BNC Text JS9

Wiltshire County Council: committee meeting. Sample containing about 21019 words speech recorded in public context

11 speakers recorded by respondent number C583

PS4JA X m (Coleman, age unknown) unspecified
PS4JB X m (Small, age unknown) unspecified
PS4JC X m (Chalk, age unknown) unspecified
PS4JD X m (Okinson, age unknown) unspecified
JS9PS000 X u (No name, age unknown) unspecified
JS9PS001 X u (No name, age unknown) unspecified
JS9PS002 X u (No name, age unknown) unspecified
JS9PS003 X u (No name, age unknown) unspecified
JS9PS004 X u (No name, age unknown) unspecified
JS9PSUNK (respondent W0000) X u (Unknown speaker, age unknown) other
JS9PSUGP (respondent W000M) X u (Group of unknown speakers, age unknown) other

1 recordings

  1. Tape 112601 recorded on unknown date. LocationWiltshire () Activity: committee meeting

Undivided text

Chalk (PS4JC) [1] [...] a very low base, and that is going to be used by the Home Secretary when, when he, he, he puts the cash limited budget together [...] next year.
[2] We are going to suffer as an authority for many years to come, from that low budget.
[3] I actually put forward an amendment, to the police authority, whereby we take that er, million pounds o , of pensions, and by a certain amount of slight of hand, it be put back into county balances, and then re-allocated back to the police authority for this year, and that would have added an extra million to the base budget and it would not have cost this county council one extra penny.
[4] And that in fact was, produced a split vote in the police authority fifty fifty, and it, it was chucked out by the chairman's casting vote.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Chalk (PS4JC) [5] That is absolutely correct.
[6] Erm, now as as this so called generous funding in fact, the police authority are facing a straight deficit of three hundred and twenty-eight thousand, they are facing a further deficit of four hundred and twenty-five thousand because they have only been given one and a half percent for pay, where all the information we have been given from the Home Office, you can shake your head as much as you like Chairman, it is in fact true, and in fact, in fact as reported in the Guardian,on , only the day before yesterday, yet again the police bill is to be, almost certainly four percent, not one and a half.
[7] That amounts to another four hundred and twenty-five thousand, the total shortfall is therefore seven hundred and fifty-three thousand, and that's without any projection costs.
[8] I mean they've gone out the window.
[9] Erm, Now erm
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Chalk (PS4JC) [10] yes or it's zero based budgeting.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Chalk (PS4JC) [11] They, on the contrary, the police authority have a working party which had four very long and very detailed meetings and went through their budget line by line by line, and these are the figures they came up with.
[12] There was no argument about it, that, that, that was passed by the working party and [...] main authority.
[13] So erm, don't let's have any of this nonsense about being, having privileged funding.
[14] Erm, the er, I refer to the er, freeze on police officers, in fact we need sixty-eight more.
[15] But we're not going to get them now, because this county council won't provi won't pay for them.
[16] I certainly support er Mr 's amendment, and totally reject what is here in this democrat , er, er, proposal.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [17] Mrs .
(JS9PS002) [18] Thank you very much Mr Chairman.
[19] Er, Colonel is erm, doing a very good job over there in trying to make our flesh creep over the whole police situation, but I can tell by some of the remarks that have been erm, given from the body of the chamber that not everybody agrees with him.
[20] I would just like to answer one or two things, erm, erm, he, he, one of the things he's saying er, is that erm, oh dear I've forgotten what I was going to say now, and I [laughing] haven't got it written down, got it written down, can I go on to something else [] erm, the Home Secretary does seem to be in some disarray over the proposed bill.
[21] I'm glad to say it got a thorough sort of leathering in the Lords, and so I think it's rather premature for him to say that by fixing a budget we have belighted the whole police service in Wiltshire, for the next er, eight or whatever number of years he said, I think that certainly is rather premature.
[22] I have hopes that this bill will very much, will be very much amended, er, when it comes to the Commons.
[23] Erm, Mr mentioned about erm, the new provisions would cut down the paperwork, work and put more policemen on, police on the beat.
[24] But erm, the Chief Constable himself, and I have heard him say this, has no confidence that the paperwork will be reduced and that any er, more constables will be seen on the beat.
[25] I'm also very worried, and this has been mentioned erm, by Mr , that the er, the Home Secretary seems to regard the police constabulary as a mere crime busting organisation, whereas really, the preventative work, the crime prevention, the work in the schools and the community work is absolutely vital if we are ever to solve, erm, we're ever to stop, the er, if we're ever able to stop the rise in crime, and this really has to be done hand in hand, I feel with local councils, and I'm glad to say that there are some initiatives around, one of them in Mr 's own district, which is making erm, some very important steps towards that.
[26] Erm, one other thing that I want to make about erm, the victims, erm, I am very much er, involved with erm, victim support Wiltshire, and one of the problems with victim support Wiltshire is their work is increasing all the time because the crime rate goes up, and every time there is more crime there is more victims, but the, the Government has not yet said that they will put the money up that they erm, that they er, the grant up that they give to the victim support.
[27] If perhaps the Government were to fund victim support properly, Erm, Mr who was burgled and has never got over it might perhaps have had a visit and some counselling from a victim support worker, and that would be a very good thing.
[28] Thank you very much.
Coleman (PS4JA) [29] Mr .
Small (PS4JB) [30] Thank you Chairman.
[31] Colonel really can't have it all ways.
[32] Er, in his er, comment just now he er, referred to the enor , the enormous er, amount that it was costing this council to er, fund the special protection service.
[33] Erm, when I drew attention to this, one of the first things I did when I got elected to this council, erm, we get papers back which seem to suggest that in fact the Home Office are funding it at a level which, dare I say suggests that we might even make a small profit, er and I have in fact recently been approached by colleagues from Gloucestershire, asking us how we manage in that er, er exercise, because they're concerned about the high cost of er, protection for certain royal establishments in their county.
[34] And they're most interested on how we er, achieve this exercise.
[35] The fact of the matter is, that the police are getting more money, and they do need to er, manage their resources most carefully.
[36] And yes we did argue, I think there were fourteen meetings of the finance working party involving hours and hours of consideration and we were er, treated to four meetings lasting fourteen hours, fourteen hours, in total.
[37] We were treated to the long diatribes of detailed considerations about the cost of paper clips and God knows what else.
[38] The fact of the matter, at the same time, erm, as you yourself have said, Chairman, we are in a situation where we have four communication rooms coming down to two next year hopefully, I personally think it should come down to one, but lets recognise that they're costing the police authority one point six million pounds, they're tying up forty-one uniformed police officers, and something like fifty er, civilian officers on those exercises.
[39] So lets be quite clear that there is still a great deal of slack in the police budget,whi money that could be used to er, put policemen on the beat.
[40] Mention has been made to the paperwork, I think that it's worth reminding ourselves that a lot of the paperwork that has been generated, is a direct result of Conservative government introduced legislation, particularly cri criminal justice er, legislation, which requires a considerable amount of paperwork, erm, to be completed by officers, quite often in long, in longhand, and not making use of technology, where in fact they er, a great deal of time and effort could be con , er could be er, saved.
[41] Members, other members have referred to the crime prevention exercise, I'm very pleased that this council has actually grasped that nettle and is going to fund a crime prevention co-ordinator at some stage in the near future.
[42] I notice it's not coming out of the police authority budget, it's coming out of publi , er this, this er committee's budget.
[43] But, we, we really need to er, put the cart before the horse, or the horse before the cart as you may say, I mean, we are now being told by the leader of the Conservative group, that er, we're going to, we, we should be supporting the idea of amateur parish constables.
[44] I look to the day when the, to see what the tabloids make, when one of these individuals gets clobbered over the head er, in carrying out their duties.
[45] I think this is policing on the cheap, and it is something profoundly to be regretted.
[46] I would much rather see more emphasis placed on er, enhancing the special constabulary, er, because I think that is a, a far more er, productive initiative.
[47] I mean I am totally opposed to vigilantes on the street, and that's what I think a parish constable service er, runs the risk becoming.
[48] But at the end of the day, there simply is no point in punishing criminals if you can't catch them, and I think it is absolutely critical that we should be devoting our attention er, to policing that catches criminals and prevents crime, and I entirely support the, the points just made about the er, initiatives within the community particularly in the schools, because I think it is absolutely critical that we er, promote a society where crime should not pay.
[49] Sadly, in modern Conservative dominated Britain, crime pays.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laughing] [...] []
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [50] Thank you Chairman, I, I, I'm rather amazed actually, at Colonel 's er, comments because er, in Stratton St Margaret there has been a sixty-one percent increase in crime, and a four and a half percent detection, decrease in the detection and prosecution of crime, and I was absolutely amazed when he come out with the figure that there's going to be a seven hundred and fifty- three thousand pound shortfall in the police budget, when on the radio, in my car this morning, from a very reputable source of Wiltshire [...] , there was a police officer on there this morning, saying how good they were in producing a freebee newspaper for distribution to every household in the county, to show the police offi , the Chief Constable's report this year.
[51] My [...] question is to, that er, police officer or to the Chief Constable, or to anybody who can answer, how much is it gonna cost that, for that paper to be produced, and would it not be better spent in putting a police officer in Stratton St Margaret, where there hasn't been one on the beat for the last six months, to help us reduce the number of er, of crimes committed in Stratton.
[52] I would like an answer to that.
[53] How much is it gonna cost the police authority to produce this freebee newspaper?
Coleman (PS4JA) [54] Mr
(JS9PS004) [55] Thank you Chairman, I despair sometimes when I listen to, to everybody trying to make points out of a discussion like this.
[56] I mean, what we're talking about is that throughout the whole of the world, there has been a tremendous increase in crime, whether it be in Britain, in France, in Germany or wherever.
[57] What we're also talking about, is elderly people being able to go out at night and not be too frightened to go out at night.
[58] And the only way round that situation, that may not even amount to crime when they're put in fear, it may amount to yobbos on the pavement, or people er, cycling on the pavement or just being their usual threatening loutish selves.
[59] At the end of the day, the only way to do something about that is to put more men on the streets.
[60] I mean increasingly we see that we're, we get more constables here more constables there, but they don't ever appear to be actually out on the streets, and until we can get more men on the streets with the deterrent effect that their appearance has, let alone anything else, we are not gonna get much further.
[61] Our, most of our rules and most of our laws are made by people who are frightened of losing their property, and not the sort of people who are frightened of being mugged at night.
[62] If they were the sort of people that were frightened to go out, up to the newspaper shop or something like that, our penalties and our, our priorities would be slightly different.
[63] And my plea is, apart from all the politics that's going on, and all your wrong and I'm right, etc, etc, etc, if we've got sixty-odd police constables available, then, somehow or other we ought to try and find the money to resource them.
[64] If that money has to come out of the existing budget, then we should, or the Chief Constable, or the Police Committee ought to look at the priorities again.
[65] But the number of police constables that we can have available, would make a big difference to the lives of the very ordinary people, and that's where we should be looking at first.
Coleman (PS4JA) [66] Thank you.
[67] Miss .
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [68] Thank you.
[69] Yes, well, I mean I'm very happy to be able to agree totally with that erm, people who make the laws aren't the people who suffer from the the physical [...] , and [...] matters might be a great deal better if erm, they paid a bit more attention, I do hope that he would agree however, erm, that police officers who are female also have a good effect on the streets, because he was acting as if erm, it was only the male person who were any use, and I'm sure that is not so.
[70] Erm ... [sigh] peo , people can't have it all ways, there hasn't been any cut in the police service, in the police budget, I'm sorry, erm we have for many years funded the police in a very generous way.
[71] This county council has funded them more than social services erm, for, I don't have the figures in front of me today, but for a long time, erm, this is unlike the overwhelming majority of county councils, who spend more on social services than they do on the police.
[72] So as a proportion of our budget, they have been well funded by Wiltshire, and I don't think anybody could dispute that.
[73] It, it's possible that the, the, the manning per hectare in this very rural county is lower than in central London, I wouldn't be at all surprised.
[74] But erm, you know, it's, it's like erm, if you talk about erm, funding per head or funding for the, for the overall spaces, you know, if it's Mr , he always wants to be funded by the, the mile of roadblock for the population, because we have rather a lot of one to the other, and I think there may be a similar situation with the police.
[75] Erm, I don't see how anybody can possibly say that the police are not privileged.
