Webcasting - Moray Council

Meeting Details

Economic Development & Infrastructure Services Committee
14 Aug 2018 - 09:30
Occurred

Documents

Agenda

Public Items
1 Sederunt
2 Declaration of Group Decisions and Members Interests *
2

In terms of Standing Order 20 and the Councillors’ Code of Conduct, there were no declarations from Group Leaders or Spokespersons in regard to any prior decisions taken on how Members will vote on any item on the agenda or any declarations of Members interests in respect of any item on the agenda.

 

3 Resolution

Consider, and if so decide, adopt the following resolution:

"That under Section 50A (4) and (5) of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973, as amended, the public and media representatives be excluded from the meeting for Item 19 of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information of the class described in the relevant Paragraphs of Part 1 of Schedule 7A of the Act.”

 

3

The meeting resolved that in terms of Section 50A (4) and (5) of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973, as amended, the public and media representatives be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the items of business appearing at the relevant paragraphs of this Minute as specified below, so as to avoid disclosure of exempt information of the class described in the appropriate paragraphs of Part 1 of Schedule 7A of the Act.

 

Para Number of Minute

 

Para Number of Schedule 7A

17

8 & 9

 

4

Under  reference  to  paragraph 11  of  the  Minute  of  this  Committee dated  15  May  2018, Councillor  Divers  stated that  he  believed  he  had  raised a question in relation  to an  on-street parking  review.   In response, the Chair stated that the Clerk would review the webcast and make an amendment to the Minute if necessary.

 

Under  reference  to  paragraph 11  of  the  minute  of  this  Committee dated  15  May  2018, Councillor  Feaver queried  whether an  update had  been provided  in  relation  to progress of the Industrial Estate at Buckie.

 

In response the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure) advised that an update had been provided to Councillor Warren which stated that the property had been marketed and negotiations with a company were at an advanced stage.

 

The Estates Manager further advised that these negotiations had fallen through and that the property was being marketed at present.

 

Councillor Divers highlighted that the minute stated that the update would be circulated to all members and asked that this be observed in future.

 

In response, the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure) agreed to note this in future.

 

Thereafter, the Minute of the meeting of this Committee dated 15 May 2018 was submitted and approved.

 

5 Written Questions **
5

The  Committee  noted  the  following  written  question  submitted  by  Councillor  Ross  and  the responses thereto:-

 

Given the fact that Fiddich Park is still being used as a campsite, is it possible to re-open the toilets for the rest of the tourist season, on environmental grounds?

 

RESPONSE

 

There   are  no  powers available  to  Environmental  Health  to  force  the  reopening of  these public toilets. If a regulated campsite closed the WC facilities then the enforcement would be to close the campsite.

 

This area has never   been an official campsite and although it may be used as a wild campsite, wild campsites do not have any facilities.

 

In order for this to be an official campsite then planning permission would be required which will dictate the boundaries and amount of tents that can be accommodated within these boundaries.   A site  licence  will be  required which will dictate  the  number of WCs,  showers and  laundry  facilities  required.   The  extent  of  the  facilities  is  dictated  by  the  maximum occupancy as identified in the  planning consent.  If this is an official campsite the campers would also expect some more facilities and staffing on site.  It should also be noted that WC provision only is not sufficient for campsites.

 

Given that the site is not licensed staff has been instructed to remove the “CAMPING” sign.

 

Councillor  Ross stated that  he  had  observed that  the  sign  had  only recently  been removed and  that the campsite still featured on various websites and  was still being  used and  asked, as a  supplementary question, that  re-opening  of the  toilets  be  reconsidered to safeguard against environmental pollution.

 

In response, the Head of Direct Services advised that he would ensure that websites were updated to  reflect  that  Fiddich  Park  was not  an  official  campsite and  that  there   was no intention of applying for a licence  to make  it an official campsite due to the associated costs.

 

The  Head  of Development Services further  advised that  an  Environmental  Health  Officer had  inspected  the  site  and  confirmed  that  there   was no  evidence of  human excrement around the site at that time.

 

Summary of Economic Development and Infrastructure Services Committee functions:

Roads Authority; Lighting Authority, Reservoirs Act 1975, Public Passenger Transport; Flood Prevention; Twinning; Piers and Harbours and Coast Protection; Industrial and Commercial Development; Environmental Protection; Burial Grounds; Assistance to Industry or Commerce; Public Conveniences; Council Transportation; Catering & Cleaning; Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003; Countryside Amenities; Tourism, monitoring funding from European Programmes, youth training and employment creation scheme and provide Architectural, Quantity Surveying, Maintenance and Allied Property Services.

