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Disclosures of Interest & Whipping Declarations
In accordance with the Council's Code of Conduct, Councillors of the Council are reminded that it is a requirement to declare interests where appropriate.
Councillors must also declare if they are subject to their party group whip in relation to any items under consideration.
No disclosures of interests were made.
· Brief introduction to the Review
· Agree the draft Scoping Framework as attached.
· To be followed by a discussion on any background information and the Review timescales.
Councillor Jaggard welcomed the Panel to the first meeting of the Climate Change Scrutiny Panel that recognised the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Report together with the consequences of climate change. It was noted that there was a responsibility on every individual to make changes, but that local government had a duty to lead the way.
The Democratic Services Officer explained that Overview and Scrutiny Commission had been requested to set up the Scrutiny Panel and highlighted the composition of the Panel. The Chair then explained that the first meeting was an administrative one and its focus was to agree the Scoping Framework and there would be no public question time. Disappointment was conveyed from the public gallery at the lack of public question time. The Chair emphasised the format of the first meeting, and at future meetings it was Chair’s discretion to allow for this (for which there would be a set format).
Councillor Jaggard reminded that Panel that its remit was quite specific. The purpose of the Panel was “to investigate and make recommendations focusing on the council’s workings and activities relating to carbon emissions and report to Council as soon as practicable” in order to reduce carbon emissions from the council’s activities by 45% by 2030 and to zero by 2050.
Whilst the Full Council notice of motion included 7 clear points, it was specific in that the scrutiny panel should focus on the activities and workings of the council relating to the reduction of carbon emissions.
Panel Members discussed the draft scoping framework. The key objectives had been documented as follows:
1) Audit the Council’s workings and activities across the various services in relation to reducing carbon emissions.
- Work is currently underway in producing an audit surrounding the council’s current facilities and it would be important to identify a baseline. It was acknowledged this current audit work would be finalised early in 2020.
- Annual government data is broken down into 3 key areas (industry/commercial, domestic, transport) for each authority and is comparable with others. Whilst aviation currently is not included (due to flight destination), the effects on local infrastructure could be incorporated to demonstrate the impact.
2) Establish a carbon emissions baseline for the town and review data to quantify the challenges that Crawley faces as it progresses towards the 2030 target and beyond.
3) Investigate best practice across other local authorities, learn from best practice in other towns and cities.
- There was a Sussex wide group already established representing districts and boroughs across East and West Sussex (Sussex Climate Emergency Local Authorities Group). This currently shares best practice and it was suggested that perhaps the Panel could either feed into this or perhaps the Group could share presentations or reports to the Panel.
4) Research and engage with key officers and partners, particularly regarding the future establishment of “green infrastructure”.
- It was commented that green open spaces were paramount and balance was needed between green space and maintaining housing ... view the full minutes text for item 2.
To confirm dates for further meetings. (Please bring diaries to the meeting).
It is proposed that potentially the Review be undertaken as a “themed” approach in order to cover the work – along with witness sessions (initial proposals for discussion and agreement are listed below). However, as documented below there are “cross-overs” with the majority of areas so careful thought will be required to ensure the Panel’s work adds value and does not duplicate.
1. Building usage/development and energy
2. Transport and vehicle usage
3. Business and local economic growth
4. Community and green infrastructure
With the scoping framework agreed, future meetings of the Panel were discussed. These future meetings were agreed as follows:
Whilst the individuals named above identifies those witnesses anticipated to speak, this may change subject to availability and, at the discretion of the Chair. Further witnesses may be called in addition or instead of those listed above should they be unavailable.
Title of Review:
Climate Change Scrutiny Panel
PART 1: THE REVIEW
PART 2: EVIDENCE GATHERING AND PLANNING
PART 3: ADMINISTRATIVE CHECKLIST