Report on County Council Matters to North Nibley Parish Council
1st June 2020
The County Council is continuing to send out briefings every weekday to county councillors, district councillors and parish clerks. I have appended the one for 29th May to this report. I can add a bit to this:
The mobile site at Oxstalls will remain in place until a fixed site is operational. The latter is expected to become operational on11th June and will be based at Hempsted Meadow. The County Council is responsible for developing the Local Outbreak Plan, i.e. dealing with outbreaks in a school, church etc. Two more peaks in outbreaks are expected which may lead to local lockdowns.
Household Recycling Centres (HRCs)
Pyke Quarry reopened on 26th May as in a message I posted to clerks and on various Facebook sites. Visits have to be pre-booked. All the HRCs in the county are now open.
Road space reallocation.
This is starting with sites in Cheltenham, Tewkesbury and Gloucester with more road width for cyclists and pedestrians. Others will follow based on district councils’ priorities.
Last week’s weekly group leaders’ briefing was informed that 1,000 emergency packs of PPE are being organised by GCC for schools (at a cost of £80,000). GCC is offering to purchase them since schools have never been in this marketplace before, but schools will have to pay for them. They will be offered to all schools in time for 1st June.
County Council Meetings
Some meetings have taken place, using Webex. Most will resume this month, including, Cabinet meetings and the scrutiny committees. A second meeting of the full County Council will be held.
Webex is also being used by Cheltenham Borough Council, but nationally Zoom is more popular and some councils and South West Councils are using Microsoft Teams:
County Council Planning Committee
A full meeting of the committee was held on 14th May involving 15 members and 14 officers. Members of the public were able to view it using the GCC website and YouTube, this level of public access being a legal requirement. Members of the public who had notified the council were able to speak early in the meeting as usual, along with the applicants and the parish, district, and county councillors local to the applications, a total of around 12 people. It lasted 4½ hours with a 5-minute break after 3 hours. I understand that this was a first for the county for principal authorities.
Lead members of the County Council’s political groups are having weekly briefing meetings with the Chief Executive, other officers and the leader of the council. Notes on the meeting taken by my group leader are being cascaded down to my political group and discussed using Webex, again on a weekly basis.
Parish Council meetings
All but one of the parish/Town councils in my electoral division are now holding meetings using Zoom.
(GDPR health warning:) If you no longer wish to receive this report please let me know.