Local democracy during coronavirus

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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Danesgate Skills Centre, Fulford Cross, YO10 4PB

Contact: Jayne Carr  Democracy Officer

Items
No. Item

1.

Drop-in Surgery

Minutes:

The main meeting had been preceded by a drop-in surgery which had provided residents with the opportunity to meet and speak informally with ward councillors, the street environment officer, the safer neighbourhood policing team and the neighbourhood management officer.

 

2.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 90 KB

To approve and sign the minutes of the last meeting of the Committee held on 2 February 2012.

Minutes:

RESOLVED:       That the minutes of the Fishergate Ward Committee meeting held on 2 February 2012 be approved and signed as a correct record.

 

Residents were informed of the new arrangements in respect of

ward committee meetings.  Because of budgetary cuts and a

reduction in staffing within the Neighbourhood Services team, there would now only be one formal meeting each year, although there would be the opportunity for informal meetings to be held. 

 

Concerns were expressed that the agenda for the meeting had not

been widely publicised.

 

 

3.

Safer Neighbourhood Policing Team

A representative from the Policing Team will talk about and answer questions on their work in the ward.

Minutes:

 

PC Andrew Thompson and Sergeant Fiona Willey gave an update on the work of the Safer Neighbourhood Team.

·        Fishergate continued to be a low crime ward but there had been a slight increase in burglary of dwellings when compared to the previous year.  These were mainly sneak-in burglaries targeted at the student population.

·        Burglaries of shed and garages had reduced, as had incidents of criminal damage.

·        There had been a slight increase in drugs offences but these related to drugs found on criminals at the Police Station. 

·        Theft had increased by 11 crimes compared to the previous year.  This mainly related to the targeting of local convenience stores.

·        Theft from motor vehicles had increased but there had only been one theft of a motor vehicle.

·        Violence had increased but seven of these incidents related to assaults on police officers at the Police Station.

·        An operation was taking place to seek to reduce burglaries and theft.

·        Action was also being undertaken to tackle incidents of anti-social behaviour on Millennium Bridge.  The use of the anti-social behaviour vehicle was continuing.

 

Clarification was sought as to the situation in respect of the old Reg Vardy garage.  Officers explained that they had been assured by the owners of the property that action was being taken although confirmation was awaited as to the nature of this.  If the situation was not resolved the Council and the Police would work together to address the matter.

 

Officers were asked if statistics on road traffic offences were available on a ward basis.  They stated that they would look into this matter.  Details were given of the 95 Alive project. 

 

Residents noted that the new administration had made a commitment to extend the 20mph policy on residential roads but that this was not due to be implemented in Fishergate Ward until the third year of the programme.  The policy would apply to side streets but not arterial roads unless there were specific policy decisions to do so.

 

Residents asked if there had been a reduction in the number of PCSOs.  Officers stated that this was not the case but detailed how they were now being used. 

 

Officers were thanked for their report.

 

RESOLVED:       That the Safer Neighbourhood Policing Team update be noted.

 

REASON:            To ensure that Members and residents are updated on the work of the Safer Neighbourhood Team.

 

4.

Have Your Say

At this point in the meeting you can raise any issues or concerns you may have in respect of the ward.

Minutes:

An opportunity was given for residents to raise any issues or concerns they may have in respect of the ward.  The following issues were raised:

 

·        Residents present at the meeting expressed their concerns at the decision to reduce the number of formal ward committee meetings to only one per year.  A show of hands confirmed that there was a general consensus that the reduction in formal meetings was a diminution of local democracy and that representation should be made against the change in arrangements.

 

·        Concerns were expressed regarding the Council’s decision to no longer provide bin bags for properties that could not accommodate a wheelie bin.  This situation was of particular concern to those living in terraced properties.  Members stated that they had unsuccessfully opposed the Council’s decision to no longer provide the bags.  The decision had been taken as part of the budget cuts.    If residents in a particular street wished to be provided with wheelie bins Members could make this request on their behalf if requested.

 

·        A resident asked why the bench on Fulford Road, just north of the junction with Hospital Fields Road, had been removed.  Councillor D’Agorne stated that he would look into this matter.

 

·        Concerns were expressed by a resident of Ambrose Street about the careless way in which recycling boxes were placed when they had been emptied.  This was posing a risk to the visually impaired.1

 

·        Concerns were expressed regarding the phasing of the traffic lights at Broadway.  Councillor D’Agorne explained that he believed that this was as a result to damage caused when investigations were taking place regarding a gas leak.  He would ascertain what action the Council was taking to ensure the problem was rectified.

