Agenda and draft minutes

Executive Board - Wednesday, 19th October, 2022 1.00 pm

Venue: Civic Hall, Leeds

Contact: Governance Services 

Link: to View Meeting Recording

Items
No. Item

57.

Substitute Member

Minutes:

Under the provisions of Executive and Decision Making Procedure Rule 3.2.6, Councillor R Stephenson was invited to attend the meeting in a non-voting capacity on behalf of Councillor A Carter, who had submitted his apologies for absence from the meeting.

 

At this point in the meeting, the Board also noted Councillor Harland’s apologies for absence from the meeting.

 

 

58.

Exempt Information - Possible Exclusion of the Press and Public

1  To highlight reports or appendices which officers have identified as containing exempt information within the meaning of Section 100I of the Local Government Act 1972, and where officers consider that the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information, for the reasons outlined in the report.

 

2  To consider whether or not to accept the officers recommendation in respect of the above information.

 

3  If the recommendation is accepted, to formally pass the following resolution:-

 

RESOLVED –  That, in accordance with Regulation 4 of the Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Meetings and Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2012, the public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of those parts of the agenda designated as exempt  on the grounds that it is likely, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the press and public were present there would be disclosure to them of exempt information.

 

 

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That, in accordance with Regulation 4 of The Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Meetings and Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2012, the public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following parts of the agenda designated as exempt from publication on the grounds that it is likely, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the public were present there would be disclosure to them of exempt information so designated as follows:-

 

(A)  That appendix A to the report entitled, ‘Core Business Transformation Programme’, referred to in Minute No.65 be designated as being exempt from publication in accordance with paragraph 10.4(3) of Schedule 12A(3) of the Local Government Act 1972 and considered in private on the grounds that this appendix contains commercially sensitive information and as such, the public interest in maintaining the exemption in relation to the appendix is deemed to outweigh the public interest in disclosing the information and financial details within it, as if disclosed it would adversely affect the business of the Council.

59.

Late Items

To identify items which have been admitted to the agenda by the Chair for consideration

 

(The special circumstances shall be specified in the minutes)

Minutes:

There were no late items of business submitted to the meeting for consideration.

60.

Declaration of Interests

To disclose or draw attention to any interests in accordance with Leeds City Council’s ‘Councillor Code of Conduct’.

Minutes:

There were no interests declared at this stage of the meeting, however, during the consideration of agenda item 16 (Leeds Food Strategy and Food Procurement Guidelines), Councillor Golton drew to the Board’s attention the fact that he was Vice President of Leeds Allotment Federation. (Minute No. 72 refers).

61.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 274 KB

To confirm as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 21st September 2022

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the minutes of the previous meeting held on 21st September 2022 be approved as a correct record.

RESOURCES

62.

Financial Health Monitoring 2022/23 - Period 5 (August) pdf icon PDF 1 MB

To consider the report of the Chief Officer, Financial Services providing an update on the financial health of the Authority, as at Month 5 of the 2022/23 financial year.

 

 

Minutes:

The Chief Officer (Financial Services) submitted a report presenting an update on the financial health of the Authority in respect of both the General Fund revenue budget and also the Housing Revenue Account, as at Month 5 of the 2022/23 financial year.

 

In presenting the report, the Executive Member for Resources provided an overview of the key information within it, which included reference to the fact that an overspend of £20.4m was projected for the Authority’s General Fund services, as at month 5 of 2022/23.

 

In response to an enquiry about the proposals responding to financial pressures on the Little Owls nursery provision, it was noted that further detail on such proposals would be presented to the Board in the coming months.

 

Members welcomed the approach being taken to present savings proposals to the Board, as detailed within the submitted report, and also welcomed the cross-directorate working that continued to be undertaken in looking to address the financial pressures across the Council.

 

In conclusion, it was reiterated that the financial pressures being felt by the Council, as outlined in the report, were being experienced throughout the sector, with it being noted that work continued with the Local Government Association and other partner organisations to highlight the sector-wide challenges being faced.

