Agenda and minutes

Community Overview & Scrutiny Panel - Pre May 2023 - Monday, 6th September, 2021 6.00 pm

Venue: Virtual Meeting

Contact: Sally Hampton - Member & Community Support Officer  Tel: 01538 395429 Email:


Webcast: View the webcast

No. Item


Notification of Substitute Members, if any.

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Councillor Wilkinson was substitute member for Councillor Martin and Councillor Gledhill substituted for Councillor Swindlehurst.


To Approve the Minutes of the Previous Meeting. pdf icon PDF 291 KB

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DECIDED:    That the minutes of the meeting of the Panel held on the 12th July 2021 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.



Urgent items of Business, if any (24 hours notice to be provided to the Chairman)

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There were no urgent items of business.


Declaration of Interests:

·         Disclosable Pecuniary Interests

·         Other Interests


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None were declared.


Questions to Portfolio Holders, if any. pdf icon PDF 273 KB

(At least two clear days notice required, in writing, to the Proper Officer in accordance with Procedure Rule 15).

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1.    Question received from Councillor Hoptroff:


Why isn’t Climate Change on the agenda for this meeting when it is the platform for the Portfolio Holder to report to members of the panel and allow scrutiny and support. This was agreed and promised when the Climate Change Emergency was approved in 2019 to be on every agenda of this committee?”


Response from Councillor Porter – Portfolio Holder for Climate Change & Biodiversity:


On the 10th July 2019 this Council took the crucial step of declaring a Climate Change Emergency. The resolution from that meeting of the full Council included undertakings to:

1        Work towards making Staffordshire Moorlands carbon neutral by 2030

2        Call on the Government to provide guidance, powers and resources to make carbon neutrality possible

3        Request that the Chair of the Community Overview and Scrutiny Panel establishes a sub committee to undertake detailed research with a view to developing an effective, achievable and costed plan for addressing climate change within the Staffordshire Moorlands.

4        Ensure that all Council Bodies and Scrutiny Panels consider the impact of climate change and the environment when making decisions and reviewing Council policies and strategies.

5        Review progress made on an annual basis via Scrutiny and Full Council.


Councillor Hoptroff’s question quite rightly refers to the importance of providing a platform for Members of this Committee to scrutinise and support the Council’s work towards achieving carbon neutrality. This is why one of the undertakings was to establish a specific sub-committee to provide the required support and scrutiny.


Since making this undertaking, the Climate Change Working Group has met on ten occasions to help formulate our action plan. However, the Council went beyond its initial undertaking and also established thematic sub-groups to consider the Council’s emissions, Energy, Housing, Natural Environment, Travel & Transport, and Industry & Agriculture. These groups have also met regularly, often on a monthly basis, to provide further opportunities for Members to contribute to this agenda. The Council also extended membership of the Working Group to include the Moorlands Climate Action Group.


I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Chairs and all the members of the Working Group and the six Sub-Group for their support in developing our Climate Change plan.


The other undertaking was to review progress on an annual basis via Scrutiny and Full Council. I am committed to presenting annual reports to both this Scrutiny Committee and to Full Council each year to coincide with the anniversary of the Council signing the Emergency declaration.


We will looking Part 2 of the Climate Change action plan in the coming months and this will be presented to both the Climate Change Working Group and this Committee to gain the valuable input of those two groups.


We have always said that the action plans will be flexible document that will be updated on a regular basis and it is important that we have an on-going mechanism to involve Councillors in that process.


Most importantly, we must now have a  ...  view the full minutes text for item 63.


Anti Social Behaviour pdf icon PDF 253 KB

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The Council was committed to reviewing its approach to community safety to reduce crime, the fear of crime and anti-social behaviour. The report, introduced by Mark Trillo – Executive Director, helped to deliver that commitment.


  A wide variety of behaviour could be defined as ‘anti-social’ if it had a negative impact on others. In law, anti-social behaviour was defined as behaviour that causes, or is likely to cause alarm, distress or harassment to others (and nuisance in the housing context).

The Council had a duty to exercise its functions with due regard to the impact on anti-social behaviour. The Council had specific duties in relation to certain types of behaviours, such as noise nuisance.

The report detailed a draft policy covering the Council’s response to anti-social behaviour and also a handbook that is intended to provide relevant advice to the residents of Staffordshire Moorlands.

In response to a query around the dilution of policing powers, members were assured this was not the case and the Council’s role was to deal with general complaints and low level anti-social behaviour which did not include any criminal offenses. Dependant on the nature of the problem, the Council would work in conjunction with the Police to ensure the most suitable action was taken for residents.

A member of the Panel requested an officer contact list to refer to and the most appropriate way to channel queries would be discussed after the meeting with the Head of Communities and Climate Change. A case management system was also being looked into which would assist members with their case work.

It was also felt that a summary of the Handbook would be beneficial for residents and that resources should be directed into the provision of activities for young people. Members were advised that the Community Safety Plan incorporated multi-agency diversionary activities to prevent the occurrence of anti-social behaviour and details of the Plan could be shared at a future meeting of the Panel.




1)               That the Panel notes the Council’s responsibilities with respect to anti?social behaviour.


2)               That the Panel recommends that the Cabinet approves the draft Anti?Social Behaviour Policy.


3)               That the Panel notes the Anti-Social Behaviour Handbook and assists in raising awareness of the handbook within the community.




Work Programme pdf icon PDF 106 KB

Any additional items to be added to the Work Programme:

·         Chair’s Items

·         Members’ Items

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The Panel considered its Work Programme and agreed the items listed.


A suggestion was made for some of the items listed for the following meeting to be postponed to allow sufficient time for the Panel to scrutinise the Climate Change Plan – Part 2. The Chair advised, that he would discuss the matter with the Chair of the Climate Change Working Group and agree the most suitable way forward.


DECIDED: That the Work Programme for 2021-2022 be agreed.