Venue: The Capesthorne Room - Town Hall, Macclesfield SK10 1EA. View directions
Contact: Sarah Baxter
Apologies for Absence
Apologies for absence were received from Councillors J Buckley, T Dean, P Groves and K Parkinson.
To give consideration to the minutes of the meeting held on 15 July 2019.
That the minutes of the meeting held on 15 July 2019 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.
Declarations of Interest
To provide an opportunity for Members and Officers to declare any disclosable pecuniary and non-pecuniary interests in any item on the agenda.
In the interest of openness in respect of item 8 ‘A Local Industrial Strategy for Cheshire & Warrington’, Councillor D Jefferay declared that his employer Wood PLC was referred to several times within the documentation.
To provide an opportunity for Members to declare the existence of a party whip in relation to any item on the agenda.
No declarations of a party whip were received.
Public Speaking/Open Session
A total period of 15 minutes is allocated for members of the public to make a statement(s) on any matter that falls within the remit of the Committee.
Individual members of the public may speak for up to 5 minutes, but the Chairman will decide how the period of time allocated for public speaking will be apportioned, where there are a number of speakers.
Note: In order for officers to undertake any background research, it would be helpful if members of the public contacted the Scrutiny officer listed at the foot of the agenda, at least one working day before the meeting to provide brief details of the matter to be covered.
There were no members of public present who declared they wished to speak.
To give consideration to a report on the development of a Strategic Regeneration Framework (SRF) for Macclesfield town centre.
Consideration was given to the Macclesfield Town Centre Regeneration Strategic Framework and Future Programme. In addition Members received a presentation by the Strategic Regeneration Manager for the North who provided information in respect of the purpose of the plan to regenerate Macclesfield, processes followed and the content for example the overarching vision and objectives, the different approaches for the different areas, what the priorities were alongside the next steps.
Members made the following comments:-
(i)The reference to the use of the word ‘quirkiness’ throughout the documentation and perhaps ‘individuality’ would have been more appropriate;
(ii)The wording ‘’to encourage the use of cycleways’ was not robust enough. It should be the Council’s goal for people to use cycleways;
(iii)Reference within the documentation to pedestrians but there was insufficient information on cycling;
(iv)Once in a lifetime opportunity to ensure more people walk/cycle to work which wasn’t being fully grasped;
(v)Lack of design ideas to facilitate cycle/walkways or parents carrying children on bikes. It was important to allow cyclists and pedestrians to share the space;
(vi)It was necessary to create an infrastructure which allowed traffic free connectivity. Encouragement was not enough and it was necessary to prioritise with a plan that would work;
(vii)£93 million had been invested in cycling yet there was nothing in the document to facilitate this;
(viii)Lobbying centrally to reduce town centre business rates;
(ix)There should be an aspiration to increase green space within the town centre;
(x)Under utilised assets in the town;
(xi)Car parking charges should be removed;
(xiii)Push for provision of public conveniences within the town centre;
(xiv)No reference to the music scene within Macclesfield;
(xv)Sunderland Street was in desperate need of regeneration;
(xvi)Encouraging community engagement was important. It was disappointing to see a lack of response to the consultation.
In response the Strategic Regeneration Manager felt that the wording within the document around improving cycling infrastructure to facilitate safe cycling into and across the town centre could be made more robust.
(1) That the draft SRF and draft Delivery Plan and associated reports on consultation were reviewed and noted.
(2) That the comments outlined above be reported to the Portfolio Holder for Environment and Regeneration for his consideration prior to the document being taken to Cabinet for formal consideration and approval.
To receive a presentation on the incident response and recovery phase in respect of the flooding that occurred within the Borough on 31 July 2019.
Members received a presentation which provided an update on the management of flood risk.
Highlighted within the presentation was information on the following:-
I. Incident response
II. Recovery phase
III. Assessing the impact
IV. Impact on Poynton and Bollington
V. Flood and water Management Act 2010
VI. Statutory planning
VII. Drainage improvements
VIII. Next Steps
Councillors M Beanland, M Sewart and J Saunders the Ward Councillors for Poynton attended the meeting and made comments in respect of the flooding which had recently taken place in the Borough, particularly in the town of Poynton whereby some residents had been severely impacted. In advance of the meeting Councillor M Beanland had submitted a number of questions for officers to also respond to.
