Agenda and minutes

Venue: in the Council Chamber at the Business Centre, Futures Park, Bacup.

Contact: Mike Neville  Tel: 01772 533431, Email:  mike.neville@lancashire.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

Also in attendance.

 

Ms H Tankard – Community Support Officer, Flood Forum.

Mr H Ballantyne, Locality Officer, Public Health, Adult Services, Health and Wellbeing Directorate, Lancashire County Council.

Mr M Neville, Senior Committee Support Officer, Democratic Services, Office of the Chief Executive, Lancashire County Council.

 

1.

Appointment of Chair.

Minutes:

Agreed: That County Councillor A Barnes is appointed as the Chair of the Forum for the remainder of the year.

 

2.

Appointment of Deputy Chair.

Minutes:

Agreed: That Councillor C Lamb is appointed as the Deputy Chair of the Forum for the remainder of the year.

 

3.

Membership and Terms of Reference. pdf icon PDF 58 KB

Minutes:

A report was presented in relation to the above and it was reported that Councillor G Sandiford had permanently replaced Councillor A Milling on the Forum.

 

Agreed:

 

1.  That the revised membership of the Forum, as set out below, is noted.

 

Lancashire County Council

 

County Councillor A Barnes

County Councillor A Cheetham

County Councillor J Oakes

County Councillor S Serridge

County Councillor D Stansfield

Rossendale Borough Council

 

Councillor C Crawforth

Councillor C Lamb

Councillor G Sandiford

Councillor D Smith

Councillor R Wilkinson

 

  Parish and Town Council representative - Councillor D Barnes  (Whitworth Town Council).

 

2.  That the Terms of Reference and protocol on public speaking, as set out below, are noted.

 

  a)  The Forum is a joint business meeting of County, District, and Town and Parish Councillors, open to the public.

 

  b)  The membership of the Forum will be all local County Councillors with an Electoral Division within the District and an equal number of District Councillors appointed by the District Council, and one Parish/Town Council representative nominated from the Parish/Town Councils within the District area.

District Councils and the Parish/Town Councils can nominate deputies or replacements in accordance with their own procedures. The officer(s) supporting the meeting must be notified of any changes prior to a meeting.  Political balance rules do not apply to the Three Tier Forum, although districts may follow these for their nominations.

 

  c)  The Forum will discuss issues that are of joint interest across the three levels of local government in the area. Agenda items will focus on strategic issues relating to all local councils in the area.

 

  d)  Any member of the Forum can request that an item is considered at a future meeting of the Forum. The Chair is responsible for agreeing the agenda and deciding whether an issue raised by a member will appear on an agenda. Where issues are raised that do not fall within the remit of the Forum these will be dealt with via the appropriate mechanism.

 

  e)  Public speaking is permitted on the following basis - on each agenda item for up to 3 minutes per person at the discretion of the Chair.

 

  f)  The Chair is responsible for managing the debate at the meeting. The Chair's ruling on any aspect of a member of the Forums right to speak will be final. Members who persistently ignore the ruling of the Chair may after being warned, be asked to leave the room for the duration of the meeting. 

 

  g)  Decisions of the Forum should be by consensus wherever possible. In the event that a consensus cannot be reached, decisions are by simple 'show of hands' majority with the Chair having a casting vote.

 

  h)  The Forum is not a formal committee of County, District or Parish Councils, therefore Access to Information provisions do not apply. However, as they are public meetings, agendas and minutes will be available on the County Council's website and by request can be obtained in person at County Hall, Preston.

 

  i)  The Chair  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.

4.

Questions.

There will be a 15 minute period (to be managed by the Chair) during which members of the public or representatives from Neighbourhood Forums can ask questions or raise issues of concern.

Minutes:

The Chair invited members of the public and representatives of various organisations who were present at the meeting to ask questions about any issues and the following matters were raised.

 

·  Concern was expressed regarding the potential long term costs associated with refuse collection vehicles from Rossendale being required to travel to the Whinney Hill landfill site rather than somewhere more local.

 

·  Action was requested in relation to the traffic congestion on South Street in Bacup caused by some taxis continuing not to use the designated taxi rank in King Street.

