Agenda and draft minutes

Joint Plans Panel - Thursday, 17th December, 2020 12.30 pm, NEW

Venue: Civic Hall, Leeds, LS1 1UR. View directions

Contact: Debbie Oldham  Tel: 0113 3788656

Link: to view the meeting

Items
No. Item

1.

Election of the Chair

To formally nominate the Chair for the meeting

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That Councillor Caroline Gruen be elected as Chair for the duration of the meeting.

Chairs Opening Comments

The Chair welcomed everyone to the remote meeting of the Joint Plans Panel.

 

The Chair explained that internet connectivity may be an issue for some participants and suggested it may be appropriate to appoint a Deputy Chair who could assume the Chair should the Chair lose connectivity. The Chair proposed that Councillor Jim McKenna be nominated as the Deputy Chair, the proposal was seconded, upon been put to the vote the motion was passed.

2.

Exempt Information - Possible Exclusion of the Press and Public

1  To highlight reports or appendices which officers have identified as containing exempt information, 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 so, to formally pass the following resolution:-

 

  RESOLVED – That the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of those parts of the agenda designated as containing exempt information 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, as follows

 

 

Minutes:

There was no exempt items.

3.

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.

4.

Declarations of Disclosable Pecuniary Interests

To disclose or draw attention to any disclosable pecuniary interests for the purposes of Section 31 of the Localism Act 2011 and paragraphs 13-16 of the Members’ Code of Conduct.

 

Minutes:

There were no declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests.

5.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies had been received from Cllr Andrew Carter.

6.

Minutes - 14th November 2019 pdf icon PDF 144 KB

To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 14th November 2019, as a correct record.

Minutes:

 

RESOLVED – That the minutes of the meeting held on 14th November 2019 be approved as a correct record with the following amendments:

 

·  That Cllr. Sharon Hamilton be removed from minute 15 – Apologies for Absence as she had attended the meeting. It was noted that she had left the meeting at 15:45;

·   Correction noted on page 9 third bullet point should have read ‘The service had been awarded £50,000 not £506,000, which had been as a result of a bidding processing to supplement staffing within the enforcement service to tackle issues within the Green Belt’.

 

7.

Matters Arising

Minutes:

In relation to the minutes of the 14th November 2019, the following points were raised:

Minute 17 – Matters arising

  • The need for a discussion around Design Champions. It was suggested that this matter should be discussed at a Planning Chairs briefing;
  • Officers to provide information on ‘land ransom strips’ and repeat the response which had been sent to local ward members on a particular issue in Wetherby;
  • Public Speaking Protocol and Guide to Pre Application Presentations. These had been revised and checked to ensure that they were in plain English. The Protocol also includes a glossary of terms and abbreviations. Members were advised that a link to the document would be circulated. Members were also informed that this would be raised corporately.

 

Minute 18 Planning Services performance report- quarters 1 and 2, 2019-20.

·  It had been requested that some benchmarking should take place with other authorities and also seek good practice in the use of S215 notices. It was noted that this would be provided to a future meeting.

 

8.

Planning Services Performance Report- end of year 2019-20 and Quarters 1 and 2, 2020-21 pdf icon PDF 454 KB

The report of the Chief Planning Officer provides a retrospective performance update on 2019-20, and a more up to date performance picture for quarters 1 and 2 of 2020-21.

 

(Report attached)

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The report of the Chief Planning Officer provided a retrospective on 2019-

20 and a more up to date performance picture for quarters 1 and 2 of 2020-21.

 

The report was presented by Jonathan Carr, Head of Development Management who informed the Panel of the following points:

·  April 2019 to March 2020 was a busy, productive and stable year for the service, with almost 4,700 applications received. Performance on applications in time remained good with all categories well above the statutory designation thresholds;

·  Due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic application numbers had initially decreased and any new applications received could not be progressed due to the lockdown restrictions. However, on the lifting of restrictions application numbers have again increased;

·  The service has adapted to the new operating environment, introducing a series of measures, protocols and operating guidelines, to enable continuity and delivery. This has included the establishment of remote access Plans Panels and increased reliance on digital technology;

·  Quarters 1 and 2, saw applications for major developments account for 3.5% of the total workload. The service continues to receive a higher proportion of majors than the national average;

·  Planning income currently stands at £641k under the budget target. This was attributed to the impact of the COVID-19 situation. It had been agreed as part of the budget setting process for 2020-21, that the planning pre application (PPA) enquiry fees income target would be increased by £250k, this has not been achieved as yet;