 

 

Report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure)

 

6

A Report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure) provided  the Committee with a summary of the key findings of the Moray Employment Land Audit 2018  and  asked that  the  Committee  note  the  Moray  Employment  Land  Audit 2018 which has already been considered and approved at the Planning and Regulatory Services Committee on 19 June 2018.

 

During discussion surrounding the Barmuckity Development in Elgin, it was queried whether an update could be provided in relation to the roundabout access to the development and whether the Committee could be kept updated with regard to progress.

 

In  response,  the   Head   of  Development  Services  advised  that   the   development  was progressing well  however the  Developer was awaiting  confirmation  from  Scottish Water  in relation  to the  diversion  of a  water  main  which  would  allow  access to the  development  to progress and agreed to keep  the Committee updated in this regard.

 

Thereafter, the Committee agreed to:

  1. note the findings of the Moray Employment Land Audit 2018, as summarised in Section 4 and Appendix1 of the report;

  2. note that the Moray Employment Land Audit 2018, set out at Appendix 2 of the report, has been agreed by the Planning and Regulatory Services Committee on 19 June 2018; and

  3. keep the Committee updated in relation to progress of the roundabout access to the Barmuckity Development.

Report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure)

 

7

Under reference to paragraph 9 of the Minute of this Committee dated 11 November 2015, a report  by  the  Corporate  Director  (Economic Development,  Planning  and  Infrastructure) asked that the Committee note the increase in projected spend of £49K against the previous reported budget spend of £3.3M,  which is still within the  agreed budget of £3.474M  in the capital plan, for the Integrated Waste Management facility at Moycroft.

 

Following consideration, the Committee agreed to note:

  1. the increase in projected spend of £49K against the previous reported spend; and

  2. the savings exercise being carried out to bring the costs back into budget, as detailed in section 3.5 of the report.

Report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure)

 

8

A report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure) asked that the Committee consider Direct Services Service Plan - Actions for Improvement for 2018/19.  The plan takes into account the Council priorities, budget pressures, risk, self-evaluation, customer satisfaction survey results, staff engagement and explores ways of delivering  services more  efficiently  and  effectively  whilst  facing  the  challenges  of declining budgets and demands for the services.

 

During   his   introduction,    the   Head    of   Direct   Services highlighted   that,   although the Improvement Action Service Plan stated that a Burials Strategy would be brought before the Committee in August 2018, this would now be presented in December 2018.    This was noted.

 

During discussion surrounding the maintenance of an efficient road network, in particular the reporting  of highway  defects,  it was queried  whether Councillors  could  have  access to the information   collected   by  Highway   Inspectors  which   is  then   forwarded  on   to  frontline operation teams so that Councillors know whether a defect has already been reported should  a Constituent report the defect  directly to their Councillor.

 

In response, the Roads Maintenance Manager advised that the project was at an early stage however once completed, it would have a public interface that would allow members of the public to report and track progress on road defects and that this would also be available to Elected Members.

 

During further discussion surrounding the implementation of electric vehicles, it was stated that hydrogen powered vehicles were being developed in the Far East which was forecasted to be very cost effective.

 

In response the  Head  of Direct Services advised that  the  majority  of grants available  from the Scottish Government were  for electric  vehicles however agreed to explore  the feasibility of hydrogen powered vehicles should  grant funding become available.

 

In response to concern raised in relation to the condition of some of the public toilets in Moray, specifically regarding 24 hour flushing systems and leaking taps and how this wastes water, the Environmental Protection Manager agreed to liaise with colleagues in Property Services to explore the use of flush sensors and general maintenance of tap seals.

 

Thereafter the Committee agreed:

  1. to approve Direct Services Service Plan - Actions for Improvement 2018/19 subject to noting that a report on the Burials Strategy will be brought to a future meeting of this Committee in December 2018;

  2. to note that the system for reporting highway defects would have a public interface that would allow members of the public to report and track progress on road defects and that this would also be available to Elected Members;

  3. that Officers explore the feasibility of hydrogen powered vehicles should grand funding become available from the Scottish Government; and

  4. that the Environmental Protection Manager liaise with colleagues in Property Services to explore the use of flush sensors and general maintenance of tap seals in public toilets in Moray.