 

Agreed: That the comments set out above are noted and where appropriate responses provided either via the Action Sheet or outside of the meeting.

 

5.

Apologies.

Minutes:

No apologies for absence were presented in relation to the meeting.

 

6.

Note of the Last Meeting pdf icon PDF 81 KB

Minutes:

Agreed: That the Note of the meeting held on the 2nd April 2014 is confirmed as an accurate record and signed by the Chair.

 

7.

Action Sheet update from the last meeting. pdf icon PDF 63 KB

Minutes:

It was requested that the highways in the vicinity of Ogden Bridge at Irwell Vale be resurfaced once all the works associated with the improvements to the bridge were complete.

 

The traffic congestion on South Street in Bacup was discussed and it was noted that some taxis still did not use the existing rank on King Street due to vehicles being vandalised there in the past. Objections had been received in relation to a proposal to relocate the taxi rank to South Street and it was suggested that increased enforcement action was required in order to encourage taxi drivers to use the existing rank rather than parking in South Street.

 

It was noted that the Police had undertaken speed measurements in Bacup and that the findings would inform the development of the scheme for the Townscape Heritage Initiative.

 

It was also suggested that rather than using Blackburn Road a number of HGVs continued to use minor roads in Haslingden, causing damage to the highway surface and kerbs. Improved signage and greater enforcement was requested in order to encourage HGVs to remain on the bypass rather than using other roads.

 

The temporary traffic signals on the Grane Road in the vicinity of the Duke of Wellington public house were discussed and it was noted that the signals were likely to remain in place for another 4 weeks due to the depth of the sewer which was being repaired and the fact that repairs were being done manually in order to avoid a total closure of the highway.

 

Agreed: That the above comments and the updates set out in the Action Sheet are noted.

 

8.

Developing the Three Tier Forums - feedback on the review. pdf icon PDF 89 KB

A copy of the report presented to the County Councils Cabinet on the 8th May 2014 in connection with the above together with an extract from the Minutes is

attached.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

A report was presented regarding the responses received during the consultation on the future of 3 Tier Forums and the decision of the County Councils Cabinet in May to develop two pilots in Lancaster and Chorley for different models of governance. It was also noted that the Rossendale Forum had adopted a slightly different format in order to accommodate the Borough Councils Neighbourhood Forums.

 

The County Councils preferred position was for Forums to be open to the public and where that was not the case officer attendance would remain at the current level. In addition no consideration would be given to devolving decision making or budgets in relation to those Forums which did not meet in public.

 

Agreed: That decision of the County Councils Cabinet on the 8th May 2014 in relation to the development of 3 Tier Forums is noted.

 

9.

Rossendale Making Space for Water Group pdf icon PDF 60 KB

Minutes:

The meeting was informed that there were 12 Making Space for Water groups across the County through which the County Council engaged with other Flood Risk Management Authorities and organisations to identify local hotspots and discuss potential solutions.

 

Ms H Tankard – Community Support Officer from the National Flood Forum had been tasked with raising awareness and empowering local communities to take action to address/prevent flooding. A number of flood action and community groups had been set up within the Borough, supported by the Rossendale Making Space for Water Group, which would assist in identifying schemes for future investment. It was noted that a number of schemes were currently being implemented at locations across the borough as part of a significant investment from the Environment Agency.

 

It was suggested that the frequency of gully cleaning be discussed at the next Making Space for Water Group as some gullys in back streets had become blocked due to a lack of regular cleaning and consequently did not help with the drainage of surface water.  A request was also made for work to be done in relation to identifying the location of all gullys and culverts together with septic tanks in rural areas in order to assist with regular maintenance in the future.

 

Agreed: That the comments of the Forum in relation to flood risk management are noted and where appropriate referred to the Rossendale Making Space for Water Group for consideration.

 

10.

Rossendale Borough Council - Task and Finish Group report on Public Rights of Way. pdf icon PDF 67 KB

Minutes:

Members of the Forum discussed the work of a Borough Council Overview and Scrutiny Task Group which had been established to review the network of footpaths and bridleways in Rossendale in order to assess both its value and effectiveness.