·  Section 106 income is lower and this was due to the timing for significant developments. The first half of the year was down due to the pandemic. It was noted that from March 2020, onwards in line with Government advice the construction industry had deferred payments of CIL;

·  Numbers of decision in quarters 1 and 2 had dropped significantly, by 19%, from the same period last year, it was noted that much of that period was subject to the COVID-19 restrictions. Once the restrictions were lifted applications could be progressed in the usual way, however the restrictions had caused a backlog;

·  74 decisions had been made by Plans Panels which had been operating remotely since April. Of these decisions 5 had been against officer recommendation with 4 going to appeal, 2 had been dismissed, 1 was pending and 1 was upheld;

·  In 2019-20, a total of 180 decisions were made by the Planning Inspectorate, of these 82.3% were dismissed, this is a significant improvement from the position reported for 2018-19. Appeal performance in quarters 1 and 2 of 2020-21 had dropped slightly but very good performance was still being maintained with 79.3% of appeals being dismissed in this time period;

·  It was noted that the COVID-19 restrictions had impacted on the ability to attend site visits in relation to compliance issues and this had impacted on the performance of the service;

·  A total of 166 enforcement and other notices had been served during 2019-20 which was a continuation of activity levels of previous years. However,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

Buildings at Risk pdf icon PDF 6 MB

The report of the Chief Planning Officer informs Joint Plans Panel of the number of Buildings at Risk in the city and the efforts that are being made to address this issue.

 

(Report attached)

Minutes:

The report of the Chief Planning Officer informed Joint Plans Panel of the number of Buildings at Risk in the city and the efforts that are being made to address this issue.

 

The report was presented by Phil Ward, Team Leader in City Development who informed the Joint Plans Panel of the following points:

·  112 buildings in the city are registered as at risk, 4 buildings had been moved from the register since the last report as works had been completed on them. However, 3 listed buildings had been added. Members attention was drawn to the register which had been appended to the submitted report;

·  It was noted that not all the buildings on the register were Council owned;

·  The ‘Big 3’ were listed as

o  First White Cloth Hall which is due to be finished in March/April 2021

o  Hunslet Mill – with the first phase completed and the second phase due to start

o  Tower Works – which was owned by CEG and was planned for use as the British Library in the North, with the Chancellor of the Exchequer dedicating £25m to repair the building. Members were advised that this building was structurally complex with specialist contractors required to undertake the repairs.

·  Updates were provided on:

o  The Majestic with all works completed and to be used as headquarters for Channel 4;

o  Cookridge Hospital which has been developed for residential use;

o  High Royds Hospital which has now completed and is residential properties;

o  Eleanor Lupton Building now has scaffolding in place, with graffiti removed and repairs ongoing;

o  Mount St Marys Church had received a position statement which had been heard at Plan Panel for proposal as a residential development;

o  St Johns Church, Roundhay has had essential repairs done to make it weatherproof and secure;

o  Stonebridge Mills has proposal for residential development.

·  There are 16 Council owned buildings on the at risk register, however it was noted that this number may decrease as the Council prepare to sell off assets.

 

Member’s discussions included:

·  The Building Act and powers to ensure that listed buildings are made safe and weatherproof;

·  Members raised concerns that the Council may be being too lenient with developers in relation to Section 106 contributions and green space. It was suggested that conditions should be added, if or when a development does start to make money that developers should pay contributions to the ward in which they are situated;

·  Small memorials which are sited in local wards which require repair. It was suggested that local ward members may be able to assist with funds to repair such memorials.

 

Members requested information on listed buildings with their local area and the reports behind them.

 

Cllr B Anderson requested information in relation to the Adel Reformatory site.

 

RESOLVED – To note the content of the report.

 

10.

Council Housing Growth programme update pdf icon PDF 281 KB

Report of Head of Council Housing Growth provides Plans Panel Members with an update on the Council Housing Growth programme.

 

(Report attached)

Minutes:

The report of the Head of Council Housing Growth provided an update on the progress of the Council Housing Growth Programme.