Report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure)

 

9

Under  reference to paragraph 10 of the Minute of Moray Council dated 14 February 2018,  a report  by  the  Corporate  Director  (Economic Development,  Planning  and  Infrastructure) informed the Committee of the current position regarding Direct Services and Development Services  (Economic Development) Capital  and  Revenue Budgets.  The report set out the budget monitoring position and commented on variances for the Direct Services and Development Services (Economic Development) Capital and Revenue Budget for the period to 30 June 2018 with a view to a full budget statement, including projections, being reported later in the year.

 

Following consideration, the Committee agreed to note the budget monitoring report for the period to 30 June 2018.

 

Report by Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure)

 

10

Under  reference  to  paragraph 12  of the  Minute  of the  Policy  and  Resources Committee dated 27 April 2010,  a report  by the  Corporate Director  (Economic Development, Planning and  Infrastructure) outlined  the performance of Direct Services for the period from 1 October

2017 to 31 March 2018.

 

Prior to discussion of the report, the Chair advised that the report’s author, Bob Ramsay, had sadly and tragically died unexpectedly last week.

 

Bob had spent over 10 years carrying out Research and Information work within the Chief Executive’s section and was a significant contributor to the effective governance and performance monitoring of the Council.   He was the author of numerous performance and statistical reports that have been considered by many Councillors over the years which have helped guide numerous decisions.

 

The  Chair  had  been advised that Bob very much  enjoyed his work with Moray Council  and the  company and  friendship  of the  team  of colleagues  that  he  worked  with and  that  it was clear   from  speaking  with  Council   staff  that   he   was  well  liked  and   will  be   very  sadly missed.  The Committee joined the Chair in passing on their deepest condolences to Bob's family and friends.

 

Following consideration, the Committee welcomed the good performance as indicated in the report and thereafter agreed to:

  1. note performance against Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure Performance Indicators, Service Plan and Complaints to the end of March 2018 as outlined;

  2. note the actions being taken to improve performance where required; and

  3. approve the changes to the Direct Services’ performance indicators, as detailed in Section 6 of the report, which are reported to this Committee.

Report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure)
11

Under  reference to paragraph 12 of the Minute of this Committee dated 5 September 2017, a report  by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and  Infrastructure) set out  the  annual  performance  of  the  Council's  Industrial  Portfolio  in  2017/18.   The report stated that  the  Industrial  Portfolio  had  exceeded the  targets set  for rental  income,  rate  of return and occupancy levels with high occupancy levels expected to continue.

 

During discussion surrounding the  rate  of return  of 7.10%  on the  industrial portfolio, it was noted  that  this  return  did not  take  into consideration borrowing  and  some staff  costs and  it was queried  whether a  true  rate  of return  could  be  circulated to  the  Committee following  the meeting.

 

In response, the Estates Manager agreed to check with Colleagues in Financial Services as to whether this information could be made available.

 

Thereafter, the Committee welcomed the good performance of the Council’s Industrial Portfolio and thereafter agreed:

  1.  to note the Annual Report for 2017/18 as set out in Appendix 1 of the report; and

  2. that, if available, a true rate of return on the properties be circulated to members of the Committee taking into consideration borrowing and all staffing costs.

Report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure)

 

12

Under  reference  to paragraph 6 of the  Minute  of this  Committee dated 20  March  2018,  a report  by  the  Corporate  Director  (Economic  Development,  Planning  and  Infrastructure) informed  the  Committee with regard to matters of Marine  Safety  and  compliance  with the Port Marine Safety  Core (PMSC) for the first quarter of 2018.

 

The  report  stated that  the  Council  is  currently  deemed to  be  compliant  with  the  PMSC however work  continues in order  the  stabilise  the  Council's  position  in relation  to  marine safety,  which  will  be  evidenced through  reporting  to  this  Committee  for scrutiny  as Duty Holder.

 

Following consideration, the Committee agreed to note the safety performance fulfilling their function as Duty Holder under the Port Marine Safety Code.

 

Report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure)

 

13

Under  reference  to paragraph 9 of the  Minute of this  Committee dated 20  March  2018,  a report  by  the  Corporate  Director  (Economic  Development,  Planning  and  Infrastructure) informed  the  Committee of the  potential  benefits  and  drawbacks of considering using  this type of material in future works within Moray.

