Committees

A meeting of the Highland Council will take place in the Council Chamber, Council Headquarters, Glenurquhart Road, Inverness on Thursday, 1 March 2012 at 10.30am.

 

Webcast Notice: This meeting will be filmed and broadcast over the Internet on the Highland Council website and will be archived and available for viewing for 12 months thereafter.

 

You are invited to attend the meeting and a note of the business to be considered is attached.

 

Yours faithfully,

 

Michelle Morris
Assistant Chief Executive


 

Prayer – Councillor A Rhind


 

1. Calling of the Roll and Apologies for Absence

 

2. Declarations of Interest

 

Members are asked to consider whether they have an interest to declare in relation to any item on the agenda for this meeting. Any Member making a declaration of interest should indicate whether it is a financial or non-financial interest and include some information on the nature of the interest. Advice may be sought from Officers prior to the meeting taking place.

 

3. Confirmation of Minutes 

 

There are submitted for confirmation as correct records the Minutes of Meeting of the Council held on 15 December 2011 and of the Special Meeting held on 9 February 2012 as contained in the Volume circulated separately.

 

4. Minutes of Meetings of Committees  

 

There are submitted for confirmation as correct records, for information as regards delegated business, and for approval as appropriate, the Minutes of Meetings of Committees contained in the volume circulated separately as undernoted:-

 

|Link to Minutes Index|

 

  • Housing and Social Work Committee - 11 January
  • Education, Culture and Sport Committee - 12 January
  • Gaelic Committee - 12 January
  • Planning, Environment and Development Committee - 18 January
  • Transport, Environmental and Community Services Committee - 19 January
  • Joint Committee for Children and Young People - 20 January
  • Inverness City Committee - 13 February
  • Resources Committee - 15 February
  • Pensions Committee - 22 February

5.  Rural Affairs and Climate Change Strategy Group

 

There are circulated for approval Minutes of Meeting of the Rural Affairs and Climate Change Strategy Group held on 1 February 2012.

 

6. Inverness Trunk Link Road (West Link) Working Group

 

There are circulated for approval Minutes of Meetings of the Inverness Trunk Link Road (West Link) Working Group held on 27 January 2012 (45kb pdf) and 17 February 2012 (37kb pdf).

 

There is also circulated Joint Report No.HC-74-11 (98kb pdf) dated 20 January 2012 by the Directors of Transport, Environmental and Community Services and Planning and Development which provides an update on the work undertaken by the Working Group which was set up to consider the outcome of the Options Appraisal and the second Public Consultation and seeks agreement for Option 6 as the preferred route as recommended by the Working Group.

 

In this regard, copies of Plans in relation to Options 1-8 are below:

 

Members are invited to agree that Option 6, as recommended by the Working Group, should be adopted as the preferred route for the Inverness Trunk Link Road (West Link) and that the Council should work with all relevant stakeholders to enhance the recreational and sporting facilities in the areas around the Bught and Torvean.

 

Members are also asked to note that the Working Group made a further recommendation in relation to the title of the project and to agree that the scheme name should be changed to ‘The Inverness West Link’.     

 

7. Classroom Support Needs Working Group

 

There are circulated for approval Minutes of Meetings of the Classroom Support Needs Working Group held on 7 December 2011 (38kb pdf) 2011, 10 January (42kb pdf) and 26 January (34kb pdf) 2012.

 

In this regard, there is also circulated Report No. HC-75-11 (122kb pdf) dated 21 February 2012 by the Director of Education, Culture and Sport which provides an update on the review of classroom support and seeks agreement for an expanded remit for the Cross Party Working Group to enable the Group to review arrangements for the allocation of the Area Additional Support Needs Budgets.

 

Members are asked to agree:-

 

(i) that the generic support post be titled Pupil Support Assistant and the duties of
    the post and person specification be as set out in Appendix 1; and
(ii)that the Cross Party Working Group should continue its work and be given an
    expanded remit to review the arrangements for the allocation of the Area
    Additional Support Needs budgets, continuing to work with the existing Task
    Group in this process. 

  
8. Equalities Working Group

 

There are circulated for approval Minutes of Meeting of the Equalities Working Group held on 1 February 2012.

 

9. Governance Review Group

 

There are circulated for approval Minutes of Meeting of the Governance Review Group (25kb pdf) held on 7 February 2012. 

