Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Committee Rooms, 2nd Floor, West Wing, Guildhall

Contact: Rofikul Islam Tel. No: 020 7332 1174  Email: Rofikul.islam@cityoflondon.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Henrika Priest and Deputy Elizabeth Rogula.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 1.

2.

Members' Declarations under the Code of Conduct in Respect of Items on the Agenda

Minutes:

There were no declarations.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 2.

3.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 167 KB

To agree the public minutes and summary of the meeting held on Tuesday, 21 July 2020.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 3.

Minutes:

RESOLVED -  that the public minutes of the meeting held on Tuesday, 21 July 2020 be approved as a correct record.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.

4.

Outstanding actions pdf icon PDF 120 KB

Report of the Town Clerk.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 4.

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Town Clerk setting out the current list of outstanding actions:

 

Electric Vehicle Charging

The Electric Vehicle Charging installation had been impacted by the pandemic but is expected to go live by December 2020. Members will be kept informed as this develops in the future.

 

Garden Waste Recycling

Members were informed that the Garden Waste Recycling pilot has now been deferred till January 2021.

 

Measurement and mitigation options for operational rail noise from London Underground affecting the Barbican Estate

The Chair noted that it is very disappointing that the residents at the Barbican Estate continue to face the ongoing noise and disturbance. The City of London has to accept that TfL has a number of challenges ahead of them at present, not least their funding position and given that TfL are now being asked to run more train services in order to provide social distancing on the trains. It was noted that the City of London is not in a position at present to press TfL to get the temporary speed restrictions put in place or to progress the longer-term solutions.   

 

A Member noted the concerns expressed by the Chairman and accepted the fact that we are now navigating through challenging times and the rail noise will have to remain on the agenda for now. The Member thanked the Chairman and the Officers involved for their work on this matter.

 

The Chairman assured the Member that the Measurement and mitigation options for operational rail noise from London Underground affecting the Barbican Estate will remain firmly on the agenda.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.

5.

Climate Action Strategy pdf icon PDF 183 KB

Report of the Town Clerk & Chief Executive.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 5.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Town Clerk on the Climate Action Strategy. The Chairman introduced the report and noted that the Climate Action Strategy is important to the Committee and despite the pandemic and other challenges, the Committee’s commitment to the Climate Action Strategy remains an important priority, as it is a key issue affecting the country and the world.

 

The Climate Action Strategy provides the City of London with an opportunity to act decisively with the Committee having previously supported the development of a comprehensive strategy and actions rather than simply  declaring a climate emergency The Chairman noted that the Climate Action Strategy is deliverable and affordable with measurable  action sets. The Chairman, along with a number of Members, have been working with Officers to support the development of the strategy which is data driven and grounded in a solid evidence-based action.

 

The Chairman informed the Committee that the Climate Action Strategy sets a date of 2027 for net zero on the City Corporation’s own emissions with implementation starting in April 2021; once the funding put in place for year one is released. Funding has been identified for the next 5-years as part of the medium term financial plan, with a budget to be agreed annually for the Climate Action Strategy. The strategy targets net zero on the full value chain by 2040. 

 

The Chairman confirmed that if the Climate Action Strategy is agreed by the Court of the Common Council then the Committee will be pushing this forward and ensuring that the impacts are reported to the Committee. 

 

The Head of Corporate Strategy & Performance informed the Committee of the actions in relation to this committee, which were improving the ability to ensure  resilience in relation to pests and diseases and resilience to climate generally, making sure

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

Department of the Built Environment Risk Management - Periodic Report pdf icon PDF 136 KB

Report of the Director of the Built Environment.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 6.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Director of the Built Environment on the Department of the Built Environment Risk Management – Periodic Report.

 

The Chairman introduced the report to Members and drew the attention of Members to the drivers check risk and the reasons behind the Department of the Built Environment Risk Management – Periodic Report being on the Committees agenda is because the City Transport Policy is administered by the Cleansing Transport Team. This in turn came about because they manage the (now much diminished) fleet of refuse collection vehicles and therefore at least one member of that team is required to hold the Transport Operators Licence which covers all Large Goods Vehicles operated by the City. The Cleansing Transport Team are therefore the corporate subject matter experts.

 

The Assistant Director - Cleansing Operations and Street Environment updated the Committee that this is one of the Health and Safety team’s policies, however the expertise remains with the Department of the Built Environment’s Cleansing team who in turn provide the expert advice, information and manage compliance for the Corporate Health Team.

