Agenda and minutes

Environment & Transport Select Committee
Thursday, 22 January 2015 10.30 am

Venue: Committee Room 1 &2, Elmbridge Borough Council, Civic Centre, High Street, Esher, Surrey KT10 9SD

Contact: Huma Younis 

Items
No. Item

1/15

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND SUBSTITUTIONS

2/15

MINUTES OF THE PREVIOUS MEETING: 15 DECEMBER 2014 pdf icon PDF 51 KB

3/15

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

    To receive any declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests from Members in respect of any item to be considered at the meeting.

     

    Notes:

    ·    In line with the Relevant Authorities (Disclosable Pecuniary Interests) Regulations 2012, declarations may relate to the interest of the member, or the member’s spouse or civil partner, or a person with whom the member is living as husband or wife, or a person with whom the member is living as if they were civil partners and the member is aware they have the interest.

    ·    Members need only disclose interests not currently listed on the Register of Disclosable Pecuniary Interests.

    ·    Members must notify the Monitoring Officer of any interests disclosed at the meeting so they may be added to the Register.

    ·    Members are reminded that they must not participate in any item where they have a disclosable pecuniary interest.

    Minutes:

    There were none.

4/15

QUESTIONS AND PETITIONS

    To receive any questions or petitions.

     

    Notes:

    1.  The deadline for Member’s questions is 12.00pm four working days before the meeting (16 January 2015).

    2.  The deadline for public questions is seven days before the meeting (15 January 2015).

    3.  The deadline for petitions was 14 days before the meeting, and no petitions have been received.

    Minutes:

    There were none.

     

5/15

RESPONSES FROM THE CABINET TO ISSUES REFERRED BY THE SELECT COMMITTEE

6/15

RECOMMENDATION TRACKER AND FORWARD WORK PROGRAMME pdf icon PDF 69 KB

    The Committee is asked to monitor progress on the implementation of recommendations from previous meetings, and to review its Forward Work Programme.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Witnesses:

     

    Jason Russell, Assistant Director for Highways

     

    John Furey, Cabinet Member for Highways, Transport and Flooding

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1)    Some members of the committee questioned why three actions on the recommendations tracker were still outstanding. The Assistant Director for Highways assured the committee a response to these actions would be provided before the next select committee meeting.

     

    2)    The Assistant Director for Highways explained that Doug Hill who had previously worked for the EA (Environment Agency) had now joined the county council to work on the county councils flooding programme.

     

    3)    The Committee enquired as to when a report on the progress being made around flooding would be brought to the select committee. The Assistant Director for Highways stated that the Partnership Board was in the process of putting together a program detailing progress made on flooding and in particular the River Thames Scheme. A report would be brought back to select committee in due course.

     

    4)     The Cabinet Member for Highways, Transport and Flooding stated that an additional six schemes had been put forward to the EA with regards to flooding. Members were asked to contact the cabinet member if they wanted any further detail around these schemes.

     

    5)    Members asked for further information around the additional six schemes submitted to the EA, along with the total breakdown of funding allocated to Surrey by area.

     

    6)    The Committee sought assurance by Officer’s that residents that were still unable to move back into their homes resulting from damage caused by floods in 2014 was not a consequence of a lack of funding. The Cabinet Member for Highways, Transport and Flooding confirmed that the closing date for the repair and renew grant had been extended to June 2015.

     

    7)    Officers were questioned over the EA’s strategy for dealing with flooding caused by ground level water. Members’ of the Committee asserted that this had been a common cause of flooding within the Surrey area. The Assistant Director for Highways responded by stating that the Environment Agencies’ strategy around ground level water flooding is centred on tackling the issue when it arises. His reason being that ground level water flooding is almost impossible to predict therefore, efforts are focussed upon alleviation measures.

     

    Recommendations:

    None

     

    Actions/Further Information to be provided:

    For the Cabinet Member for Highways, Transport and Flooding to provide further information around the six additional flooding related schemes submitted to the EA, along with the total breakdown of funding allocated to Surrey by area.

     

    Committee next steps:

    None

     

7/15

LOCAL GROWTH DEAL - INVESTMENT IN TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE DURING 2015/ 16 TO 2017/18 pdf icon PDF 199 KB

    Purpose of the report:  Policy Development and Review 

     

    The Committee has requested a report on the recent Local Growth Deals and how this opportunity is being used to fund the transport infrastructure in Surrey. The scope of the report is limited to the schemes being proposed in the current funding round, focused on the 2015/16 programme.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Witnesses:

     

    Lyndon Mendes, Transport Policy Team Manager

     

    Jason Russell, Assistant Director for Highways

     

    John Furey, Cabinet Member for Highways, Transport and Flooding

     

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1. Members of the Committee raised questions over how involved Borough and District authorities had been with decisions around which projects should be put forward as part of the Local growth deals. It was explained that the leaders and chief executives of each district and borough within Surrey were asked which schemes they would like to see included as part of the local growth deal.

     

    2.    Some members of the committee did not feel they had been consulted around which plans were being put forward for funding although some twin hated members explained that they had been consulted through their district and borough contacts. Officers responded to this concern by pointing out that many of the large projects were fast moving; in some cases the time from conception to commencement was three months which inherently limited member inclusion.

     

    3.    It was explained that the Borough and Districts were key from a financial and strategic perspective.

     

    4.    It was concluded by the Committee that the Local Growth Deal was commendable for the level of investment it has achieved and the far reaching scope of its transport infrastructure schemes. It was noted that when major schemes were being considered county councillors should be consulted. Officers and the Cabinet Member were open to suggestions from members on how best to engage with members on this.