 

10. Northern Joint Police Board

 

There are circulated for information Minutes of Meeting of the Northern Joint Police Board held on 25 November 2011.

 

11.   Highland and Islands Fire Board

 

There are circulated for information Minutes of Meetings of the Highland and Islands Fire Board held on 24 November 2011 and 27 January 2012.

 

12.  Highland and Western Isles Valuation Joint Board

 

There are circulated for information Minutes of Meeting of the Highlands and Western Isles Valuation Joint Board held on 23 November 2011.

 

13. Membership of Strategic Committees, etc

                                        

Members are asked to note that the political make-up of the Council is now as follows:- 

  • Ind – 25
  • Lib Dem – 21
  • SNP – 18
  • Lab – 6
  • IMG – 6
  • Ind Alliance - 4

The formula in respect of the number of places on Strategic Committees is unchanged at 7/6/5/2/1/1.                     

 

14. Question Time

 

The following Questions have been received by the Assistant Chief Executive in terms of Standing Order 42:-

 

(i) Ms  M Smith (16kb pdf)

 

To the Chair of the Transport, Environmental and Community Services Committee

 

“How many meetings have taken place with Ward Councillors so far to discuss priorities for their share of the £2m injection into the TEC’s budget for road repairs?"

 

The response is circulated

 

Ms Smith will be entitled to ask a supplementary question which will be answered by the Chair of the Transport, Environmental and Community Services Committee.

 

(ii) Mr G Farlow (16kb pdf)

 

To the Leader of the Administration

 

“Can you please provide an update on the funding situation of the emergency towing vessels from the UK Liberal Democrat-Conservative Coalition Government?”

 

The response is circulated

 

Mr Farlow will be entitled to ask a supplementary question which will be answered by the Leader of the Administration.

 

(iii) Mr D Hendry (15kb pdf)

 

To the Chair of the Resources Committee

 

“At the last Resources Committee, it was revealed that a risk exists to Highland Council over the telephony project through the Fujitsu contract. Therefore can the Chair of Resources assure the Council that no additional or unplanned financial pressure will be placed on Council budgets as a result of this?”

 

The response is circulated

 

Mr Hendry will be entitled to ask a supplementary question which will be answered by the Chair of the Resources Committee.       

 

15. Capital Funding for the River Ness Flood Alleviation Scheme (Tidal Section)

 

There is circulated Report No. HC-76-11 (47kb pdf) (Appendices (1106kb pdf)) dated 20 February 2012 by the Director of Transport, Environmental and Community Services which confirms that the Council’s bid to the Scottish Government for capital grant for the River Ness Flood Alleviation Scheme (Tidal Section) has been successful and invites agreement that the balance of funding for the scheme be provided by increasing the allocation for Flood Alleviation in the Council’s Capital Programme.

 

The report also seeks agreement for the Capital Programme to be increased by a further £1m to help fund Streetscape works on Huntly Street, Douglas Row and Bank Street and that the Council should actively seek other sources of funding towards this project, including the Inverness Common Good Fund.

 

Members are asked to:-

 

(i) note that the application to the Scottish Government for capital grant (£16.7m)
    for the River Ness Flood Alleviation Scheme (Tidal Section) has been successful;
(ii) agree that the Council’s Capital Programme be increased by £4,177,225 as per
    the funding profile set out in the report in order to provide the balance of
    funding; and
(iii)agree that the Council’s Capital Programme be increased by a further £1m
    (£0.5m in 2013/14 and £0.5m in 2014/15) to help fund the Streetscape works
    on Huntly Street, Douglas Row and Bank Street and that the Council should
    actively seek other sources of funding towards this project, including the
    Inverness Common Good Fund.  

    

16.   Police and Fire Services

 

(i) Draft Written Evidence to the Justice Committee on the Police and Fire Reform (Scotland) Bill        

 

There is circulated Report No.HC-77-11 (90kb pdf) dated 20 February 2012 by the Assistant Chief Executive which provides draft written evidence for consideration in regard to the submission to the Justice Committee on the Police and Fire Reform Bill currently at Stage 1 in the Bill process.

 

Members are asked to consider the draft written evidence and agree any amendments for submission to the Justice Committee by 6 March 2012.