 

The report author highlighted the COVID-19 risks as it is important that the service level risks are sighted by the Committee.

 

The report author noted that a report from the Committee went to the Establishment Committee in January 2020 with reference to the lack of a single point record containing a database of all the employees and volunteers for the City of London. He asked if the Committee wishes to take the request back to the Establishment Committee on the same subject.

 

A Member commented that there is a need to address the red risks, as the City does not want to discourage volunteering activities. The Committee was unequivocal on this and expected progress, action and a timed

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

Period 1 (April - July 2020) Cemetery & Crematorium Business Plan Performance update pdf icon PDF 281 KB

Report of the Director of Open Spaces.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 7.

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Director of Open Spaces on the Period 1 (April – July 2020) Cemetery & Crematorium Business Plan Performance update.

 

A Member observed that the City of London continued to maintain an open cemetery (following guidance from the City’s Legal team) when other cemeteries and crematorium grounds were closed.  The City’s large spacious chapels enabled the City to allow 20 people to attend a funeral safely when many crematoria were limiting numbers to 5 or 10 people. The Member in question commended the Departments work around this, during a very difficult time.

 

The Deputy Chairman of the Committee mentioned that the team had been providing a number of services in addition to what is required of them. He mentioned that the Lord Mayor was very impressed with the services during his visit to thank the staff in person.

 

A Member asked for a comment around the budgetary position of the Cemetery and Crematorium. The Department’s Business Manager responded that the Department has had an increase of income, which resulted in the increase of expenditure too, such as bringing in extra staff to cover those who are unwell or shielding. It is expected to maintain the same level of income unless there is a second spike. The Department is anticipating that it may go over their budget, in the event of a second wave of COVID-19.

 

The Superintendent & Registrar commented that it is hard to clarify where the Department’s financial position may be towards the end of the year as it had to reduce the number of cremations due to the number of cremators being available, as a result of the replacement project. At present the Department has only one working cremator and this maybe the case until the first week of November 2020. 

 

The Chairman

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.

8.

Department of the Built Environment (Cleansing Services) Business Plan Progress Report for Period 1 (April - July), 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 223 KB

Report of the Director of the Built Environment.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 8.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Department of the Built Environment on the Department of the Built Environment (Cleansing Services) Business Plan Progress Report for Period 1 (April - July) 2020/21.

 

A Member commented that he observed from the news, that Suez is going into a merger with Veolia and if this will impact the City of London’s KPI with Veolia. The Assistant Director - Cleansing Operations and Street Environment confirmed that he was informed that Veolia’s is looking to merge with Suez, and the City of London will continue to monitor its local performance, he further advised that he did not anticipate any problems with the City’s contract with Veolia or service delivery as a result of the merger.

 

This was followed by another Member who commented that they had tried to use the City of London’s public toilets but faced difficulties due to not having a 50p coin and asked if there are any plans to go cashless.  The Assistant Director - Cleansing Operations and Street Environment confirmed that there are cash points in all the City of London’s public toilets but going cashless means that the Department will have to factor in additional budget.

 

The Deputy Chairman reminded the Committee that there is a need to strike a balance between going cashless and ensuring that the option to pay with cash is also available as not everyone may have access to the right IT accessibility.

 

The Chairman asked if the cashless payments on the City of London toilets can be explored given that mobile payments at Hampstead Heath are now provided with cashless solution. Additionally, he mentioned that in light of the COVID-19 it is observed that physical cash are not good to carry due to the infection risks involved and as such this case is

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

Markets and Consumer Protection Business Plan 2020/2021: Progress Report (Period 1) pdf icon PDF 219 KB

Report of the Director of Markets and Consumer Protection.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 9.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Director of Markets and Consumer Protection on the Markets and Consumer Protection Business Plan 2020/2021: Progress Report (Period 1).

 

The Port Health and Public Protection Director introduced the report to the Committee and noted that the report covers the lockdown period and the easements that followed, consequently much of the recent work of the Service has been to assist businesses open and recover from the lockdown. 

 

He noted that the Amber and Red KPIs relate to Port Health and the problems with receiving paperwork from other countries.  This is a global issue that is affecting the UK and beyond.  Consequently, procedures and processes have been developed with Defra and the Food Standards Agency to address the issue, such as accepting electronic copies of paperwork. This has sped up much of the process and will be in place until the current situation resolves back to some normality.

 

The Deputy Chairman asked why there seems to be an increase of NO2(Nitrogen dioxide) figures. This was followed by another question in terms of pest visibilities within the City of London.