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That it be noted that at Month 5 (August) of the financial year, the Authority’s General Fund services are forecasting an overspend of £20.4m, and that the Housing Revenue Account is forecasting an overspend of £0.2m, with it also being noted that the General Fund position reduces to £17.98m when account is taken of additional budget actions plans received to date;

 

(b)  That it be noted, that where an overspend is projected, directorates, including the Housing Revenue Account, are required to present action plans to mitigate their reported pressures, in line with the Revenue Principles agreed by Executive Board in 2019; with it also being noted that proposals received to date are included within the submitted report at Appendix 4, and that further action plans will be received at the November 2022 meeting of Executive Board;

 

(c)  That it be noted that known increased inflation and known impacts of the rising cost of living, including the 2022/23 pay offer, have been incorporated into this reported financial position, with it also being noted that these pressures will continue to be assessed, with the latest position being incorporated into future reports to be received by Executive Board.

 

63.

Revenue Savings Proposals for 2023/24 to 2025/26 pdf icon PDF 326 KB

To consider the report of the Chief Officer, Financial Services which presents the Council’s financial position for 2023/24 to 2025/26 together with a number of ‘Business as Usual’ savings proposals in response to that financial position. Such proposals would be taken by the relevant Director or Chief Officer in accordance with the relevant Officer Delegation Scheme.

 

 

Minutes:

The Chief Officer (Financial Services) submitted a report which presented the Council’s financial position for 2023/24 to 2025/26 together with a number of ‘Business as Usual’ savings proposals in response to that financial position, with the report highlighting the intention for such proposals to be taken by the relevant Director or Chief Officer in accordance with the relevant Officer Delegation Scheme.

 

The Executive Member for Resources presented the report, highlighting that it provided an overview of the initial directorate savings proposals for the three year period, with it being noted that further proposals were scheduled to be submitted to the December 2022 Board meeting. The collaborative approach being taken with Scrutiny Boards on such matters was highlighted, with the Executive Member emphasising the scale of the financial challenges which were being faced by the Council and the difficult decisions which were required as a result.

 

Responding to an enquiry, the Board was advised that internal charging levels for services had been reviewed, but it was deemed reasonable that where appropriate, levels were increased to reflect increased delivery costs.

 

Regarding the proposed savings in the report around street lighting consumption, in response to a question the Board received further information on this, with officers undertaking to provide the Member in question with a more detailed note on such matters.

 

Responding to an enquiry regarding the financial impact upon the Council as a result of employee absence rates, it was noted that work had been undertaken on such matters, and whilst the Board received further information on this, it was undertaken that officers would provide the Member in question with further detail in terms of the financial and other costs associated with absence rates.

 

Members discussed the income generating services in the Council and the approach being taken to address financial pressures in these areas whilst also preserving such vital income generation. It was noted that the Council was doing everything it could to strike the correct balance on such matters, however, the scale of the financial challenges being faced by this Council and the sector as a whole were reiterated. 

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That the Council’s financial position for 2023/24 to 2025/26, as outlined within the submitted report, be noted, with it also being noted that further savings are required to deliver a balanced budget position for 2023/24 and contribute towards closing the projected gaps in the years 2024/25 and 2025/26;

 

(b)  That the ‘Business as Usual’ savings put forward in the submitted report, be noted, with it also being noted that decisions to give effect to them shall be taken by the relevant Director or Chief Officer in accordance with the Officer Delegation Scheme (Executive functions);

 

(c)  That it be noted that additional savings proposals will be brought to Executive Board for consideration at its meeting on 14th December 2022.

64.

Leeds City Digital Strategy pdf icon PDF 208 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Resources presenting the City Digital Strategy which provides an overview of the ambitions and aspirations for Leeds City Council and Leeds Health and Care Partnership, and which has been written from a ‘whole city’ perspective.    

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of Resources submitted a report presenting the Leeds City Digital Strategy which provided an overview of the aims and priorities of the strategy, detailed the collaborative approach taken in the development of the strategy and referenced how it aligned to the Best City Ambition and the three pillars within that.