[76] Every other committee, or part of this county council has, with the exception of probation service which we did today, social services and libraries which we did at budget revue, have been funded at last year's cash limit plus one and a half percent.
[77] The exception to this is the police, who have had by far the largest addition to that, they haven't lost money when they lost S S A, erm, we have been ge , extremely generous to them, far more than to any other committee this year, erm, and although we haven't given them money for, to pay awards because we don't know exactly what it is.
[78] We've never given money directly for pay awards anyway, because if you do that, that's what the claim always is, you know.
[79] There is sufficient money in balances to pay our share of that, if we need to do so, and I think making scare stories about it doesn't do anything towards what I hope we all want, which is an efficient, effective police force in this county, protecting us erm from crime, and helping to prevent as much crime as possible.
[80] I, I urge you to support 's motion.
Coleman (PS4JA) [81] Mr .
Small (PS4JB) [82] Thank you Chair.
[83] I think has summed up quite well there I think, which, what everyone's aims is, which is that we want an effective and efficient police force, which everyone has got confidence in to make sure that it protects citizens against crime in this country, and nothing could be, I don't think anybody who is erm, civilised in this county or this country would want anything different.
[84] But I think that there has been some interesting arguments put forward this morning about the act, there's more policemen, or sorry, should I say police officers available to Wiltshire.
[85] But if the Home Secretary feels that we can have more, er, er, police officers, why doesn't he give us the money so we can employ them.
[86] I mean it's as simple as that, and I [...] Colonel 's comments, saying how hard done by Wiltshire police constabulary could be next year because we haven't set over the odds budget for this year so that the Home Secretary can take it on.
[87] If he, the Home Secretary feels that Wiltshire's so badly funded next year, if he's a caring and considerate Home Secretary, then he'll put more money into Wiltshire and provide more police officers for Wiltshire.
[88] It makes a change that the burden of more want is put on the central government instead of local authorities, because too often in the past, central government has said, in many issues, oh, we think you should have that, but the responsibility for paying for it comes from the local authority.
[89] But we're not going to give you any more money.
[90] So it'll be nice to see the tables turned, and Mr [...] start, keep rather quiet about the number of extra policemen, sorry, police officers needed in this county, and other counties in the country, because he'll have to pay for it himself won't he?
[91] And that'll be a t turn up for the books for him.
[92] But what does amaze me, is the reason why this motion came forward in the first place.
[93] It was quite obvious Mr thought he had something up his sleeve to embarrass the Labour party and Liberal Democrat parties of this, this council.
[94] He thought, when this Lieutenant Colonel came back to him and said, oh my God the police budget's in problems, we've got em here, that they put something onto the council agenda.
[95] And he's had it slapped in his face, because this council has provided an adequate budget for the police authority, it has pr , treated it fairly and squarely like every other council committee, and made sure that the service they provide is adequate for the people of this county.
[96] It's funny that he flags at the interests of the party of crime.
[97] I think nowadays we all know, that the flagships of the conservative party, crime is no longer a thing they can fly high.
[98] We're on about taxation this week, well the- they're in trouble over that now.
[99] The party of low taxes, the party of high taxes they failed on that.
[100] [...] I won't mention back to basics because I know that's really embarrassing for them
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
Small (PS4JB) [101] [laughing] so we- not, we'll go over that very quickly as possible [] .
[102] So we have had a failing government, we've had a failing Tory administration, and the people who are interested in looking after this county and all it's services within the budget set by central government, has made sure that we have got a good police force, which it will not receive cuts in it's services, cuts in it's er, it's, it's er, forces, and make sure that other services, like education, social services, libraries, highways and everything else will also be adequately funded in this county.
Coleman (PS4JA) [103] Right, well I'm going to reply to the debate, and then I hope we can move to a vote, ah, oh I didn't see your hand earlier Mr , I'm sorry.
Okinson (PS4JD) [104] Thank you Chairman.
[105] I think enough has been said regarding this today, in relation to this, I think we have supported our police force, we have a fine police force in this county.
[106] We're very supportive of it and have been.
[107] Unfortunately, as was [...] earlier on, central government has led the attacks, it's led the attacks through Sheehey right the way through, and we were supportive of our police then, I think not only of this county, but of all counties, and all county police forces said the same, and we will support our police force, and certainly this budget recommends itself to that.
[108] If central government wishes to increase those expenditure levels when they go over, that is down to them.
[109] They've been trying to get the police on the cheap for too long, and blaming us, and now I think the tables are very reversed.
Coleman (PS4JA) [110] Thank you.
[111] As I say I think I'll sum up and have a vote, and then I intend to break for lunch on conclusion of this item.
[112] I think what I find most unfortunate, is the intellectual dishonesty of the Home Secretary.
[113] He's a very bright man, Michael Howard, but it's quite clear that he's much more concerned with grabbing the headlines and finding scapegoats, than with taking action through law that will actually improve the chance, both of preventing crime and of detecting crime, and then even more so, deterring people from re-offending, and it's most distressing to see that when research showed that a particular non-custodial method of punishment is effective in perhaps fifty or seventy or eighty percent of cases, whereas prison is not, he goes for prison, he goes for picking on squatters, he goes for picking on the defendants right to silence so that we can see more people like er, jailed when they were innocent.
[114] But I've left that sort of civil liberty out of this motion today, because we can't deal with all the, because we can't deal with everything all at once, but perhaps it can be tou touched at council, because we had Colonel , who also doesn't like to be confused with the facts, trying to tell us that next year the, or the year after next, budgets will be cash limited, but I've got news, they already are cash limited.
[115] They are trying to suggest that erm, somehow this year we're cutting the police budget, he seems to have forgotten that last year when he was chairman of the police authority, a three hundred thousand pound cut, a genuine cut was made in the police authority budget, budgets were cut to make up to make up to that three hundred thousand, at the discretion of the Chief Constable, and to the credit of Mrs , and her other colleagues in the police committee, virtually no attempt was made to make political capital at that time, instead of which now, when all we've seen is a request for the Chief Constable to defer proposed new spending, all of a sudden this is presented as a cut.
[116] Now reference was made to the police finance working party which met for a long period of time, and unfortunately made no progress whatsoever in zero base budgeting.
[117] There's obviously been a misunderstanding there, a lack of communication or whatever, but whereas some departments have got to grips with the issue, unfortunately police wor finance working party just stuck to the traditional way, rather reminiscent of Mr 's old budget working party days, which doesn't get to grips with the real needs and the real costs.
[118] Now Mr referred to a two percent clear up rate, I'm not quite certain what figure that is, I know in Wiltshire it's much better than that in the thirties and forties.
[119] But nationally the clear up rate has fallen under the Conservatives from forty-one percent to twenty six percent, and there is no excuse at all for a freeze on the number of police officers when we were promised an extra thousand.
[120] Ah, but you're going to be getting some extra police officers by taking them off er, paperwork, er you're gonna get two thousand three hundred I see in the press, well that as shown, that of course will be twenty three, but if anybody here thinks the Chief Constable's gonna produce twenty three new police officers through reductions in paperwork and through the other initiatives the Home Secretary has announced, well I don't believe them, and we shall have to wait and see.
[121] This council needs to take seriously crime prevention and crime detection and most of all fear of crime, and that's why it's become part of the policy committee's concern, and I think that's with the police committee's agreement, for years they've been trying to tell us to get involved in crime prevention, and from next year we're going to do that.
[122] Crime prevention is not just about retribution, about making the little buggers pay.
[123] It's about preventing crime, because people who are burgled would rather not have been burgled in the first place.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [124] Hear, hear. [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [125] And of course the deterrents that we've had, over the years, when they they've been of the emotive and knee jerk sort, and I remember the short sharp shock for instance, under Whitelaw, they didn't work, because they weren't thought out, they were just to make them clap at the Tory party conference.
[126] To his credit, Lord Whitelaw having been forced to bring in the short sharp shock, dropped it when it was proved not to work.
[127] Everybody hopes that we've forgotten about that, but we haven't, and we're reminded of it because of the courage of Lord Whitelaw and his advanced age and ill health, getting on to the T V last week and saying the Home Secretary is wrong to nationalise the police.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [128] Hear, hear.
Coleman (PS4JA) [129] In fact , Conservative opposition in the Lords is proving very important, and if Colonel is concerned about the future level of the police budget, why doesn't he do a bit more to stop this nationalisation of the police going through parliament at the moment, and I just want to quote the, the words of Conservative Chairman of the Sussex police authority, over the years from nineteen eighty-two to nineteen ninety-three, four of them, and the most senior of course, who led the Association of County Councils for the Conservatives.
[130] These ill judged proposals present a dangerous step towards a politicised national police force.
[131] They are irrelevant to the battle against crime, and the improved efficiency of the police service which we all support.
[132] I can't put it better than that.
[133] And finally, the criminal injuries compensation scheme, to cut the amounts paid to people who are victims of gang rape, to cut the amount paid to people who are victims of child abuse, that shows just how much the Home Secretary cares about the victims of crime, and his other measures show that he's far more concerned with his own career, with pleasing the Conservative party conference, and with trying to do anything, anything [...] I mean he's brought in whatever it is, twenty-seven proposals, one or two of them are bound to work, if you throw enough stuff at the fan, some of it usually hits the target.
[134] But we've got to take the issue seriously.
[135] Mr is still moving a motion which refers to the party conference proposals which have now moved on to bills before the house.
[136] He might be more constructive if he cared to pick which items from that he agrees with, we might even find a measure of agreement on one or two of the issues, because they're not all rubbish.
[137] But I move my motion, and I ask for those in favour to please show ...
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [138] I'm so sorry, Mr 's amendment.
[139] Those in favour of Mr 's please show ... Those against.
[140] That is lost.
[141] Those in favour of the substantive motion please show ... those against ... That is carried.
[142] adjourn for lunch and be back at two.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...] [break - lunch]
Coleman (PS4JA) [143] Welcome back.
[144] Item ... twenty-one, regional representation on the European Union Committee of the Regions.
[145] I er, move the motions set down in the order paper and, does anybody else wish to speak on this?
[146] Those in favour please say aye.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [147] aye
Coleman (PS4JA) [148] Those against.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [shouting] [...] []
Coleman (PS4JA) [149] Oh, That is carried.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [150] That doesn't necessarily mean it's wrong.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [151] I don't think it's, I don't think it's an essential office motion, otherwise Cornwall would have done it by now.
[152] Item twenty- two one budget review sub-committee minutes, I move to receive the minutes from the budget sub-committee those in favour say aye.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [153] aye
Coleman (PS4JA) [154] And against ... that is carried.
[155] Erm, twenty-two two the recommendations not yet dealt with, the first is the review of the County Farms estate, and I will move paragraph nine one, that is to say the recommendation of the property services sub-committee ... [paper rustling] okay, here we are, [...] which is a recommendation to this committee to adopt option one as set out in the submitted report namely to maintain the County Farms estate at around it's present size, and to manage it in accordance with the nineteen eighty-eight review of the estate.
[156] I will say in moving that, would I note that the property services, the property sub- committee I should say, is receiving a further report on recommendations on how to preserve the long-term viability of the estate, which I consider to be the right priority, erm, the long- term viability of the estate is essential for the value both as an estate and for the value of it er, to us should we need to dispose of any of it for development land in the future.
[157] Erm, Mr .
Small (PS4JB) [158] Thank you chair.
[159] I wish to move an amendment which is erm, that we defer any decision on this until the property, the director of property services has made his report to the property sub- committee on the erm, future, stroke [...] to the organisation, which is th , the subject of his next report to property sub- committee.
Coleman (PS4JA) [160] Seconded.
Small (PS4JB) [161] Yeah, I think that we need to look into more depth the issue of the County Farms estate, we agreed from the start it was something that could not be rushed, and we had to, the principle question that needed to be answered was that was there a viability for County Farms or role for County Farms in the nineteen nineties.
[162] I think that that question has been answered, and I think the role of the estate has been answered in the report put by Mr .
[163] But since the initial motion was put forward by the policy and resources committee the question of local government review has become more prominent within the minds of this council and other councils across the country, and I think that issue needs to be addressed before we make as a cou , a council our final decision on the County Farms estate.
