i) Chairman of Council
ii) Leader of the Council
iii) Chief Executive
In the absence of the Chairman of Council, the Vice- Chairman indicated that engagements had been limited although it had been both and honour and pleasure and a humbling experience to attend a service at All Saints’ Parish Church in Gainsborough in a community show of support for the people of Ukraine.
The Vice Chairman also took the opportunity to promote West Lindsey’s Annual Flag Raising for Commonwealth Day on 14th March at 10.00am outside the Guildhall, Councillors and public were welcome to attend. Reference was also made to the Annual Churches Festival which would be taking place during the week and which she would be in attendance. The Festival was always an amazing event and residents and visitors alike were encouraged to get involved.
The Leader made the following address to Council: -
“Thank you, Chairman,
As previously reported the ten upper-tier Councils in Lincolnshire have been working together in order to respond to the opportunities for devolved decision-making made available through the Government’s ambitious Levelling Up White Paper, published on Wednesday, 2nd February. This signifies a resetting of the relationship between central and Local Government, giving Councils more power to deliver effectively on behalf of the areas and communities they serve. Our aim is to achieve the early submission of a compelling case for devolved powers for historic Lincolnshire. Anything less would, undoubtedly, be a missed opportunity to build a better future.
The Proposed Submission version of the new Central Lincolnshire Local Plan was approved by members of the Joint Strategic Planning Committee at a meeting on Monday, 28th February and will now undergo an eight-week formal public consultation period (Regulation 19). This is expected to open during week commencing Monday, 14th March and close in week commencing Monday, 9th May. Following that the document (and any representations received) will be submitted to the Planning Inspectorate in preparation for an Examination in Public in the summer.
The Lincolnshire Outbreak Engagement Board met for the final time on Wednesday, 2nd March, albeit with the proviso that it could be readily reconvened if necessary. This decision responds not only to falling infection rates and a reduction in hospitalisation here, but also to the national transition to ‘Living with Covid’ and is due in large part to the outstanding success of the NHS and partner organisations in delivering the various vaccination programmes as well as the support and understanding of residents. The Lincolnshire Help line will close on Thursday, 31st March and lateral flow testing kits will no longer be available without charge after that date.
Preparations are well under way for the introduction of the separate collection of paper and card in West Lindsey, an environmental and financial imperative. Deliveries of the new purple-lidded bins commenced today and will be completed by the end of March. Collections will begin in April, as detailed on the calendars previously delivered to householders. Information packs have also been posted to every home to assist in verifying the items accepted in each recycling bin. The response to these arrangements has been overwhelmingly positive and highly encouraging!
Thank you again Chairman.”
The Chief Executive addressed Council and advised the Chief Officer Employment Committee had met on 23 February and following a robust and intensive recruitment process had made an appointment to the Chief Officer Post – Director of Corporate Services/Section 151. Emma Foy had provided a provisional start date of 30 May 2022. Emma was an experienced s151 officer and would be a great addition to the team. He looked forward to introducing Emma to wider membership in due course.
The previous week interviews held also been held for the post of Assistant Director – People and Democratic Services. The new appointed Director had been involved in the recruitment day and the Chief Executive was pleased to advise that Emma Redwood had been successful in that process. Congratulations were expressed to both Emma’s on their successes.
The Chief Executive had also attended the service in Gainsborough in support of the Ukrainian people. With regards the emergency issues created by the Invasion of Ukraine, the seven Districts and the County Council were working through the existing Resettlement Partnership led by North Kesteven to offer support where possible to the people of Ukraine.
As referenced by the Leader the Local Outbreak Engagement Board was being paused, in addition it had also been agreed that the Strategic Control Group of the Lincolnshire Resilience Forum could be paused for the moment. The Group remained on standby in-case there was a change in the evolution of the Covid 19 and could be re-established at short notice if necessary.
Finally, on 25 February a follow up session with the Peer Team that visited the Council in January 2020 had been held. The Peer Team had met with the senior management team and the Chairmen and Vice Chairmen of Committees to reflect on progress against the 10 recommendations. The initial feedback had been positive and the Authority would receive a follow up written report of the findings by the 18 March, which would subsequently be presented to Full Council for consideration.
This concluded announcements for the meeting.