 

(ii) Pathfinder

 

There is circulated Report No.HC-78-11 (36kb pdf) dated 22 February 2012 by the Assistant Chief Executive which advises of the Council’s application to be a pathfinder for trialling some of the new arrangements in advance of the establishment of single services for Police and Fire and Rescue expected for 1 April 2013.

 

Members are asked to note that the Council along with Northern Constabulary and the Highlands and Islands Fire and Rescue Service has made an application to be a pathfinder authority to trial new scrutiny and engagement arrangements in advance of the establishment of the new single services for Police and Fire and Rescue.
 

17.  Planning for Integration
  

There is circulated Report No. HC-79-11 (58kb pdf) dated 19 February 2012 by the Chief Executive which provides an update on progress towards the integration of health and social care from April 2012, including further proposals for management arrangements.

 

Members are asked to agree:-

 

(i) to match the current post holder as Head of Education, subject to an interview
    process which recognises that this is now a joint post across the Council 
    Services;
(ii) to appoint five District Manager (Children’s Services) with one post in each of
    the North, Mid and West Areas and two posts in the South Area;
(iii)that the Interview Panels for Area and District Managers should comprise of the
    Chief Executives and Directors of Highland Council and NHS Highland;
(iv)that responsibilities for Learning and Quality Assurance be combined within a
    single post of Principal Officer (Curriculum and QA);
(v)to appoint two Policy Officers (Services for Adults) for Health and Social Care
    Services; and
(vi)to delete the post of Principal Officer (Support Services) for Health and Social
    Care Services.

     
18.  Treasury Management Strategy Statement and Investment Statement 

 

There is circulated Report No. HC-80-11 (351kb pdf) dated 16 February 2012 by the Director of Finance which confirms that the Council has adopted the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) Code of Practice on Treasury Management in Local Authorities and that a requirement of this Code is for an annual Treasury Management Strategy Statement and Investment Statement to be approved for the forthcoming financial year.

 

Members are therefore asked to agree the Treasury Management Strategy Statement and Investment Statement for 2012/13 as circulated.

   

19.  Statutory Performance Indicators 2010/11
                                                                                                                

There is circulated Report No.HC-81-11 (166kb pdf) dated 6 February 2012 by the Assistant Chief Executive which provides comparisons of Highland Council Statutory Performance Indicators (SPIs) with other Scottish Councils for the financial year 2010/11.

 

Members are asked to note the Highland Council’s performance during 2010/11 compared to other Scottish Local Authorities for benchmarked Statutory Performance Indicators (SPIs) reported to Audit Scotland and agree the remedial actions proposed by Service Directors to improve the Council’s rank position for SPIs in the bottom quartile in 2010/11.

 

20.  Appointment of Independent Chair – Adult Protection Committee

 

There is circulated Report No.HC-82-11 (33kb pdf) dated 16 February 2012 by the Assistant Chief Executive which confirms that the current Chair of the Adult Protection Committee has tendered his resignation and the Council is therefore required to appoint a new Chair. In this regard, the report outlines the responsibilities placed on the Council by the Adult Support and Protection (Scotland) Act 2007 and proposes a process for the appointment of a new Chair.

 

Members are asked to agree:-

 

(i) that a recruitment process to appoint an Independent Chair for the Highland
    Adult Protection Committee should be undertaken as outlined in the report;
(ii) that the role requires at least 20 days of involvement a year and that there
    should be a set fee of £3000 plus normal expenses;
(iii) to delegate responsibility to the Chief Executive, in consultation with the Chair of
    the Housing and Social Work Committee, to agree a role description for the
    position; and
(iv)that any appointment should be agreed by the Council in due course.     

 

21.  Lease of Land at Sandown, Nairn

 

There is circulated Report No.HC-83-11 (89kb pdf) dated 7 February 2012 by the Corporate Manager which seeks approval to lease a section of Nairn Common Good Land at Sandown, Nairn.

 

Members are asked to agree, as Trustees of the Nairn Common Good Fund, the letting of an additional area of land extending to approximately 0.90 Ha (2.22 Ac) or thereby to the Nairn Allotment Society on terms and conditions as stipulated in the Council’s Allotments Policy and as otherwise to be agreed by the Depute Chief Executive/Director of Housing and Property. 

 

22.  Deeds Executed

 

Members are invited to note that a list of Deeds (42kb pdf) and other documents executed on behalf of the Council since the meeting held on 15 December 2011 is available in the Members’ Library and on the Council’s Website.