Coleman (PS4JA) [164] Can I just clarify then, how far do you imagine this being deferred, that is to say are you awaiting the outcome of the local government commission report
Small (PS4JB) [165] No , I do believe that Mr 's report is coming to the March property er, sub-committee and then it will be the subsequent meeting of the policy and resources committee which will be at the end of March.
Coleman (PS4JA) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [166] [...] [microphone moved] er, any debate discussion will be deferred until the report as described in nine one two has been reported to the property committee, this is a report to the next meeting recommendations on how to preserve the long-term viability of the estate.
[167] So what happens to the resolution that, woolly resolution that came from property at the bottom of the budget page four, resolved?
[168] To [...] that's that's dropped, that's all deferred is it?
Coleman (PS4JA) [169] Right, I'm the chairman of the meeting, so I'll try and tell you what I understand Mr has moved.
[170] He's moved that this matter be deferred.
[171] He's made reference, in his mov motion, to a report coming to the next property services sub-committee, and I recognise that report as referred to in nine two of these minutes of budget review sub-committee.
[172] Erm, and I understand that to be the position.
[173] Any other report, erm, such as to request the director of property services fully to explore all options for the disposal of all or any part of the County Farms estate for the maximum financial benefit to the County Council, that sort of report for instance has not been requested by the property sub- committee nor by any other committee with erm, er, as I understand it.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [174] According to Mr 's motion.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [175] Right, Mr .
Chalk (PS4JC) [176] Yes Chairman, we we did have this debate in er budget review as I remember it.
[177] Erm, if we are asking Mr to look at the long-term viability and the ways of preserving that, those options may be other than option one which was what you moved, and I think it's rather premature to actually go down a road that says we preserve it in it's present form with some disposals, when, we are asking for a report for it's future viability, which may mean complete disposal, or may not, and I think, that, that's why I've seconded Mr 's amendment, because it's right we should wait for that that report to come to property, know the full facts, and then we can make a decision as to which option we want for the County Farms estate.
[178] So it's only a matter of two months and than I think we can make a long-term decision, not the short-term.
[179] I there is a worry of course, that, er County Farms if we happen to end up in three unitary authorities, could be said to be not a core activity of those three new authorities, especially the core of an urban one, and it may be that if we're not careful the County Farm estate can end up in the hands of the residuary body for sale, and I think what we're looking, asking Mr to do, is to find ways of, of moving it forward, without ha falling into that net, which may not be what we want.
Coleman (PS4JA) [180] Mr .
(JS9PS003) [181] Thank you Mr Chairman.
[182] I'm just a little bit concerned that if we do delay it while discussions are going on about the unitary authorities and such like, we'll put restrictions on Mr running it as a commercial enterprise, and I think we have got to make sure that any long term deferral on this, we don't inhibit him rationalising selling off the odd cottage and this sort of thing, and the farmhouse as we go along, and amalgamating ones because I think it's, he's got to be able to run it as a commercial proposition during the course of deliberations.
Coleman (PS4JA) [183] Mr .
Okinson (PS4JD) [184] Yes, Chair, I'd be very sad if, if anything that was passed here meant that Mr wasn't fully exploring all avenues as described in the terms of resolution passed through budget revue.
[185] And I take this opportunity to say that, erm, I had, I moved this at budget revue, and my intention was to move erm, pretty much the wording that Mr moved at property, but I was unable to obtain that wording by the time of the meeting, so I put this forward, erm, knowing that it obviously was different words, but but with that same sense, that we do have to address some very real issues about County Farms and not to pussyfoot about it I think that er, any comparison between the County Farms and a commercial enterprise is a coincidence of terms, but I can't see how we can have forty million pounds worth of estate, as it's valued on the free market, to be making two hundred and ninety-one thousand pounds a year out of it, and think that that is commercial.
[186] I can't see how we've had a revue in nineteen eighty-eight which has recommended a very specific course of action, none of which appears to have been implemented, I don't see how we get a report which describes er, the intention of the county council as maintaining the ethos of the County Farms, whatever that is, as I, I don't recall any decisions like that, and certainly if we've made one, I'd be interested in being party to changing it, I think wha what we have to say is we've got a lot of land, are we using it to the best interest of the people of Wiltshire, and that is one thing it's addressing, not a, a way of preserving the County Estates as they are, not a way of keeping a hundred and twenty farmers and their families erm, as tenants of Wiltshire, I mean they're not gonna be out of jobs are they?
[187] I think there are many purposes that the County Farms should have, and we need to look at what is the best value financially, that we can obtain for the people of Wiltshire, so when everybody talks about they'd like their country schools maintained, they'd like this that or the other bought, they'd like Corsham station purchased, we could buy it easily if we sold a County Farm couldn't we?
[188] And the only thing that seems to stand in the way of doing anything commercially sensible with County Farms is that every time we deal with it, somebody says, ah, but it can only exist as an entity, let's keep it as that, let's pass it on to a trust, let's safeguard it, let's do this and that.
[189] Well I'd like to see a very open report, and that's why I [...] Mr , and I'd like him to look at all the options, we're deferring this so that we can see what's possible, you know, [...] , perhaps Hanson Trust would like to come along and offer us fifty million pounds for it, that'd be a fair deal wouldn't it, perhaps somebody else would do that.
[190] Perhaps erm, the Duchy of Cornwall would like to take back the land that we rent from them, in order that we can rent it on, lease, well we lease, I mean, same thing isn't it?
[191] Erm, we rent land from the Duchy of Cornwall, perhaps, er well you know long leasehold, we bought it this way, and we pay low rent.
[192] There are things around this, that I wonder what on earth we're doing and what is the best way forward and I would like to see that kind of report come back to us.
[193] And the reason I say it, and the reason I labour the point, is that I think amongst the problems that we've encountered particularly in budget review is to have chief officers and their staff producing reports in which they have a very clear vested interest.
[194] Not least in their own jobs.
[195] And I think it is a great pity, that this council is losing some of it's capacity to produce reports which are independent of the departments which are the most affected by them.
[196] I think the great sadness of the report coming forward on County Farms is that it's no doubt going to be produced by Mr , a further report, and erm, what, what can we say if he comes forward saying it's a wonderful institution and he wants to keep his job running it.
[197] Am I going to say oh, I think that's a very fair, free, independent thinking view.
[198] It may be it may not.
[199] I think that I would like those considerations borne in mind by Mr when he's doing his report, and I'd like us to have a very open view about what we do with the County Farms.
Coleman (PS4JA) [200] Well I'm going to disagree with Mr on a number of issues.
[201] He does seem to suggest, that if you're directly interested or if you have a direct interest in something you can't take an objective view, and I would say that actually, [...] members have shown their ability to erm, to achieve something different from that, the way they wear different hats at different committees, Mr comes to mind where he will argue for the D S O's, at the D S O managing board, and for the client at Education Committee.
[202] And I actually think it is coming close to a professional slur on Mr to suggest that he can't take an independent view.
[203] And what leads me to that conclusion is the distortion that Mr brought in, in suggesting that the estate is worth forty million pounds.
[204] If you read the report at paragraph seventy, you'll see that it has an investment value in the region of eight million pounds, it's only worth forty million if you kill all the tenants overnight, which is rather drastic, vacant possession in other words.
[205] Now you might achieve vacant possession over a period of seven years.
[206] Vacant possession can't be er achieved er, er overnight, as you appreciate but if the Government's agricultural er land tenancy, hey don't keep interrupting.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [207] If the Government's agricultural land tenancy reform proposals go through, which I rather hope they do, it'll be a little while yet, we could well see a change in the security of tenure issue, which might make it easier to achieve er, vacancy and vacant possession.
[208] And it comes down to a basic difference of approach to this.
[209] Either you consider that the County Farms are playing a role set down by law and supported over the years of an, which no other authority and no other body in the country can provide, and which is a socially valuable role, and that is to provide the first step in farming, and clearly they do.
[210] Or you think that all they are is another piece of silver to flog off like Mrs Thatcher flogged off the nationalised industries.
[211] I don't consider, I don't consider that the severity of this county council's financial position justifies this, in the flog it off at all costs approach.
[212] Now, what Mr has moved is to defer the matter, and I'm in mind of to accept that.
[213] But I would make clear to Mr if he looks at the minutes of the budget review sub-committee, that the suggestion of the director of property services wastes his time fully exploring all options for the disposal of all or any part of the County Farms estate, for which he probably asks for a large amount of money, since it involves an enormous amount of wasted time, is not been agreed, it's a non-delegated item, it was a recommendation of this committee which has not been moved at this committee, and it was a most unfortunate and woolly form of words.
[214] What's been moved
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [215] Hear hear .
Coleman (PS4JA) [216] is to defer the matter pending the director of property services report which the property sub-committee properly called for at it's last meeting.
[217] I'm happy to accept that amendment, and I would put the motion, as amended, to the vote.
[218] Those in favour please show ... those against ... that is carried. [paper rustling]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [219] Did you have a bad lunch chair?
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
Coleman (PS4JA) [220] I had a lovely lunch ... I just thought I'd try and get my own way for once.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [221] Chairman in your haste to get your own way for once, I mean, I had my hand up for about ten minutes and I thought that er, er our friend on your right had appraised you of that, because I think that you gave just as much a distorted view of what the real problem is, as perhaps Mr did, and I think that the way you railroaded that one through does you no credit at all .
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [222] Yeah,Ch cha chair, it is possible for Mr by moving a, another small but you know, perhaps relatively insignificant motion on, on this same item, as we've not moved to the next one, and I will, I will happily second it, in order to enable him to speak to it, erm, to actually express the views, and very valuable ones, which he does hold.
[223] He is actually one of the few amongst us, who is probably quite expert on these matters.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [224] He would, he would be worth listening to, I think.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [225] Chairman, is that to be the case.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [226] Chair, chair point of order, you don't, point of order you, Mr doesn't need to move an an amendment or anything else, you can still accept debate on any item on the agenda until you've called the next agenda item, irrespective of the motion on the table.
Coleman (PS4JA) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [227] I know you do Chair, you know what you're doing but I'm saying it's a waste of time us having to move one.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [228] Chairman, what a let down this is gonna be.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [229] You asked for it.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [230] For what it's worth, my opinion in property, and my opinion now, is that ... we need to retain if we can, a viable unit for County Farms.
[231] In other words, a unit which comprises several farms which is big enough for us to move tenants about, and big enough for us to retain a management structure.
[232] What we don't or shouldn't do, is to regard every County Farm as a sacred cow.
[233] There are opportunities for development in the Swindon front garden, in the Chippenham front garden, the Devizes front garden, wherever, and it is my belief that since this county council originally purchased those farms, and have since maintained them, that if there is going to be a development windfall, then that should accrue to this county council and not to Thamesdown or whoever else it happens to be.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [234] The, the problem is, that nobody will ever take, and I suppose it's possible that I don't take, a balanced view of this.
[235] Everybody's in their own camp, and it, it, it's only when you come to consider, and I mean my group is nowhere near behind me on this, because we have farmers who, who again think that anything to do with County Farms is sacrosanct.
[236] But until you consider the amount of money tied up in County Farms, and the return it gives us, and the, the subsidy if you like of so few people, and you think that [...] school can't have toilets and things like that, then these should all go into the decision making melting pot, and this council should not blind itself to the various options that there could be, and in those circumstances Mr I think should be allowed to explore the possibilities of the market.
[237] In as much as, if we are suddenly told, divest yourselves of County Farms, then we will be in a much better position to make a balanced decision, and to maximise return from those County Farms if we had that information available.
[238] I do not myself think, that Mr ever produces a biased report on anything, and I would think that, erm, on reflection Mr may think that he overstepped the mark there, er ... I feel that we should, if we can, defer this in it's entirety, which also includes, the note at the bottom, that would allow Mr to go out and, and, and explore the possibilities.
[239] That's all he's gonna do, this council retains the final decision, and we wish to make that decision with the benefit of all the knowledge that is available.
[240] And if somehow or other the, the, the whole of that er, erm, number nine, including the [...] can be deferred, and I believe it should be, then that is what I would wish to happen, I would wish Mr to continue to have the freedom to see what the options are for this county council.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [241] Right, now there's one, we've made a decision to defer consideration of this report, but because both Mr and Mrs had indicated they wanted to speak before I took the vote, I'm prepared to take the speeches, but I don't know that there's very much of a motion that can legally be moved.
[242] Mr
(JS9PS003) [243] Thank you Mr Chairman.
