Local democracy during coronavirus

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Agenda and minutes

Venue: The George Hudson Board Room - 1st Floor West Offices (F045). View directions

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Items
No. Item

59.

Declarations of Interest

At this point in the meeting, Members are asked to declare:

 

·        any personal interests not included on the Register of Interests

·        any prejudicial interests or

·        any disclosable pecuniary interests

 

which they may have in respect of business on this agenda.

Minutes:

At this point in the meeting, Members were asked to declare if

they had any personal interests not included on the Register of

Interests or any prejudicial or disclosable pecuniary interests

that they might have had in the business on the agenda.

 

Several Members noted that they did not have a prejudicial or disclosable pecuniary interest. However, Cllr Aspden and Cllr D’Agorne and noted that he had previously contributed to the North Yorkshire Pension Fund due to their previous jobs in education. Cllr Hook also noted that she was currently on the North Yorkshire Pension Fund Board.

60.

Exclusion of Press and Public

To consider the exclusion of the press and public from the meeting during consideration of the following:

 

Annexes A, B, C, and D to Agenda Item 9 on the grounds that they contain information relating to individuals and the financial affairs of particular persons. This information is classed as exempt under paragraphs 1, 2 and 3 of Schedule 12A to Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as revised by The Local Government (Access to Information) (Variation) Order 2006).

Minutes:

Resolved: That the press and public be excluded from the

meeting during the consideration of annexes to Agenda Item 9 on the grounds that they contained information relating to individuals and the financial affairs of particular persons. This information is classed as exempt under Paragraphs 1, 2 and 3 of Schedule 12A to Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as revised by the Local Government (Access to Information) (Variation) Order 2006).

61.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 118 KB

To approve and sign the minutes of the meeting of the Staffing Matters & Urgency Committee held on 17 January 2022.

Minutes:

Resolved: That the minutes of the Staffing Matters and Urgency Committee held on 17 January 2022 be approved and then signed by the Chair as a correct record with the following amendments:

 

a)   That minute 50 be amended to state that members asked for additional information as to why (not where) individuals had resigned from their position at the Council.

 

b)   That the resolved of minute 51 be amended to read ‘The Committee agreed to defer the item to the meeting of the Committee on 15 February 2022.’

 

62.

Public Participation

At this point in the meeting members of the public who have

registered to speak can do so. Please note that our registration

deadlines have changed to 2 working days before the meeting, in

order to facilitate the management of public participation at our

meetings. The deadline for registering is 5.00pm on 11 February

2022 Members of the public can speak on agenda items or

matters within the remit of the committee.

 

To register to speak please visit

www.york.gov.uk/AttendCouncilMeetings to fill out an online

registration form. If you have any questions about the registration

form or the meeting please contact the Democracy Officer for the

meeting whose details can be found at the foot of the agenda.

 

Webcasting of Public Meetings

Please note that, subject to available resources, this public

meeting will be webcast including any registered public speakers

who have given their permission. The public meeting can be

viewed on demand at www.york.gov.uk/webcasts. During

coronavirus, we've made some changes to how we're running

council meetings. See our coronavirus updates

(www.york.gov.uk/COVIDDemocracy) for more information on

meetings and decisions.

Minutes:

It was reported that there had been one registration to speak at

the meeting under the Council’s Public Participation Scheme.

 

Gwen Swinburn asked why reports and Council meetings didn’t have a section for officer declarations of interest. She stated that she felt the proposed LGPS Discretions Policy to Implement a Shared Cost Additional Voluntary Contribution Scheme would only support highly paid Council officers avoid tax and lacked an equalities impact. She asked that the Committee defer the item to gain more information.

63.

Changes to Membership of Committees, Joint Committees administered by other Councils, Regional Local Authority Bodies and Other Bodies pdf icon PDF 155 KB

This report presented a proposed change to decisions made at the Annual Council meeting on 27 May 2021, relating to appointments to Committees, Sub-Committees and Outside Bodies for the 2021/22 municipal year. The proposed change relates to membership of a Regional Local Authority body.

Minutes:

The Committee noted the request to amend the appointment to the West Yorkshire Combined Authority – Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee and agreed to Cllr Fitzpatrick being named as a substitute member.

 

Resolved:

 

                      i.         Approved the change to outside body appointments for the West Yorkshire Combined Authority – Corporate Overview and Scrutiny Committee with Cllr Fitzpatrick being named as a substitute member.

 

Reason:     In order to make appropriate Council appointments to

representatives on Outside Bodies for the remainder of the current municipal year.

64.

