Full Council - Thursday, 19th October, 2023 7.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber - Civic Centre. View directions

Contact: Mr G Lelliott 

Note: This meeting will begin at 7.30pm or at the rise of the special meeting, whichever is the later. 

Items
No. Item

45.

Mayor's Announcements

Minutes:

The Mayor provided an update on the events and engagements that she had attended since the last Council.

46.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 153 KB

To confirm and sign, as a correct record, the minutes of the Council held on 20 July 2023.

Minutes:

The minutes of the 20 July 2023 Council were confirmed and signed as a correct record.

47.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Burton, Furey, Mann, Mullens, Singh and Smith.

48.

Declarations of Interest

If Members have an interest in an item, please complete a member interest form and email it to Democratic.Services@runnymede.gov.uk by 5pm on the day of the meeting. Members are advised to contact the Corporate Head of Law and Governance prior to the meeting if they wish to seek advice on a potential interest.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

49.

Speaking or Questions from Members of the Public under Standing Order 12

Any questions received will be circulated separately following the deadline for submission of questions from the public.

Minutes:

There were no public questions or speaking.

50.

Petitions

To receive any petitions from members of the Council under Standing Order 19.

Minutes:

There were no petitions.

51.

Questions from Members of the Council under Standing Order 13

a) Question from Councillor Don Whyte to the Leader of the Council

 

“Over recent weeks the subject of refugees being housed in Runnymede has received a lot of attention on social media.  It is a credit to the residents of Runnymede that so many residents have offered accommodation in their own homes to the people of Ukraine seeking refuge from their awful war.  Runnymede Borough Council (RBC), to its credit, offered to provide accommodation to some refugee families from Syria and Afghanistan.  Regrettably, recent social media posts have been quite vitriolic and there is, I believe, a public misconception about the number of refugees currently being housed by Runnymede Borough Council. Can I ask the Leader how many dwellings have RBC provided to Syrian and Afghan refugees over the last 5 years?”

 

b) Question from Councillor Robert King to the Leader of the Council

 

“On the 13th of October 2022 members of Corporate Management Committee (CMC) were asked to approve the purchase of new vehicles for grounds maintenance, as this service was being brought back inhouse. While the delivery of services inhouse was welcome, I raised serious concerns around the rushed purchase of fleet vehicles, with no consideration being given to lease them until full-service needs were known. At Environment and Sustainability Committee (E&S) on the 8th of June 2023, agenda item 13, paragraph 4.5, confirmed the council’s intention to sell those same two vehicles which were purchased fewer than 8 months before, despite the continued reassurance the Leader and the Chief Executive, at the time, gave CMC that all due diligence had been done around their purchase. Will the Leader confirm how much his administration lost of Runnymede taxpayers money on the resale of those vehicles and other equipment which was rushed to be purchased, who he has held responsible for this and whether the previous Chief Executive ever provided a full report, as he promised publicly when challenged, on this blunder and how processes in future would be changed to ensure this does not happen again?”

 

c) Question from Councillor Abby King to the Leader of the Council

 

“Can the leader confirm at present, the number of residents who are on Runnymede’s housing register, the numbers on each priority banding, the numbers for each household size and percentage who have been waiting in 6-month periods?”

 

d) Question from Councillor Eliza Kettle to the Leader of the Council

 

“Can the leader confirm the number of non-HRA properties the Council owns either directly through the General Fund or indirectly through its Company (RBCI) that are empty, the size of those units and the length of time they have remained unoccupied?”

 

e) Question from Councillor Rhys Davies to the Leader of the Council

 

“Can the leader confirm a full RAAC survey has been conducted across the whole of the Council’s estate, including its owned companies, and that no RAAC concrete has been found or that appropriate measures have been taken to make building safe and if RAAC has been found  ...  view the full agenda text for item 51.

Minutes:

a) Councillor Don Whyte asked the Leader of the Council the following question:

 

“Over recent weeks the subject of refugees being housed in Runnymede has received a lot of attention on social media.  It is a credit to the residents of Runnymede that so many residents have offered accommodation in their own homes to the people of Ukraine seeking refuge from their awful war.  Runnymede Borough Council (RBC), to its credit, offered to provide accommodation to some refugee families from Syria and Afghanistan.  Regrettably, recent social media posts have been quite vitriolic and there is, I believe, a public misconception about the number of refugees currently being housed by Runnymede Borough Council. Can I ask the Leader how many dwellings have RBC provided to Syrian and Afghan refugees over the last 5 years?”