[244] Er, I moved the original motion, and the thinking at the time was, after a lot of discussion, that eight one as it appears on the agenda, to maintain the estate at around it's level was the correct decision.
[245] And then we added eight two, which asked the director to explore the long-term viability of the estate, now we made that, and I said so at the time, the answer to that could be either positive or negative.
[246] This left it to Mr , to come up with sufficient information to enable that decision to be made.
[247] Thank you.
Coleman (PS4JA) [248] Mrs I excluded you from the speech after you asked the question
(JS9PS004) [249] Erm I hope [...] two sentences, thank you Mr Chairman.
[250] One is, is really, I felt I should reply in support of Mr [...] concerning some of Mr 's remarks.
[251] I don't know whether he's read the County Farms Estate report, but it was actually option two, was one of the proposals we had to consider, which was to [clears throat] was to dispose of about a third of the estate, reduce it from twelve thousand acres to nine thousand acres, which was actually rejected at erm, the property sub-committee by all parties, including Labour.
[252] Thank you Mr Chairman.
Coleman (PS4JA) [253] Right, next item ... twenty two A, twenty two two B, [...] commission application for additional funding.
[254] It's a recommendation from the budget review sub-committee at minute six.
[255] [paper rustling] Er, I move to note the decision of the budget review sub-committee.
[256] Miss oh, Mrs .
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [257] Thank you [...] .
[258] I'd just like some clarification of what, what this resolution from budget review actually means.
[259] Does it mean that P and R today are actually supporting the establishment, establishment of those posts, and we are going to go and get the money, or what?
[260] Thank you.
Coleman (PS4JA) [261] I, I, that, that is the answer's in the negative, we're not setting up those posts or funding them today, but they've enabled us, they've prompted us to carry out a revue, I think, I wasn't present at budget review [...] it.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [262] Mr .
(JS9PS000) [263] In moving these matters from commissioning in grant A erm, to this committee, erm, even if Social Services had had the money available, if they would have still been moved to this committee.
[264] The purpose of that, or the reasoning behind f behind that, was that, over the last few years erm, this type of expenditure has been charged not to Social Services but to the section one three seven account.
[265] Which the treasury is responsible for, and this committee is responsible for.
[266] Erm, so that the, the purpose of bringing some of these corporate activities back into Policy and Resources where they can perhaps determine how that erm, is going to be managed in the future.
[267] And it was the reasoning behind the erm, the resolution at budget review.
[268] There's just one point I'd make on erm, the first one, regarding the, th, Wiltshire and Thamesdown Racial Equality Council.
[269] Erm, the director's report under statutory responsibilities, does say that under Race Relations act, local authorities have a duty, erm, it's a little bit stronger than that actually in the act.
[270] It states it shall be the duty of local authorities, there i-, and on that point I, you know, in this area, I don't think that Wiltshire County Council has done, or spent a great deal of money in actually furthering those.
Coleman (PS4JA) [271] Thank you.
[272] Mr .
(JS9PS002) [273] Thank you Mr Chairman.
[274] Er, seeing this here, does it mean that anybody that loses er, a vote in a sub-committee can then move it to the budget review to have a second go at winning it?
Coleman (PS4JA) [275] I honestly don't think that's what happened, but, Mr .
(JS9PS003) [276] Chairman, I I note with surprise the attempt by Thamesdown C A B to get extra money, and I w I would wish guidance on how I could join Devizes C A B into the same er, situation.
[277] Would I need to, to er, ask for Devizes C A B to considered by the er, the Chief Executive in his report.
[278] Would that be sufficient?
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...] [laugh]
Coleman (PS4JA) [279] Right, let's have the Chief Executive.
(JS9PS000) [280] Er, I think there may be a bit of confusion about this minute.
[281] My understanding is what the budget sub-committee, well what the Social Services er, committee were saying, was there are a number of grants which in their view are not peculiar or specific to Social Services but are of a corporate nature.
[282] Budget sub-committee said, we understand that, what we're asking, what we ask is that the er, director of finance and the Chief Executive look at it and come back with a report.
[283] That report would include such grants as we may feel are of a [...] which are of more corporate nature, rather than specifically a service based one, and how we would recommend the council to deal with them.
[284] At the moment, it is not transferring, nor has anybody agreed to transfer the burden of those applications to the policy committee.
Coleman (PS4JA) [285] Well er, er lots of hands, one at a time, erm,
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [286] Sir, with due respect to all members, the officers will make an objective assessment when they report.
[287] They will not be pressurised as to what they should put on or should not put on.
(JS9PS003) [288] Chairman, I, I, I, I object to that, because I think that that wasn't either the tone of my question or or the implication of my question.
[289] What I'm saying is, that if the Chief er Executive and the fin Chief Finance Officer whoever, is going to make a report, I don't wish him to confine his report to Thamesdown C A B money advice service, I wish him also to consider Devizes C A B money advice service and start regrading.
[290] I thought that was fairly straightforward, and didn't deserve the answer it got.
(JS9PS000) [291] We are looking at or, we will be looking at all grants that are made by all committees, to decide which ones in our view should be recommended to you to be treated as a corporate kind of grant.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [292] Thank you Chairman.
[293] Erm, [...] to actually raise this issue.
[294] I mean, I think one, the first thing to be said is that one can assure members covering all the other C A B's was that they actually got their bids in full.
[295] If the Thamesdown one didn't, er, the officers for their own reasons have separated out this particular er, activity, erm, and I felt at the time that it was unreasonable to give a hundred percent funding to er, most C A B's but not to one.
[296] And I, like Mr ask that this issue should in fact be addressed, we should be looking at their total responsibilities, and I I support the action of the budget review in saying that er, we should be looking at this with a view to it being a corporate responsibility.
[297] Er, the I I also make the point, that er, my understanding is having now talked to a number of the other C A B's, that in fact they were looking to Thamesdown money advice centre because this money was actually to replace funds that previously had been er, available through the Allied Dunbar sponsorship scheme, and which has, which I gather was withdrawn er, at very short notice, and they were looking to Thamesdown to er provide that support and resource as a county resource, and I I therefore felt that it was right to bring it forward.
[298] But the important point here I think, is that this is a corporate, or may be a corporate res responsibility, and therefore my understanding is that the officers are going to look at those parts which may be looked at as a corporate responsibility, and I would therefore erm, assume that one would look at all the C A B services in that light.
Coleman (PS4JA) [299] Yes, thank you.
[300] Er, Mr .
(JS9PS000) [301] Thank you Chairman.
[302] I would like, coming back to the erm, racial equality councils, taking into account [...] statutory responsibilities, and I know that certain statutory responsibilities often have in very small print at the end of the act, subject to available resources.
[303] I'm not sure that that exists in this case.
[304] Erm, but reading it very carefully, and it says, local racial equality councils as well as being supported by the Commission for Racial Equality, and I think that is a very important as well as being supported, are also entitled to receive financial assistance from local authorities.
[305] It does appear however, the application made to us, is exclusively local authority support and not a part of an overall support that includes the commission for racial equality.
[306] I think that definitely need to be looked into, as does the er, requirement of this particular post within the act.
[307] Now that is the type of thing that I would like to see come back for legal opinions on that statutory responsibility, the level of it, and the reasons for it.
Coleman (PS4JA) [308] I think, the reference is a general reference, and the minute is a general minute.
[309] Erm, there are a number of issues, there are three separate issues there's the C A B issue, which I remember for years trying to get additional staff funded in the North Wiltshire C A B from from this council and we couldn't afford it then and we can't afford it now.
[310] And in the end the district council were able to afford a bit of funding towards staff, which broke a tradition that district councils tended only to fund premises, erm, and indeed the district council have done that as well in our case, recently by moving them to better premises.
[311] There's, there's the Racial Equality council issue, where erm, I mean I think there's er, I would like to look again at the degree to which compliance and contract compliance can be achieved through the county council's procedures which we looked at about four years ago, and I would see that at least as important as working and funding outside activities.
[312] But erm, in a sense both of those are subsidiary to the general erm, point of the recommendation of the motion of the debate, which is that, erm, since we're entreatingly trying to set corporate priorities and a corporate policy for this council, certain voluntary sector organisations such as C A B and C R, C R E's, clearly work in that sort of field, and clearly have the sort of objectives which fit, which may fit into our own corporate objectives.
[313] Erm, I'm, I don't know to what degree the specific er cases for [...] development workers erm, and indeed the extra funding for Thamesdown fit into our corporate responsibilities, because we haven't phrased them yet, and we haven't seen the report.
[314] But I do think the specific point you make as to whether there's any prospect of the National Commission for Racial Equality putting any money towards the development worker that's wished, ought to be addressed by somebody at some point in the context of preparing the next report.
[315] Erm, was there somebody else had their hand up?
[316] No?
[317] Can I move that we mo go to, I'll put this to a vote then, those in favour of the recommendation from budget review please show ... and the against ... that's carried.
[318] [paper rustling] ... Twenty three, twenty three one.
[319] The minutes of the Economic developments and Tourism sub-committee meeting tenth of January, I move that those are received.
[320] Those in favour please say aye ... and the against ... they're received.
[321] Number two the Rural Development Area for South West Wiltshire ... [paper rustling] [cough] and I move the recommendations as shown at erm, one, two, three, four, five and six in minute fourteen of the minutes of [...] .
[322] Those in favour please show ...
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [323] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [324] And the against ... that is carried.
[325] Item twenty four [...] [microphone moved] meeting held on the eleventh of January are received ... those in favour please say aye.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [326] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [327] And the against ... that is carried.
[328] Twenty four two, the re- designation of the director of public protection, the Chief Executive to report.
(JS9PS000) [329] Er, sir, er yesterday I received a letter from the Institute of Trading Standards Administration, and if I may I'll read a paragraph from it.
[330] [reading] My institute would wish for it's concern that having striven to establish the statutory qualification, the Diploma in Trading Standards, and consequently persuading employing authorities as officers holding that qualification use the title Trading Standards Officers now sees the potential of confusion [] .
[331] The institute clearly does not wish to interfere with the er, council's rights er, to decide what it should call er people.
[332] Er, I don't know how members, er, may feel about it.
[333] I, I appreciate that one of the concerns was the use of the word director, er, and maybe it would er, help us all out of the problem, after all, you have decided to merge the two departments, and therefore calling them er, Chief Officer, using the two department's names seems to work against what your attempts have been, and therefore maybe Chief Public Protection Officer, rather than director.
[334] You have a Chief Fire Officer.
Coleman (PS4JA) [335] I know this caused an immense amount of debate at Personnel sub-committee, and I thought that Personnel sub-committee had come to a reasonable solution.
[336] I note that the, this Institute of Trading Standards Administration suggests a title such as Director of Consumer and Trades Services, Director of Health and Consumer Services, Head of Regulatory Services, and Department of, I don't want to, you can't call a person department.
(JS9PS000) [337] I think it, I think it's a combined
Coleman (PS4JA) [338] Director of Trading and Consumer Protection.
[339] They're not trying to push, they are only trying to be helpful, but I think it is a material matter for the committee to consider.
[340] Mr .
Small (PS4JB) [341] I was just having a word with one of your colleagues here trying to take up what Mr 's point was and I think we've come up maybe with a compromise, is that we call him the County Public Protection Officer.
[342] And I will move that.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Small (PS4JB) [343] Mr will be able to sleep silently in his bed.
Coleman (PS4JA) [344] Yes, the problem was, with the previous suggestion of Chief Public Protection Officer, [...] director, appeared to have confused with the responsibilities of the Chief Fire Officer, but if we say County Public Protection Officer.
[345] Mr , oh well, we've already appointed him so at least we don't have to alter the outcome.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
Coleman (PS4JA) [346] [laughing] Erm, Mr [] .
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Chalk (PS4JC) [347] As always, it's something very small that has the longest discussion property, and it was at personnel.
[348] Erm, I don't like long titles, and er, and erm, and I am wary also of the public protection words because I think they do infer, as, as was stated quite clearly at personnel, they do infer that the Chief Fire Officer's somewhere in there as well, and he isn't.
[349] Erm, surely we can find something, director of consumer protection or director of consumer [tape ends]
Coleman (PS4JA) [350] Miss
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [351] Well, I, I, I find that one difficult.
[352] Firstly because I understand there's some problem with the word director, which I don't understand, but everybody says, well I don't understand, but well, maybe some officer will explain that to me when I finish speaking.