 

As part of the introduction to the report, the Board received further information on the key principles of the strategy, whilst Members also noted the extensive consultation which had been undertaken as part of its development and the fact that it had been written from a ‘whole city’ perspective.

 

Responding to a Member’s enquiry, the Board received further information on the range of actions being taken by the Council and partners to ensure that the digital sector and the opportunities arising from it were inclusive and accessible to all.

 

Members acknowledged the 18-month timeframe for the associated innovation programme.

 

On the issue of connectivity, a Member suggested that more isolated and harder to reach communities were prioritised during the roll out of the 5G network and also the provision of super-fast broadband. In response, the Board acknowledged the vital importance of quality connectivity in all communities across the city and the challenges faced in some settings, and as such, it was noted that a collaborative approach on such matters would continue. 

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That the approach being outlined in the digital strategy, the digital transformation approach and the innovation programme, as detailed within the submitted report and appendices, be supported;

 

(b)  That the Leeds City Digital Strategy, as detailed within the submitted report and appendices, be approved, and that agreement be given for the strategy to be published.

65.

Core Business Transformation Programme pdf icon PDF 221 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Resources that provides an update on, and proposals regarding the Core Business Transformation (CBT) Programme, which aims to transform Finance, Procurement, HR and Payroll activities across the Council. Specifically, the report seeks approval to progress with phase 1 of the programme’s delivery, together with other related approvals to facilitate this.

 

(Please note that Appendix A to this report is designated as being exempt from publication under the provisions of Access to Information Procedure Rule 10.4(3))

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of Resources submitted a report that provided an update on, and proposals regarding the Core Business Transformation (CBT) Programme, which aimed to transform Finance, Procurement, HR and Payroll activities across the Council. Specifically, the report sought approval to progress with phase 1 of the programme’s delivery which was to replace the finance system, together with other related approvals to facilitate this.

 

In considering the report, as presented by the Executive Member for Resources, the Board recognised the need to replace the current finance system, which was phase 1 of the programme, as recommended in the report.

 

Following consideration of Appendix A to the submitted report designated as being exempt from publication under the provisions of Access to Information Procedure Rule 10.4(3), which was considered in private at the conclusion of the public part of the meeting, it was

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That approval be given for the Core Business Transformation Programme to proceed with phase 1 of delivery, with the required additional Authority to Spend of £9.47m, funded from Capital Receipts, also being approved; with the total cost estimate to deliver Phase 1 being £10.48m;

 

(b)  That the change for the overall technical requirement from a single Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solution to a core technology platform, plus a number of best of breed applications in order to better meet the Council’s requirements now and in the future, be noted, with it also being noted that this approach will enable the Council to benefit from the rapidly changing technology market;

 

(c)  That it be noted that all of the programme costs, whether revenue or capital are included under the banner of transformational change, and as such can be capitalised under the Government’s Flexible Use of Capital Receipts Directive; with it also being noted that this funding source cannot be used to cover frontline revenue costs;

 

(d)  That it be noted that Phase 1 is part of a wider programme of works estimated to cost £18.48m, inclusive of phase 1; with it also being noted that additional approvals will be sought for the subsequent phases;

 

(e)  That it be noted that the Chief Officer (Financial Services) is the responsible officer for the procurement and implementation of phase 1 of the programme which is focused upon Financial Services; with it also being noted that the cross-Council programme board, chaired by the Chief Officer (Financial Services), will continue to provide oversight and challenge, and that Internal Audit are also reviewing such matters on a 3-monthly cycle and providing recommendations to the programme board.

ENVIRONMENT AND HOUSING

66.