 

The Leader responded in the following terms:

 

“Runnymede is a welcoming borough and this Council is proud to be supportive of people in need.

 

Under the Syrian Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme, the Council accommodated six families in this area. Four of those Syrian families were accommodated in social housing provided by Runnymede, and two were supported to secure accommodation through the housing register with a Registered Provider.

 

To put that in context, this would usually represent considerably less than 2% of our annual housing register allocations when considering the number of allocations made in the past couple of complete financial years.

 

Under the Afghan Resettlement Schemes, the Council has supported 3 Afghan families to secure accommodation locally in the Private Rented Sector.

 

For completeness, I would add that in respect of the approximately 160 family groups of Ukrainian refugees who were anticipated to arrive locally:

 

       47 have arrived and remain living with a Sponsor/Host.

       48 households have secure private rented sector accommodation.

       24 households have returned to Ukraine.

       18 households have returned to another country.

       13 households have moved on due to reasons “other” than those above.

       10 households did not arrive in the area despite having successfully applied for a visa.

 

None of the Ukrainian cohort has applied to join the housing register and we have not provided any direct homelessness assistance with temporary accommodation. This is testament to the hosts locally and to the support provided by Runnymede and its partners to ensure local arrangements are manageable and people move on in a planned way.

 

The Council provides welfare support and advice tailored to individual households’ needs and has supported refugees in this area to access wider support services as may be required.”

 

Councillor D. Whyte asked how many families Runnymede had been asked to accommodate under the Afghan and Syrian resettlement schemes?  The Leader said that the Council had not been requested to accommodate a specific number of people under the Afghan resettlement scheme, although it had provided homes for a number of larger families.  Councillor Gracey was unable to provide information relating to Syrians as this scheme operated before he was elected.

 

Councillor R. King asked whether  ...  view the full minutes text for item 51.

52.

Recommendations from Committees

Minutes:

x

52a

Carbon Baseline - recommendation from the Corporate Management Committee

The report associated with this item was circulated to all members with the agenda for the 14 September 2023 meeting of the Corporate Management Committee.

 

The Committee discussed the report, which had been the subject of several months’ of work.  Senior staff were being provided with similar training to that provided to members on carbon literacy.  In addition, further all staff training on climate change was due to be provided.

 

There was discussion around the methodology for collecting the baseline data.  It was noted that this was a standardised practice within the sector.  Officers would look into whether it was possible to incorporate elements that related to the consumption and/or production of meat and dairy products.

 

It was resolved that:

 

1.    The Aether Ltd Council Estate and Area GHG Baseline report (Appendix 1) be agreed, alongside other sources of information (including consultation feedback from Summer 2023), and that it should be used to develop a Climate Change Action Plan for the Borough.

 

2.    The Committee recommend the Council note the content of the Aether Ltd Council Estate and Area GHG Baseline report.

Minutes:

It was proposed (by Councillor Gracey), seconded (by Councillor Howorth) and resolved that the content of the Aether Ltd Council Estate and Area GHG Baseline report be noted.

52b

Equalities Objectives - recommendation from the Corporate Management Committee pdf icon PDF 492 KB

The report associated with this item was circulated to all members with the agenda for the 14 September 2023 meeting of the Corporate Management Committee.  An updated equalities document incorporating the changes requested by the Corporate Management Committee is attached.

 

The Committee was pleased that the Council’s equalities objectives had been reviewed and updated.

 

It was resolved that the Committee recommend the Council adopt the refreshed Equalities Objectives for the period 2023 – 2027, subject to the Equalities Group reviewing the proposed objectives document to reference the Council’s level one membership of the government’s Disability Confident Employer Scheme, and to express a desire to progress to higher levels of the scheme in due course.

Minutes:

It was proposed (by Councillor Gracey), seconded (by Councillor Howorth) and resolved that the refreshed Equalities Objectives for the period 2023 – 2027 be adopted.

