Agenda and draft minutes
Venue: Remote Via Zoom
Contact: Angela Bielby Democracy Officer
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.
Members were asked to declare, at this point in the meeting, any personal interests, not included on the Register of Interests, or any prejudicial or disclosable pecuniary interests they may have in respect of business on the agenda. There were none.
To approve and sign the minutes of the Planning Committee meetings held on 7 October 2021, 4 November 2021 and 2 December 2021.
Members were informed that it was a virtual meeting being held remotely at which the Committee would make a recommendation which would be ratified by the Chief Operating Officer.
The Director of Governance (and Monitoring Officer) explained that the decision to revert to holding council meetings remotely was taken at the end of December in light of public health advice on COVID. She advised that this was an informal meeting and that decisions would be made by the Chief Operating Officer. She added that the meeting arrangements were being kept under review by Group Leaders, the Leader of the Council, the Chief Operating Officer and public health.
A Member expressed concern about the legal status of the meeting and asked if the Chief Operating Officer was required to follow Committee recommendations. He asked for reassurance on this from the Monitoring Officer and Senior Solicitor. The Director of Governance (and Monitoring Officer) explained that it was an informal meeting that would be used in consultation with the Chief Operating Officer in his decision making. She added that he had indicated that he would follow Members recommendations. She advised that the Council’s Constitution allowed for the Chief Operating Officer to make decisions. She noted that if the Chief Operating Officer had concerns regarding recommendations being put forward, he could ask for further consultation with Members. She then clarified that this was an informal meeting to make recommendations to the Chief Operating Officer. She confirmed that she was satisfied that the meeting could go ahead and the legalities of it.
A Member requested that the Public Participation agenda item should be taken before the Minutes agenda item. Cllr Ayre proposed and Cllr Daubeney seconded the following amendment to the minutes of the meeting held on 6 October 2021 (minute 49 paragraph 13 of the minute for the Os Field 2800, Eastfield Lane, Dunnington, York[20/01626/FULM] application:
After members voted, the Chair commented on his reasons for abstaining which some other members considered to pre-determine him for future applications.
Concerning the minutes of the meeting held on 2 December 2021, Cllr Daubeney proposed the removal of his name from the attendance list and to be added to the apologies list. The Chair proposed a further amendment under Declarations of Interest of those minutes to amend the last sentence to:
The Chair noted that Roger Pierce, registered to speak on the item, was a senior officer at a council that the Chair was a Council Member of, and as such, the Chair would leave the meeting for that item with Cllr Pavlovic, Vice Chair, taking over as Chair for that item.
Concerning the minutes of the meeting held on 7 October 2021, a Member asked for clarification on the final bullet point of the minute for the Os Field 2800, Eastfield Lane, Dunnington, York
[20/01626/FULM] application regarding consultation with Ward Councillors and local Parish Councillors on Construction
Environment Management Plan. At this point in the meeting, a Member expressed concern regarding the amendment to minutes of ... view the full minutes text for item 62.
At this point in the meeting members of the public who have registered to speak can do so. Members of the public may speak on agenda items or on matters within the remit of the committee.
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 remote meetings. The deadline for registering at this meeting is 5:00pm on Tuesday 4 January 2022.
To register to speak please visit www.york.gov.uk/AttendCouncilMeetings to fill in an online registration form. If you have any questions about the registration form or the meeting, please contact Democratic Services. Contact details can be found at the foot of this agenda.
Webcasting of Public Meetings
Please note that, subject to available resources, this meeting will be webcast, including any registered public speakers who have given their permission. The meeting can be viewed live and 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.
It was reported that there had been one registration to speak at the meeting under the Council’s Public Participation Scheme on general matters within the remit of the Planning Committee. The registered speaker, Gwen Swinburn, was not available at this point in the meeting and the Chair noted that she would be contacted to speak at later point in the meeting.
This item invites Members to determine the following planning application:
Members considered a schedule of reports of the Assistant Director, Planning and Public Protection, relating to the following planning applications, outlining the proposals and relevant policy considerations and setting out the views of consultees and officers.
Members considered a major full application from Urbanite, S & J D Robertson Group Ltd And Portman Land Ltd for the erection of 5 storey student accommodation building with associated car parking following demolition of existing buildings at Aubrey House, Foss Islands Road, York, YO31 7UP.
The Head of Planning and Development Services gave a presentation on the application. She then gave an update to Members advising that further comments had been received from York Civic Trust, the submission of revised plans for the application, and proposed additional conditions on the flood evacuation plan, cycle parking, and removal of a redundant crossing. She also advised Members of the following change to the recommendation:
In light of the urgent decision making procedures contained within the Council’s Constitution being invoked, this Planning Committee meeting will be held remotely. Upon considering the Application, Members will make a recommendation as to whether they are minded to approve or refuse the Officer’s recommendation. The outcome of this meeting will then be communicated to the Chief Operating Officer who will make the formal decision taking into account views of the Members.
She then outlined the recommendation to the Chief Operating Officer should Members agree.
At this point the Chair advised Members that following consultation with the Vice Chair, Chief Planning Officer (Head of Planning and Development Services), and Monitoring Officer, there was agreement on the change of procedure at the meeting to take public participants on the application first, followed by Member questions to the public participant and Officers.
Emma Lancaster, Agent for the Applicant, spoke in support of the application. She explained that the applicant had a strong track record of student accommodation, including the Courtyard student accommodation in York. She noted that it was high quality accommodation. She noted that whilst Aubrey House was a reminder of the past, it was not listed and that the building behind it was temporarily used by a community group but was not suitable for community use.
In response to Member questions, Emma Lancaster explained that:
· The layout of the cycle parking store was devised working with highways officers and as a result the cycle parking on ground level had increased. There were single and two tier cycle racks.
· Regarding there being no windows on the rear elevation, it was the relationship with the building to the rear that led to the blank elevation to avoid the sense of overlooking into the building behind.
· The accessible rooms on the ground, first, and second floors were in proximity to the central lift and there was level access from the car park to those rooms, which were fully DDA compliant.
In response to Member questions, Officer clarified that:
· There was a mix of accommodation on the site, with eleven cluster flats providing 62 bed spaces. There was also communal space and a terrace. Some rooms were smaller and some larger as was the mix of other student accommodation across the city. Officers did not have any concerns about the ... view the full minutes text for item 64a
Any other business which the Chair considers urgent under the Local Government Act 1972.
Gwen Swinburn felt that the meeting was unlawful and asked which councils were conducting their meetings online. She listed the councils that held their meetings in person. She suggested that the agenda should not have been issued without stating which law was being referred to. She requested that the Chief Operating Officer to include areas of recommendations that he had not approved. She requested a change to the order of the meeting and a peer review into the Planning Committee.
The Chair asked if Members felt that questions to speakers and officers after public participation was better. A Member felt that it was better.