Agenda

Eastbourne Borough Council Full Council - Wednesday, 28th February, 2024 6.00 pm

Venue: Court Room at Eastbourne Town Hall, Grove Road, BN21 4UG

Contact: Committee Services on 01323 410000 

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Minute's Silence

The Council will hold a mnute’s silence for former Councillor and Mayor, Olive Woodall.

2.

Minutes of the meetings held on 15 November 2023 and 24 January 2024 pdf icon PDF 182 KB

Additional documents:

3.

Declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests (DPIs) by members as required under Section 31 of the Localism Act and of other interests as required by the Code of Conduct (please see note at end of agenda).

4.

Mayor's announcements. pdf icon PDF 171 KB

A list of the Mayor’s announcements in respect of his activities since the last meeting is attached for information.

5.

Notification of apologies for absence.

6.

Public right of address.

The Mayor to report any requests received from a member of the public under council procedure rule 11 in respect of any referred item or motion listed below.

7.

Order of business.

The Council may vary the order of business if, in the opinion of the Mayor, a matter should be given precedence by reason of special urgency.

8.

Petition - EBC must give Defiant Sports compensation, an alternative site and hold a public meeting re Fort Fun pdf icon PDF 106 KB

A petition signed by 1,938 people has been received with the statement ‘EBC must give Defiant Sports compensation, an alternative site and hold a public meeting re Fort Fun’, has been submitted and the full petition statement is attached. 

 

In accordance with the Council’s petition scheme, Loretta Lock (Managing Director, Defiant Sports) as the petition organiser will have 5 minutes to present the petition.  Then there will be 15 minutes of Council debate.

9.

Matters referred from Cabinet or other council bodies.

The following matters are submitted to the Council for decision (council procedure rule 12 refers):-

9a

Council Budget and Setting of the Council Tax for 2024/25 pdf icon PDF 165 KB

Report of the Chief Finance Officer and Councillor Maxted on behalf of the Cabinet. Referred from Cabinet incorporating the recommendations from the Cabinet reports on:

 

·           General Fund Revenue Budget 2024-25 and Capital Programme

·           Treasury Management and Prudential Indicators 2024-25 Capital Strategy

·           Housing Revenue Account (HRA) Revenue Budget and Rent Setting 2024-25

·           Changes to Discretionary Council Tax Discounts and Empty Homes Premiums from 01 April 2024 

 

Please note that the Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (England) Amendment) Regulations 2014 requires named votes to be taken and recorded when setting the annual budget and council tax, including on substantive motions and any amendments.

 

Additional documents:

9b

Local council tax reduction scheme pdf icon PDF 127 KB

Report of Councillor Robin Maxted on behalf of the Cabinet held on 7 February 2024.

Additional documents:

9c

Corporate Plan 2024 - 2028 pdf icon PDF 122 KB

Report of Councillor Stephen Holt on behalf of the Cabinet held on 7 February 2024,

Additional documents:

9d

Approval of Licensing Fees 2024/2025 pdf icon PDF 141 KB

Report of the Director of Service Delivery

Additional documents:

10.

Calendar of Meetings 2024/25 pdf icon PDF 136 KB

To agree the Calendar of Meetings for 2024/25.

 

Please note - The Council dates will be subject to final approval at the annual meeting of the Council, in accordance with legislation.

 

11.

Motions.

The following motions have been submitted by members under council procedure rule 13:-

11a

Motion - Gaza Conflict

Motion submitted by Councillor Holt.

“This Council:

·       Expresses deep sympathy for all those affected by the conflict in Israel and Palestine. To those in Eastbourne who have been affected by this conflict we offer our support in this difficult time.

·       Condemns the murder of Israeli civilians, the taking of hostages by Hamas and subsequent death and destruction in Gaza, killing tens of thousands of Palestinians.

·       Believes that the urgent priority must be to stop the deaths and suffering of any more civilians in Gaza, Israel and the rest of Palestine.

·       Hopes for an immediate further release of all hostages and release of Palestinian prisoners held without charge and an immediate permanent ceasefire to allow more aid and the possibility of a peaceful resolution.

·       Believes that the only credible basis for long-term peace is the delivery of a Palestinian state alongside a safe and secure Israel.