52c

Approach to Financial Sustainability - Savings, Income Generation and Efficiency Process - recommendation from the Corporate Management Committee

The report associated with this item was circulated to all members with the agenda for the 14 September 2023 meeting of the Corporate Management Committee.

 

A revised approach, incorporating the feedback received at the recent meeting of the Council, was presented to the Committee.  The revised process now incorporated the opportunity for Service Committees to provide their feedback on the outcomes of service reviews, before consideration by Corporate Management Committee, as part of the over-arching savings, efficiencies and income generation process.

 

It was resolved that the Committee recommend the Council agree the amended approach for the identification and delivery of savings, income generation and efficiencies, as set out in the officer’s report.

Minutes:

It was proposed (by Councillor Gracey), seconded (by Councillor Willingale) and resolved that the amended approach for the identification and delivery of savings, income generation and efficiencies, as set out in the officer’s report, be agreed.

52d

Calendar of committee meetings - recommendation from the Corporate Management Committee

The report associated with this item was circulated to all members with the agenda for the 12 October 2023 meeting of the Corporate Management Committee.

 

The revised layout of the calendar was welcomed.

 

The Corporate Management Committee recommended that the calendar of meetings for the 2024/25 municipal year by agreed by the Council.

Minutes:

It was proposed (by Councillor Gracey), seconded (by Councillor Willingale) and resolved that the calendar of committee meetings for the 2024/25 municipal year by agreed.

52e

Amendments to the Constitution - recommendation from the Corporate Management Committee

The report associated with this item was circulated to all members with the agenda for the 12 October 2023 meeting of the Corporate Management Committee.

 

Urgency procedures

 

The Committee welcomed the modernisation of the Council’s urgency procedures (Standing Order 42 (SO42)).  There was discussion about whether SO42 was being used as a tool to circumvent committee discussions.  It was reported that the frequency and value of SO42 decisions was dependent on the issues that arose, and could therefore be highly variable.  The value of recent SO42 decisions was questioned; it was stated that these decisions related to supplementary estimates, which could be reported separately to the supplementary estimates agreed by committees, should the Corporate Management Committee require it.

 

Contract Standing Orders

 

There was discussion about the advertising of contract values when seeking bids as part of the tendering process, and whether this was having value for money implications for the Council.  It was noted that the Public Contract Regulations 2015 required specific information to be provided when advertising a contract above the Find a Tender Service (FTS) threshold contract value.

 

The Committee recommended to the Council that:

 

1.     The proposed minor amendments to the Council’s urgency provisions (Standing Order 42) and the Contract Standing Orders be agreed, subject to the minor typographical error at 2.5a of the Contract Standing Orders being corrected.

 

2.     The Corporate Head of Legal and Governance be delegated authority to make further necessary amendments to the Constitution, to give effect to the amendments proposed in the report.

Minutes:

It was proposed (by Councillor Howorth), seconded (by Councillor Willingale) and resolved that:

 

1.     The minor amendments to the Council’s urgency provisions (Standing Order 42) and the Contract Standing Orders be agreed, subject to the minor typographical error at 2.5a of the Contract Standing Orders being corrected.

 

2.     The Corporate Head of Legal and Governance be delegated authority to make further necessary amendments to the Constitution, to give effect to the amendments proposed in the report.

52f

Play Area Programme 2023/24 - recommendation from the Corporate Management Committee

The report associated with this item was circulated to all members with the agenda for the 21 September 2023 meeting of the Community Services Committee which made a recommendation to the Corporate Management Committee.

 

The Committee was pleased to note that there had been cross party and ward member involvement in developing the proposals.

 

It was resolved that:

 

1.     The proposed health and safety works and play area replacement plan be agreed.

 

2.     A capital estimate of £229,000, for the replacement plan involving Surrey Towers, Pooley Green and Hythe Park, as set out in table 3 of the report, to be funded from the resources set out in table 2 (subject to any additional approvals required), be agreed.

 

3.     The release of £100,000 for play area replacement programme provisions, set aside in the capital programme for 2023/24, be agreed.

 

4.     An allocation of £47,000, from the 2024/2025 youth development revenue budget for the play area replacement, be agreed.

