SBC - The Scrutineers

Mortal Mindy's picture

Environment & Economy Scrutiny Commitee meeting at 2.00 pm, Monday 1st December 2014. Agenda & Reports:

Item 4- Bathing Water Performance in the Borough;  Peter Stevenson (Environment Agency)

Six made the Standard.  Staithes failed.  Focus on the new standard on DECC website, to get a Blue Flag needs to get an 'excellent'.  Cayton Bay the best. (?). Reighton has problems; Haven Holidays are working very hard to put in place systems of improvement.  Robin Hoods Bay was poor but improving, due to sewage removal pipe - now excellent.  Runswick Bay - excellent, perhaps due to the removal of the seaweed. Sandsend had problems with 'heavy rain' bacteria from agriculture that ran into the stream.  North Bay - excellent.  Staithes was poor and remains poor with results lower than previous years.    Filey - there was a problem with Pinewood Avenue connected into the wrong system, work started in October 2014 due to be completed in Jan 2015, should improve.  South Bay - Yorkshire Water have invested £50mil, has made a difference, previously had been poor.  In September recorded high bacteria levels, not linked to rainfall, the YW assets had not overflowed with 2.5ml rain on the day of the test the YW system has done what it is supposed to do.  We have done some extensive surveys to find the possible source, seabirds and the harbour users.  There needs to be low levels of bacteria to meet the standard.  A big sampling programme at different states of the tide, survey indecisive, samples sent away for final analysis.  We will be repeating the survey in April, before the tourism/bathing season.  We are working with SBC & the Harbour Board and looking at the seafoord processing plants, eg washwater & disposal of waste seafood.  

Q's: MoP Steve Croft - Seagulls are a natural part of the sea eco system.  What about the use of previous, old data.   Removing seaweed would be counter-productive.   

EA: We are also looking at  donkeys on the beach, if the MST analysis comes back and where the bacteria comes from - if not present we cross it off. Refactorisation on a smaller data set. The directive allows this to happen.  Our first priority is public health.  Secondly for decision making.  EA make Defra aware - Defra allowed us to use old data.  Seaweed - bacteria lives longer on seaweed.  Runswick Bay guideline - so many factors in water quality. 

Andrew Williams (SBC) We only remove seaweed if it starts to rot or causes a hazaard. 

Q: Cllr David Jeffels - (Task Group on Sea Gulls). - With regard to the northern area of the Borough concerning agriculture and fertilisers.  Could we do more to encourage the use of more friendly fertilisers, especially at Staithes?

EA: We are trying to encourage ...  bacteria running off from slurry, our focus this year is more on Sandsend. 

Q:  Pollution into the sea - what about speedboats, motor users?

EA:  We wouldn't anticipate bacteria coming from these sources. We have taken samples against water quality along the bay.  We have done a lot of work around Staithes. Either the fertilisers are organic or not.  During heavy rain the YW covers have been blown off. 

Cllr Finney - re Staithes - needs investigation the last time we talked about this, as well as the quantity and type of bacteria - 75% from agriculture and 25% from human.

Q: Cllr John Ritchie - The South Bay - When do we get the results?  

EA: The MST analysis will be completed in December 2014.

Q: Chair - What about the new Marinas - the Harbour Master?

Q: Cllr Cockerill - If seabirds are a problem what can be done, we are looking at Clacton and what they are doing. 

EA:  The use of chickenwire and food sources.  The bird/gull contribution would be a small one.  

Chair - Just to remind you what we are voting on - to have a public inquiry day in the New Year (2015) ;-)

Item 5 - Creative Industries

I missed this cos I wanted to catch the EA bloke to ask further about Staithes.  'potash should not contain bacteria ... may look at the sewage and other things' is 300m outside my area.  (agreed to exchange contact details for further discussion.) ;-)

Back to WOOD END - (Andrew)   accommodates many micro business' that don't necessarily want to grow.  One problem we have identified is electricity costs.  We did not estimate £45,000pa, more than double our estimate.  We need to make these units more commercially viable ... rents a little higher.

