Agenda and draft minutes

Cabinet - Wednesday, 15th September, 2021 5.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber - Civic Centre, St Luke's Avenue, Harrogate HG1 2AE. This meeting will be livestreamed here: https://bit.ly/HarrogateYouTube (Copy and paste the link in your browser).. View directions

Contact: Elizabeth Jackson, Democratic Services Manager  Tel: 01423 500600 Email:  democraticservices@harrogate.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

40.

Apologies for Absence:

Minutes:

40/21 – APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND NOTIFICATION OF SUBSTITUTES: An apology for absence had been received from Councillor Richard Cooper.

 

(5.30 pm)

 

41.

Declarations of Interest:

Members to advise of any declarations of interest.

Minutes:

41/21 – DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST: There were no declarations of interest.

 

(5.30 pm)

 

42.

Minutes: pdf icon PDF 361 KB

of the meeting of 18 August 2021.

Minutes:

42/21 – MINUTES: The Minutes of the meeting of the Cabinet held on 18 August 2021 were approved unanimously as a correct record.

 

(5.31 pm)

 

43.

Exempt Information:

To determine whether to exclude the press and public during the consideration of any exempt information items – items 7 and 8.

Minutes:

43/21 – EXEMPT INFORMATION: Appendices to the report at Minute 46/21 were deemed to be exempt under paragraph 3 of Schedule 12a to the Local Government Act 1972.  Discussion on the items took place in open session.

 

(5.31 pm)

 

44.

Nidderdale Greenway Extension: pdf icon PDF 164 KB

The Executive Officer Economy and Transport to submit a written report.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

44/21 – NIDDERDALE GREENWAY EXTENSION: The Executive Officer Economy and Transport submitted a written report which presented a high level scoping study into the extension of the Nidderdale Greenway from Ripley to Wath which had been produced by Sustrans.  The report, entitled ‘Extending the Nidderdale Greenway:

A feasibility study’, was attached as Appendix A to the report.

 

The report broke the route down into a number of sections and offered a high level assessment of planning and related issues, route design, the business case, next steps and funding.  A significant amount of work would be needed on planning permissions, route design and landowner consents before any work could commence.  A potential business case was included at section 6 of the report and estimated costs of c£4.5m were outlined in table 4.

 

The primary driver for the proposals was to increase ‘green tourism’ in Nidderdale and also support sustainable transport for those travelling between Pateley Bridge, Harrogate and Knaresborough.

 

It was proposed that a steering group be established to include all stakeholders in order to drive the proposals forward.  It was proposed that HBC provide officer representation on the steering group and NYCC were offering officer support to the project due to their role as Highway Authority.  The AONB Manager had also confirmed that there would be AONB representation on the proposed group.

 

RESOLVED (UNANIMOUSLY):

 

That    (1) the content of the Sustrans report into the extension of the Nidderdale Greenway is noted; and

 

(2) officer representation on the Nidderdale Greenway Extension steering group be agreed.

 

Reasons for decision:

 

The Nidderdale Greenway Extension scoping study was commissioned by Nidderdale Plus with funding from a number of stakeholders, including HBC. Due to HBC’s financial contribution and the interests of more than one Cabinet Member portfolio, it was agreed that a report would be brought to Cabinet to make Cabinet aware of the outcomes.

 

The main outcome was to establish a steering group to take the project forward. Therefore agreement was sought to provide officer representation on the group.

 

Sustainable transport was a key priority for this Council and opportunities such as this should be supported.

 

Alternative options considered and recommended for rejection:

 

Not to provide officer representation onto the group. This was not recommended as this would mean that HBC would have no input into the potential development of the route and no influence on its delivery.

 

(5.34 pm to 5.40 pm)

 

 (D)

 

45.

Knaresborough BID: pdf icon PDF 186 KB

The Director of Economy, Environment and Housing to submit a written report.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

45/21 – KNARESBOROUGH BUSINESS IMPROVEMENT DISTRICT: The Revenues, Welfare and Customer Services Manager submitted a written report in the name of the Director of Environment, Economy and Housing which provided an update on progress with the development of Knaresborough Business Improvement District (Knaresborough BID) and outlining the ballot process. Attached at Appendix 1 was a copy of the Knaresborough BID Business Plan, which had been developed following consultation with businesses within the proposed BID area.

 

A Knaresborough BID Company had been formed and was funded through a mix of public and private funding.  HBC investment of up to £27k had been conditional on matched private sector funding and would be repaid following the successful creation of the BID.  The Mosaic partnership had been engaged to manage the development of the BID process and the next stage would be the ballot of all eligible businesses in August – October 2021.  As the Council was responsible for paying business rates on twenty eight eligible properties located within the BID area it would receive twenty eight votes in the ballot and the report sought the Cabinet’s mandate for a vote in support of the BID proposal. 