 

The Port Health and Public Protection Director noted that there had been a slight increase in the last month in NO2 levels, but it is not to the level experienced pre COVID.  The Air Quality Team Manager also updated the Committee and mentioned that the NO2 levels had decreased significantly during the COVID restrictions and the recent slight increase is due to increased traffic and the use of other combustion plant as the City becomes busier. 

 

In terms of the pest visibilities within the City of London, this is potentially due to the lack of people and footfall within the City of London, which has led to the pests being disturbed less

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.

10.

Port Health & Public Protection Risks pdf icon PDF 487 KB

Report of the Director of Markets and Consumer Protection.

 

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 10.

Minutes:

The Committee received a report of the Director of Markets and Consumer Protection on the Port Health & Public Protection Risks.

 

A Member noted that the target dates for a number of the risks are missed and advised that in order to mitigate the risks, we should include a target date.  Officers agreed to include the target dates for the future report on this.

 

RESOLVED – that Members noted the report and the actions taken by the Department of Markets and Consumer Protection to monitor and manage effectively risks arising from its operations.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 10.

11.

Report of Action Taken Between Meetings pdf icon PDF 16 KB

Report of the Town Clerk.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 11.

Minutes:

The Committee received the report of the Town Clerk on the report of action taken between meetings.

 

RESOLVED – that Members noted the report.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 11.

12.

Questions on matters relating to the work of the Committee

Minutes:

A Member asked if the City of London had any plans to regulate the use of drones within the City of London as the Member had received complaints in terms of a drone being flown in his constituency last night.

 

Officers agreed to take this away and investigate the matter further, as usually drones are only used within the City of London for a number of specific reasons, including policing and for building surveys.  

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 12.

13.

Any other business that the Chairman considers urgent

Minutes:

Update on the impact of the UK leaving the EU (Brexit) on Port Health & Public Protection – Gavin Stedman

The Port Health and Public Protection Director noted that a report was presented to the Committee in its siting of July 2020, at which point the City of London knew that there would be a phased introduction of Border Controls from January 2021.  However, at present we do not know the regime which we will follow at the end of the EU Transition Period (e.g., will EU imports be subject to the same checks as imports entering the UK from outside of the EU or will there be a ‘lighter touch’.  It is therefore challenging to predict future workloads at this time.

 

The Committee was informed that the City of  London had made a funding bid to the Food Standards Agency with a request for £474K, but had received only £150K. Officers had gone back to the Food Standards Agency and had asked for other fund opportunities that may be available.  Officers had also made a bid to Department for Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs for additional funding for the difference.  The closing date for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs was the 13 September 2020 and a bid was submitted.

 

Members raised concerns about the lack of funds being made available. The Chairman assured the Committee that he is working with the Port Health and Public Protection Director to ensure that the funding gaps are addressed, and resources are put in place.

 

Clean Air Day 8 October 2020 - Ruth Calderwood.

The Air Quality Manager informed the Committee that the Clean Air Day is confirmed for 8 October 2020. This will be the fourth consecutive year that this has been running for; organised by a charity called Global

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 13.

14.

Exclusion of the Public

MOTION – That under Section 100(A) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the meeting for the following items on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Part I of the Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 14.

Minutes:

15.

Non-Public Minutes

To agree the non-public minutes of the meeting held on Tuesday, 21 July 2020.

 

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 15.

Minutes:

RESOLVED -  that the no public minutes of the meeting held on Tuesday, 21 July 2020 be approved as a correct record.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 15.

16.

Financial Implications of Covid-19 on the Cleansing Service

Report of the Director of Built Environment.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 16.

Minutes:

The Committee received the report of the Director of Built Environment on the Financial Implications of COVID-19 on the Cleansing Service.

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 16.

17.

Port Health and Environmental Services Debtors -Period Ending 30 June 2020

Joint report of the Director of the Built Environment, the Director of Markets and Consumer Protection and the Director of Open Spaces.

 ...  view the full agenda text for item 17.

Minutes:

 

The Committee received a joint report of the Director of the Built Environment, the Director of Markets and Consumer Protection, and the Director of Open Spaces.

 

 

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 17.

18.

Non-public questions on matters relating to the work of the Committee

Minutes:

There were no additional, urgent item of business for consideration in the non-public session.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 18.

19.

Any other business that the Chairman considered urgent and which the Committee agrees should be considered whilst the public are excluded

Minutes:

There were no other urgent business.

 ...  view the full minutes text for item 19.