 

·        A resident stated that the pedestrian crossing light was not working correctly.  It was noted that any such problems could be reported to the Council by telephoning 551551.

 

5.

Ward Committee Funded Schemes 2012/13

To formally agree the schemes to be funded through the Ward Committee for 2012/13 (to view the schemes for the ward go to www.york.gov.uk/wards/)

Minutes:

[Councillor D’Agorne and Councillor Taylor declared personal interests in this item as Friends of New Walk]

 

Details were given of the schemes to be funded through the Ward Committee for 2012/13.

 

It was noted that funding had now been divided into three components:

 

(i)           Ward Budgets – to commission local voluntary and community organisations to meet identified needs.

(ii)          Other Voluntary Sector Support – funding to support those voluntary sector organisations that provide services to more than one ward committee.

(iii)        Ward Credits – to be allocated to identified wards to be used to commission new services, either from within the council or from other partners.

 

The Ward Committee budget had previously been around £24,000 but this had been reduced to £3,280.  There was, however, also funding available for which groups could apply. The Neighbourhood Management Officer stated that she could assist groups in this process.

 

Concerns were expressed regarding the changes in ward funding.  Views were put forward that the previous arrangements had been recommended as good practice and demonstrated strong local democracy.  Discussion took place as to how this could be addressed, including the possible utilisation of the Council’s Petitions Scheme. 

 

Residents were informed that the criteria as to how the funding could be allocated had impacted on the decisions as to which schemes should be approved.  These were as follows:

·        £800 to the Melbourne Centre to provide health and fitness classes to Fishergate residents.

·        £700 to YUMI to purchase a polytunnel.

·        £1000 to Friends of New Walk for an information board.

·        £780 into a community chest.  Applications that fall within this budget were invited from ward based community groups.

 

It was noted that the funding for these schemes was significantly less than had been applied for. 

 

The situation in respect of salt bins, including those that had previously been funded from the ward funding, was also noted.

 

RESOLVED:       That the allocation of ward funding, as outlined above, be approved.

 

REASON:            To enable ward grant funding to be allocated to local ward schemes for the forthcoming year.

 

6.

Residential Parking

Minutes:

Members explained that residents of Maple Grove had raised concerns regarding the level of commuter parking around their homes.  The situation had culminated in an incident when a refuse collection vehicle had been unable to access the road and therefore the bins could not be emptied.

 

The problems in Maple Grove had been considered as part of the annual review of parking and a proposal had been put forward that parking be restricted to one side of the road and that action be taken regarding the turning point.  A number of residents had stated that they would like a residents’ parking permit scheme to be introduced.  Consultation was currently taking place on this proposal.  Changes in legislation meant that it was no longer necessary to have marked bays.  If the scheme were to be introduced, signs would be sited at the entrance to the cul de sac notifying drivers of the restrictions that were in place.

 

Some residents expressed concern that if a residents parking scheme were to be introduced in Maple Grove it would result in the problems being relocated elsewhere.  Residents of other streets, including Ambrose Street, stated that they were experiencing similar problems with commuter parking.  They were advised of the consultation process and the costs of the permits.

 

Concerns were also expressed regarding enforcement issues in respect of the parking restrictions in place in Fulford Cross.  This matter would be raised with Parking Services.1

 

Members stated that discussions had taken place with some local businesses to seek their support in encouraging their employees to use public transport to travel to and from work to alleviate the issues that were arising in respect of commuter parking.

7.

Your Ward Forum

To help identify issues to be the focus for the next informal meeting.

Minutes:

Residents were asked to identify any issues that they would wish to be considered at future ward committee meetings.

 

RESOLVED:       That, at the next meeting, an update be provided

                             on the parking arrangements in Maple Grove.

 

REASON:            To enable the effectiveness of the arrangements, and any implications for other streets in the area, to be considered.

 

Members stated that they would welcome further suggestions for

future agenda items.

 

8.

Fishergate Gyratory Proposals

Minutes:

Plans were on display regarding the proposals for the Fishergate Gyratory.  The formal consultation process was due to commence in the near future and consideration was being given as to how best to ensure that the local community had opportunities to view the proposals.  The Section 106 funding from the Barbican Development had been  earmarked for the work.    Residents were encouraged to contribute to the consultation process.

 

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