Amendment to the Council's LGPS Discretions Policy to Implement a Shared Cost Additional Voluntary Contribution Scheme pdf icon PDF 235 KB

This report requests approval for an amendment to the Council’s LGPS Discretionary Policy Statement in order to comply with The Local Government Pension Scheme Regulations 2013 (the “LGPS Regulations”), to implement a Shared Cost Additional Voluntary Contribution Scheme (SCAVC) for employees.

Minutes:

Officers introduced the report outlining the recommendation to amend the Local Government Pension Scheme Regulations 2013 (LGPS) to implement a Shared Cost Additional Voluntary Contribution Scheme (SCAVC) for employees. They outlined how the salary sacrifice scheme would work for employees and the Council. It was confirmed that the proposed supplier was the only one in the market offering this scheme. It was confirmed that the scheme would come with a 4.5% charge to the Council, which officers confirmed should be saved through lower National Insurance contributions.

 

Members enquired about whether the scheme was supported by HMRC and whether future problems could arise if HMRC challenged the Council to pay any money back. Officers confirmed that the PS Tax outlined that they were backed by HMRC and therefore, officers didn’t expect issues arising in the future. Members asked how many employees officers expected to take up the new scheme. Officers confirmed that 110 employees were currently taking up the Council’s Additional Voluntary Contributions scheme (AVC) and expected around 90% of those employees to transfer over or use both schemes. Members enquired why so few employees accessed the current AVC and whether the new scheme would largely just benefit the highest paid Council employees. Officers noted that the scheme would be promoted to all employees and as long as someone didn’t sacrifice their salary below the national minimum wage they would be able to participate in the scheme, however, it was confirmed that the scheme would benefit most those with the highest salaries.

 

The Committee discussed whether to support the scheme. Members noted the proposed savings to the Council which would cover the costs for participating in the scheme, they asked for further detail to be provided to the Committee about expected cost depending on the number of employees that take up the scheme. Members also agreed that they would wish for confirmation directly from HMRC that they supported the scheme. Therefore, Members discussed the prospect of delaying a decision until this information was available. Officers noted that a delay to the decision would lose the Council its current position to implement the scheme and would likely be delayed until October.

 

 

 

Resolved:

 

                      i.         That a decision be deferred to the Committees 21 March 2022 meeting;

                     ii.         That the financial breakdown of savings for the Council and the projected costs and savings depending on the number of employees that would take up the scheme be shared with the Committee;

                    iii.        That a programme for how the scheme would be advertised to staff from across the workforce to be able to take advantage of the scheme. Also where possible a breakdown of employees under which pay grades currently take up the Council’s current AVC and what experience PS Tax have from implementing at other Councils to be shared with the Committee;

                   iv.        That if approved at the 21 March 2022 then the Committee agreed to schedule an annual report for a meeting around a year after the scheme is implemented to review take up  ...  view the full minutes text for item 64.

65.

Work Plan pdf icon PDF 163 KB

To consider the Committee’s draft work plan for the municipal year 2021/22.

Minutes:

The Committee considered their work plan for 2021/22 and noted that the Amendment to the Council’s LGPS Discretions Policy to Implement a Shared Cost Additional Voluntary Contribution Scheme item would be added to the Committees 21 March 2022 meeting. Officers also confirmed that they would bring the Workforce demographics as of 31 March 2022 would be added to the Committees work plan for either May or June 2022. The Committee also requested that an item be added to look at the use of recruitment consultants on recruitment panels.

 

Resolved:

 

                      i.         That the Amendment to the Council’s LGPS Discretions Policy to Implement a Shared Cost Additional Voluntary Contribution Scheme item would be added to the Committees 21 March 2022 meeting;

                     ii.         That the Workforce Demographics as of 31 March 2022 be added to the Committees work plan for either May or June 2022;

                    iii.        That an item to review the use of recruitment consultants on recruitment panels be added to the Committee work plan.

 

Reason:     To ensure the Committee maintains a program of work for 2021-22.

66.

Redundancy, Pension or Exit Discretion pdf icon PDF 129 KB

This report advises the Staffing Matters and Urgency Committee of the expenditure associated with redundancy, pension or exit discretions paid in accordance with council policy to employees below Chief Officer.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members considered a report which advised them of expenditure

associated with pension or exit discretions. An overview of expenditure was provided in the table at paragraph 5 of the report. There were total costs to the council of £113,904.22 and £17,610.23 in relation to two compulsory redundancies. Full details were set out in exempt Annexes A, B, C, and D to the report.

 

Resolved:

 

                      i.         That the expenditure associated with each proposal, as detailed in the report annexes, be noted.

 

Reason:     So that the council has an overview of expenditure.

 

Note: the above item was considered in private session, in accordance with the decision in Minute 60.

 

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