[353] But if if you just say consumer protection, you're not covering the public health side of it awfully well.
[354] Erm, [sigh] that seems to me ...
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [355] Yeah, well an awful lot of this, this sort of waste disposal regulatory work and so on is, is very distantly removed from most consumers, and they would be rather surprised if they knew you were doing it.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [356] Well only, er thank you Mr Chairman, just very briefly to second the, the objections to the word director.
[357] I mean we have all had representations about this particular word of director, er, er, it implies the n er, the er, certain superiority of that service over another under public protection.
[358] Erm,
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [359] Yes, [...] .
[360] Erm, have we, did personnel receive anything from erm, the erm, from er, the Chief er Public Health Officer?
[361] I mean has there been any, because there may be some argument in having a quick go at it at public protection, and hearing from the new department what they'd like their chief officer to be called.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [362] Sir, er I und
Coleman (PS4JA) [363] Mr
(JS9PS001) [364] I understand that one of the problems is the word consumer which is not er er, particularly liked in some quarters.
[365] Erm, and therefore you're thrown back at er finding something else, this sort of vague compromise of director of this that or this that and the other, er, er, appeared, and er it seems to me A long winded, er but also, it indicates something against what you've already tried to do, which is to merge the two together.
[366] Now I appreciate that some people seem to object to the words public protection, erm ... I'm not certain why bearing in mind you have a public protection committee.
Coleman (PS4JA) [367] [...] oh, come on.
[368] No, I, I'm [...] .
[369] Still remember that we're debating Mr 's amendment which is director of consumer protection.
[370] Mr .
Small (PS4JB) [371] Chair, I think, er I think anyone [...] can say that, that Mr , as the County Public Protection Officer isn't going to be in charge of the fire service.
[372] It's obvious the Chief Fire Officer will be in charge of the fire service, and I don't see there's any problem between the two.
[373] The public protection committee deals with the th , the consumer affairs, public health, trading standards and it therefore, the person who's in charge of those three departments should have the, the thing as public protection.
[374] The the fire service is separate but it reports to the public protection committee.
[375] I think it's quite obvious and quite distinct.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [376] Mr
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [377] Sir I'm beginning to wish I'd never resurrected this matter.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [378] But, there was concern about the title of the director of public protection.
[379] To answer the question of Mrs , I have spoken to Mr , he is Mr, and he has already explained, would like a short title, and would like to keep away from the previous department's tasks of trading standards and public health for obvious reasons.
[380] Erm, if members don't like the word consumer then I think they would have to use public, er it does cover, I I think the title County Public Protection Officer would er, er satisfy Mr and I don't think it would upset the Chief Fire Officer.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [381] Right , those in fav ... any more speakers
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [382] [whispering] [...] mustn't forget. []
Coleman (PS4JA) [383] Those in favour of Mr 's amendment, which is director of consumer protection please show ...
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [384] One, two, three, four ...
Coleman (PS4JA) [385] And those against.
[386] That is lost.
[387] Those in favour of Mr 's motion, county public protec er nearly, Mr .
Chalk (PS4JC) [388] I assume, Chairman, director is the right word, because we've used it amongst all the other, we've got the director of library services, we've got the director of property services and what have you.
[389] I believe it should be director of public protection.
Coleman (PS4JA) [390] Right, those in favour of Mr 's amendment [...] seconded.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [391] Mr 's amendment is director of public protection, those in favour of that please show ... , those against ... Erm, we come to Mr 's motion, director
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
Coleman (PS4JA) [392] County public protection officer, those in favour please show ... those against ... [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [393] Item twenty-five, the minutes of the property sub-committee held on the thirteenth of January.
[394] Erm, first of all I move that we receive the minutes.
[395] Those in favour of receiving the minutes please say aye.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [396] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [397] And those against ... that is carried.
[398] Er, twenty-five two A, the capital [...] disposal of surplus property, Mr
(JS9PS003) [399] [pages being turned] Thank you Mr Chairman, this was erm, a comment on the minutes at twelve two.
[400] Could we convey the thanks of the members of this committee to the property services and the chief executive's department, for their efforts in effecting sales and gaining large scale capital receipts for the county.
[401] Thank you.
Coleman (PS4JA) [402] Yes, I'd certainly second that, and I think you can see from the figures that er a great deal of work was done, and a great deal was achieved.
[403] The erm, with that addition I will move the recommendation in paragraph three of minute twelve of the property sub-committee's minutes, [reading] to make representation to the association of county council urging the Government to reconsider it's policy in not allowing local authorities permanently to make use of the full amount of capital realised from sales of assets. []
[404] Mr .
Chalk (PS4JC) [405] Thank you Chairman.
[406] You moved that, that, that local authorities should be able to make use of the full amount of capital from it's receipts.
[407] Of course we do.
[408] You don't sell a house and keep the mortgage, we have debts.
[409] We have probably less debts maybe than some of the other authorities in Wiltshire, and Thamesdown has a far greater debt than ours.
[410] But it is only right, it's public money, that if we are owing money, that we should have to use some of the er money from realisation of assets, to repay the debt.
[411] If we were then to get to a position like Dorset County Council, who have no debts, they of course can spend a hundred percent of the money they realise from assets.
[412] And I get rather tired of the constant accusations that councils can't spend, they're not allow , they, they have to, they lose fifty percent of receipts, they don't lose them, they go to the benefit of the chargepay er tax, council tax payers of this county, in reducing the debt and reducing the debt burden of interest, er interest on the budget.
[413] And I'm quite happy with the present situation.
Coleman (PS4JA) [414] Miss
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [415] Well I think what Mr is really saying is that the Conservative [...] round Dorset, in er, the first sort of, I don't know, six decades of this cen this century were rather more sensible than the Conservatives who ran Wiltshire at the same time, because they made sure they acquired some assets they could flog for development, and put themselves in this happy position, which the ones in Wiltshire had obviously failed to do.
[416] Erm, I'm quite sure that we ought to be able to spend this money, and I think it's it's very sensible and it would help a great deal with the problems that we have.
[417] And I think for Mr to pretend that the Government has nothing to do with our problems, is unfortunately becoming more and more threadbare as an excuse.
Coleman (PS4JA) [418] Right erm, oh Mr .
(JS9PS004) [419] Chairman, er I don't often disagree with er Mr in front of me there, but I have been consistent in my approach over the years, er, wherever I've had the had the opportunity to speak at political meetings and ministers have been present.
[420] I have consistently said why don't they allow er, councils to spend the receipts from council houses on building new houses, and I've never been impressed with the replies nor the reasons.
[421] Er, and in this instance I have consistently erm, asked that we, we do all we can, to allow us to spend our capital receipts, and the fact that we had the holiday last year was er, er, of of great benefit to this this council, erm, there are er times when we should er perhaps be putting money into reserves or paying off debt, but this council should be allowed to make those decisions rather
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [422] Hear hear
(JS9PS004) [423] rather than the appropriate minister, so, in this instance, and I I I can't support er on this issue.
Coleman (PS4JA) [424] I think, I think I would, having moved the recommendation would seek to clarify what we're asking the Government to reconsider, erm, because we're not saying what they should come up with as a new policy, but I think we could add the words, for capital investment, at the end of the motion, recognising that at one level of government, central government it has been the practice in the past, er when they had some capital they could sell in the form of British Telecom shares and er, indeed other nationalised industries, er not to use the er the results erm, er release this [clears throat] realised by that capital disposal for capital investment, instead to use it for revenue purposes, which was in the long term somewhat unfortunate.
[425] But it comes down to, first of all, whether it's sensible to borrow against assets, and all of us do if we're lucky enough to own our own homes we tend to have borrowed either our first mortgage or sometimes a second against it, and we make our own judgement, and I see there are some suggestions on how the Government spotted this with regard to schools in suggesting that perhaps schools could raise money by mortgaging their school buildings, of course
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
Coleman (PS4JA) [426] It doesn't sound quite so good when you put it at that sort of level, cause it puts a school at risk, but of course there's no reason why a county council shouldn't borrow considerably more than this council does, looked at on accounting principle, unless I'm wrong, and Mr I'm going to call in a minute, will correct me if I am.
[427] But it seems to me we've got more than enough assets to cover the borrowings we've got at the moment and indeed many more besides.
[428] It should be a matter of judgement for local authorities to what degrees they are indebted, because they do have to pay the interest, by and large from the er, from the money they raise on erm, on on council tenants, and and from other income.
[429] But er having added to the debate and added those words to the motion, I'll call Mr .
Okinson (PS4JD) [430] Yes Chair, [...] I think Mr was quoting Michael Portillo wasn't he in about the er, when you sell a house you don't not pay off the mortgage, and of course what most people do is buy another house, sorry who was it?
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Okinson (PS4JD) [431] Oh alright.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
Okinson (PS4JD) [432] When you, when you sell a house you pay off the mortgage
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Okinson (PS4JD) [433] of course, what most people do is, when they've sold their house and paid off the mortgage, they take out another mortgage and, and buy another house, because they need one to live in.
[434] Erm, what of course people like Mr Portillo do, is, sell other people's houses, pay off the mortgage and throw them out on the street.
[435] But, the reality is
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Okinson (PS4JD) [436] In Westminster, in Westminster city council, how many thousands of people thrown on the street, moved out
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Okinson (PS4JD) [437] but, yes.
[438] But of course, the Government already controls the capital borrowing that we can make.
[439] They control our borrowing limits.
[440] We've had a very restricted capital programme, which your group Mr , particularly Mr were complaining about earlier in this meeting, which restricts the amount of road- building we can do.
[441] Now if the Government wish to restrict the capital borrowing that we can make, which they do anyway, why do they need to restrict, also, what we do with the results of any spending, why don't they allow us to spend it perhaps, on the roads, that Mr would like to see built?
Coleman (PS4JA) [442] Mr
(JS9PS001) [443] Thank you Mr Chairman.
[444] I don't know whether I'm agreeing or disagreeing with Mr .
[445] But I think it is a point.
[446] I think if we go down not having a responsible position to our debts, repaying our debts in the long term, erm, we are going to be restricted on what we can borrow with the capital, because no government is going to, you know, my party or your party, is going to let us go on building debts, and more debts by giving us permission to borrow money and more money and more money.
[447] And it does worry me because, if we're going to go into unitory authorities [...] whose going to take over these debts, if we're going to build them up?
[448] And what you said about mortgaging a school, how can a school mortgage it's school premises if we've already mortgaged it, with our eighty-five million borrowing, we've already got half the schools in this county on a mortgage anyway.
[449] So, you know, they're taking a second mortgage, not a first mortgage, because we've already mortgaged it.
[450] I would back Mr 's opinion, and I think we ought to take a responsible position towards paying off our debts.
[451] And if it means fifty percent of whatever we get in capital receipts going to pay off our debts, it's a worthwhile attitude, and I think we ought to take our debts responsible.
[452] We shouldn't just think we're not going to be here in two years time, it's somebody else's problem, they'll take over our debts.
Coleman (PS4JA) [453] I'll put it to the vote, those in fa , sorry, so sorry
(JS9PS000) [454] Yes, I er, at the risk of getting unpopular with other people that live in Swindon today.
[455] Erm, let's cover one or two things, because about a year ago, in two articles in the local use, sorry who was it? [...] allowed to sell the accumulated fund from council house sales, on building new houses, and two weeks later the deputy leader of the council, argued that he needed that money invested because the council couldn't exist without the interest on it.
[456] Now that's a case of having your cake and eating it, isn't it?
[457] And actually, when we come back to the paper in front of us, I would like to get one other thing clear.
[458] It's perfectly true that the front garden policy on the assets has been stated by Thamesdown Borough Council they don't want to sell it.
[459] That is Thamesdown Borough Council who don't own it.
[460] Er, and this came up several years ago, when this council went into conversation with the Goddard Estate, and the Goddard Estate wishing to dispose of our assets.
[461] At that particular moment of time, as the leader of the Labour group here, I had a discussion with the leader of the Labour group on Thamesdown Borough Council, with the political officer down there , and I was asked to resist any attempt to sell off the garden of Swindon, because once Thamesdown became a unitary authority, it would want that to sell for itself to get it's capital.
[462] Now that has never been denied by the leader of that council, although he keeps on, it is not Thamesdown's policy.