·       Believes the tragic recent events in Israel, Gaza and Palestine must not be allowed to divide our communities in Eastbourne.

·       Condemns the increase in anti-Semitic and Islamophobic violence and abuse in the UK and that all forms of racism have no place in Eastbourne.

The Council resolves to:

1.         Explore how the Council can better support and facilitate events for people of all faiths and none, where they can come together and express solidarity and sadness in response to these events.

2.         Offer appropriate support to any local resident who needs our assistance as a result of these violent events.

3.         Ask the Leader of the Council to write to the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs to call on the UK Government:

a)      to press all parties to agree:

                              i.        to an urgent permanent, bilateral ceasefire in Gaza, Israel and the rest of Palestine and to make every effort to resume the peace process;

                            ii.        to guarantee that international humanitarian law is upheld and that civilians are protected in accordance with those laws;

                           iii.        To allow the Red Cross immediate access to hostages in Gaza, in order to provide urgent medical aid to the elderly, the sick and the wounded and to ensure all civilians have access to humanitarian support, including unfettered access to medical supplies, food, electricity, other fuel and water.

 

b)     to do all in its powers to support those that are committed to a permanent peace and a 2-state solution.”

 

11b

Motion - To support the youth voice in Eastbourne

Motion submitted by Councillor Williams

 

Background:

 

As part of Eastbourne Alive, the wraparound programme of the Turner Prize in Eastbourne, the Eastbourne Alive team has collaborated with East Sussex College and its students to co-create a Town Manifesto, giving voice to the young people in our community. Following an open dialogue with Councillor Williams and Councillor Holt at the Town Hall, the insights gathered from young people highlighted their priorities in areas that included accessibility, inclusivity, safety, transport, creativity, wellbeing, and economy.  Recognising the invaluable perspectives offered, this motion seeks to formalise a process where the local authority actively listens, reflects, and acts on youth voice, emphasising its significance in decision-making processes affecting both the present and future of our younger residents.

 

“Motion:

The Council will adopt a new and co-created approach to local democracy by seeking to:

 

Connect with Young People:

To encourage all local Councillors to connect with existing youth structures and seek to provide a platform for young people to offer an input on policies and participate in discussions on local issues.

 

To offer an annual open forum at the Town Hall hosted by Councillors, allowing young people to express their views to elected members on matters important to them.

 

Promote Youth-Friendly Spaces:

To actively promote youth-friendly spaces and events where young people can express their ideas, concerns, and aspirations for the community. 

 

Collaboration:

For the relevant Cabinet Members and members appointed by Full Council to hold a ‘youth brief’, to seek to collaborate with local schools, youth and community groups to encourage young people to be consulted and involved in decision-making processes and civic activities.

 

Promote Street Art and Young Artists:

To promote street art, murals, and showcasing the talent of young artists, reflecting the desire of young people to see themselves reflected in the town through ‘colour’ and life.

 

Support Young Artists Market:

To support the Youth Market and ensure it provides creative opportunities to showcase young people's talent, fostering town-wide pride in our youth.

 

11c

Motion - Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO) Study

Motion submitted by Councillor Smart

 

“This Council requests the issuing of the updated report by Aecom entitled ‘Eastbourne Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMO) Study’, a draft of which was produced in June 2023, subject to Aecom having all required information, and will as a matter of urgency bring forward and consider through a future committee report the intervention options that might be proposed in the final report, including, but not limited to Article 4 intervention.”

 

11d

Motion - A Housing Emergency

Motion submitted by Councillor Diplock

This Council notes:

       The unanimous, cross-party call on Government made at November’s Full Council meeting.

      At the Eastbourne Borough Council-led Housing Conference in Westminster in January, Conservative, Labour, Liberal Democrat and Independent local authorities repeated our collective call to raise the cap on housing benefit subsidy for local authority housing placements from the current 2011 levels, in order to properly reflect the real costs of providing Temporary Accommodation (TA).

      That this meeting was joined and supported by Crisis, the Trussell Trust, MPs and Peers.

      The most recently available figures show that rough sleeping in England has increased by 26%, and a record 280,000 households are in TA.