Future of the Alderton Heights and Gipton Gates high rise and resident rehousing pdf icon PDF 289 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Communities, Housing and Environment on proposals regarding the three Alderton Heights high rise blocks in Alwoodley, and the two Gipton Gate West and East blocks in Gipton. The report outlines the proposed approach, including the proposal for all residents to be rehoused, with appropriate support for those who need it, and for subsequent demolition to clear the sites to enable the development of new modern housing. 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of Communities, Housing and Environment submitted a report presenting proposals regarding the three Alderton Heights high rise blocks in Alwoodley, and the two Gipton Gate West and East blocks in Gipton. The report outlined the proposed approach, including the proposal for all residents to be rehoused, with appropriate support being provided, and for subsequent demolition to clear the sites in order to enable the development of new modern housing.

 

In presenting the report, the Executive Member for Environment and Housing outlined the key aspects of the proposed approach, highlighting the positive resident engagement which had taken place to date.

 

Responding to a Member’s enquiry, the Board received further information on the proposal to award ‘Band A’ housing priority and direct let status to tenants of the blocks.

 

Members also received further information on the costings associated with the options considered, and the reasons as to why the option of demolition to clear the sites to enable the development of new modern housing was being proposed.

 

Regarding the carbon footprint of the proposed approach, it was noted that, should the recommendations in the report be approved, then the intention would be to submit a further report to the Board around proposals for the development of new housing, with it being undertaken that further information regarding the carbon impact could be included within that.  In addition, and in response to a Member’s specific enquiry, the Board also received further information regarding the number of quality, energy efficient homes that were proposed to be developed, subject to a further report being submitted to the Board. 

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That the rehousing of residents of secure tenanted flats in the affected blocks, as detailed within the submitted report be approved, and that approval be given for Home Loss and Disturbance payments to be made to qualifying residents, with it being noted that such matters will be supported by ongoing engagement with residents during implementation;

 

(b)  That the awarding of ‘Band A’ housing priority and direct let status to tenants of the blocks, be approved;

 

(c)  That the affected properties be declared as surplus, and that the suspension of lettings (to the flats and nearby garages), be approved, with any void properties being taken out of charge;

 

(d)  That approval be given for the negotiation and undertaking of the re-purchase of the leasehold flats, with approval also being given for compulsory purchase to be pursued, if a voluntary approach is unsuccessful;

 

(e)  That agreement be given that the buildings should be safely demolished, in order to create clear sites for future housing development;

 

(f)  That in parallel to the resolutions above, agreement be given that activity should be progressed to explore options for developing each site for new modern housing, and that this activity will inform a future report to the Executive Board presenting the revised proposals and the recommended options for the sites;

 

(g)  That expenditure of £5,339,200 from the Housing Revenue Account Capital Programme to deliver re-housing and building emptying activity,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 66.

ADULT AND CHILDREN'S SOCIAL CARE AND HEALTH PARTNERSHIPS

67.

Implementation of Changes to the Adult Social Care Charging Policy 2022-23 pdf icon PDF 569 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Adults and Health providing an update on the implementation of the changes to the Leeds City Council Charging Policy for non-residential Adult Social Care, as agreed by the Board on 15th December 2021, and which came into effect in April 2022.

Minutes:

Further to Minute No. 97,15th December 2021, the Director of Adults and Health submitted a report providing an update on the implementation of the changes to the Leeds City Council Charging Policy for non-residential Adult Social Care, as previously agreed by the Board, and which came into effect in April 2022.

 

In presenting the report, the Executive Member provided an overview of the key elements, including the current position regarding the income / savings achieved by the changes made to the charging policy, updated information regarding the number of service users affected and details of support arrangements which had been put in place to accompany the changes.

 

In response to a Member reiterating concerns previously raised around the changes made to the charging policy, the Board received further detail and assurance around the principle of the changes which had been made. 

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That the successful implementation of the changes to the Charging Policy, as approved by the Board on 15th December 2021 (Minute No. 97 refers), be noted;

 

(b)  That the impacts on affected service users, together with how any risks have and continue to be mitigated, as detailed within the submitted report, be noted;

 

(c)  That it be noted that the revised expectation for potential income / savings achieved by the changes to the charging policy are £1,687,895 for the current financial year, with a potential full year effect of £2,974,528.

