Agenda and draft minutes

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Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for absence and declarations of interest

To receive any apologies and declarations of interest.

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillor G Driscoll and J Richards, NFU County Advisor.

 

2.

Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 286 KB

To consider the minutes of the previous meeting.

Minutes:

The minutes of the last meeting held on 8th September 2021 were approved as a correct record.

 

3.

Allocation of funding and associated governance process

To discuss the allocation of funding and the associated governance process:

 

1) £1,000,000 could be spent entirely on one sector. For instance it could all be spent on transport to reduce transport emissions, housing, to reduce household emissions, or biodiversity, amongst others.

 

How does the CCWG think the funds should be split and why?

 

2) What would the ideal governance process for evaluating projects for spend, once the category of spend is defined?

 

Minutes:

3               

Allocation of funding and associated governance process

 

The Chair introduced the meeting and said that the Climate Crisis Action Plan would be going to the Joint Executive Team on Friday 12th November and then to Scrutiny Committee on the 23rd November.

 

She said she wanted this meeting to be an opportunity for open debate on how to spend the £1m funding put aside for climate change related projects.   

 

She wanted the budget to be spent on something that had a long-term impact and outlined the biodiversity benefits, she said this could be one project or a number of different projects.

 

Councillor Freeman said that £1m would not go far and he thought that it should be spent on one or maybe two projects under the Council’s direct control.  His ideas included Woodland, Arboretum or Biodiversity projects.  He said there would need to be a fixed term consultation to gather public views and the project needed to progress quickly.

 

Councillor Caton said that the next step following this meeting should be an options analysis to ensure that the Council could clearly see what it was getting for the money spent and how it would reduce emissions.  He said that there were government initiatives that could increase the amount of funding available.

 

 

 

 

 

In response to a question from Councillor Light, the Climate Change Project Officer said that only £9k of the budget had been spent so far and that was on 3 surveys from Common Place: -

·         Biodiversity survey – completed with a very high response

·         Active Travel survey – commissioned but not yet completed

·         And one other that had not yet been used.

 

She said that the phasing of the funding within the budget was one third each year for three years, she said the spend might be phased differently depending on when it was required.

 

She said that there were numerous options on how the money could be spent and asked that Members gave feedback to guide the decision making progress on what they thought was most important and most needed.  She said that in the district transport was the biggest carbon emitter but was the responsibility of Essex County Council (ECC) and the next largest emitter was the housing sector.

 

Councillor Caton said that his top priority would be the energy efficiency of the housing stock, which would provide both environmental and social benefit.  He said a large proportion of lower income families lived in private rented accommodation, and therefore it was important to encourage private Landlords to make the investment needed to provide the environmental and social benefits. 

 

The Climate Change Project Officer said that the Government had different levels of energy performance certificates for private rented properties and the standard required for these properties was due to be raised and could then be enforced.  She said she would be undertaking a project to find out how many properties in Uttlesford District Council (UDC) did not meet the higher standard and she would then contact  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.