Members asked questions in respect of the following:-
(i)Whether or not dredging of rivers still took place;
(ii)Why there was not a flood alert in place particularly in respect of the incident involving Kettelshulme whereby none of the residents called 999 and therefore the emergency services were unaware of the severe flooding taking place there;
(iii)What impact would the flooding have on the highways budget;
(iv)Were officers confident that the implementation of the Local Plan was not going to lead to problems for the Council in future in respect of housing developments being partly responsible for the flooding problems;
(v)Would the gullying schedule be given increased priority;
(vi)That any progress report be considered at the next meeting;
(vii)It was considered to be essential that any advice on flooding was readily available. Officers had been asked to ensure newsletters and FAQ’s contained all of the relevant information so that residents and the Town and Parish Councils were aware of who to contact should the same happen again.
(1) That the presentation be noted.
(2) That written answers to all of the questions submitted by Councillor M Beanland be provided to all Members of the Committee including the Poynton Ward Councillors.
(3) That a progress report be brought back to the November meeting of the Committee.
(Prior to consideration of the following item, the meeting was adjourned for a short break).
To give consideration to the Local Industrial Strategy for Cheshire & Warrington.
Consideration was given to the Local Industrial Strategy for Cheshire & Warrington. In addition Members received a presentation which provided information on the background to the Local Industry Strategy, the approach to Cheshire and Warrington’s Local Industry Strategy, the key messages and the timescales to completion.
David Rutley MP attended the meeting and asked questions in respect of what steps were being taken to put ‘Macclesfield on the map’ and how engaged were Astra Zeneca in the wider ambitions of the life sciences side and whether or not Castle Street was part of the wider plan? He went on to highlight the importance of working with the Council and Members to revitalize Macclesfield town centre. The Planning Regeneration Framework was moving forward but with £5 million contribution to Macclesfield he wanted to know what Local Economic Partnership could do to get behind it.
Members asked questions and made comments in respect of the following:-
(i) The report should focus on growth and not just look at increasing productivity and efficiency;
(ii) The Council were putting up barriers and as a result one Member commented that he had had to recently sell a HMO in Macclesfield;
(iii)Some parts of the report were confusing;
(iv)What was meant by cleaner growth?
(v) No reference to the internet or lower wages;
(vi)Retention of graduates was key;
(vii)Only three sentences in the report given to the ageing population;
(viii)Further information in terms of accommodating growth needed to be included.
(1) That the approach and key messages as presented as a basis for the Cheshire and Warrington LIS narrative for submission to Government be noted and that the above comments be reported to Cabinet for information.
(2) That it be noted that the Cheshire East Local Area Industrial Strategy (LAIS) was being developed in association with the Cheshire East Economic Strategy as approved by Cabinet in July 2019.
To give consideration to the performance scorecard for quarter 1.
Consideration was given to the performance data for services within the Council’s Place directorate for quarter 1 of 2019/20. Particular focus was given to any areas of poor or worsened performance.
Members asked questions in respect of the following:-
(i) Whether or not the Council were exploring different services that libraries could offer?
(ii) Why had there been a high turnover of Environmental Health Officers?
(iii) Why was ‘higher is better’ in respect of performance indicator PH006?
(iv) Was the Council committed to promoting recycling?
In addition Members welcomed the increase in numbers of home adaptions in respect of performance indicator PGE003 as well as an increase in the number of preventative and relief actions being taken in order to reduce levels of homelessness in Cheshire East.
That the performance scorecard be noted.
To give consideration to the areas of the forward plan which fall within the remit of the Committee.
Consideration was given to the areas of the Forward Plan which fell within the remit of the Committee.
That the Forward Plan be noted.
To give consideration to the work programme.
Consideration was given to the work programme. Some minor amendments to the work programme were circulated to Members prior to the meeting. It was requested that the work programme include a stand alone item on the plans for Crewe town centre. In addition there was a request for a progress report on the flooding issue to be brought back to the November meeting.
In addition due to the workload of the Committee it was suggested that future meetings should commence at 10am.
(1) That the work programme be approved subject to a number of minor changes to the wording/dates of items and subject to the inclusion of a stand alone item outlining plans for Crewe town centre and an item outlining the progress report in respect of the flooding issues.
(2) That all future meetings commence at 10am.