 

It was reported that there were circumstances where individuals or groups were interested in undertaking minor works in order to improve/maintain the network but were often concerned about potential legal issues/public liability. In response it was suggested that any issues should initially be raised with the Public Rights of Way Team at the County Council who would be able to provide advice and may already have work planned in the area.

 

The leaflet 'Routes around Rossendale' which publicised the availability of a number of routes in the Borough was discussed and it was suggested that in future leaflets relating to Public Rights of Way should include information as to how the public should report faults to the County Council. However, it was recognised that this may not be possible in all cases as the County Council did not produce all such material.

 

In response to a query regarding the use of trampers to enable disabled people to access public rights of way in Lea Quarry the Chair reported that potential routes were still being assessed.

 

Agreed: That the comments of the Forum are noted.

 

11.

2014/15 Quarter 1 Environment Directorate Performance Dashboard. pdf icon PDF 605 KB

Minutes:

Mr Ballantyne presented the updates on schemes set out in the Dashboard and informed the meeting that all capital schemes which were due for delivery in quarter 1 had either been completed or were progressing as planned. It was noted that during May 99% of identified highway defects had been repaired within the 20 day target period and in line with the new approach which the County Council had adopted through the Transport Asset Management Plan.

 

It was suggested that there were a number of locations in the Borough such as the length of Rochdale Road through Turn Village, where white lining on the highway had become worn and was in need of repainting. In response Mr Ballantyne undertook to report any areas to the Public Realm Manager for attention.

 

Agreed: That the updates set out on the Dashboard are noted.

 

 

 

12.

Events on the Highway - policy and procedures for highway management. pdf icon PDF 613 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

It was reported that due to the increasing demand on resources Lancashire Constabulary had adopted the Association of Police Officers 'National Guidance' in relation to the policing events and in the future would not undertake any traffic management for events on the highway other that those which were deemed by the Police to be of national importance, such as Remembrance Day parades.

 

A number of members of the Forum expressed their concern regarding the decision and the possible impact it may have on many events and parades which traditionally were held in towns across the Borough, particularly in relation to small rural communities.

 

It was noted that events often required the closure of roads for short periods and the power to do so rested with local authorities rather than the Police. Under the Town Police Clauses Act 1847 District Councils were able to prevent obstruction in streets in times of public procession, rejoicing or illuminations and in any case when the streets are thronged or liable to be obstructed. This legislation was normally used for carnivals and processions where any road closure would be for a short period and there was no substantial traffic management required. In addition the County Council, under the Road Traffic Regulation Act, 1984, was able to close roads for a maximum of three days in any calendar year in order to regulate traffic on a temporary basis to facilitate sporting events, social events or entertainment on the highway.

 

It was the responsibility of the event organiser to liaise with the relevant local authority about events and determine what form of traffic management and marshalling were required. With regard to providing marshals for events it was noted the policy included a proposal for the County Council to establish an accredited training course which would enable County/District Council staff to be trained at a potentially reduced cost.

 

Agreed: That the proposed policy and procedure for highway management associated with events on the highway is noted.

 

13.

Transport Asset Management Plan (TAMP) pdf icon PDF 232 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Mr Ballantyne reported that the TAMP was the County Councils approved investment strategy which identified key strategic priorities for the highway authority during the period 2015-2030. The Plan represented a fundamental change in approach for the County Council away from tackling what was perceived as the worst areas first, towards one aligned to the Department for Transport's philosophy that, 'prevention is better than cure' with resources being used to reduce key maintenance backlogs through preventative methods.

 

Analysis had indicated the County Council required approximately £35m per annum to maintain all of its transport assets at their 2013 levels. However, the direct allocation likely to be received from central government, via the Department for Transport, would only be £25m per annum and so the resulting shortfall presented a challenge to do more, or even the same, with less.

 

It was noted that preventative intervention works, involving treatments that were generally carried out at an earlier critical stage in an asset's life-cycle and are usually less expensive and less intrusive, were proposed to reduce maintenance backlogs. Key maintenance backlogs would be reduced over a ten to fifteen year period which would mean that the level of available funding broadly matched the amount needed to maintain all assets.

