Greenwich Council

Agenda and minutes

Venue: Committee Room 5 - Town Hall, Wellington Street, Woolwich SE18 6PW. View directions

Contact: Denise Kevern  Email: denise.kevern@royalgreenwich.gov.uk or tel: 020 8921 5145

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for Absence

To receive apologies for absence from Members of the Panel.

Minutes:

The Cabinet Member for Community Safety and Environment – Councillor Jackie Smith gave apologies for absence.

 

Councillor Don Austen (7.05pm) and Councillor Tonia Ashikodi (7.20pm) gave apologies for lateness.

2.

Urgent Business

The Chair to announce any items of urgent business circulated separately from the main agenda.

Minutes:

There was no urgent business.

3.

Declarations of Interest pdf icon PDF 34 KB

Members to declare any personal and financial interests in items on the agenda.  Attention is drawn to the Council’s Constitution; the Council’s Code of Conduct and associated advice.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Resolved –

 

That the list of Councillors’ memberships as Council appointed representatives on outside bodies, joint committees and school governing bodies be noted.

4.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 50 KB

Members are requested to confirm as an accurate record the Minutes of the meeting held on 20 July 2017.

 

No motion or discussion may take place upon the Minutes except as to their accuracy, and any question on this point will be determined by a majority of the Members of the body attending who were present when the matter in question was decided.  Once confirmed, with or without amendment, the person presiding will sign the Minutes.

Minutes:

Resolved -

 

That the minutes of the meeting of the Community Safety and Environment Scrutiny Panel held on 20 July 2017 be agreed and signed as a true and accurate record.

5.

Environmental Enforcement in Street Services and Community Safety pdf icon PDF 243 KB

To note the content of the report.

Minutes:

The report was presented by the Assistant Director Community Safety and Environmental Health and the Interim Assistant Director Street Services, Parks and Open Spaces. The latter gave a brief overview of the content, including performance activity, challenges faced and liaison with outside bodies, for example the Metropolitan Police and Peabody Housing.

 

In response to a question regarding fly-tipping and Houses of Multiple Occupancy (HMOs), the Assistant Director replied that additional staff had been employed to tackle the problem and engaged with colleagues in other areas such as Licencing to identify un-registered HMOs. In regard to increased resourcing, there were four teams which serviced Plumstead, Charlton, Abbey Wood and Woolwich specifically and as a result, a reduction in complaints had been noted. He added that there was one generic phone number that could be used to contact the Council and report enviro-crime.

 

The Panel queried if Community Protection Warnings (CPWs) and Notices (CPNs) were proving to be effective. The Assistant Director referred to the table at 4.2.5 in the report, which showed that the use of CPWs had reduced the need for CPNs which in turn had reduced the number of CPN Fixed Penalty Notices issued.

 

The Panel noted that investigations of fly-tipping and FPNs issued indicated that the perpetrators were not being identified. The Assistant Director explained that this was a national problem and that Government were reviewing legislation. The perpetrators tended to be individuals who operated outside of the legal framework, and included builders working in neighbouring authorities and un-registered HMO landlords. The use of CCTV, Community Wardens and the Police were employed to apprehend them, and media coverage of cases employed to dissuade others from fly-tipping. Waste carriers were proactively stopped and those without licences had their vehicles confiscated. The public were encouraged to report incidences.

 

Councillor Ashikodi gave apologies for lateness and joined the meeting (7.20pm).

 

The Assistant Director explained that barrow beats during July and August 2017 showed 67 and 64 roads not completed on their scheduled day respectively. This was due to staff annual leave (peak time) and the need for the recruitment of staff at that time. The number of roads swept fluctuated from month to month because the figure was dependent on the number of days in the month and if there were any Bank Holidays. Spot checks were undertaken to ensure roads had been swept and the service would also welcome feedback from councillors and the public.

 

The Panel drew attention to the significant drop in the issuing of FPNs by Town Centre Wardens for littering and other misdemeanours. The Assistant Director stated that there were several reasons for this, including the number of wardens has dropped and they had been focussing on street drinkers rather than littering. The Assistant Director Community Safety and Environmental Health said that the wardens would be advised that their productivity levels needed to increase and that they should focus on enforcement activity.

 

In response to a question about CCTV, the Assistant Director replied that it  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

Showing Places for Children and Young People to Play are Safe pdf icon PDF 131 KB

To inform the Scrutiny Panel of current places that children and young people can play and take part in activities throughout Greenwich.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The report was presented by the Interim Head of Sport, Leisure, Libraries and Adventure Play Services. He highlighted that there were 88 facilities across the Borough. Work with Parks and Open Spaces was underway to encourage greater usage of green spaces. The Peninsula ward was an issue and discussion with the Greater London Authority regarding engagement with developers and investors had taken place. He also gave an overview of the regular safety and inspection work, which took place.

 

Councillor Barwick asked that it be noted that there were now two table tennis tables in Charlton Park. She also praised the success of the Charlton Skate Park.

 

Regarding the Peninsula ward, the Panel suggested that a joined up approach was required between Parks and Open Spaces and the Planning service, as developers were finding reasons to cordon off areas of green space, which was then being subsumed in to private developments with no public access. There needed to be assurance that this would not continue. The Interim Head of Sport, Leisure, Libraries and Adventure Play Services agreed and discussions were ongoing with the Assistant Director Planning.

 

Councillor Don Austen gave apologies for lateness (7.05pm) and asked the Panel to note that at present Abbey Wood, Thamesmead and Plumstead were somewhat isolated, but the proposed regeneration scheme would see an increase in population and a greater degree of investment would be required for community facilities such as play areas. The Interim Head reassured the Panel that discussions were taking place with Peabody regarding capital infrastructure.

 

The Panel noted that there were no Youth Hubs in Area 2 – Blackheath and Greenwich and queried if one was being considered. To which the Interim Head replied it was and work was ongoing.

Action: Interim Head Sport, Leisure, Libraries and Playgrounds

 

In response to a question regarding training and inspections of play areas, the Interim Head said that training of Park Wardens and other relevant officers was ongoing and RoSPA training in line with legislation was kept up-to-date, and that annual inspections of sites were undertaken by external RoSPA approved inspectors.

 

He continued that Anti-Social Behaviour was high on the agenda. Work was undertaken with youth groups and officer resources were flexible to enable them to attend ‘hot spots’ when necessary.

 

The Interim Head advised the Panel that consultation was due to start on the Physical Activity and Sports Strategy and associated Action Plan and the aim was to have the Strategy in place by March 2018. A report on the Strategy would be brought back to the Panel.

Action: Sport, Leisure, Libraries and Playgrounds/ Senior Corporate Development Officer

 

Resolved:

 

That the report showing places for children and young people to play are safe was noted.

7.

Commissioning Future Reports pdf icon PDF 94 KB

To note the work programme items that are scheduled to be presented to the meeting of the Community Safety and Environment Scrutiny Panel on 25 January 2018.

 

To identify any specific themes or lines of enquiry to be covered in the report on this agenda, in order that this can be commissioned from the report author accordingly.

 

To note the draft project statement for the in-depth scrutiny of support provided to residents and communities who suffer from anti-social behaviour.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The report was introduced by the Senior Corporate Development Officer.

 

The Panel requested that Police cuts and impact be added to the list of future agenda items.

Action: Senior Corporate Development Officer

 

The Panel were requested to forward any specific questions relating to the In-depth scrutiny item – Review of Support provided to residents and communities who suffer from Anti-Social Behaviour - to the Senior Corporate Development Officer.

Action: Community Safety and Environment Scrutiny Panel

 

Resolved:

 

That the Work Programme be noted.