Agenda item

Questions at Cabinet Meetings

Up to 30 minutes is allowed for this item.

 

Written questions

 

To answer any written questions from a County Councillor, (or any person living or working in the county, or is affected by the work of the County Council), about any matter which relates to any item on the agenda for the meeting.

 

The closing date for the receipt of questions is 4.00 pm on Tuesday 16 April 2019

 

Please submit any questions to jo.moore@gloucestershire.gov.uk

 

A written answer will be provided for each question and presented to the questioner and to Cabinet Members in advance of the meeting. The questions and answers will be taken as read at the meeting and need not be read out. At the discretion of the Leader of Council, each questioner in attendance at the meeting will be allowed to ask one supplementary question in response to the answer given to the original question.

 

A copy of the questions and answers circulated at the meeting will be attached to the signed copy of the minutes of the meeting.

 

Urgent questions

 

An urgent written question may be asked by a member of the public about any item on the Cabinet agenda for that meeting which the Chairperson considers could not have been reasonably submitted by the deadline for the receipt of written questions, provided he or she gives notice of the question to the Chief Executive by 12 noon on the day before the meeting.

Minutes:

The following supplementary questions were asked at the meeting.

 

Question 1: Cllr Jeremy Hilton

 

Agenda item 11: Gloucestershire’s Sufficiency Strategy – Semi Independent Project

 

Cllr Hilton referred to the large number of care institutions based in Kingsholm and stated how important it was not to overload the community with such facilities. Seeking clarification on the answer to his question, Cllr Hilton asked what other properties in the county had been considered as possible locations for a young person’s facility? Cllr Hilton asked Cllr Boyles to provide a written answer to the question, including the reasons why the locations had been dismissed as suitable premises.

 

Response by: Cllr Richard Boyles (Cabinet Member for Children and Young People)

 

Cllr Boyles explained that the project to provide a young person’s facility as was proposed four years ago under the IRIS project. After the Ofsted Inspection in 2017, a key part of Gloucestershire’s Sufficiency Strategy expanded the need for a wider range of local accommodation options.

 

Cllr Boyles explained that some of the properties that had originally been considered were no longer suitable . The Gloucestershire Sufficiency Strategy aimed to cater for young people in the community.

 

Cllr Boyles agreed to provide Cllr Hilton with a written response to his question after the meeting. He stated that, as the terms of the project grew, so did the terms of requirement.

 

Question 2: Cllr Jeremy Hilton

 

Agenda item 11: Gloucestershire’s Sufficiency Strategy – Semi-Independent Project


Cllr Hilton acknowledged there was a communications plan but stressed the importance of consulting with the local community.  Cllr Hilton asked for assurance that consultation had been done?

 

Response by: Cllr Richard Boyles (Cabinet Member for Children and Young People)

 

Cllr Boyles referred to the clear communications plan which set out the engagements that would be undertaken with the local community on a wide range of issues associated with the project, including bus services, schools and hospitals. Cllr Boyles agreed to provide a written response to the question after the meeting and assured Cllr Hilton the views of the local community would be listened to.

 

Question 3: Cllr Jeremy Hilton

 

Agenda item 11: Gloucestershire’s Sufficiency Strategy – Semi Independent Project

 

Cllr Hilton stated that, in the UK, a person reached maturity and was regarded as an adult by the time of their 18th birthday. Cllr Hilton asked Cllr Boyles to guarantee no new person over the age of 20 would be placed at Trevone House and that no one over age 20 would spend their first night in care at the house? 

 

Response by: Cllr Richard Boyles (Cabinet Member for Children and Young People)

 

Cllr Boyles stated he was unable to promise that no one over the age of 20 would be placed at Trevone House. He explained some placements could roll over beyond the age of 18 and that he would need to consult with the team on the matter. Cllr Boyles did not envisage anyone over the age of 20 would be placed at the facility but could not give a definite yes or no at this time.

 

Question 4: Cllr Jeremy Hilton

 

Agenda item 11: Gloucestershire’s Sufficiency Strategy – Semi Independent Project

 

Cllr Hilton noted that the Care Quality Commission and Ofsted were regulators of the facility and asked how often and how rigorous were their inspections expected to be?

 

Response by: Cllr Richard Boyles (Cabinet Member for Children and Young People)

 

Cllr Boyles confirmed the inspections would be as rigorous as always and that the inspection reports would be available as and when the information was provided. The inspections would be annual but may be more frequent. 

 

Question 5: Cllr Jeremy Hilton

 

Agenda item 11: Gloucestershire’s Sufficiency Strategy – Semi Independent Project

 

Cllr Hilton referred to a recent briefing with Cllr Boyles and the indication there would only be two people on duty overnight. Cllr Hilton also referred to a recent radio interview given by the Leader of the Council, Cllr Mark Hawthorne, where it was suggested there would be 4 members of staff on duty 24/7. Cllr Hilton sought clarification on how many members of staff would be on duty at the facility from 9pm to 9am?

 

Response by: Cllr Richard Boyles (Cabinet Member for Children and Young People)

 

Cllr Boyles confirmed there would be 4 members of staff on duty, once the facility was fully open. Until this time, and as the facility developed, the number of staff could be lower, dependent on the number of residents. Cllr Boyles said that everything would be risk assessed, with additional staff brought in if the risk was deemed appropriate.

 

Question 6: Cllr Jeremy Hilton

 

Agenda item 8: Corporate Asset Management Plan

 

Cllr Hilton asked whether the Council would achieve zero carbon emissions from its buildings by 2030? He enquired about carbon emissions targets?

 

Response by: Cllr Ray Theodoulou (Cabinet Member for Finance and Change)

 

Cllr Theodoulou explained that the Council owned some very old buildings, including several refurbished buildings, upgraded to a modern standard. He stated that the county’s environmental policies had helped achieve lead status for Gloucestershire in reducing carbon emissions. It was not possible, however, to guarantee a carbon neutral position when refurbishing old buildings. The Council would continue to do all it could do to modernise and improve Council buildings.

 

Question 8: Cllr Paul Hodgkinson

 

Agenda item 7: Financial Monitoring Report 2018/19

 

Cllr Hodgkinson questioned the reduction in the number of pot hole repairs carried out on minor roads during the past three months in comparison to the volume of repairs carried out for the same period the previous year?

 

Response by: Cllr Vernon Smith (Cabinet Member for Highways and Flood)

 

Cllr Smith drew comparisons in the variances in weather between the previous year and the current year, including the detrimental effects of the ‘Beast from the East’ in 2018 and the milder weather experienced in recent months. Cllr Smith referred to the Council’s £150 million investment in the county’s highway network and highlighted a number of schemes in the major resurfacing programme currently underway. He was pleased that the number of pothole repairs had reduced due to the Council’s resurfacing strategy. 

 

Question 9: Cllr Paul Hodgkinson

 

Agenda item 8: Corporate Asset Management Plan

 

Cllr Hodgkinson enquired about other buildings in Gloucestershire and how they could be adapted to make them carbon neutral?

 

Response by:Cllr Ray Theodoulou (Cabinet Member for Finance and Change)

 

Cllr Theodoulou referred to the difficulties in bringing the Council’s older buildings up-to-date because of their age and condition. He confirmed that the Council would continue to sell some of the older buildings and refurbish where it could.

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