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Decision details

Future Libraries Investment Programme

Decision Maker: Executive

Decision status: Decision Made

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes

Purpose:

Purpose of Report: To provide an update on the Council’s investment programme into Libraries, including proposals for investment based on public consultation and the Explore vision for libraries and archive services.

The Executive will be asked to:

·         Approve the capital expenditure for the programme against each project

·         Approve related property matters that are part of the projects solutions offered

·         Approve the procurement of building contracts

·        Approve lease arrangements between partners involved.

 

Decision:

Resolved: 

 

In relation to Project Finances (as detailed in Table 1)

 

(i)           That the Chief Operating Officer (COO) be recommended to approve the new overall Programme Capital Budget of £7.701m, including:

·        Additional borrowing of £1m to fund the Programme, subject to approval by Budget Council in February 2022.

·        Allocation of £0.3m from the council’s Climate Change budget to the new overall Programme Capital Budget.

·        Allocation of £0.8m from the Education (Basic Needs and SEND programmes) to the new overall Programme Capital Budget.

·        The ring fencing an re-investment in the new overall Programme Capital Budget of all future land sale income from the disposal of the existing Clifton Library site and housing land disposal as part of the CWJS site, assumed at the date of this report to be £400k for the existing Clifton Library site and £375k for the CWJS development housing land disposal.

 

In relation to Property Matters

 

(ii)         That the COO be recommended to approve the open market disposal (by freehold sale or long lease) of the existing Clifton Library site, as shown edged red on the plan at Annex E.  Such land not be disposed of until the CWJS development is complete.

 

(iii)        That the COO be recommended to approve, with effect from 1 August 2022, the appropriation of the former Clifton Without Junior School (CWJS) site, as shown red on the plan at Annex G, from being held for the purpose of school / education, to:

·  Library and ancillary social / community purposes in respect of that part of the site shown edged in green on Annex G;

·  Housing purposes in respect of that part of the site shown edged in blue on Annex G.

(the 8 year restriction period imposed by Paragraphs 4 and 6 of Schedule 1 of the Academies Act 2010 (“AA 2010”) requiring that the consent of the Secretary of State for Education is obtained for the disposal or appropriation/change in use of land which was used wholly or mainly for the purposes of a school/academy will expire by the end of July 2022 as any use for education purposes (non-sport/non playing-field use) ceased by 18 July 2014 according to confirmation received from Hope Sentamu Learning Trust).

 

(iv)        That the COO be recommended to approve the principle of disposal (by freehold sale or long lease) of that part of the former CWJS site shown edged in red on the boundary plan at Annex I for the purpose of affordable housing provision, including negotiation of the terms of and entering into any legal documentation including the requirements set out in paragraph 36 of the report, which shall be amended to read as follows:

·        The purchaser of the site will be required to adhere to all statutory permissions governing the development of the site, including planning considerations such as ecology (which shall include an objective to retain the majority of the Fairway hedgerow), Tree Protection Orders, landscaping, all other ecology issues and character of the scheme.

 

(v)         That the COO be recommended to approve the disposal by an open market sale (by freehold sale or long lease) of the vacant former Haxby Library site, as shown edged in red on the plan at Annex D, including negotiation of the terms of, and entering into, any necessary legal documentation.  Capital income from such sale returning to be classed as a corporate capital receipt.

 

(vi)        That the COO be recommended to approve the entry into a Settlement Agreement with Hope Sentamu Learning Trust (HSLT) regarding the former CWJS site, on the proposed terms set out in paragraphs 38-40 of the report.

 

(vii)      That the COO be recommended to approve the entry into an Agreement for Surrender and Leases with both Haxby & Wigginton Youth & Community Association (HWYCA) and Explore regarding a proposed new co-located library and community centre at Oaken Grove in Haxby whereby:

a.   The council will agree to apply for planning permission for the proposed development.

b.   If and when planning permission is granted on satisfactory terms:

·        HWYCA will surrender its current lease of the site back to the council;

·        the council’s chosen contractor will carry out the necessary construction works, on completion of which:

o the council will grant HWYCA a replacement Head Lease of the redeveloped site on similar terms to HWYCA’s existing lease (at nil Premium and peppercorn rent for a Term expiring on 31December 2102);

o HWYCA will grant the council a long sublease of the ‘library exclusive areas’ (with a communal right to use the ‘shared used areas’) for a Term expiring circa 25 December 2102 at nil Premium and peppercorn rent until the 34th anniversary of the lease date (‘the Rent Commencement Date’) (after the Rent Commencement Date the rent payable by the council to HWYCA would increase to open market rent, which would after that point be subject to upwards only review every 5 years but the council can terminate the lease at any point after the Rent Commencement Date by giving at least 6 months’ prior written notice to HWYCA);

o the council will in turn grant Explore a sublease of the ‘library exclusive areas’ (with a communal right to use the ‘shared used areas’) at nil Premium and at peppercorn rent for a Term/period expiring on 31 March 2034 (with option for grant of further lease if the libraries service contract between the council and Explore is extended.

 

(viii)     That the COO be recommended to delegate authority to the Director of Housing, Economy & Regeneration, in consultation with the Director of Governance and the Executive Member for Culture, Leisure & Communities, to negotiate the terms of and enter into any and all legal agreements necessary to implement the property transactions referred to above including, but not limited to, the leases with HWYCA and Explore relating to the site at Oaken Grove in Haxby consequent upon the proposed Agreement for Surrender and Leases.

 

In relation to all other matters in respect of the Programme

 

(ix)        That the COO be recommended to approve the principle of future development at the current Explore Centre at Acomb and associated public consultation.

 

(x)         With regard to the CWJS Development, that the COO be recommended to grant approval for the council to undertake works within the adjoining Vale of York Academy site (which is leased by the council to HSLT) to create a new access path for students, safe vehicle access to the school parking with safe delivery and drop off points, and relocation of a school garage that sits across the land boundary.

 

(xi)        That the COO be recommended to delegate authority to the Director of Customer & Communities, in conjunction with the Director of Governance and in consultation with the Executive Member for Culture, Leisure & Communities, to develop and submit planning applications in 2022 for both H&W and Clifton library developments.

 

(xii)      That, following successful planning approvals, the COO be recommended to delegate authority to the Director of Customer & Communities, in consultation with the Director of Governance and the Chief Finance Officer, to procure the building contractors to deliver the construction of H&W and Clifton library developments and enter into the relevant necessary contracts.

 

(xiii)     That the current anticipated Programme timetables for delivery, as set out in the report at tables 3-5, be acknowledged.

 

Reason: To progress with the Programme, entering into all necessary legal agreements, to deliver new libraries for Haxby & Wigginton and Clifton, and start the public conversation with regard to planned future development at the current Explore Centre in Acomb.

 

Report author: Andrew Laslett

Publication date: 14/01/2022

Date of decision: 13/01/2022

Decided at meeting: 13/01/2022 - Executive

Effective from: 18/01/2022

Accompanying Documents:

 

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