Local democracy during coronavirus

During coronavirus, we've made some changes to how we're running council meetings. See our coronavirus updates for more information on meetings and decisions.

Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Remote Meeting

Webcast: video recording

No. Item

Opening Remarks of the Chair

The Chair thanked those Officers who had enabled the Council’s first public remote scrutiny meeting to take place and he noted some permanent changes to the Committee’s membership, (Cllr Wann had been replaced by Cllr Pearson and Cllr Vassie had been replaced by Cllr Hollyer). He thanked Cllr Wann and Cllr Vassie for their input over the last year and he also thanked the former Scrutiny Officer, Steven Entwhistle, for his support over the years and wished him well in his retirement.


Declarations of Interest

At this point, 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.



At this point in the meeting, Members were asked to declare any personal interests not included on the Register of Interests, prejudicial interest or any discloseable pecuniary interest which they may have in respect of business on the agenda. None were declared. 




Minutes pdf icon PDF 123 KB

To approve and sign the Minutes of the meeting held on 9 March 2020.


Resolved:  That the minutes of the meeting held on 9 March 2020 be approved as a correct record and be signed by the Chair at a later date.




Public Participation

At this point in the meeting members of the public who have registered to speak can do so. The deadline for registering is 5.00pm on Thursday 2 July 2020. Members of the public can speak on agenda items or matters within the remit of the Committee.


To register to speak please contact Democratic Services, on the details at the foot of the agenda. You will then be advised on the procedures for dialling into the remote meeting.


Webcasting of Remote Public Meetings


Please note that, subject to available resources, this remote public meeting will be webcast including any registered public speakers who have given their permission. The remote public meeting can be viewed live and on demand at www.york.gov.uk/webcasts.


During the coronavirus pandemic, we've made some changes to the way we run council meetings. See our coronavirus updates (www.york.gov.uk/COVIDDemocracy) for more information on meetings and decisions.






It was reported that they had been one registration to speak under the Council’s Public Participation Scheme.


Ms Swinburn spoke on agenda item 4, The Councils Response to Covid 19.  She expressed her dissatisfaction with the content of the report and the current committee meeting structure. She felt that face to face meetings needed to reconvene as soon as possible.


The Council's Response to Covid 19 pdf icon PDF 238 KB

This report presents, at Annex 1, the Council’s immediate response to the Covid 19 pandemic, as submitted to and considered by the Executive at its meeting on 7 May 2020 and provides an opportunity for this Committee to reflect upon how the Council and in part the City responded to the pandemic in terms of its impact on York and its residents.

Additional documents:


Members considered a report and annex that highlighted the Council’s immediate response to the Covid 19 pandemic, as submitted to and considered by the Executive at its meeting on 7 May 2020.


The Chair expressed the Committee’s gratitude to all City of York Council staff for supporting the City during the pandemic and for ensuring essential services continued. He confirmed that at this meeting, Members would receive a number of updates that would reflect upon how each directorate had responded initially to the pandemic.


The Interim Head of Paid Service thanked all staff, key workers, partners, service operators, residents and volunteers who were responding every day to new and changing priorities. He informed Members of the emergency planning measures put in place, to ensure the organisation responded quickly to the crisis and the Council’s current financial position, where it was noted that officers would continue to lobby Government for further financial assistance to support the significant pressures. 


The Director of Public Health gave a brief overview and confirmed that following the guidance from Public Health England, changes were made to the delivery of some statutory public health services. She commended all public health staff and partners for their response to the pandemic and for supporting vulnerable groups and numerous organisations, including schools and the NHS. 


Officers then answered a number of Members questions and agreed, that due to time constraints, they would supply a written response to any unanswered questions and it was noted that for clarity, the responses would be annexed to the minutes. 


A short adjournment took place at 3:04pm and the meeting reconvened at 3:12pm


The Chair welcomed the Corporate Director of Children, Education and Communities, the Assistant Director of Joint Commissioning, the Head of Housing Delivery and the Corporate Director of Economy and Place to the meeting, where they each supplied Members with a short presentation of their key areas, covering:


        What non-essential work stopped during lockdown.

        What new work had to start.

        What worked well and what could be improved.


Following each presentation, officers answered Members questions and in summary and in noting the work undertaken to date, the Chair invited Committee Members to register their suggested areas for business.


The Chair thanked all officers for their updates.




(i)      That the information received at Annex 1 of the report and from the presentations made at the meeting be considered.


(ii)      That future business for scrutiny be emailed to the Chair.


Reason: To ensure that proper and effective scrutiny was in place in relation to the Councils response to Covid 19.

Question and Answers pdf icon PDF 109 KB


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