Agenda and minutes
Venue: This meeting will be a virtual meeting and therefore will not take place in a physical location
Contact: Rose Blaney Tel: 07385 362773
Apologies for Absence
Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Jeanette Forster.
Declarations of Interests in Agenda Items:
To receive declarations by Members and/ or co-optees of interests in respect of items on this Agenda.
Members are reminded that, in accordance with the revised Code of Conduct, they are required to declare any disclosable pecuniary interests or other registrable interests which have not already been declared in the Council’s Register of Interests. (It is a criminal offence not to declare a disclosable pecuniary interest either in the Register or at the meeting).
Members are advised however, in the interests of clarity and transparency, to declare at this point in the meeting, any such disclosable pecuniary interests which they have already declared in the Register, as well as any other interests.
Members are reminded that they may not, by law, participate or vote in any discussion in a meeting on a matter in which they have a disclosable pecuniary interest
Members are advised that they should leave the room during consideration of any items of business in which they have a disclosable pecuniary interest.
No Declarations of Interest were made.
The Chief Executive gave the committee a brief overview of the process of Local Government Re-Organisation (LGR) and where Cumbria currently is in the process. They then took the Committee through the draft consultation response that the Executive will be submitting to Government on behalf of the Council, taking the committee through each proposal, while giving members the chance to ask questions at the end of the each proposal.
Members took this opportunity to thank the Chief Executive and all other officers involved for their hard work in putting the proposal together, organising member briefings.
East / West Option
The Chief Executive’s key highlights for this option included; representing local needs while working at a strategic level, savings being made but not through excess cuts and redundancies giving the Unitaries the ability to reinvest and not just change the system but improve it. This option will also look to keep Police and Fire at the Pan-Cumbrian level with an integration of a Blue Light Service, strengthen the Adults & Children Services, while also highlighting the West’s culture and noting that continuing the link with Allerdale is key.
Councillor Weir asked whether the Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC) 2021 elections would change or influence being able to move forward with LGR. The Chief Executive explained that there will be no structural change due to the election and that the elections must go ahead due to being delayed from 2020 due to the Pandemic. They also highlighted that the current PCC is supportive of the change as Police will remain at Pan-Cumbria level and welcomes the introduction of a Blue Light Service.
Councillor Pollen noted that Councillor Meteer has previously put in a motion to support the Cumbria County Council (CCC) One Unitary proposal, and would like that noted in the minutes due to Councillor Meteer not being in attendance at this meeting. Councillor Pollen also noted that there were a lot of positives for Copeland’s proposal but believe that the simplification from a one unitary proposal would be better than any other option with the value for money statistics within the CCC proposal showing a larger saving than Copeland. Councillor Pollen asked for confirmation regarding the possibility of a Mayoral model being implicated as highlighted at the previous member briefing. Mayor Starkie answered that, whichever bid prevails, the residents will have only one council who deals with all the functions. CCC have identified a number of savings but noted that savings do not always equate to value for money. The Mayor also highlighted that the Mayoral model, while a possibility, is for the new unitary to decide. The Combined Authority is not another tier but rather a strategic body designed to attract investment.
Councillor Hailes highlighted that the main aspect is about what is best for the residents and that he had been doing some surveying within their own community and work colleague, the majority of whom have shown support for the CBC model.
Councillor Wilson noted that this was an interesting ... view the full minutes text for item OSC169