 

5.     The virement of the revenue budgets earmarked for the replacement of play equipment to fund the capital expenditure be agreed (noting that this would show in future revenue reports as contributions to capital expenditure on the summary page of the budget).

 

The Committee recommended to the Council that:

 

1.     A capital estimate of £565,000, for the replacement plan involving the remaining locations set out in table 3 of the report, to be funded from the resources set out in table 2 (subject to any additional approvals required), be agreed.

 

[Members were advised at the Community Services Committee that the capital estimate had been revised.  This was however not captured in the recommendation put before the Community Services Committee, which is what was moved and agreed for communication to the Corporate Management Committee.

 

The Council is therefore asked to agree a revised capital estimate of £799,000, covering both financial years, for the replacement plan to be funded from the resources set out in table 2 of the officer’s report (subject to any additional approvals required).]

Minutes:

It was proposed (by Councillor Howorth), seconded (by Councillor Lewis) and resolved that a revised capital estimate of £799,000, for the replacement plan involving the remaining locations set out in table 3 of the report, to be funded from the resources set out in table 2 (subject to any additional approvals required), be agreed.

52g

Housing Revenue Account Development 2 - recommendation from the Housing Committee

The report associated with this item was circulated to all members with the agenda for the 20 September 2023 meeting of the Housing Committee.

 

The Housing Development Manager outlined the background for two potential development sites that had been chosen to contribute to the Council’s 125 homes target. A multi-disciplinary team would be appointed separately to the architects as part of the procurement route.

 

Concerns were raised about any potential developments eventually falling into the hands of buy to let landlords who would rent such properties out to students at the nearby university to be used as HMOs. A member stated that there was a significant shortage of family homes within the area because of this and asked if there were mechanisms to ensure this did not happen to any potential future developments. The Head of Housing and Business Services stated there are mechanisms in place in certain circumstances, although the longevity of these will be minimal.

 

Addressing concerns around right-to-buy, the Corporate Head of Housing advised that covenants are put in place on right-to-buy properties the Council sells with stipulations on how properties can be used that remains on the property through subsequent ownerships.

 

Resolved that:

 

Members approved a supplementary revenue estimate to be spread over the next 4 years for both projects to proceed from RIBA Stage 1 to 3 to be presented to Full Council.

Minutes:

It was proposed (by Councillor Nuti), seconded (by Councillor Hulley) and resolved that a supplementary revenue estimate, to be spread over the next 4 years for both projects to proceed from RIBA Stage 1 to 3, be agreed.

52h

Grant Funding to Improve the Energy Efficiency of Council Homes - ECO4 - recommendation from the Housing Committee

The report associated with this item was circulated to all members with the agenda for the 20 September 2023 meeting of the Housing Committee.

 

The Corporate Head of Housing outlined the benefits of procuring an external contractor to access ECO4 funding to improve the energy efficiency of 59 of the ‘hardest to treat’ properties. This would enable the Council to work towards its target of ensuring all Council owned homes have an energy rating of at least a C by 2030 and would enable residents to save a significant amount of money on their energy bills.

 

The outlay required by the Council was modest in the context of the available grant from government.

 

The Chairman praised the Corporate Head of Housing and his team for getting the grant funding from the Government, and all members agreed this was a positive scheme to pursue.

 

Resolved that:

 

Members approved and referred the proposal to Full Council for the procurement of a contractor to implement energy efficiency measures to 59 Council owned homes, via the ECO4 programme.

Minutes:

It was proposed (by Councillor Nuti), seconded (by Councillor Hulley) and resolved that the procurement of a contractor, to implement energy efficiency measures to 59 Council owned homes via the ECO4 programme, be agreed.

52i

Risk Management Framework 2023 - 2026 - recommendation from the Standards and Audit Committee

The report associated with this item was circulated to all members with the agenda for the 3 October 2023 meeting of the Standards and Audit Committee.

 

The Standards and Audit Committee was asked to approve for recommendation to full Council the Risk Management Framework.

 

The Committee was asked to recommend for approval by full Council, the Council’s Risk Management Framework.  The aim was to formalise, embed and continuously improve processes and procedures for the identification, evaluation and control of risks within and across the organisation.

