the following amounts be calculated for the year 2020/21 in accordance with Sections 31 to 36 of the Act:

(a)    £77,801,531 being the aggregate of the amounts which the council estimates for the items set out in Section 31A(2) of the Act taking into account all precepts issued to it by parish councils.

(b)    £64,974,585 being the aggregate of the amounts which the council estimates for the items set out in Section 31A(3) of the Act.

(c)    £12,826,946 being the amount by which the aggregate at (3)(a) above exceeds the aggregate at (3)(b) above, calculated by the council, in accordance with Section 31A(4) of the Act as its council tax requirement for the year.  (Item R in the formula in Section 31B of the Act).

(d)    £221.73 being the amount at (3)(c) above (Item R), all divided by Item T (1(a) above), calculated by the council, in accordance with Section 31B of the Act, as the basic amount of its council tax for the year (including parish precepts).

(e)    £5,524,151 being the aggregate amount of all special items referred to in Section 34(1) of the Act, as set out in column 2 of appendix 1.

(f)     £126.24 being the amount at (3)(d) above less the result given by dividing the amount at (3)(e) above by Item T (1(a) above), calculated by the council, in accordance with Section 34(2) of the Act, as the basic amount of its council tax for the year for dwellings in those parts of its area to which no parish precept relates.

4.    To note that for the year 2020/21 Oxfordshire County Council has stated the following amounts in precepts issued to the council, in accordance with  ...  view the full minutes text for item 72.

73.

Items from Council meeting held on 13 February

To consider any business not considered at the Council meeting on 13 February.

 

Minutes:

The chairman advised that three motions were deferred from the Council meeting held on 13 February 2020 which would be taken at agenda item 10.

 

74.

Report of the leader of the council

To receive any updates from the leader of the council.

 

Minutes:

Councillor Sue Cooper, Leader of the council, referred to her update provided at the Council meeting held on 13 February 2020. In response to a question she advised that there was no further update on the Didcot Gateway project.

75.

Questions on notice

No questions have been submitted from councillors in accordance with Council procedure rule 33. 

 

Minutes:

No questions were submitted by councillors under Council procedure rule 33.

 

76.

Motions on notice

To consider motions from councillors in accordance with Council procedure rule 38. 

 

(1)      Motion to be proposed by Councillor Sue Roberts, seconder to be notified

 

“Council notes that paragraph 73 of the NPPF, on ‘maintaining supply and delivery’ requires planning authorities ‘to identify and update annually a supply of specific deliverable sites sufficient to provide a minimum of five years’ worth of housing against their housing requirement’. This deliverability rule is commonly known as the ‘5-year housing land supply’.

 

Unfortunately, this phrase leads to the misconception that councils that cannot demonstrate a 5-year housing land supply cannot do so because they have failed to allocate or approve sufficient sites. This is not the case for councils with adopted local plans consulted upon and found sound at examination, who are keeping up with changes to methodology which might require increased housing numbers. Such councils, provided they have gone on to approve sufficient applications, by definition would indeed have allocated sufficient land for housing.

 

But lost 5-year housing land supply can result if developers fail to build out at the required rate on the sites allocated in the local plan. They then, themselves, have created strong planning grounds for granting of planning permissions on new sites that they apply for; sites that were specifically not in the local plan. This often results in appeals, which are time-consuming, extremely costly, and distressing for the council and residents alike.

 

George Freeman (Cons MP Mid Norfolk) summed this up in a House of Commons debate (Hansard, 4th July 2018): “developers are banking…permissions for later, because they know that they will get them, and using the five-year land supply to force the wrong development in the wrong places”. “Through the Localism Act 2011, we set out to [give] local communities the chance to shape their future. We are now in danger of looking like we are in favour of speculators, profiteers and out-of-town developers, who dump housing estates that we legislate for, with no responsibility being taken locally.”

Council thereforerequests that the Leader write to the Minister for Housing Communities and Local Government requesting:

 

·         That the Minister notes the severe problems that exist with the ‘5-year housing land supply” rules in the National Planning Policy Framework as outlined above

·         That the Minister considers revising the housing land supply rules (5-year or other durations) such that, provided the planning authority has allocated sufficient land to housing, and has not unreasonably withheld planning permissions, the authority shall have been deemed to have met its obligations and there would be no grounds for third parties to demand the release of further land for development

·         That any other measures introduced to ensure appropriate delivery of homes should be actionable by the local authorities themselves on behalf of local people and not subject to external factors beyond their control, thus re-instating the primacy of residents and their elected representatives in ensuring that the right homes are built for the right people, in the right places, in a planned and  ...  view the full agenda text for item 76.

Minutes:

A.   With the agreement of Council Councillor Kantor moved and Councillor Casey-Rerhaye seconded, the altered motion set out below with the deleted words shown by a strikethrough and additional wording shown in bold:

 

Council notesthe International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of Antisemitism is the most widely accepted and recognized definition of anti-Jewish racism. It states that: Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of Antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.

 

Council notes the All Party Parliamentary Group on British Muslims (APPG) definition of Islamophobia: Islamophobia is rooted in racism and is a type of racism that targets expressions of Muslimness or perceived Muslimness.

 

Council notes that, by using these definitions, it helps to understand, identify, and tackle Antisemitism and Islamophobia.

 

Council holds the right to freedom of speech and freedom of religion as fundamentals but freedom of speech is not an unlimited right, and should not be used to advocate racial or religious hatred that constitutes incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence.

 

Council resolves to:

? condemn all hate crimes and deplore the rise in hate crimes against members of the Jewish and Muslim communities in Britain.

? condemn all inflammatory rhetoric in political discourse: including antisemitic and islamophobic tropes used by politicians and public servants.

condemn inflammatory rhetoric in political discourse that is antisemitic or islamophobic.

? adopt the IHRA definition of Antisemitism in full and without amendment.

? adopt the APPG definition of Islamophobia in full and without amendment.

? ask officers to update this council’s equality policies to this effect. 

After debate and on being put to the vote the motion was agreed. Whilst the majority of councillors supported the motion a number expressed concern regarding the definitions of antisemitism and islamophobia referred to in the motion.

 

RESOLVED:

That Council notesthe International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of Antisemitism is the most widely accepted and recognized definition of anti-Jewish racism. It states that: Antisemitism is a certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of Antisemitism are directed toward Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.

 

Council notes the All Party Parliamentary Group on British Muslims (APPG) definition of Islamophobia: Islamophobia is rooted in racism and is a type of racism that targets expressions of Muslimness or perceived Muslimness.

 

Council notes that, by using these definitions, it helps to understand, identify, and tackle Antisemitism and Islamophobia.

 

Council holds the right to freedom of speech and freedom of religion as fundamentals but freedom of speech is not an unlimited right, and should not be used to advocate racial or religious hatred that constitutes incitement to discrimination, hostility or violence.

 

Council resolves to:

1.    condemn all hate crimes and deplore the rise in hate crimes against members of the Jewish and Muslim communities in Britain;

2.    condemn inflammatory rhetoric in political  ...  view the full minutes text for item 76.