 

68.

Thriving: The Child Poverty Strategy for Leeds pdf icon PDF 340 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Children and Families providing an overview of ‘Thriving: The Child Poverty Strategy for Leeds’, and the work that sits underneath the strategy, including work that has occurred during and post pandemic. This report gives an update on each of the workstreams in terms of recent activities, outcomes and next steps, and also considers the impact that the national cost of living crisis is having on local levels of poverty.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Further to Minute No. 141, 20th April 2022, the Director of Children and Families submitted a report providing a further overview of ‘Thriving: The Child Poverty Strategy for Leeds’, and the ongoing work that sat underneath the strategy, including work that had occurred during and following the Covid pandemic. This report presented an update on each of the workstreams in terms of recent activities, outcomes and next steps, and also considered the impact that the national cost of living crisis continued to have upon local levels of poverty.

 

In presenting the report the Executive Member highlighted that the submitted report should be read alongside the ‘Cost of Living’ update report found later in the agenda within the Communities portfolio (Minute No. 73 refers).

 

As part of the introduction, the estimated scale of child poverty in Leeds was highlighted, together with the links between increased demand for social care support and the rise in the levels of those living in poverty. Further detail was also provided on the range of actions which continued to be taken in response to the issue of child poverty.

 

In considering the report and acknowledging the scale of the issues raised, a Member highlighted the importance of continuing to deliver preventative measures where possible, in order to support those in need. In response, the Board received assurances around the investment in preventative work which continued.

 

In response to a Member’s enquiry regarding the potential for future reports to reflect upon educational attainment, the Board discussed the challenges that continued to be faced in the area of education provision. 

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That the strategic framework in place to mitigate the impact of child poverty, together with the work being undertaken by the Council and other partners in the key areas of activity, be endorsed;

 

(b)  That the need to promote the work of the ‘Thriving’ strategy across the city and in particular in each respective Executive Member’s portfolio, in order to highlight the impact of poverty on children and their families, be acknowledged;

 

(c)  That it be noted that the responsible officer for such matters is the Deputy Director Children and Families.

69.

Recommendation to increase levels of Fee and Maintenance payments to Leeds Foster Carers and implement revised finance policy arrangements pdf icon PDF 380 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Children and Families setting out recommendations for providing an uplift in the weekly fees and maintenance allowances paid to Leeds foster carers to ensure that the cost-of-living increases do not disadvantage and impact negatively on Leeds foster carers. The report also sets out the proposed amendments and revisions to the foster carers finance policy which has been refreshed to address inequities in payment arrangements and to establish better certainty of payments in different circumstances. 

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of Children and Families submitted a report which presented recommendations for providing an uplift in the weekly fees and maintenance allowances paid to Leeds foster carers to ensure that cost-of-living increases did not disadvantage and impact negatively upon Leeds foster carers. The report also set out the proposed amendments and revisions to the foster carers finance policy which had been refreshed to address inequities in payment arrangements and to establish better certainty of payments in different circumstances.

 

In presenting the key points of the report, the Executive Member highlighted the vital role played by foster carers in Leeds, emphasised the importance of ensuring that the Authority remained competitive in this field to retain and recruit foster carers and noted that such finance arrangements had not been reviewed since 2014. Given the budget pressure that this proposal would create, it was acknowledged that directorate-wide work would continue to identify other budget savings.

 

In considering the report, the Board discussed a Member’s comments regarding the levels of revised fee arrangements proposed to be paid to a foster carer for looking after a third and any subsequent children, and also regarding whether there was potential for such reviews of the finance arrangements to be undertaken more frequently.

 

In discussing the role of the private sector care providers in this field, and the high costs often associated with them, Members reiterated the crucial role played by the Council’s foster carers, and the need to ensure that the Council remained competitive in this field to retain and recruit foster carers.