[463] You know it's a hypocrisy anything that comes from that side.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [464] Point of order, Chairman, point of order, can I, can I
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [465] Chairman, point of order, this is not Thamesdown council.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [466] Point of order, point of order, can Mr give any written evidence that the leader or Thamesdown Borough Council, in a meeting with him as leader of the Labour group on this council, that he made that statement?
[467] If he cannot, then I suggest Mr keeps quiet, because people could accuse him of lying for the sake of lying's sake.
Coleman (PS4JA) [468] Now I think it's, I think erm, the best question to ask in these circumstances is who benefits?
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [469] And erm , it s it seems to be an entirely er rational position for any public politician, for instance, Mrs Thatcher before the seventy-nine election, denying that she had any plans to double V A T, or Mr Major denying some of the plans for raising taxes that we've come up with, or indeed denying plans to privatise the forestry commission.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [470] Well he did [laugh]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [471] That is not the matter before us.
[472] The matter before us is whether to recommend, whether to make representations to the A C C as shown in minute three, with the words for capital investment added at the end.
[473] Those in favour please show ... and the against ...
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [474] Yes.
Coleman (PS4JA) [475] Thank you [...] .
[476] That is carried.
[477] [paper rustling] Twenty-five two v, minute fourteen of property sub-committee disposal of assets in the borough of Thamesdown.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [478] We are recommen , I will move that we amend the County Council's policy of consultation with the borough and district councils, by increasing the three week period referred to in the report, under er paragraph six, to six weeks.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [479] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [480] Those in fav , well Mr
(JS9PS004) [481] Chairman, this is not what we, er, agreed before, and it seems to me that there's been some re-thinking on this, and I hesitate to say that once again, er, members are trying to face all ways because they don't want to upset somebody, but the policy that we've had in the past, had total support at property, and it is, it is a policy that has worked.
[482] And we've had, had instances of why that policy didn't work, and I'm only sorry that those people who supported it before are finding it impossible to support it now.
Coleman (PS4JA) [483] Mr , I'm moving exactly what I moved at property sub- committee.
[484] To increase from three weeks to six weeks, and I believe it's important to respond to district and borough councils when we're trying to co-operate with them.
[485] Not to do what they want, because we're certainly not giving the sort of assurance that's requested in the borough council's motion, and we're certainly not giving special treatment to the borough.
[486] But we are responding by saying, well, we will give you six weeks to respond when we notify [...] .
[487] If this committee agrees with that amendment.
[488] I take the point that you're suggesting that another group may have re- considered it's position.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [489] No I think Mr
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [490] I'll decide when the [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [491] Can I, can I say something?
[492] I think three weeks has worked quite well, we've had no troubles with it.
[493] They've had plenty of reason to, to mar put up a marker in the three weeks and we've spent the next three or four weeks after that discussing it.
[494] And therefore why should we change it?
[495] And it has worked, so let's leave it alone, if it doesn , if it's not broken why mend it?
Coleman (PS4JA) [496] Miss .
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [497] Well, if it's not broken, why on earth should six weeks be such a problem?
[498] You know, I mean, if if
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [499] I don't see why giving a little more time for consultation should cause any problems of any kind.
Coleman (PS4JA) [500] Those in favour of, of my motion please show ... those against ... that is carried.
[501] Twenty-five two c, [...] old rectory, minute seventeen,
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [502] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [503] Those in, I'll move the recommendation of seventeen paragraph one.
[504] Those in favour please say aye.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [505] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [506] Those against ... that is carried.
[507] Twenty-five two d, members allowances for meetings of the South-West county farms authority, recommended to approve attendance travelling and subsistence, Mr [...] group, and travelling and subsistence only when he takes duties on behalf of that [...] group.
[508] Mr .
Chalk (PS4JC) [509] Thank you Chairman.
[510] Erm, we we talked about this sort of issue earlier on, in in relationship to the, to the R A D. Erm, I'm not quite sure of the strong importance of that organisation to the council, but I am sure that this erm, committee was set up by a number of south west authorities who are trying to look at the future of county farms.
[511] And I think that er, Mr was chosen because of his extensive knowledge of the subject.
[512] And I think if, and I know it was agreed at group leaders meeting, that if we could find a way that Mr could be paid these erm, allowances, it would be important to allow him to pursue the work which is being done on that committee, and I would hope that we might all agree to the recommendation, and that is when he's on the steering group, it's attendance erm, full attendance and er travelling, but on the others, travelling and subsistence.
[513] I think it's difficult to actually find that it's attendance on the sub-group.
[514] But I mean that, it is expensive to keep going to London and places like that, I think he should be reimbursed for it.
Coleman (PS4JA) [515] I thought that's what I moved actually, that he
Chalk (PS4JC) [516] I didn't move it, I'm agreeing with what you did Chairman.
Coleman (PS4JA) [517] All right, thank you.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [518] [...] Those in favour please say aye.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [519] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [520] And against ... that is carried. [...] [paper rustling] [microphone unclear]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [521] If somebody gets on that list, do they get [...] substitution from personnel, or do they [...] .
Coleman (PS4JA) [522] [...] See the reference to regular members of the personnel sub-committee.
[523] It does require that, unlike other committees, the er officers need to be clear who our regular members of personnel sub actually are.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [524] [...] .
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [525] Chair, can I ju give the, I'm sorry I thought you'd already passed the motion, the Labour group [...] names are , and .
Coleman (PS4JA) [526] Yeah well, we got halfway through the vote.
[527] Those in favour please say aye.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [528] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [529] Those against ... that is carried.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [530] Mr [...] .
Coleman (PS4JA) [531] Twenty-seven, which is on your main agenda paper, I move to appoint Mrs erm, as shown to the [...] Trust.
[532] Those in favour please say aye.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [533] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [534] And the against ... carried.
[535] Twenty-eight, the report of the county archivist move
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [536] Could I just say sir, this is the re report which is, is made er each year to this committee, to inform the committee of of the work, and I hope members are pleased with the er wide range and volume work which has been carried out, and note in particular the involvement of this service with the public, and the er pleasure of the public and those have made donations, the fact that over eight thousand people have visited, and the number of people who've erm received lectures and have benefitted from that.
[537] And I hope that members appreciate as I say, the range and scale of work, which is that, you will also have seen that they've been able to open now one evening a week, and for a very small service with a budget of about three hundred and fifty thousand pounds, erm they are doing sterling work.
[538] I hope members will add their endorsements to what is in the conclusion there, erm, for the work of the staff who've achieved this.
[539] Members will see at paragraph eight, how the dep er office compares with the national average, [...] we are well, well below that, and I think this is a very good service indeed er, county council, which is not just value for money, that that's too glib, but actually provides an excellent service,with within those limited constraints.
Coleman (PS4JA) [540] Mr .
Chalk (PS4JC) [541] Thank you Mr Chairman.
[542] I'm always worried when we get to item twenty-eight at this time of the year, and somebody rushes through and doesn't actually say anything about this.
[543] Well, I'm pleased to hear you have.
[544] I think too often, the county archivist and the records office are forgotten and left to do their very worthwhile work over there without very much appreciation of what they do from members.
[545] It it's a part of the county council I've always taken a considerable interest in, and I support them in all their efforts.
[546] It's an excellent report.
[547] It shows how well we are conducting the service, in what is an old bedding factory, after all, and if you've been to Winchester lately, you will have seen a six million pound record office, with with modern architecture in a prominent position in Winchester, er, which I'm sure they're conducting a service, but I'll bet you that pound for pound we're giving a far better service in Wiltshire, with our dedicated staff, who've been there a long time.
[548] And I would, over the last few years, I've I've suggested that members visit and see the work of the county record office.
[549] It was a great disappointment to me that when having set it up with an invitation couple or three years ago, about three members turned up, and I think that was very regrettable.
[550] The work is most fascinating, the the records they hold are quite er large and erm, I'm pleased to say that on their request, the Conservative group have have given the records of our group meetings since nineteen sixty to nineteen eighty-six to to the, erm, record office, and before anyone rushes over, there is a, a, a slight [...] before they're released to the public.
[551] But that will be after the demise of the Wiltshire County Council.
[552] I wouldn't want to embarrass those that are here now, with anything that's in there.
[553] But er, also i I'm currently compl er getting together the records of my old company that go back to eighteen seventy-nine, and I've been instrumental in getting one or two of the governing bodies to get their records in.
[554] They do an excellent job, members should take a little more interest and go and see what they do.
Coleman (PS4JA) [555] Yes, I'm not certain whether Liberal group records go back beyond nineteen eighty-one, but erm,
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
Coleman (PS4JA) [laugh]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh] [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [556] I I und unders
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [557] I I'm not certain that they were particularly group organised, but er, certainly I shall be looking forward to deposit a [laughing] large number of files there from our group.
[558] Just to get them out of the house [] .
[559] Mrs .
(JS9PS004) [560] Thank you very much.
[561] Erm, I would like to propose, I'm not sure [...] correct form, that we minute this council's support and appreciation for the work of the county archivist, rather than just note the report.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [...]
(JS9PS004) [562] Well only just to really, actually [...] all Mr Mr has er said, and just one other bit of information, the time when the Chairman of the council extended the invitation to sixth formers, looking for alternative entertainment for the sixth formers of [...] school, after they sat through a full council, I took them over to the er archivists er department, and we saw the paper restor , sorry, shouldn't say paper restorer, manuscript restorer at work, and these sixth formers, already knew of the existence, one of them asked to see the records of [...] parish, because he knew they were there, and I mean, I think this is wonderful, that the sixth formers already, er children are being taught about the ar the records, and they will want to be sure that we kept them, and I think it's our moral duty to keep er, the records of the past for future generations.
[563] I hope you'll support my, whatever you call it, proposal to minute our appreciation.
[564] Thank you.
Coleman (PS4JA) [565] Mr .
Coleman (PS4JA) [566] Thank you very much Mr Chairman.
[567] I would like to second Mrs 's motion.
[568] Away from the county council I am, myself, very interested in, in industrial archaeology, local history and particularly the history of of Wiltshire parishes, particular reference to west Wiltshire.
[569] So I did really enjoy reading this report, a well written report, and for me well received, and I offer my congratulations for it.
[570] Erm, I haven't yet visited the archivist department, but they can expect me,
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [571] ooh.
Coleman (PS4JA) [572] [laughing] They can expect me as er as I say [] but probably, for me, one of the more interesting papers on the whole agenda today.
[573] Thank you very much for it.
Coleman (PS4JA) [574] Mr .
Small (PS4JB) [575] Thank you Chair.
[576] Erm, I think that this erm, part of the agenda is [...] most interesting because I think it's other departments which also report back to the policy resources, which really, we as a erm, council don't get much chance to see it's doing.
[577] I remember when my mum and dad were on this committee, actually the this records department is part of the Libraries' erm, committee's responsibility, [...] records sub used to be there, and used to regularly meet and that used to deal with it.
[578] Erm, I've endorsed the comments that've been made [...] I think the er congratulations, and can I say I've got a sneaking feeling originally, this paper was put on the agenda to embarrass me so that the records department can get the new shelves I originally blocked.
[579] But I have passed it now.
Coleman (PS4JA) [580] Mr
(JS9PS000) [581] Thank you.
[582] Erm, the report is extremely valuable, the work of the archive service is extremely valuable.
[583] It's not only about archives and the past.
[584] We are today, creating history and those documents will go into the archives.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
(JS9PS000) [585] It is a creative process, not a past process and something which is just stored away and lost and kept for the future.
[586] It is something creative, it's about today, it's about tomorrow, because those patterns go forward to tomorrow.
[587] It is an extremely valuable service, and one which tends to get left behind.
[588] But it is one of our most valuable, and we should do everything that we can to support it.
Coleman (PS4JA) [589] Right, Mr .
Okinson (PS4JD) [590] Thank you Chairman.
[591] Yes, like many of the others, I happen to be one of the ones who did go up there and take a look at it, erm, at the time, and I hope that the motion as er, not only to the county archivist but all the staff over there for the very hard work and diligent work of which they put in.
[592] I saw, and I have had in actual fact, recourse to actually use that service over there, and it's rather interesting if one can t to say that er in the particular village which I er represent, they actually came up, when I asked a certain question, they gave me a, a, far more than what I actually asked for at the time, but found out who the first village constable was, and I think myself that er, that service over there , it deserves every praise it gets heaped on it.
[593] Thank you sir.