 

The Deputy Leader referred to a letter dated 10 September 2021 from the owners of 17 Knaresborough businesses to all HBC Councillors asking the Council to abstain in the ballot to allow Knaresborough businesses to decide for themselves.  The Deputy Leader confirmed that Cabinet Members had seen the letter and advised that they would be making an informed decision based on the officer report and the Knaresborough BID business plan.

 

Should the ballot be successful the Council would be subject to an annual BID levy of £5.5k for the 5 year lifespan of the BID.  For every £1 that HBC invested through the levy over £25 of additional funding would flow into the BID for direct investment into improving the Knaresborough BID area.  

 

Whilst the item had been identified as a key decision it was not included on the Forward Plan to enable the Council to take part in the ballot and vote in support of the proposal before the ballot closed on 8 October.  In accordance with Paragraph 14 of the Access to Information Procedure rules the Chair of the Overview and Scrutiny Commission had been notified of this. 

 

RESOLVED (UNANIMOUSLY):

 

That    (1) it be noted that the content of the BID Proposals do not conflict with any existing council policy, nor propose a disproportionate burden on particular businesses;

 

(2) it be noted that the submitted BID Proposals meet the regulations;

 

(3) the potential financial implications of a positive BID Ballot be noted;

 

(4) the Knaresborough BID proposal is supported; and

 

(5) the Director of Economy, Environment and Housing be authorised to complete the Knaresborough BID ballot papers by voting for the formation of a Business Improvement District for Knaresborough on behalf of the Council.

 

Reasons for decision:

 

The Knaresborough BID proposal had been developed by a team led by an experienced BID delivery company and  ...  view the full minutes text for item 45.

46.

Compulsory Purchase of 33 Littondale Avenue, Knaresborough, North Yorkshire, HG5 0BQ: pdf icon PDF 201 KB

The Empty Homes Officer to submit a written report.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

46/21 – COMPULSORY PURCHASE OF 33 LITTONDALE AVENUE,

             KNARESBOROUGH, NORTH YORKSHIRE, HG5 0BQ: The Empty Homes Officer submitted a written report which requested approval for the making of a Compulsory Purchase Order (CPO) under Section 17(1)(b) of the Housing Act 1985 for the acquisition of 33 Littondale Avenue, Knaresborough HG5 0BQ and its subsequent disposal for the purpose of providing housing accommodation. 

 

The property had been empty since 2005 and the report detailed the actions of the Empty Homes Officer to attempt to bring the property back into use in accordance with the Empty Homes Strategy.  Compulsory purchase was a last resort, the Council had made every effort to see the property returned to use and CPO was now the only realistic option.  Section 6 of the report outlined the financial and legal implications of undertaking the CPO and further financial information was attached at exempt Appendix 3.

 

The Empty Homes Officer confirmed that a decision to authorise the making of a CPO would not preclude the owner from taking steps to return the property to use and the two processes could run in tandem.

 

RESOLVED (UNANIMOUSLY):

 

That    (1) the making of a CPO be authorised under Section 17 (1) (b) of the Housing Act 1985 to acquire the freehold of 33 Littondale Avenue (edged red on the plan in Appendix 1) for housing purposes;

 

(2) authority be given to the Head of Legal and Governance, in conjunction with the Head of Housing and Property, to take all necessary steps to secure the making, sealing, confirmation and implementation of the CPO, including but not limited to the publication of all statutory notices, securing the confirmation of the order by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (as appropriate) including theconduct of a Public Inquiry if necessary and vesting of the Land in the Borough Council; and

 

(3) authority be given to the Head of Legal and Governance, in conjunction with the Head of Housing and Property, to acquire interests in the land within the Order either by agreement or compulsorily, the payment of compensation and statutory interest and the instituting or defending of proceedings where necessary, together with the property’s subsequent disposal.

 

Reasons for decision:

 

The Empty Homes Strategy, approved by Cabinet on 6 February 2019, set out the procedure to follow when dealing with long-term empty properties. The Key Objectives of the strategy included prioritising all long-term empty homes for action with the ultimate aim of reducing their number.

 

There was a massive shortage of housing stock within the Harrogate district as stated in the HEDNA 2018, this identified the overall housing need as 669 homes per year for the whole of the period of 2016-2035. This included a rented affordable housing shortfall of 208 properties and about half as much again for affordable sale.

 

Moreover, there were currently 1723 households registered on the council’s Waiting List for rented accommodation. This quantifies the housing need required to justify the use of CPO powers in  ...  view the full minutes text for item 46.