 

Responding to a Member’s enquiry, clarification was provided on the reasons for the financial pressure which had emerged in relation to costs associated with in-house foster carer provision, which was due to a change in the mix of skilled carers, when compared to what had been budgeted for.  In addition, it was emphasised that all Looked After Children required skilled care, and as such the Authority would always look to encourage carers to continue to develop their skills in this area.

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That the recommendation and associated funding for a 7% increase of maintenance allowances paid to Leeds foster carers, as detailed within the submitted report, be approved, and that approval be given to the uplift being implemented retrospectively, from the 1st April 2022;

 

(b)  That the recommendation and associated funding for a 5% increase for the fee element paid to Leeds foster carers, to be implemented retrospectively from the 1st April 2022, as detailed within the submitted report, be approved;

 

(c)  That the costs associated with the implementation of updated finance polices regarding costs associated with caring for Children Looked After by Leeds City Council and also the support arrangements for Leeds foster carers, be approved;

 

(d)  That it be noted that the associated costs arising from the resolutions above are greater than budgeted, with it also being noted that whilst the Children and Families directorate will draw up action plans to identify other savings to offset this, there is  ...  view the full minutes text for item 69.

ECONOMY, CULTURE AND EDUCATION

70.

UK Shared Prosperity Fund pdf icon PDF 465 KB

To consider the report of the Director of City Development which provides an update on UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) and sets out high-level priorities for Leeds.  The report also seeks endorsement of the priorities outlined and the delegation of authority to the Director of City Development to accept funding and authorise year 1 procurement.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Further to Minute No. 143, 20th April 2022, the Director of City Development submitted a report which provided an update regarding the UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) and set out proposed high-level priorities for Leeds. The report sought endorsement of those priorities and agreement to delegate necessary authority to the Director of City Development to accept UKSPF funding and also to authorise year 1 delivery.

 

Responding to a Member’s enquiry, the Board received further details on the breakdown of the funding allocation, the levels of funding being received when compared to that of the EU Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF), the timeframes by which such allocations would need to be spent and how the allocation would align to the 3 investment priorities. The Board also received further information on the provision of other complementary funding streams which were available.

 

In response to an enquiry, the Board received an update on the activity of the MP Engagement Group, in line with the requirement to consult with local MPs.

 

Members also received further detail on the process by which the added value arising from the investments made via this funding stream would be monitored and assessed. 

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That the high-level UKSPF priorities for Leeds, as detailed within the submitted report, be noted and endorsed;

 

(b)  That the necessary authority be delegated to the Director of City Development, in order to enable the Director to accept UKSPF funding (including Multiply) and contract with the West Yorkshire Combined Authority, subject to our priorities being accepted by UK Government;

 

(c)  That the Board authorise procurement and spend for year 1 delivery of the interventions, outputs and outcomes of UKSPF, as set out within the West Yorkshire Local Investment Plan, subject to approval by UK Government.

 

71.

Destination Marketing and International Relations Plan pdf icon PDF 552 KB

To consider the report of the Director of City Development seeking approval to the Destination Marketing and International Relations Plan 2022-2025: ‘Connecting the Local to the Global’. The Plan is part of ongoing work to reset and renew work in the current challenging economic environment and to reflect changes which have taken place regionally with the election of the first West Yorkshire Mayor in May 2021 and the closure of Welcome to Yorkshire in early 2022.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of City Development submitted a report which sought approval to the Destination Marketing and International Relations Plan 2022- 2025: ‘Connecting the Local to the Global. The report noted that the plan was part of an ongoing programme to reset and renew the work being undertaken in the current challenging economic environment and to reflect changes which had taken place regionally with the election of the first West Yorkshire Mayor in May 2021 and the closure of ‘Welcome to Yorkshire’ in early 2022.

 

The Board noted a comment made regarding the need to increase the provision of premium hotels in the city centre in order to enhance Leeds’ status as a preferred conference destination, with Members being provided with an update on what had been achieved to date in this area, but with an acknowledgement that there was further work to do.