Coleman (PS4JA) [594] Mrs .
Small (PS4JB) [595] Th thank you very much.
[596] I very much echo all that's been said, and I'm very pleased to hear what Mr Mr sa said.
[597] I very clearly remember being at the records panel when I er er first arrived, and seeing erm Mr reaction when it was a a member of the party to my right which re , said well, as we have financial problems and as, as we have these documents, why can't they be photocopied and we'll sell sell them off.
[598] And there was a shiver through the meeting.
[599] Erm, but the point that I really wanted to make [...] slightly mischievous, but the point I really want to make is that I am very concerned indeed about the future of the, of this service er in the re-organisation of the councils, and I really feel this is something we need to keep very much in mind in short to ensure that this valuable record is er is maintained.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [600] Hear, hear.
Coleman (PS4JA) [601] Thank you, Mr .
Small (PS4JB) [602] Thank you Chairman.
[603] Erm, I too endorse the er views expressed by other members, but I think it's also worth commenting on the work that, and contribution that's made of voluntary, by by volunteers to the work of the archivist, which is referred to in the report.
[604] I'm sure many members will have been sorry to have noted the erm, the thefts of materials and one hopes that security cameras has now in fact been er installed, and if not, why not?
[605] Erm, and I think [...] it's also perhaps right that we should note with pleasure the comment made in the third paragraph on the second page, about the work of Mr and Mr , er, I think that does rec er, give some recognition to erm, er the role that the archivist's are playing in the wider community, and I think that is extremely er commendable and I think we should send our congratulations from this committee er, and our support for what they're doing.
Coleman (PS4JA) [606] Mr .
(JS9PS003) [607] Er, thank you Mr Chairman.
[608] Erm, I fully support all the comments about the archive system, I have a membership ticket here, and I was a member of that system long before I came here.
[609] I would fully support all of the good work that is done and I would wish it to continue.
[610] Thank you.
Coleman (PS4JA) [611] Right, so the motion is to note the report and to express our appreciation and support for the work of the county archivist.
[612] Yes?
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [613] And his staff.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [614] And his staff.
[615] Those in favour please show.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [616] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [617] And the against.
[618] That is carried.
[619] Item twenty-nine, A D C conference on community safety.
[620] I move to take no action on this matter.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [621] Aye, aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [622] Those in favour, any against?
[623] ... [paper rustling] Right, now [...] main agenda, where we're being informed of a planning and environment committee's concern at the conversion of county council owned residential accommodation to other uses, and I did suggest a briefing, but I don't think anybody [...] .
[624] Erm, I will move to note the concern of the planning and environment committee, and to ask the officers to ensure that when planning applications are submitted, for the conversion of county council owned residential accommodation to other uses, that, the matter be not determined until the policy and resources committee has been consulted.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [625] Second.
Coleman (PS4JA) [626] In other words we get consulted so we get a chance to comment on the planning application when it's made.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [627] Can I just comment I think on the process, what happens is, is that in fact the application is made by the director of property services, we don't now have a first resolution or a second resolution.
[628] [...] I think it would be when the committee comes to the director of property services and says, we would like this to happen, that's when we'd have to come to you before the application [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [629] Only, to say that I I I would be opposed because I believe you should delegate to committees to run their affairs and their resources in the way they want to.
[630] And in this sort of instance, I mean Tidworth, with the, with bringing in of North Tidworth it's important that we do have extra accommodation, the police are doing it within their, within their remit.
[631] I, I can't see why we've got to have all this sort of thing, coming back to policy.
[632] But obviously Mr is about to tell me why.
Small (PS4JB) [633] With pleasure.
[634] Too often now, in the last four years in planning committee, time and time again, we get applications from departments, and most of them coming from the police authority, for changing residential accommodation to other uses.
[635] We believe it is morally wrong to be taking away residential accommodation, when there are so many people homeless in our society, and we should do something about it.
[636] And time and time again the planning officers, and Mr said, this is not the right form to do it, we are a planning authority and it is a decision that has to be taken by the service committee.
[637] Over the last four years we have consistently moaned, we have passed resolutions at planning, asking committees to consider, and nothing has been done.
[638] And that is why we are now taking this direct route of saying, that policy and resources, as the policy making body of this council, should have some input to make sure that we in the planning committee are not [...] the situation [...] on a planning application when instead we [...] deal with the moral issue of turning away people who need homes.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [639] Yeah actually, I'd be interested if someone sitting on the planning committee, or perhaps a director erm, yeah or perhaps you could tell me, er, why why if the planning committee members are so concerned about this, did they grant the planning permission?
Coleman (PS4JA) [640] Right, erm, Mr can answer that one.
Chalk (PS4JC) [641] Well when, when you are looking at a planning application, Mr Chairman, you can only look at planning matters.
[642] Er, the matter which I am sure all of us in this committee are concerned with, is the principle involved, and the principle behind the letting.
[643] That is something the planning committee can't look at.
[644] Er, and I think that the way, that the way that er erm, er Councillor has mo ,th th the proposal that Councillor er, has moved is a sensible way around.
[645] You will note er, that the erm, planning and environment committee were concerned at the conversion of county owned residential accommodation, and we decided to inform the policy and resources committee of our concern.
[646] This is the right way around, and erm, Councillor 's motion addresses that particular question.
Coleman (PS4JA) [647] Mr .
(JS9PS000) [648] Yes Chairman.
[649] I I w would like to point out, whether or not we are going to continue to delegate degrees of authority to our service committees, or whether we're going to over-rule that and say, oh no, only P and R ultimately full council will be able to take any decisions.
[650] Now recently a colleague of mine er, that comes from an area where I grew up, and heaven forbid, that I heard the news that Esher has become Liberal, but
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [651] Oh, [...] Labour [laugh]
(JS9PS000) [652] but the particular council which is Elmbridge District Council, started off after last year's victory by the Liberal Democrats, by moving to one full council meeting a week, lasting about six hours once a week.
[653] The chairman then went to the extent of scrapping every committee, and having three full council meetings a week, on the grounds that every member should consider every issue.
[654] Now is this a suggestion the thin end of the wedge, that we now start taking away the authority of our service committees to decide what they want to do, and have to pass it back up the line for decisions to be made, because quite frankly, I don't want to come down here five days a week, ten hours a day for full council meetings.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [655] Well, I I was hoping we could, we could avoid discussing the activities of too many District and London Borough Councils for that matter, such as Westminster today, erm, but erm, there are certainly some very fine London Borough Councils.
[656] I, I don't think we're taking away the Planning and Environment Committee's delegated powers, we're merely trying to ensure the policy and resources committee is consulted on proposals for conversion of residential accommodation, for the, oh I will say the moral reasons that Mr outlined, I wouldn't really disagree with what he said.
[657] Mrs Miss .
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [658] Yes, I mean it, erm, Mr is quite right, and I'm very surprised at the length of time, [...] I'm not sure if he's still in on planning, but he's certainly been on and off it a lot, erm, hasn't worked it out yet.
[659] Erm, this is part of the legacy of the unspeakable , who changed the presumption to be in favour of development.
[660] Erm, and therefore, that Planning Committee erm, basically has to vote in favour of development, unless there are over-riding planning reasons why they should not.
[661] And unfortunately concern about homeless is not a planning issue.
[662] It is not considered relevant, however important it is in normal human terms, in planning terms it is non-existent.
[663] Therefore, the only committee which can over-ride it, is this one.
[664] But it's not taking away the erm, power of the planning committee on any other matter whatsoever.
[665] I don't see any problem with this as a former chairman of planning, and I don't think any other one would.
Coleman (PS4JA) [666] Right, those in favour of motion please show ... and the against ... that is carried.
[667] Item thirty-one, er [...] [very quiet, papers being rustled near microphone] Mr
Small (PS4JB) [668] [cough] Excuse me Chair.
[669] Thank you.
[670] [cough] Try that again.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Small (PS4JB) [671] [laugh] Thank you chair, can I just say er, I think that the motion outlines in it's first two erm paragraphs the actual benefits of having a direct service organisation to this county.
[672] It says, that not only does it save it's money when it comes to when we're putting in the tender bids, but actually the profits it makes goes back into the County Council, it has a two- prong saving of averages to this council, and we've known and seen in the years that it's been running that money has come back into county council balances, which means that we can have more money to spend on other services.
[673] I think that, and I know that members from the D S O board, many members [cough] excuse me, er agreed that there seems a need to be a more positive approach taken to save the schools and other organisations within the county council network, when considering erm, the uses of the D S O, the advantages that that has not only on the county council, but them as an individual school, college or whatever.
[674] I know the colleges are out now.
[675] Erm, for them, because it means that the county council, when they are making a profit, D S O makes a profit has more money to spend on education, which will improve the standard of our schools in this county.
[676] And therefore the schools should remember this when looking into going for other options, which may mean there's very little difference between them and the D S O, and the fact that th that the profits made by the D S O will be lost if they haven't got that contract, and I think that's a very important point that they should take on, and I think a lot of schools miss out on that particular idea.
[677] I know one other thing that is important, is the fact that a marketing document, the need for a marketing document, which can go to non erm [...] schools, I think erm, brought this up, the need to promote the value of the D S O overall.
[678] The last part of the resolution is it's actually taking up the area, where at the present time we haven't got a D S O. It seems stupid that you go into a school and you can clean, clean their classrooms, cut their grass and look after their, do their grounds maintenance, cook the kids' dinners, but you can't do any minor repairs, you've got to call in another organisation.
[679] Now there may be a legitimate reason why the D S O does not see there is a role to be carried out.
[680] And that is why we're asking for officers to form a report on whether or not a small building maintenance team should be set up to be able to carry out that work.
[681] I think it should go to the D S O board to be able to look into, and then come back to policy and resources.
[682] I think that is a, there is a need to look into this, it is an area where we haven't looked into at the moment, and when you consider the valuable work that our staff in the D S O organisation does, and the profit it makes for this county council, and the savings it makes for the county council, it would be sensible for us to also look into building maintenance as well.
Coleman (PS4JA) [683] Thank you.
[684] Erm, I think, oh there are several speakers, Mr 's next.
(JS9PS004) [685] Chairman I shall leave it to others on this site to make the case if they wish er, against the recommendations.
[686] My concern is on the first page, the grammatical errors in the
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [687] Cor
(JS9PS004) [688] I, er I mean it sticks out like a sore thumb, and one would have expected that this paper came from education.
[689] But if people
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [laugh]
(JS9PS004) [690] if people can't recognise possessive pronoun in that the it's is short for it is, er, somebody ought to check it because it, it lets the whole thing down.
Coleman (PS4JA) [691] Yes Mr , I made that very point [...] .
[692] Mr [...] .
Chalk (PS4JC) [693] Thank you Mr Chairman.
[694] [clears throat] Like you I am a member of the managing board for the D S O. Erm, and erm, like you I'm sure that erm, you would like to repeat your words, that you said then about heralding this report and it's successes and reminding the members and th of the public, and members of this county council the real benefits [clears throat] [...] from maintaining erm, our D S O and from the erm the way in which it has been managed and the way in which the amalgamation is working there.
[695] I really do feel that erm it's a success that should be [...] , it should be, we should make the most of it, we should public it, publicise it, erm, wherever we can.
[696] Whether it be in schools, town halls, public libraries or whatever.
[697] [clears throat] And I would support all what Mr said in that.
[698] In regards to [...] of this motion, I don't really have a great deal of trouble with that at all.
[699] Erm it's only just asking us to have a look at an idea which has banded to us once or twice, erm, we can have a look to see if erm, we can erm, have an in-house building maintenance, to develop the amalgama the amalgamation a little bit further than what we have already, erm, it won't harm harm us to have a look, so I've got no real trouble with that at all.
[700] Thank you.
Coleman (PS4JA) [701] Thank you, Mr .
Chalk (PS4JC) [702] Thank you Chairman.
[703] Erm, my fear of this report is that we are actually erm, it shows to me a certain level of complacency.
[704] And, and I I think we're in danger of being complacent over the D S O. Now I have over many years been involved with the D S O, and er, and I I support their efforts.
[705] But, times are moving on, local government review is just round the corner, and erm, we see that grant maintained schools of course are coming along.
[706] They're not actually erm, using the D S O, and I've just been involved in the
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Chalk (PS4JC) [707] I've just been involved in the selection of caterers for erm, South Wilts Grammar School, and I've got to say, and I've told Mr this, because he criticised me, Concept Catering weren't in the le in the frame.