 

The   report    stated  that,    while   early   indications   looked    promising    it   was  felt   that, presently, there   was  insufficient   evidence  to  support  the   use  of  the   material   in  road construction  within  the  Council's   road   infrastructure,  particularly  in  relation   to  long  term financial benefits and environmental impact.

 

Following consideration, the Committee agreed to note:

  1. the contents of this report; and

  2. that further evidence is required before committee to use recycled plastic in road construction within Moray, as outlined in paragraph 5.8 of the report.

Report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure)

 

14

A report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure) informed  the  Committee  of  a  safer  routes  to  school  scheme  at  the  junction  of  Elgin Road/School Brae/Clifton Road, Lossiemouth.  The scheme requires the signalisation of the junction to control vehicle movements and improve the crossing points for pedestrians.

 

Following consideration, the Committee agreed to: 

  1. approve the project to update the junction of A941 Elgin Road and School Brae to a signalised junction; and

  2. note that consultation will be undertaken with the local community one a scheme design has been finalised.

Report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure)

 

15

A report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure) asked that the Committee consider changes to the SuDS arrangements.

 

The report stated that Local Authorities were being encouraged to enter into a collaborative framework with Scottish Water for the maintenance of SuDS for new development which would allow Moray Council to have more control over future SuDS and help to reduce future flood risk.

 

Following consideration, the Committee agreed:

  1. to sign up to the principles set out in the Memorandum of Understanding for shared maintenance of SuDS for new development under Section 7 of the Sewerage (Scotland) Act 1968, as set out in the Appendix to the report;

  2. the policy which states that above ground components of SuDS for new development will be maintained by the landowner/s; and

  3. to note that a further report will be submitted to a future meeting of this committee outlining the governance arrangements for the Section 7 agreements.

Report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure)

 

16

A report by the Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure) informed the Committee of the successful outcomes of the Castle to Cathedral to Cashmere, Elgin Conservation Area Regeneration Scheme and Heritage Experience projects.

 

The Committee joined the Chair in commending Mr Jim Royan, Chair of Castle to Cathedral to Cashmere project, Moray Council staff, partnering agencies and the many volunteers who had been involved in the project that had resulted in a significant improvement to the High Street in Elgin and was an excellent example of partnership working.

 

Thereafter, the Committee agreed to note the report.

17 Question Time ***

Consider any oral question on matters delegated to the Committee in terms of the Council's Scheme of Administration. 

 

17

There were no questions raised.

 

Item(s) which the Committee may wish to consider with the Press and Public excluded

 

Events
1

The Chair took the opportunity to announce the following events due to take place in the coming weeks in Moray and commended local volunteers who make these events possible:

  1. 18 August 2018 – Elgin Food and Drink Festival;

  2. 31 August – 1 September 2018 – Spirit of Speyside Distilled;

  3. 26 August 2018 – Classic Car Show, Buckie;

  4. 18 August 2018 – Elgin and District Pipe Band competing in the Pipe Band World Championships;

  5. 26 September – 1 October 2018 – Findhorn Bay Arts Festival; and

  6. September 2018 – Speyside Whisky Festival.
Private Items
18 Dredger Collaboration
  • Information on the amount of any expenditure proposed to be incurred by the Authority;
  • Information on proposed terms and/or expenditure to be incurred by the Authority;
  1. Dredger Collaboration - Appendix 1
    • Information on the amount of any expenditure proposed to be incurred by the Authority;
    • Information on proposed terms and/or expenditure to be incurred by the Authority;
  2. Dredger Collaboration - Appendix 2
    • Information on the amount of any expenditure proposed to be incurred by the Authority;
    • Information on proposed terms and/or expenditure to be incurred by the Authority;

Meeting Documents

There are no separate meeting documents but there may be meeting documents assigned to the Agenda.

Declarations of Interests

Visitors

Also in attendance at the above meeting were:

 

Councillors George Alexander and Derek Ross.

 

The Corporate Director (Economic Development, Planning and Infrastructure); the Head of Direct Services; the Head of Development Services; the Transportation Manager; the Estates Manager, the Roads Maintenance Manager; the Environmental Protection Manager; the Acting Consultancy Manager; the Principal Officer (Economic Development); Mr K Major, Senior Traffic Engineer; the Legal Services Manager (Property and Contracts); and Mrs L Rowan, Committee Services Officer as Clerk to the Meeting.


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