Agenda item

Programme of portfolio holder attendance

Report of the Democratic Services Manager


Members welcomed Councillor Viv McCrossen, Portfolio Holder for Young People and Equalities to the meeting to examine her portfolio. Councillor Viv McCrossen gave a presentation, providing an update to members on some key happenings in her portfolio, giving them the opportunity to ask any questions after.


No questions or areas of concerns had been submitted in advance of the meeting so Councillor McCrossen delivered an update on various areas of responsibility within her portfolio. She gave the following updates:


·       Gedling Borough Council had coordinated the annual programme of activities in the community/leisure centres as well as funding and supporting other community led events such as the Platinum Jubilee, female skate jam, holiday activities and food programmes.


·       The holiday activities and food programmes (HAF) was aimed at children aged 5 – 16 years with a goal to provide access to food as well as activities during school holidays, including free activities for children who receive benefits-related free school meals. She noted the HAF is now the responsibility of Nottinghamshire County Council.


·       Gedling Borough Council had received £25,000 from the Nottinghamshire County Council Food Fund. These funds were used to help address loneliness and isolation with 18 small grants being awarded to various community projects, enabling social eating opportunities. It was noted that 27 warm spaces were created where people could come together, socialise, stay warm and in some cases have hot refreshments during the winter months.


The Chair gave Members the opportunity to ask questions of Councillor McCrossen’s portfolio.


Members queried whether disability awareness training would be held for members as well as staff.


It was noted that equalities awareness training would be of benefit for Councillors and confirmed that the Democratic Services Manager would review which courses Members will participate in for the next electoral year.


Members asked how the £138,000 HAF allocation compared to previous years and whether it was enough to meet demand.


The Head of Communities & Leisure explained that £138,000 was the allocation that Gedling Borough Council helped to process throughout that time period. He explained that it could be a challenge to find providers but the scheme had improved their local relations.


Members welcomed Councillor Ron McCrossen, Portfolio Holder for Environment to the meeting to examine his portfolio. Councillor Ron McCrossen gave a presentation, providing an update to members on some key happenings in his portfolio, giving them the opportunity to ask any questions after.


He gave the following updates:


·       A new pilot initiative was established in Netherfield and Killisick to reduce contaminated bins. New bin tags would be placed on bins if contamination occurs to alert residents and encourage them to scan the QR code, providing information on which items can or can’t be recycled.


·       Green Flag equality standards have continued to be used and improved to enhance the Borough’s paths and play areas. It was noted that there are now five Green Flag parks in the Borough


·       Over 1,200 trees were planted as part of the Queens Jubilee Tree Canopy Planting Initiative at Gedling Country Park and Digby Park Arboretum during the last year.


·       It was noted that the joint-bid with the South Nottinghamshire Community Safety Partnership for the Safer Streets Fund of £250,000 had been successful. The funding will pay for a range of crime prevention measures including additional wardens, a greater CCTV network and improved street lighting.


·       A new food business registration scheme was implemented in partnership with the Food Standards Agency and Trading Standards who will now automatically receive a copy of new food business registrations within the borough.

The Chair then asked members if they had any questions regarding Councillor Ron McCrossen’s portfolio.

Members asked whether any consideration had been given to the opening hours of public toilets as some seem to close early, causing difficulties where the public may need to relieve themselves.

Councillor McCrossen asked members to provide details on which toilets they were referring to so an investigation could be conducted.

Members asked for clarity on the procedure for repeat contamination of residential recycling bins.

The Head of Environment explained that the new tag initiative is considered the first warning, where the crew would then return to try and empty. This would be followed by a verbal warning if the contamination continued, with a written warning thereafter before enforcement action would be considered – on a case-by-case basis.

Members offered Councillor McCrossen the opportunity to tour their wards to give members and parish councils the opportunity to provide feedback on the areas that require attention.

Councillor McCrossen confirmed he would make arrangements with them separately.


The Chair thanked Councillors Viv and Ron McCrossen for their presentations and information provided.

Supporting documents: