Agenda item

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 Monday 6 October  2014.  Members of the public can speak on agenda items or matters within the remit of the committee.


To register to speak please contact the Democracy Officer for the meeting, on the details at the foot of the agenda.


Filming, Recording or Webcasting Meetings

“Please note this meeting will be filmed and webcast and that includes any registered public speakers, who have given their permission.  This broadcast can be viewed at


Residents are welcome to photograph, film or record Councillors and Officers at all meetings open to the press and public. This includes the use of social media reporting, i.e. tweeting.  Anyone wishing to film, record or take photos at any public meeting should contact the Democracy Officer (whose contact details are at the foot of this agenda) in advance of the meeting.


The Council’s protocol on Webcasting, Filming & Recording of Meetings ensures that these practices are carried out in a manner both respectful to the conduct of the meeting and all those present.  It can be viewed at



It was reported that there had been ten registrations to speak at the meeting under the Council’s Public Participation Scheme, one of which had subsequently withdrawn, and that six Members of Council had also requested to speak on items, details of which are set out below:


Matter within the remit of the Committee


Cllr Warters spoke in relation to savings proposals for the Eco Depot, in particular to proposed staffing reductions and the removal of the pest control service which affected staff morale. He requested the Cabinet Member to allow scrutiny of the proposals for the pest control service, prior to a final decision being made.


Delivering Marketing, Culture, Tourism and Business Development – Stage 3


Jane Gibson, spoke as Chair of Visit York, referring to the consultation and planning undertaken, over a two year period, in development of the new approach to delivering marketing, culture, tourism and business development in the city. She referred to the issues faced by silo working which hindered staff ideas and which would now be allowed to flourish in the new company. She expressed her thanks to all Members and Officers for their input into production of the draft Business Plan. 


Cllr Steward expressed his support for the proposals outlined in the draft business plan for Newco which would provide a good opportunity for the city. He confirmed that his only concerns related to the financial aspects of the plan.


Cllr Cuthbertson, spoke to confirm that this comments were on behalf of the Liberal Democrat Group rather than his own as a member of the Yorkshire Museums Trust. He confirmed that the Group welcomed the new way of working outlined in the report. There were concerns however at the lack of a detailed business case, outline of specific planned responsibilities and details  of projects and outcomes. They asked for work to be undertaken to ensure that existing ‘brands’ such as Visit York were maintained and enhanced. They also reiterated their concern, as previously reported to Cabinet, regarding the £230,000 of cuts in the area of Arts and Culture before the transition to NewCo.


The Punch Bowl Public House, Lowther Street, York – Article 4 Direction


Paul Giller spoke as a regular of the Punch Bowl, pointing out that this was a community pub, a place where locals could socialise. He confirmed that being registered as partially blind he felt comfortable in the premises which provided a safe haven for both himself and the local community.


Paul Crossman, spoke as an owner and co-owner  of a number of public houses in the city referring to a number of similar changes of use of public houses both locally and nationally.   He asked Members to support the request for the Article 4 Direction and confirmed that whilst compensation was an issue this had never been pursued.


Nick Love, spoke as a member of York CAMRA and as a customer of the Punch Bowl, public house, he reiterated his support for the making of an Article 4 Direction as the only method of protecting this community asset. He also reiterated that no compensation claims had been made in relation to other Article 4 Directions around the country and highlighted the exceptional circumstances in this particular case. He urged Members to support the request and asked them to note the 1200 signature petition also in support.


Cllr Watson spoke of the amenity the Punch Bowl provided for the local community.  He raised concerns at any changes to the existing frontage, to future delivery and parking issues and asked Members to protect the building and support an Article 4 Direction.


Proposed Expansion of Fulford Secondary School


Cllr Brooks spoke to welcome the proposals for a new sports hall for Fulford School.


Rewiring Public Services: Business Case for Children’s Services


Carol Pugh, spoke as a concerned resident and parent, regarding the proposals to relocate the Castlegate based services to West Offices. She referred to the holistic approach currently provided at Castlegate, a vital service for young people which was not offered anywhere else in the city. She also expressed concern that feedback from Castlegate did not reflect that reported from the user group in the report. Finally she referred to ongoing work by support staff to find holistic options as to how the service could be maintained but expressed concerns at the short timeframe in which to examine possible options.


Helen Aitchison also expressed concerns as to how the Castlegate service would operate at West Offices. She referred to the vulnerable young people who accessed the holistic service provided in a safe environment in Castlegate. As a volunteer counsellor she also expressed concern as to who would fill the gap. She referred to the long waiting times for access to mental health services and suggested that the proposals would further diminish the support available for young adults, also confirming closure of Castlegate to young people of York could not be underestimated


Heather McKenzie, spoke on behalf of Unison, referred to the extensive staff cut’s proposed for Children’s Services which would have a negative financial and social impact . She highlighted the great importance of the services to both users and staff pointing out that the services had previously been put forward as ‘best practice’ showing positive outcomes. She also referred to the excellent holistic approach being offered at Castlegate and to the lack of capacity of voluntary organisations to take on this work. Reference was also made to the expertise developed by the staff and to ongoing work examining delivery of the service as a social enterprise.


Dawn Moores, referred to the assistance given to vulnerable people at Castlegate over a number of years, giving examples of the variety of help provided . She referred to the online petition already containing 750 signatures against closure of Castlegate and asked Members to look at alternative proposals for the service. 


Cllr Cuthbertson also spoke to express his concerns in relation to the proposed closure of Castlegate. He pointed out that West Offices were not considered to be the correct venue for disadvantaged  and vulnerable young people to gain access to the services they required.

Cllr Runciman also spoke to raise her concerns at the transfer of services from Castlegate to West Offices which she felt would not help young people. She referred to the number of people who suffered from mental health problems and to the need to deal with these at an early stage to prevent them escalating and for early intervention to keep young people out of the justice system. She highlighted the accessibility, flexibility and user friendly nature of Castlegate and asked Members to delay a decision and undertake further consultation to examine alternative options for the service. 


Cllr Brooks spoke to express her concerns in relation to the closure of Castlegate which would affect the most vulnerable young people in the city. She also asked Members to delay making any decision to examine other ways of carrying out this valuable service. She reiterated that West Offices were not a suitable venue for this service and asked Cabinet to re-examine their proposals.


Domestic Waste Recycling Scrutiny Review Final Report


Sarah Mason spoke in relation to this scrutiny review, as a Bachelor of Science graduate in Environmental Science who had carried out her dissertation in the Council’s Waste Strategy department. She referred to the data she had gathered as part of her investigation into incentives to improve recycling levels. She confirmed that it was crucial to identify the barriers to recycling prior to proceeding with further campaign work. She also referred to the need to use the expertise of the Universities in any future work.


In response to Councillor Warters earlier comments relating to a matter within the Committee’s remit, Officers confirmed that staff consultation had now commenced in respect of changes at the Eco Depot. Officers highlighted the need to examine all options to meet demands, within budget constraints. With regard to the Pest Control service, this was a non statutory service and reference was made to the pest control market where there were more competitive providers of these services.  



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