 

Agreed: That the principles and approach as set out in the Transport Asset Management Plan are noted and that the Forum receive updates in the future regarding implementation of the Plan.

 

14.

Tour de France review

Oral report.

Minutes:

Mr Ballantyne informed the meeting that the two stages of the Tour de France which held in Yorkshire during July had been successful, with the associated traffic management measures working well and minimal disruption to traffic in Lancashire.

 

Agreed: That the update is noted. 

 

15.

County Councillors Update

County Councillors on the Forum will give oral reports on activity that they have been involved in since the last meeting.

Minutes:

The Chair invited the County Councillors on the Forum to give a brief update on activities which they were involved in.

 

County Councillor Stansfield reported that he was a member of the Regulatory Committee which primarily considered issues in connection with public rights of way.

 

County Councillor Serridge informed the meeting that he was involved with the ongoing introduction of superfast broadband which was on target a achieve 97% coverage of Lancashire. More locally a pilot scheme in Whitworth was aimed at encouraging older people to make use of the Internet. He also reported that he was working with the County Councils Champion for Armed Forces veterans and the Princes Trust in relation to initiatives in the Borough.

 

County Councillor Oakes reported that she was the Chair of both the Regulatory Committee and the Commons and Town Greens Sub Committee which was due to meet shortly. She added that many of the highway issues which she received could be reported directly to the County Council via Public Enquiry Management System at http://new.lancashire.gov.uk/roads-parking-and-travel/fault-search.aspx

 

County Councillor Cheetham reported that she was a member of the Education Scrutiny Committee and the Student Support Appeals Committee which considered applications for assistance with home to school transport.

 

The Chair reported that she was the Deputy Chair of the Executive Scrutiny Committee and also served on the Budget Working Group which would consider where potential savings could be made by the County Council over the next few years.

 

Agreed: That the updates from the County Council representatives present, as set out above, are noted.

 

16.

Items raised by members of the Forum

An oral update will be given in relation to the Overview and Scrutiny Task Group on planning applications education/highways contributions.

Minutes:

The Chair reported that the County Councils Overview and Scrutiny Task Group to look into planning applications education/highway contributions had not met and she would keep the Forum informed of any developments.

 

Agreed: That the report is noted.

17.

Themes for future meetings

Any suggestions for themes to be discussed at future meetings should be forwarded to the Chair and Harry Ballantyne, Localities Officer, Environment Directorate: Strategy and Policy, Mobile 07717 423903 or by email to harry.ballantyne@lancashire.gov.uk

Minutes:

The following were suggested as possible topics for discussion at future meetings.

 

1.  The work of the Princes Trust in general but also in relation to specific activities within the Borough.

 

2.  Issues relation to parking outside schools in the Borough and what action can be taken to address it, including enforcement action, the Healthy Street scheme and potentially using school grounds for drop off/collection in order to remove parked vehicles from the highway. It was also suggested that many of the issues which had been discussed during the meeting in relation to traffic speed/congestion were often the result of a lack of knowledge or understanding of the Highway Code.

 

3.  Updates in relation to the M65 and the M66 Gateway Studies which were referred to in the Dashboard.

 

4.  An update in relation to the development of the Rawtenstall Town Plan.

 

Agreed: That the Chair and Locality Officer consider the above suggestions and where appropriate make arrangements for reports to be brought to future meetings.

 

18.

Urgent Business

An item of urgent business may only be considered under this heading where, by reason of special circumstances to be recorded in the minutes, the Chair of the meeting is of the opinion that the item should be considered at the meeting as a matter of urgency. 

 

Minutes:

There were no items of urgent business for discussion at the meeting.

 

19.

Date of Next Meeting

The next scheduled meeting of the Forum will be held at 6.00pm on the 3rd December 2014 in the Council Chamber at the Business Centre, Futures Park, Bacup.

 

Minutes:

It was noted that the next scheduled meeting would be held at 6pm on the 3rd December 2014 in the Council Chamber at the Business Centre, Futures Park, Bacup.