[708] Their presentation was appalling, their attitude wasn't much better, and the presentation from the other companies was superb, one in particular, erm, came and really gave a good presentation.
[709] That isn't only that school.
[710] Most schools that have gone grant maintained have declined to use the D S O. Now my concern is, erm that we're not actually, when we come and compare with the outside world, we're not actually giving the service that we may think we are.
[711] Er, and that's of some concern, because I don't want to see the D S O diminish in that way.
[712] In th , and this is not a school who's decided to set it face against the county council, and it's services.
[713] And Mr will know, that in fact we've employed quite a few of his services and other services of the county council.
[714] We went in with an open mind, but I have to be honest, the presentation was so abysmal, that there was no way that we could in fact continue with them, and we have the same problem with the cleaning contract.
[715] In another school, which is er, locally managed, we are I think about the only school in the county who have decided to employ our own caretaker and our own cleaners, and, and in fact the latitude that gives us, has really allowed us to do a lot more in that school, erm with the staff and the staff are happier.
[716] So, those may be exceptions, but don't lets run away with how marvellous everything in it is.
[717] We have lost contracts, the D er, the grounds maintenance section have lost two major contracts in Wiltshire to other companies.
[718] Those other companies, one of them Thamesdown, I see Mr smiling away up there, because Thamesdown won the one up there, and broke his one in the one in the south.
[719] There were troubles [...] to start with, but you ask any of the schools in the south whether they want Direct Services back, and most of them will say, thank you we'll keep [...] , we're very pleased with them.
[720] So let, let's just, there'll always be arguments over this, I know.
[721] Lets lets not be too euphoric about it.
[722] On the building maintenance side, it has been looked at several times in the past.
[723] I think the time has probably passed now, all the schools have got their own budgets, they've got their own [...] builders who are giving them a good service, and I doubt whether this is the time to resurrect that, especially with local government review not far off, and the future of a county-wide D S O in some doubt, when it comes to local government review.
Coleman (PS4JA) [724] [...] I think I ought to just come in there because, erm, I don't know to what degree it's appropriate to discuss erm, the er, some of the background details to the letting of contracts in public, but perhaps it's alright.
[725] Because I can agree to some degree with what Mr has said.
[726] I've been and watched and contributed to some degree, erm or at least in listening to the reports of governors at the [...] school, erm, in the allocation of some of their contracts, which of course include some being let under L M S and some being let under G M S, with regard to building and cleaning, they were very disappointed with the presentation that the D S O gave, and even though the D S O was eight thousand pounds less than the competing bidder, O C S, they gave the contract to O C S, and a report has had to be made to the district auditor to give their reasons.
[727] Now it is totally true, that the start of that O C S contract was a disaster, and it is also true that several months on, the pay of the cleaners is still not being correctly done, and concerns are being raised in the governors, it's a four years contract, being an L M S contract, and under G M S they are submitting one year contracts.
[728] On the other side of the coin, the grounds maintenance service is very highly rated at [...] and we have this interesting shared contr cu campus with Sheldon, where I think the District Council D S O is cutting Sheldon's grass, and the County Council D S O have been cutting [...] and you'll be able to walk along the divide and see which looks better I suppose, after a bit.
[729] But I certainly think that with regard to Concept Catering, the merger did not come s , could almost, didn't come soon enough, because we needed to turn Concept Catering, from a school meals organisation into a catering organisation, and give it stronger management and a better lead and a better appreciation of what it means to be customer oriented.
[730] And now, particularly the point about making D S O's customer oriented, I have stressed again and again, both privately to Mr and Mr , and also at the D S O managing board, and I think public session.
[731] Er, so, there is undoubtedly a lot of work still to be done in making the D S O competitive, as for building maintenance work, I'm not certain we've ever considered having a building maintenance D S O. We may have looked at it in the days before D S Os, but that's er, a long time ago, and it's certainly worth having a look.
[732] Er, Mr .
(JS9PS001) [733] Thank you Mr Chairman.
[734] As you've said before, you know I'm a privatisation man, er, and I think that comes down to number three, if we privatised the lot and pushed them further out, if they felt there was a need to do building maintenance they could do it.
[735] It's only while they stay so in-house as a D S O, that we have to be so careful about what we do and what we don't.
[736] And I think we have got to let them compete competitively with the private sector, we've got to push them further out.
[737] And that is why, as Mr said, I think they ought to be allowed to produce some sort of advertising pamphlet, and get their act together, because if they're going to go and compete out there they've got to be prepared for it, and we've got to allow them to give a decent presentation, at least have a decent glossy brochure to push round, so at least they can say what they do, because they will never compete when they are privatised unless they get it.
Coleman (PS4JA) [738] Mr .
Small (PS4JB) [739] Thank you Chairman.
[740] I have to admit to being somewhat encouraged by er some of the comments that have been made here.
[741] I mean, I do think we need to er recognise that tremendous efforts are being put in by the individuals employed by the D S Os, but I do think that we need to recognise also, that there is a lot lacking in the, particularly the marketing of the services.
[742] Er, I'm involved with a school at the moment that in fact has just put Concept Catering out.
[743] Erm, and the reports that I've had back from the governors was that Concept Catering was so, so absolutely certain that they were the only people who could do it, that when they were faced with competition, they hadn't got the faintest idea how to respond to it.
[744] And er, the competing package, which incidentally I have to tell you were the D S Os own staff who decided to do their own management buyout, er, of the service.
[745] They have cut the price, er of meals charged to the children, they've er made some adjustments o c , to the menus offered, which was what the parents wanted, and as a result they've actually increased the take-up of school meals by something like sixty percent.
[746] And that's the D S O's own staff buying out th the service from under under Concept Catering.
[747] So I do think that the, I don't think it actually does necessarily come down to glossy brochures, but I think it is a management attitude erm, in terms of mark developing a very much more pro-active marketing approach to going out and competing aggressively in the market place for the contracts.
[748] I'm absolutely certain that once you've got the people there, once you've got the contracts in place, the er, the people employed will deliver a high quality service.
[749] But unfortunately, they are not getting the opportunity because of er some of the management failings means that they're not actually getting the contracts to which they're entitled.
Coleman (PS4JA) [750] Mr [...] .
(JS9PS002) [751] Very briefly Chair, to say I think nothing's perfect, as I said, I mean there are areas that still need to be improved, and I think our, the image and in a sense our marketing section does need to be improved, and I think no-one would deny that.
[752] But the figures are quite clear that there are benefits of having in-house erm erm, fields that can compete against the private sector for county council work, and the fear, and the reason why they were set up in the first place, to make sure that you couldn't have outside erm, er or private organisations setting up cartels to basically screw the local government down, and charge whatever price they want and con us through and through.
[753] With local, with in-house teams it means that we are protected from that ever happening, and I hope that our in-house teams will continue to go on and on from strength to strength, [...] valuable resource to the county council.
[754] And can I just say, a governing body that I am on, I've just recently gone on to, employs private cleaning contractors, it didn't want the D S O, and ever since that contract has come in, they have been in terrible, terrible trouble.
Coleman (PS4JA) [755] Right, those in favour of the motion circulated [...] please show ... those against ... that is carried.
[756] Item thirty- two [...] [paper rustling] ... [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [757] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [758] Those in favour please say aye.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [759] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [760] And the against ... I will move that that is approved for purposes of members travelling and subsistence [...] those in favour please say aye.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [761] Aye.
Coleman (PS4JA) [762] Those against ... that is carried.
[763] [...] recommendation of one two three on the letter [...]
Chalk (PS4JC) [764] Ca can I query the accuracy first of all, of that report?
[765] As I understand, it is not I think what I voted for in number three, that specifically the county secretary and solicitor should inform a member of authority.
[766] I don't think we said who should inform them.
[767] I don't think we actually said who was going to inform the member authorities.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Chalk (PS4JC) [768] We actually said we should, we, the body corporate should, erm, I have some, I if, if it should be the county secretary, I believe it should be in consultation with the county supplies officer.
[769] That's the only point I'm taki making.
Coleman (PS4JA) [770] I understood, [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Coleman (PS4JA) [...]
Chalk (PS4JC) [771] I think it should be in consultation with the county supplies officer, because I think it is important that that he also has ownership of that letter which goes to the fellow p our fellow members at resource.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [772] Yes, I mean I would like to support what Mr is saying.
[773] In fact erm, what we agreed yesterday was one on this paper, two and three followed from it, erm, but were not actually moved, at the working party, because it was me who did the moving.
[774] Erm, and er, they are necessary but they are not actually what we agreed.
[775] So I think we have to do them, but I think it is very important that we do not erm, er talk to the, or communicate with the other member authorities in a way that looks as if this is Wiltshire saying, well we want to find a way of flogging off this asset without worrying about what happens to the future of the service.
[776] Erm, it's very important that we find a joint way forward to make sure that whatever the future of local government is in this county, there is an effi effective and efficient purchasing erm, er service me who did the moving.
[777] Erm, and [...] .
Coleman (PS4JA) [778] Mr
Small (PS4JB) [779] Thank you Chair.
[780] Can I just move a slight amendment to the erm,
Coleman (PS4JA) [...]
Small (PS4JB) [781] Well then I will move one and I will move Mr 's wording for three, and on two basically delete that the money should come from the identified savings made in the Chief Executive's department.
[782] It has the same effect Chair.
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [783] I have to say that when Mr was there, he didn't mention one single word about a supplementary revenue estimate, did he?
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [784] He didn't mention what it would cost, and we actually said, we hope by today he would
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [785] Chairman
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [786] come back with how much the the consultant would be.
[787] I'm agreeably surprised to see it's three thousand, I hope we're getting the quality of advice that is necessary for such a large organisation.
[788] Erm, I think it's important that we find, wherever that three thousand comes from, it's important we find it.
[789] This is a critical issue, because local government review is coming up fast.
[790] The other members of the consortium are worried about what's going to happen, and if we do if we do leave it to later on Chairman, the, we have every danger that the consortium will not be a core activity of the new authorities, it will end up in the residual body, and be, and just be sold.
[791] And I think what we're doing here, is is getting ahead of that, and trying to look to the future of the consortium.
[792] It's important we do it.
[793] If there are savings, identified savings in the Chief Executives department, I'm sure that that [...] from those to this should be the way forward, but er, I'm happy to second what Mr said, erm, with th and that is in three with the addition of in consultation with the county supplies officer.
Coleman (PS4JA) [794] Right, that's the motion passed by Mr seconded by Mr [...] .
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [795] Thank you Chair, as the chair of that meeting yesterday, I was wondering if I was at the same committee as this m these minutes came from, because when I read the minutes two and three, I certainly didn't remember us passing those.
[796] So first of all I would call in today the accuracy of the minutes, because as far as the revenue, supplementary revenue estimate was concerned, no figure was mentioned.
[797] In fact Mr did then say, where do we think we're going to get the money from?
[798] My comment was, I'm certain that by tomorrow afternoon, Mr you will have found somewhere from your little niche, [...] that you will find the money for it.
[799] And that was the comment that was made.
[800] No question was asked, of how you raise the supplementary estimate for this, and
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [801] You would find the money, and that was left to that.
[802] And through request to the county solicitor, it was again Mr quite rightly said, it was said we would, and we as a corporate body, i e the county council, and the C P D. And I would go along with the the er proposition.
Coleman (PS4JA) [803] Mr .
Okinson (PS4JD) [804] Chair, I'm just going to join Mr in in objecting to the supplementary estimate.
[805] I don't think there's any need for it, and there are substantial erm underspendings in the Chief Executives department already, if he wishes to spend it out of that.
[806] I would suggest even that since there is a surplus in C P D, [clears throat] of over a million pounds, that er, they are perfectly capable of funding their own studies.
[807] But, perhaps the intention is that er, they don't fund it, that it's funded by the county council, but certainly I don't think this committee should be approving a supplementary estimate.
[808] I don't think it's necessary in any circumstance.
Coleman (PS4JA) [809] [...] Mr [...]
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [810] Were you moving a [...] ?
Unknown speaker (JS9PSUNK) [811] Basically, I did s , well if you want a technically [...] but I've said [...] it comes out of the er, identified savings of the Chief Executive's department as already ma er made.
Coleman (PS4JA) [...] [tape ends]