     

    5.    The Transport Policy Team Manager stated that eight out of the eleven transport strategies had been signed off by local committees. It was further explained by the Cabinet Member that the schemes put forward had to meet certain criteria such as meeting housing and skills needs.

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Environment and Transport Select Committee agreed the following recommendations;

     

    1. To endorse the proposed schemes for the 2016/17 programme and beyond.

    2.    To support the commitment for sufficient resourcing to enable the programme for 2016/17 and beyond to be pursued without compromises; recognising that smaller major schemes [less than £5m] require about 1-3 years of committed resource for the production of a credible business case, whilst larger schemes require longer time-frame and resource.

    Actions/Further information to be provided:

    None

     

    Committee Next steps:

    None

     

     

     

8/15

JOINT MUNICIPAL WASTE MANAGEMENT STRATEGY REVISION 2 (2015) pdf icon PDF 125 KB

    Purpose of the report:  Policy development and review

     

    This report introduces the revised joint waste management strategy (Annexe 1), which is recommended for adoption by the Cabinet subject to approval by the Committee.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Witnesses:

     

    Matt Smyth, Waste Development Group Manager

     

    Tom Beagan, Waste Policy and Partnerships Manager

     

    Mike Goodman, Cabinet Member for Environment and Planning

     

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1.    Members of the Committee highlighted examples of Local Authorities that used the same recycling plants yet had differing performance statistics. Officers were asked if there was a problem of a lack education or a fault inherent within a separate collection recycling system. The response given by Officers asserted that the separate collection system had been reviewed and the results of this review concluded that it was both financially and legally preferable.

     

    2.    The Committee was informed that a review had been undertaken designed to analyse Local Authorities and their success. It highlighted the importance of Communication between Borough’s and District’s. The ultimate goal that resulted from this review was the creation of a unified waste management strategy which spans the County. Members’ welcomed this strategy.  

     

    3.    It was explained that a communication strategy around recycling would be pushed out to all district and boroughs in the coming months.

     

    4.    On page 47 of the report, the Committee questioned Officers over their decision to set a goal of zero percent municipal waste sent to landfill and asked what assumptions were made to conclude this as a viable target. Officers claimed this was a feasible target and was based on current trends in collection and recycling technology and used Hampshire as an example where this was already achieved.

     

    5.    The Committee highlighted SCC’s low levels of recycled textiles. Member’s pointed out that textiles offer the highest financial return and thus, would be beneficial to the Council to promote textile recycling. Officers noted that there is a campaign set to go ahead in spring promoting the work councils do to recycle textiles.

     

    6.    A member of the committee queried what action was taken by local authorities with regards to dog waste put in household bins. The Chairman asked for officers to provide the committee with a short note on how this was dealt with.

     

    7.    The Select Committee agreed the recommendations set out in the report but asked that on page 9 of the joint waste management strategy (table 1, strategy targets, indicator 3, percentage of municipal waste sent to landfill) officers relook at the 2019/20 target which currently stated 0%.

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Environment and Transport Select Committee;

     

    1.    Approved the adoption of the Joint Municipal Waste Management Strategy Revision 2 (2015).

     

    2.    Supported the adoption of the revised strategy by Surrey County Council at the next cabinet meeting.

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Actions/Further information to be provided:

    ·         For officers to send the committee a note explaining what action is taken by local authorities with regards to dog waste put in household bins

    Committee Next steps:

    None

     

9/15

UTILITIES TASK GROUP RECOMMENDATIONS AND SOUTH EAST PERMIT SCHEME (SEPS): UPDATE REPORT pdf icon PDF 594 KB

    Purpose of the report: Policy Development and Review

     

    The Select Committee is asked to review the further progress made on the recommendations of the Task Group, and to also review the performance of the South East Permit Scheme, to improve the co-ordination and quality of work of utilities companies in Surrey.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Witnesses:

     

    Matt Jezzard, Traffic and Streetworks Manager

     

    Jason Russell, Assistant Director for Highways

     

    Key points raised during the discussion:

     

    1.    With regards to digging up roads/pavements for repair work, the Committee queried why there was a six month interim period before reinstatement is enforced and why there is a need for one team to do the digging and another team to complete the reinstatement. Officers responded by stating that the six month interim period is part of legislation and that different specialist teams being assigned to different aspects of works was both financially prudent and allowed better planning of resources.

     

    2.    If any members required a utilities update for their local committee they were asked to contact the Traffic and Streetworks Manager.

     

    3.    It was explained that within legislation there was a cap on how much you could charge a Utility Company for a permit to work, as the permit fees must reflect officer time spent on scrutinising them, and should not generate income for a Highway Authority.

     

     

    Recommendations:

     

    The Chairman asked for the item and the recommendations to be deferred to the next select committee meeting so the utilities task group can discuss the recommendations further.

     

    Actions/Further information to be provided:

    • For the Scrutiny Officer to discuss with the Chairman of the Utilities Task Group the inclusion of the updated report on the next select committee agenda and the possibility of reconvening a meeting of the task group before this date. 

     

     

    Committee Next steps:

    None

     

10/15

DATE OF NEXT MEETING

    The next meeting of the Committee will be held at 10.30am on 12 March 2015 at the Basingstoke Canal Centre, Mytchett Place Road, Mytchett, Camberley GU16 6DD.

    Minutes:

    The next meeting of the Committee will be held at 10.30am on 12 March 2015 in the Ashcombe Suite, County Hall, Kingston upon Thames.