 

Responding to a Member’s enquiry regarding the marketing of the Yorkshire brand following the closure of ‘Welcome to Yorkshire’, the Board received an update on the range of actions that continued to be taken collaboratively with partner organisations, with it being noted that active discussions continued on how regional marketing would be delivered in the longer term.

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That the Destination Marketing and International Relations Plan 2022- 2025: ‘Connecting the Local to the Global’, as detailed at Appendix 1 to the submitted report, be approved;

 

(b)  That the necessary authority be delegated to the Director of City Development, to enable the Director to implement the Plan.

 

INFRASTRUCTURE AND CLIMATE

72.

Leeds Food Strategy and Food Procurement Guidelines pdf icon PDF 362 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Resources presenting a Leeds Food Strategy and which seeks approval to undertake public consultation on the strategy.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of Resources submitted a report presenting a draft Leeds Food Strategy and which also provided the Food Procurement Guidelines, which had been introduced by the Council. The report highlighted the key themes and aims of the food strategy, noted the development work which had been undertaken to date and sought approval to undertake public consultation on the draft food strategy.

 

In presenting the report, the Executive Member highlighted the comprehensive consultative work which had been undertaken with stakeholders to help develop the draft strategy.

 

A Member highlighted the importance of encouraging public engagement in, and awareness of local food production, and in response to a specific enquiry, the Board received clarification on a statistic within the report that ‘Leeds produces 49% of the calories it demands’, with it being noted that this was purely from a calorific perspective, rather than in terms of the specific food consumed in the city.

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That the draft Leeds Food Strategy, as detailed at appendix A to the submitted report, be approved;

 

(b)  That a public consultation exercise on the draft Leeds Food Strategy, be approved;

 

(c)  That the introduction of the food procurement guidelines at Leeds City Council, as presented at Appendix B to the submitted report, be noted.

 

(During the consideration of this item, Councillor Golton drew to the Board’s attention the fact that he was Vice President of Leeds Allotment Federation)

COMMUNITIES

73.

Cost of living update report pdf icon PDF 461 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Communities, Housing and Environment which provides an updated position on the Council’s response to the cost-of-living situation in Leeds.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Further to Minute No. 25, 27th July 2022, the Director of Communities, Housing and Environment submitted a report providing an updated position on the Council’s response to the cost-of-living situation in Leeds which built upon the report submitted to the Board in July 2022, and which detailed the actions being taken in response to new developments, both local and national, since the consideration of that previous report.

 

The Executive Member for Economy, Culture and Education introduced the report in the absence of the Executive Member for Communities. In doing so, the significant changes which had been experienced since the previously submitted report in July were highlighted, together with the key actions taken to mitigate against the impact of the cost of living issues being experienced.  The scale of the challenges being faced and the levels of demand for relevant services being experienced across the city were also highlighted.  Finally, it was brought to the Board’s attention by the Executive Member that due to recent changes in Government policy, sections 10 and 17 of the submitted report were no longer up to date.

 

In considering issues arising from the report, Members discussed the causes of the current financial challenges being experienced in the UK, whilst concerns were raised regarding the scale of the significant financial difficulties being faced in communities across Leeds. The Board also discussed the Government’s current position regarding the Energy Price Guarantee, with a Member highlighting the importance of ensuring that communities were signposted to the support available to them.

 

The Board highlighted how communities were supporting each other in response to the challenges being faced, with emphasis being placed upon the need to ensure that where such community initiatives were being delivered, the Council looked to play a supportive role.

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That, subject to acknowledging that sections 10 and 17 of the submitted report were no longer up to date (as referenced above) due to recent changes in Government policy, the contents of the submitted report, be noted, and that the approach being adopted, as detailed, be endorsed;

 

(b)  That it be noted that the Director of Communities, Housing and Environment will be responsible for overseeing and implementing any actions arising from the submitted report.

 

74.