 

The report was presented to the Joint Plans Panel, by Mark Denton, Head of Council Housing Growth and advised Members of the following points:

·  The establishment of a dedicated multi-disciplinary team to ensure the delivery of the council housing growth programme under the leadership of the Director of Resources and Housing. It was noted a proposal to move the team to City Development Directorate as part of other organisational changes planned for housing by April 2021;

·  The establishment of a large scale programme of council housing, which now has over 800 new homes in the pipeline, including 3 of the proposed 7 extra care housing schemes for older people. It was advised the schemes are at various stages of design, planning and delivery as set out in Table 1 of the submitted report;

·  There is currently a shortage of larger sites and the team were now looking at smaller sites;

·  The Council has a significant waiting list for homes and it was noted that the Council is losing approximately 600 council houses each year to the Right to Buy Scheme;

·  As part of the programme the team are looking at affordability and climate change efficiencies;

·  The team will try to engage with ward members to assess the needs of an area;

·  Members attention was drawn to paragraph 4.6 of the report which highlighted a number risks.

 

Member’s opinion was that this was a helpful report and their discussions included the following:

·  Shortage of family homes, although it was recognised that there was a need to balance this with single person or smaller household requirements;

·  The need to ask communities what they would like to see from developments including green space;

·  Right to Buy legislation and Rebuild Strategy;

·  The purchase of suitable sites for affordable housing with a mixed tenure.

 

RESOLVED – To note the content of the report.

11.

Place-making and Local Plan Update pdf icon PDF 359 KB

The report of the Chief Planning Officer provides an update of the work that this group has undertaken since July 2019 with the primary focus being around input into the Local Plan Update and the opportunity to strengthen and heighten the existing policy framework around sustainable place-making both in terms of health and well-being and climate change agendas.

 

(Report attached)

Minutes:

Cllr. Walshaw left the meeting at 14:25 prior to the start of the item on Placemaking.

 

The report of the Chief Planning Officer provided an update on cross departmental work (including Public Health, Active Leeds, Planning, Highways and Parks & Countryside) to build on the work of Leeds’ 2014 Public Health report with a focus on identifying practical steps to achieve benefits and added value between good design in planning for health and wellbeing.

 

The report was presented to the Joint Plans Panel by Jenny Fisher, Principal Officer Planning & Sustainable Development and Kathryn Holloway, Team Leader Policy and Plans, both from City Development.

The Members were informed of the following points:

  • The Planning and Design for Health and Wellbeing (PDHW) group was established in 2017, involving colleagues in Planning, Design, Highways, Public Health, Active Leeds and Parks and Countryside) with a primary focus being around input into the Local Plan Update and the opportunity to strengthen and heighten the existing policy framework around sustainable placemaking both in terms of health and well-being and climate change agendas;
  • There are 2 key documents – Building for Tomorrow, Today and Neighbourhoods for Living. Work is ongoing to merge these 2 documents (as has occurred with the draft Highways SPD), into a new Sustainable Placemaking SPD, as it is the view that the information should be in one place. This new document will work with the Local Plan and work on this is being undertaken with Public Health and University of Leeds;
  • A training resource had been completed - Placemaking for Resilient Communities, this had been rolled out to City Development colleagues and the proposal is for it to be provided to Members in the new year;
  • 3 key principles – Active neighbourhoods (promoting active neighbourhoods with a walking action plan including mapping local walking groups) Better air quality and Greenspace (to encourage developments with green walls and roofs) and Cohesive communities (to provide a social and integrated community such as the Kirkstall Forge site which include pocket parks and railway station). These principles were worked up with Public Health and are especially relevant with the Covid 19 pandemic;
  • There are currently a couple of cohesive communities already in the city which are working well such as LILAC, it was recognised that this way of living was not for everyone but people should be given lifestyle choices;
  • It was noted that Leeds has some award winning schemes such as Saxton Gardens, Allerton Bywater Millenium Village, Yarn Street with Parklands in Moortown cited as an excellent example of provision of greenspace by a developer;
  • Conversations are currently taking place to discuss centralised waste disposal as part of future housing schemes particularly on larger developments;
  • The scoping of the Local Plan was presented to Development Plans Panel in July 2020, with a priority for climate change. In November 2020 another report was submitted which looked at reduction of emissions, renewable energy, and a green infrastructure. Another report is proposed for January 2021 to look at infrastructure,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 11.

12.

Date and Time of Next Meeting

To be confirmed.

Minutes:

The next meeting of the Joint Plans Panel will be confirmed at the Annual Meeting of Council in May 2021.

 

 

Chairs Closing Comment

The Chair thanked all for attending the meeting, and wished everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

 

The meeting concluded at 15:10