Agenda and draft minutes

County Council - Wednesday, 13th July, 2022 10.00 am

Venue: Chamber - County Hall, Carmarthen. SA31 1JP and remotely. View directions

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors J.P. Hart, M. Donoghue, B.D.J. Phillips and G.B. Thomas.

 

2.

DECLARATIONS OF PERSONAL INTERESTS.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillor / Officer

Minute Number

Nature of Interest

Mr N. Daniel

Mr A. Williams

5. RECRUITMENT TO THE POST OF DIRECTOR OF PLACE (Permanent appointment)

 

An officer incumbent to the report had a personal and prejudicial interest in this item and therefore left the meeting during the deliberation of the report and voting thereof.

 

 

3.

CHAIR’S ANNOUNCEMENTS.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

·       The Chair announced the following visits/events he had recently attended:-

 

-       Welcomed the Commonwealth Games 2022 Queen’s Baton to Pembrey Country Park, on behalf of Carmarthenshire.

 

-       Visited, together with Councillor Edward Thomas, a resident of Llandeilo who had recently turned 103 years of age and during the visit met another resident who was 110 years old.

 

·       The Chair congratulated two members of staff, and who were recently presented with the British Empire Medal, for services to Health and Social Care during the Covid 19 pandemic.  Lyndsay McNicholl, a very dedicated Care Home Manager with over two decades of experience in the care sector, was awarded with the British Empire Medal for going above and beyond during the pandemic.  Lisa Randell, a front-line support worker at a residential care home for older adults was awarded with the British Empire Medal as during the pandemic she was asked to take a temporary senior position when her colleague had to shield.

 

The Chair congratulated both Ms McNicholl and Ms Randell in person with Council Members showing their appreciation with a standing ovation.

 

·       The Chair expressed his personal congratulations to Dame Nia Griffiths MP on being awarded the British Empire Medal for her political and public service.

 

 

 

4.

TO APPROVE AND SIGN AS A CORRECT RECORD THE MINUTES OF THE COUNCIL MEETING HELD ON THE 22 JUNE 2022 pdf icon PDF 345 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting of Council held on the 22nd June, 2022 be signed as a correct record.

 

5.

RECRUITMENT TO THE POST OF DIRECTOR OF PLACE (Permanent appointment) pdf icon PDF 220 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

[note: Mr N. Daniel and Mr A. Williams having earlier declared their interest in this item left the meeting during its deliberation and voting thereof.]

 

The Council received a report which set out the arrangements for the recruitment to the permanent post of Director of Place.  

 

In presenting the report, the Cabinet Member for Organisation and Workforce stated that Council at its meeting on the 13th October, 2021 endorsed the decision to introduce temporary arrangements to fulfil the duties of the Director’s responsibilities following the resignation of the previous Director of Environment who left the Authority on the 31st December 2021.

 

It was reported that the post of Director of Place was a Chief Officer post and any appointment to such a post where the salary is £100,000 or more, was governed by the Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2014.  In addition, the Regulations required the Council to endorse the Job Profile, make arrangements for the post to be publicly advertised in such a way that it would bring it to the attention of persons who are qualified to apply for it and ensure that the job profile to be sent to any person on request.

 

In response to a query regarding detail on operational deliverables within the job profile the Assistant Chief Executive (People Management & Performance) reported that alongside the job profile a comprehensive application pack which covers the necessary operational detail would be sent out to the interested candidates.

 

In response to a number of comments on the title of the post ‘Director of Place’, the Chief Executive stated that she would take on board the comments made and would review the input prior to making a decision outside of the meeting.

 

A comment was raised regarding the current constraints within the Council Constitution which prevented the involvement of Scrutiny Committee and/or Planning Committee in the development of the Job Profile/Post Title. In response, the Council was advised that the due process had been followed as the personnel function was delegated to the Chief Executive, Director or relevant Head of service. 

 

In response to a question as to why a recruitment process had to take please, the Head of Administration and Law explained that the Local Authorities (Standing Orders) (Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 only allowed interim arrangements for up to 12 months and due process had therefore been followed.

 

In response to a query raised regarding the provision of job share, the Assistant Chief Executive (People Management & Performance reported that the potential to job share the role was available and that this would be included in the advert.

 

RESOLVED THAT the subject to the Chief Executive re-visiting the job title and satisfying herself on that point, the Job Profile, Person Specification and the Job Advert for the post of Director of Place appended to the report at Appendix A and B respectively be endorsed.

 

6.

PUBLIC QUESTIONS:-

Additional documents:

6.1

QUESTION BY MS ELLEN HUMPHREY TO COUNCILLOR A. LENNY, CABINET MEMBER FOR RESOURCES

“Second home ownership is a significant issue for local communities and local first-time buyers in rural Carmarthenshire. Will Carmarthenshire County Council implement the second home council tax premium of 300% from April 2023?”

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

“Second home ownership is a significant issue for local communities and local first-time buyers in rural Carmarthenshire. Will Carmarthenshire County Council implement the second home council tax premium of 300% from April 2023?”

 

Response by Councillor Alun Lenny – Cabinet Member for Resources:-

 

Thank you for your question it is indeed a most timely one. Before specifically addressing your question please forgive me if I do for a minute or two try to explain where we stand on this, what the latest development is and what has happened since you have tabled this question at a national level. 

 

This Council is very concerned about the damage that the unreasonable growth in the number of second homes has especially for beach side resorts like Llansteffan but also to rural towns as well like Cilycwm and Myddfai.  In my opinion it is completely unacceptable for people who are rich enough to afford a second home are denying local young people from buying their first home in their own communities.  And by pushing the house prices up beyond any means, we say a second home but it’s a second house in a way because you can’t call a house by somebody who only spends a few weeks a year as a home.  It is not a problem in Wales only of course.  People from Cornwall and in the Lakes and also in the Northeast of England also face the same problem.  I discussed it with the Chair of the Planning Committee in Northumberland, but in Wales of course, language is a unique factor. 

 

Last year this Council called on the Welsh Government to give new powers to Local Authorities to take action in this area not only for the right to raise a higher premium but also via the planning regime and also to put a cap on the number of second homes in any specific area.  I am pleased to say that this is going to happen thanks to the agreement between Plaid Cymru and Labour in the Senedd, a package of measures was announced last week which to some extent was according to what we as a Council would have called for. 

 

Among the measures the Welsh Government recommends creating three new classes of house use which is, main home, a second home and holiday lets on short term basis.  Local Planning Authorities based on evidence will have the right to insist that every owner has to get planning permission if they want to change the use of a house from one class to another. 

 

The National Planning Policy will also change in also to give Local Authorities the right to manage the number of second homes and holiday homes in any community.  It is an intention to present a statutory Licensing Plan for every holiday home including short term holiday lets.  Also measures to increase the rates for second homes and on holiday lets.

 

In terms of your specific question, if Carmarthenshire Council is going to raise the premium  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.1

7.

QUESTIONS BY MEMBERS

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chair advised that no members questions had been received.

 

8.

MINUTES FOR INFORMATION (AVAILABLE TO VIEW ON THE WEBSITE)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chair stated that the minutes outlined on the agenda were available for information on the Council website.