 

Officers explained that the Framework was developed to support delivery of actions in the Annual Governance Statement in support of compliance with the Local Code of Corporate Governance.

 

Members noted the agreed definitions of risk and risk management and fully supported the intention to make the Council more risk aware to support decision making by adopting a 5 stage process to risk management.  This involved:

 

·         Setting the Council’s objectives and risk appetite

·         Identifying risks

·         Risk evaluation

·         Taking action to manage risks

·         Monitoring and reporting

 

Each stage of the process was detailed in the Framework and Members agreed it was very comprehensive and should ensure consistency and transparency. 

 

As a way of embedding the consideration of risk a motion was proposed and seconded to add an additional recommendation making it mandatory that a separate section on risk implications was added to the committee report template.

 

Officers planned to submit the Risk Appetite Statements to the next scheduled meeting of the Committee in November 2023.  This supplemented the Risk Management Framework and was proposed to be updated annually as part of annual budget and business planning.  A report presenting an update on and highlighting aspects of the Corporate Risk Register and associated activity would be considered at the scheduled meeting of the Committee in January 2024.  Thereafter, it was intended that a report on corporate risks and mitigation would be reported twice a year to the Committee. 

 

In addition, Officers reported that the capital and investment strategy would contain further details of the risk appetite specifically for commercial and regeneration, portfolio and divestment opportunities. 

 

Members were very supportive of the Framework, particularly welcoming the addition of risk management to the ‘dashboards’ produced by the Project Management Office for senior management and Members, showing risk statistics and movements.

 

Members noted the policy, resource and legal implications and agreed that failure to take advantage of opportunities and mitigate business risks was a major risk to the Council which could impact on its ability to deliver strategic objectives.  In addition, the Committee acknowledged that a failure to regularly review and update the Risk Management Framework could have an adverse impact on the Council’s Annual Governance Statement.

 

The next steps following adoption of the Framework would be a series of briefings for managers, the release of the tool kit and resources, development of the dashboard for reporting and implementation of the reporting schedule to the Committee.

 

Officers were thanked for their input into creating the Risk Management Framework and looked  ...  view the full agenda text for item 52i

Minutes:

It was proposed (by Councillor Hulley), seconded (by Councillor Malcolm Cressey) and resolved that:

 

1.     The Risk Management Framework, as set out in Appendix ‘A’ of the Officer’s report, be agreed.

 

2.     A section on risk implications be made mandatory on all relevant reports to Committees to ensure that all risks and mitigatory measures were identified.

53.

Local Government Act 1972 - Section 85: Attendance Dispensation, Councillor John Furey

Recommendations

 

a)    The Council is asked to consider whether it wishes to exercise its powers under Section 85 of the Local Government Act 1972 by granting a dispensation to the attendance requirements for elected Members in recognition of Councillor Furey’s ill-health.

 

b)    The Council is asked to agree the duration of the dispensation, to apply from 17 November 2023.

 

 

1.    Councillor Furey last attended a meeting of the authority on 17 May 2023 and has not been able to attend a meeting since then owing to ill health.

 

2.    Section 85 of the Local Government Act 1972 provides that if a member of a local authority fails throughout a period of six consecutive months from the date of his/her last attendance to attend any meeting of the authority, he/she, unless the failure was due to some reason approved by the authority before the expiry of that period, will cease to be a member of the authority.

 

3.    Therefore, if Councillor Furey fails to attend any meeting of the authority due to take place before 17 November 2023, or any meeting of an outside body to which he has been appointed as the Council’s representative, he will cease to be a member unless the Council grants a dispensation.

 

4.    As this is the last ordinary meeting of the Council before 17 November 2023, it is suggested that in light of Councillor Furey’s continuing recuperation, members consider whether a dispensation should be granted.

Minutes:

It was proposed (by Councillor Snow), seconded (by Councillor Gracey) and resolved that:

 

1.     The Council exercise its powers under Section 85 of the Local Government Act 1972 by granting a dispensation to the attendance requirements for elected Members in respect of Councillor Furey’s ill-health.

 

2.     That the duration of Councillor Furey’s dispensation be set at six months, to apply from 17 November 2023.

54.

Notices of Motion from Members of the Council under Standing Order 15

To receive and consider any notices of motion from members of the Council under Standing Order 15.