Annual update on migration activity in Leeds pdf icon PDF 476 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Communities, Housing and Environment which provides a wide-ranging update on migration activity in Leeds, including how Leeds, as a welcoming and compassionate city has responded to national policy changes and global events.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Further to Minute No. 65, 20th October 2021, the Director of Communities, Housing and Environment submitted a report which provided a comprehensive update on migration activity in Leeds, including how Leeds, as a welcoming and compassionate city continued to respond to the range of migration issues being experienced through the collaborative work of the Council and its partners.

 

The Chief Officer, Safer Stronger Communities introduced the report in the absence of the Executive Member for Communities. In doing so, Members were provided with an overview of the key issues within the report, including the implications arising from national policy changes and global events, and the collaborative approach being taken by the Council and its partners in response to such matters.

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That the contents of the submitted annual update report on migration, together with the full overview and insight, as detailed at Appendix 1, be noted, and that the approach adopted within the Migration in Leeds Strategy, as presented at Appendix 2, be endorsed;

 

(b)  That the responsibility of the Director of Communities, Housing and Environment for leading this work through the Council’s Safer Stronger Communities programme, be noted;

 

(c)  That the responsibility of the Chief Officer for Safer, Stronger Communities in leading the work of the Leeds Strategic Migration Board which oversees delivery on the strategic, co-ordinated and inclusive approach towards migration in Leeds, be noted, together with the Chief Officer’s responsibility for the work of the Council’s migration and resettlement team which provides strategic and operational direction for the city;

 

(d)  That the intention to provide a further annual report in 2023 on migration activity in Leeds, be noted.

75.

Anti-Muslim Prejudice pdf icon PDF 277 KB

To consider the report of the Director of Communities, Housing and Environment which sets out a Council and citywide approach towards supporting Muslim communities by addressing anti-Muslim prejudice, and which seeks endorsement of adoption of the Leeds definition of anti-Muslim prejudice, as presented.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of Communities, Housing and Environment submitted a report which set out a Council and citywide approach towards supporting Muslim communities by addressing anti-Muslim prejudice, and which sought the Board’s endorsement to adopt the Leeds definition of anti-Muslim prejudice, as presented within the report.

 

The Executive Member for Resources introduced the report in the absence of the Executive Member for Communities. In doing so, it was emphasised that a comprehensive and wide-ranging consultation exercise had been undertaken as part of the development of the Leeds definition of anti-Muslim prejudice.  It was also noted that whilst the agreement of the definition would be a significant step forward, it was acknowledged that there was much work to do in the tackling such prejudice in society.

 

Members welcomed the proposals within the report and the work which had been undertaken to date, highlighted that the establishment of such a definition was needed, and looked forward to the work which continued in this area, including the establishment of the associated action plan.

 

In noting the Council’s previous adoption of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s working definition of Antisemitism, together with the work currently being undertaken in relation to anti-Muslim prejudice, it was suggested by a Member that next steps should include consideration of further actions which looked to address prejudice in other faiths and religions.

 

In considering the work which had been undertaken to develop the definition within the report, Members discussed the differences between the terms Islamophobia and anti-Muslim prejudice and the reasons for the approach being proposed.

 

In conclusion, Members welcomed the proposals and thanked all those who had contributed to the work in this area to date.

 

RESOLVED –

(a)  That the work of the Council undertaken to better understand the extent and perceptions of Anti-Muslim prejudice in the city, as detailed within the submitted report, be noted;

 

(b)  That the adoption of the Leeds definition of Anti-Muslim prejudice, as set out in paragraph 15 of the submitted report, be endorsed;

 

(c)  That it be noted that the Elected Members responsible for this work are the Executive Member for Communities, the Executive Member for Resources, and the Chair of the Hate Crime Strategic Board;

 

(d)  That the Board’s endorsement be given to the Chief Officer, Safer and Stronger Communities to develop and implement an action plan, and report to the appropriate Elected Member led boards and the Director of Communities, Housing and Environment on this matter.

 

DATE OF PUBLICATION:  FRIDAY, 21ST OCTOBER 2022

 

LAST DATE FOR CALL IN

OF ELIGIBLE DECISIONS:  5.00 P.M., FRIDAY, 28TH OCTOBER 2022