Agenda and minutes

Operations and Place Shaping Board - Wednesday, 30th September, 2020 5.00 pm

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Contact: Holly Weaver  Democratic Services Assistant

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No. Item



To receive and record apologies for absence.



Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Carpenter, Councillor Howard and Councillor Jenner.



Minutes pdf icon PDF 366 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting of the Operations and Place Shaping Board held on 10 March 2020.



This item was not discussed.



Matters Arising


There were no matters arising.



Declarations of Interest

To receive and record any declarations of Interests from members present in respect of any of the various matters on the agenda for this meeting.



There were no declarations of interest relating to items on the agenda.



Councillor Training Including Induction


The Cabinet Lead for People and Organisational Development opened the item.


In February there had been a meeting held to discuss Planning training with a view to mirroring the training held at East Hampshire District Council, as it was a regular training programme. These training sessions would reflect Havant’s individual need but would ultimately allow for Members of both Councils to be flexible in which sessions they attended. The Cabinet Lead explained that planned training for Members had been put on hold as the Covid-19 Lockdown had taken place. As the Lockdown had progressed and the council had moved to remote working and remote meetings, training had to be focused on helping Members to learn to work in a digital environment. Virtual meetings and training could be recorded if necessary, allowing for increased flexibility and accessibility for Members in completing training. Moving forward a library of training sessions could be put together for members to look at, with presentations, question and answer sessions, and peer learning.


The Chairman expressed her thanks to officers for all their technical input over the years but felt that too much time had passed since training was initially looked at.


The Cabinet Lead for People and Organisational Development explained that previous proposed training plans had created complaints, and moving forward it would be up to the Members in conjunction with officers to establish the best needs for the Development Management Committee’s training.


In response to a question about training frequency, the Development Manager responded saying that at the meeting in February 2020 they had agreed to try and establish a potentially twice monthly training session for Members to try and cover a variety of topics. Matters of common interest to both councils could be held for Members of both together, whilst separate training sessions could be held for borough-specific training also.



The Cabinet Lead for People and Organisational Development highlighted the potential that virtual training sessions would hold, as training methods and topics could now be more diverse than before.


The Head of Organisational Development told the Board that virtual resource libraries with learning resources were to be launched in the coming weeks. There was an intention to give this to Councillors to allow them to access videos, webinars and pdfs covering a wide range of topics. This would be a step away from blanket training to an individualised response when it was eventually rolled out.


In response to a question about officer training, the Head of Organisational Development explained that monitoring of officer training took place in the form of a record which marked which officers passed their online course. Officers were ultimately responsible for their own development record, which they could share with their manager.


The Head of Organisational Development also added that resource libraries and e-learning facilities were live and so could be altered. The Training Needs Analysis Survey previously circulated for Members would be utilised to see where Councillors felt they could use more support, shaping their own development as officers  ...  view the full minutes text for item 61.


Nutrient Neutrality Update


The Planning Policy Manager opened the item by giving a brief history as to the Nutrient Neutrality issue. Officers told the Board that the council’s mitigation scheme was launched on 18 August 2020, and there had been a site visit by a DEFRA minister and the Chair on Natural England on 10 September 2020. The Development Management Committee was able to take this mitigation scheme into account when making a decision, notably on 10 September 2020 also.


The Planning Policy Officer explained that Warblington Farm would be taken out of intensive agricultural use, thereby reducing the damage to the Solent’s European Sites. Management of the site would maintain the level of nitrogen at 5kg/ha/year which would free up space for new development. They explained it was worth noting that there are pre-existing issues which development could not solve, but there were  schemes to help with this, such as catchment sensitive farming, for example. Excess nutrients from agricultural activity could take many years to reach the Solent. External consultants had been brought in to ensure the scheme was robust, and a review was undertaken by them, the results of which could be found on the council’s nutrient specific webpages. By restricting the agricultural use of Warblington Farm, the Solent’s water quality is maintained, thereby meeting the requirements of the Habitats Regulations.



The Deputy Leader of the Council and Cabinet Lead for Planning, Hayling Seafront Strategy and Commercial Services explained that the net effect of additional housing would be less than a 1% increase in the worsening of water quality, but as no one could be sure how much additional nitrogen could be increased, it was better to use Warblington Farm to reduce the likelihood of a significant impact. They also explained that Warblington Farm could only deliver a finite amount of nitrate mitigation, but not all sites coming forward would require unlocking some of the mitigation from the scheme. This would continue to be monitored.


In response to a question concerning the upcoming Havant Thicket Reservoir proposal, the Planning Policy Manager responded by saying that the proposal in its basic format was factored into the Habitats Regulations Assessment of the Local Plan. It would not be an immediate solution but could continue to be looked at by the council in conjunction with Portsmouth Water and the PfSH.


In response to a question regarding the calculation of the Nutrient Neutrality calculation at Warblington Farm, the Planning Policy Officer told the Board that the amount of nutrients in a dairy farm was established by Natural England at 36.2kg/h/year. The maintenance figure of 5kg/h/year could be subtracted from this in order to work out how much nitrogen could offset development. The 60 hectares of Warblington Farm taken out of intensive agricultural use could remove 1872kg of nitrogen which could be offset against development. It was highlighted that nutrient mitigation on a development site would always be preferred to off-site mitigation. The Planning Policy Officer also explained to the Board that the council would maintain  ...  view the full minutes text for item 62.