      Over the 2023/24 financial year, this has resulted in:

§  Ordinary working families being priced out of the housing market through no fault of their own;

§   Almost everyone knowing someone who is struggling to access housing of their choice; and

§  The Council’s total net spend on TA in 2023/24 forecast to be circa £4.6m, up from £1.3m just three years ago, with scores of local authorities across the country similarly affected.

This situation is unsustainable and continues to represent an existential threat to local government.

Whilst the Council's teams will continue to do everything in its powers to meet both the needs of its residents and its statutory obligations, the system was not created to deal with these numbers.  The driving forces underpinning this are systemic and structural and are not in the Council's control. Under current funding arrangements the Council does not have the resources to solve the problem alone.

As such, this Council resolves to:

1.    Declare a Housing Emergency for the Borough of Eastbourne.

2.    Recognise and endorse the work of the Leader of the Council in pursuing a cross party, cross community consensus on this national challenge.

3.    Reaffirm the full support of this Council in the actions of this authority, and that the Leader of the Council and Chief Executive continue to press the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities and the Chancellor of the Exchequer - along with their shadow counterparts - for additional resources to help those local housing authorities and councils worst affected, such as Eastbourne, including raising the current 2011 cap on housing benefit subsidy for local authority housing placements.

4.    Continue to work with the sector and try and engage Government to develop long term solutions to fix the national housing crisis.”

11e

Motion - Health Services at the Eastbourne DGH

Motion submitted by Councillor Diplock

“This Council:

      Recognises the demands placed on the NHS, and the phenomenal hard work and dedication of the doctors, nurses and the healthcare family. We thank them for it.

 

      Notes that in 2010, Eastbourne had a 24/7 in-patient paediatrics unit, a fully-fledged and operational maternity unit, and several branches of emergency medicine.

 

      Notes that, some 14 years later, emergency general surgery and emergency orthopaedics have gone from the Eastbourne District General Hospital (DGH).  The DGH’s full maternity unit has been downgraded to a midwife-led unit, which itself was closed for almost 3 months in total last year and has been closed since December with no date to reopen, conducting outpatient appointments only.  In January 2024, East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust (ESHT) began implementing changes to DGH paediatric services, including the closure of the Short Stay Paediatric Unit.  In December 2023, the East Sussex Health Overview and Scrutiny Committee (HOSC) called for a pause to ESHT’s changes to paediatric services at the DGH and is conducting a review.

 

This Council:

1.    Endorses the decision to request the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to call in the changes by ESHT to DGH paediatrics.

 

2.    Calls on the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care to outline how they will support ESHT to overcome the midwife shortage that has led to the DGH Midwifery Unit to close for births; and

 

3.    Calls upon ESHT to:

      Pause the changes to paediatric services, allowing a full review of the proposals;

      Make public its plans to permanently and safely re-open the DGH’s Midwifery Unit for births;

      Commit to being transparent and open with local residents;

      Commit to reviewing its threshold for what constitutes significant change; and

      Commit to fully inform and consult both HOSC and the people of Eastbourne before any future changes to services at the DGH are implemented.”

 

12.

Discussion on minutes of council bodies.

Members of the Council who wish to raise items for discussion (council procedure rule 14) on any of the minutes of the meetings of formal council bodies listed below must submit their request to the Head of Democratic Services no later than 10.00 am on the day of the meeting. A list of such items (if any) will be circulated prior to the start of the meeting.

 

The following are appended to this agenda:-

12a

Minutes of Audit and Governance Committee - 28 November 2023 pdf icon PDF 163 KB

12b

Minutes of Scrutiny Committee - 4 December 2023 pdf icon PDF 167 KB

12c

Minutes of Licensing Committee - 5 December 2023 pdf icon PDF 158 KB

12d

Minutes of Cabinet - 13 December 2023 pdf icon PDF 168 KB

12e

Minutes of Licensing Committee - 15 January 2024 pdf icon PDF 139 KB

12f

Minutes of Planning Committee - 29 January 2024 pdf icon PDF 127 KB

12g

Minutes of Cabinet - 7 February 2024 pdf icon PDF 159 KB

13.

Date of Next Meeting

The next meeting is scheduled to take place on 22 May 2024 at 6 pm.

AMENDMENTS NOTIFIED FOR THE MEETING pdf icon PDF 73 KB