 

a) From Councillor Sam Jenkins

 

Disability Confident Leadership at Runnymede Borough Council

 

Motivation:

 

This motion is being brought forward to support the development of an inclusive and diverse workforce within Runnymede Borough Council and to support the Council’s commitment to equality of opportunity.

 

This council notes:

 

The Disability Confident scheme is a Government initiative designed to encourage employers to recruit and retain people with disabilities and those with long term health conditions. The Disability Confident scheme supports employers to make the most of the talents which people with disabilities can bring to the workplace (note 1).

 

There are 3 levels of Disability Confident, designed to support organisations as they move through the scheme. These are, Level 1 (Committed), Level 2 (Employer), Level 3 (Leader). Each level must be completed before moving on to the next.

 

A new member organisation can join the Disability Confident scheme at Level 1 if it agrees to the Disability Confident commitments and identifies at least one action that it will carry out to make a difference for people with disabilities (note 2).

 

The Disability Confident Commitments are:

 

·         Inclusive and accessible recruitment

·         Communicating vacancies

·         Offering an interview to people with disabilities if they meet the minimum job criteria

·         Providing reasonable adjustments

·         Supporting existing employees

 

Once an organisation has achieved Level 1, it can progress to Level 2 of the scheme by completing a self-assessment. The self-assessment is based around two themes; ‘getting the right people for your business’ and ‘keeping and developing your people’. Level 2 is achieved once the organisation confirms to the Department for Work and Pensions that it has completed the self-assessment, which will include evidence of existing good-practice as well as achievable follow-up actions where there are areas for development.

 

To progress to the highest level of the scheme and to become a Disability Confident Leader, an organisation must have its self-assessment validated by an external stakeholder. The organisation must also provide a short narrative to show how it is making good on its follow-up actions, confirm that it is employing people with disabilities and report on disability, mental health and wellbeing by referring to the Voluntary Reporting Framework.

 

A number of nearby organisations are Level 2 members of Disability Confident, including (note 3):

 

·         Royal Holloway University of London (RHUL)

·         Proctor and Gamble UK (formerly based in Egham)

·         Citizens Advice UK

·         Epsom and Ewell, Reigate and Banstead, Surrey Heath, Tandridge, Waverley and Woking Councils.

 

Other nearby organisations who have reached Level 3 include:

 

·         Animal and Plant Health Agency (based in Addlestone)

·         Unum (based in Dorking)

 

Runnymede Borough Council is currently a Level 1 (committed) employer.

 

As a Level 1 Disability Confident (Committed) employer, Runnymede Borough Council  supports the five commitments of the scheme as described above. Working towards Level 2 and Level 3 will enable the Council to transform its commitments into evidence-driven action that will benefit its current workforce as well as future talent.  ...  view the full agenda text for item 54.

Minutes:

Motion a) Disability Confident Leadership at Runnymede Borough Council

 

The proposed motion, as set out in the summons, was moved by Councillor Jenkins.

 

Councillor Williams seconded the proposed motion.

 

The proposed motion was debated by the Council.

 

The motion was CARRIED:

 

Motivation:

 

This motion is being brought forward to support the development of an inclusive and diverse workforce within Runnymede Borough Council and to support the Council’s commitment to equality of opportunity.

 

This Council notes:

 

The Disability Confident scheme is a Government initiative designed to encourage employers to recruit and retain people with disabilities and those with long term health conditions. The Disability Confident scheme supports employers to make the most of the talents which people with disabilities can bring to the workplace.

 

There are 3 levels of Disability Confident, designed to support organisations as they move through the scheme. These are, Level 1 (Committed), Level 2 (Employer), Level 3 (Leader). Each level must be completed before moving on to the next.

 

A new member organisation can join the Disability Confident scheme at Level 1 if it agrees to the Disability Confident commitments and identifies at least one action that it will carry out to make a difference for people with disabilities.

 

The Disability Confident Commitments are:

 

·       Inclusive and accessible recruitment

 

·       Communicating vacancies

 

·       Offering an interview to people with disabilities if they meet the minimum job criteria

 

·       Providing reasonable adjustments

 

·       Supporting existing employees

 

Once an organisation has achieved Level 1, it can progress to Level 2 of the scheme by completing a self-assessment. The self-assessment is based around two themes; ‘getting the right people for your business’ and ‘keeping and developing your people’. Level 2 is achieved once the organisation confirms to the Department for Work and Pensions that it has completed the self-assessment, which will include evidence of existing good-practice as well as achievable follow-up actions where there are areas for development.

 

To progress to the highest level of the scheme and to become a Disability Confident Leader, an organisation must have its self-assessment validated by an external stakeholder. The organisation must also provide a short narrative to show how it is making good on its follow-up actions, confirm that it is employing people with disabilities and report on disability, mental health and wellbeing by referring to the Voluntary Reporting Framework.

 

A number of nearby organisations are Level 2 members of Disability Confident, including:

 

·       Royal Holloway University of London (RHUL)

 

·       Proctor and Gamble UK (formerly based in Egham)

 

·       Citizens Advice UK

 

·       Epsom and Ewell, Reigate and Banstead, Surrey Heath, Tandridge, Waverley and Woking Councils.

 

Other nearby organisations who have reached Level 3 include:

 

·       Animal and Plant Health Agency (based in Addlestone)

 

·       Unum (based in Dorking)

 

Runnymede Borough Council is currently a Level 1 (committed) employer.

 

As a Level 1 Disability Confident (Committed) employer, Runnymede Borough Council supports the five commitments of the scheme as described above. Working towards Level 2 and Level 3 will enable the Council to transform its commitments into evidence-driven action that will benefit its  ...  view the full minutes text for item 54.

55.

Minority Group Priority Business

An item of minority group business has been registered by the Leader of the Labour, Co-operative and Green Party Group in accordance with Standing Order 23.

 

Statement by Cllr R King on Egham Hythe, Pooley Green and Thorpe Lea Liveable Neighbourhoods

 

Since the start of 2023 I have been working with officers of Surrey County Council to secure much needed additional funding for residents of Egham Hythe, Pooley Green and Thorpe Lea to ensure necessary improvements are made and resources secured to address a range of issues on local roads, pavements, cycle ways and street amenities which residents have raised with myself, Cllr Rhys Davies and our Thorpe and Egham Town Councillors. I would like to publicly thank officers who have helped me secure design and consultation funding from the Department of Transport to potentially make a Liveable Neighbourhood across a wide part of the Egham division, a reality. We were one of only two divisions across Surrey to secure this funding for our residents, in part thanks to our efforts to demonstrate the community need and the initial support of residents, businesses and civic leaders. Surrey County Council is holding in person events at the Hythe Centre, one which was held on the 18th of October between 2pm and 8pm and one which will be held in a few days’ time on the 21st of October between 10am and 1pm so residents can come to see what could be potentially provided within the second round of funding if it is secured, and also log their ideas with members of the design team over the Common Place collection tool, https://eghamhythe.commonplace.is/

 

I would like to publicly thank Cllr Isabel Mullens of Egham Town Ward and Cllr Margret Harnden of Thorpe Ward who helped me lobby for streets in their Borough Wards to be included within the mappable area shown within the consultation. Their assistance was essential in securing those areas within the designated zone and in being able to provide a potential for our shared residents to benefit from this investment.

 

I would like to encourage all residents of Egham Hythe, Thorpe Lea and those who live around Vicarage Road in Egham Town ward to respond to the survey and consultation and residents who travel, work or worship within this area to also take part. We have the potential here to improve the communities we live, work, travel and worship in, through a range of measures such tree planting, place shaping of streets, cleaning up broken pavements, providing clear cycle routes which are safe and separate from motor traffic, reducing speeding hotspots through physical infrastructure and finally making streets generally smarter and more liveable in after many years of neglect. Please make you voice heard by the 31st of October and help us again be successful in the second round of funding which will be to secure cost of the providing delivering residents priorities.

Minutes:

This item of business was considered between agenda items 10e and 10f, in accordance with Standing Order 23.4.

 

Councillor R. King read the statement that had been published with the summons for the meeting.

56.

Press and Public to be Excluded by Resolution

To consider any items so resolved at the meeting.

Minutes:

There was no exempt business.