Q: Cllr Challen - Looking at the figures they are not consistant?

A:  In 2010/11 the profit was higher due to Yorkshire Forward contribution eg Northern Net - Yorkshire Forward paid up front 3 years in advance to host this facility £160,000.  It was never used.  The turnover is now what it should be.

Q: Cllr Broadbent - What policies are in place to attract business people outside the area?

A: No policy.  We work on a case by case basis. Some contacts at Manor Park at Eastfield.  The maximum Wood End space is for 8 people, there is a big gap between Wood End and a Business Park unit accommodation.  it depends on how big or ambitious the business are. ;-)

Item 6 - North Bank Partnership

Offshore developments are happening - Siemens and the Humber - Eth**  it is going ahead, the big Windfarm Development, Doggerbank SSE & FSE have invested £100mil into it.  We are working with East Riding and Humber Councils, we are meeting the same people, investment will be coming to Scarborough.  Dalby Offshore's and Offshore Renewable Centre based in Whitby - will create several hundred jobs.

Item 7:  Regeneration of the Borough & The Council's Vision (Renaissance)

The Visitor Economy - the 'Yorkshire Coast' brand  - since LEP established subsumed within a layer of work programme - East Riding and SBC to hinterland 20 miles inland. (these guys talk fast!) (Janet Deacon apologies for absence)

Q: Cllr David Jeffels:  Tour de Yorkshire? - Janet Deacon is working on this.

Q: Cllr John Ritchie: re North Bank - where does this sit in relation to devolution?

A: No constant position - will be used as a vehicle that feeds in, to lobby the Councils

Q:  Cllr John Ritchie - It has no formal status, that is my point.

A: The unit was established in 1995 ... we have led a range of economic developments.  Then with Yorkshire Forward we earned a reputation for being able to deliver. We are proud of what Renaissance has achieved.  If we were to be succesful as a service and a Council: We have delivered on:

Scarborough Business Park, Wood End, The Rotunda, The investment into the SPA and SIV. Scarborough & Whitby Harbours, Barrowcliff Family Centre, Next Generation Broadband, Eastfield Town Centre. Job Match (connecting 400 people with over 400 companies). The Futurist, Music Port, Whitby Business Park.

(Q to self - who are these people?) (Nick Taylor, Simon Featherston, David Kelly , plus one other?) - Scarbados's Fab Four! here is their report again:

NT: Not directly Renaissance, but we have had our part to play.  LEP have said we should be discussing with you.  We are held in high esteem out of Town.

Q:  Cllr Challen - This is still an area of low income. So how do we translate these investments into a higher standard of living for local residents?  There are 10,000 people on income related work benefits.

A:  Through education, skills, the future of the University, the Coventry bid, The UTC, The Academy and working in secondary schools, trying to scope out a skills match.

A: Simon - Improving connectivity to education and business. eg Job Match, focus on apprenticeships, construction engineering.   In Jan 2015, construction skills & CITB we are at Middle Deepdale and Yorkshire Coast College for work experience.

Q: Cllr John Ritchie - At David and Simon, how will we feel living in a Renaissance area with one quarter of all households earning less than £ 10,000 per year?

A: David - The Draft Strategy - looking forward - offshore, Potash - we already have an agreement with York Potash that Job Match will do the recruitment.  We are expecting 8000 new jobs to 2030.  We are developng a Coastal Development Strategy ...  to get more funding.

Q: Cllr David Jeffles: - It fits in with County report, focussing on skills and development of skills.

Q: Cllr Challen - What about the improvements to the A64?

A:  Confirmed this morning - unfortunately only more improvements to the Hopgrove Roundabout - very disappointing.

Q: Cllr Challen - re North Bank Partnership - What involvement does the other Authority have in your operation? You are reporting to us ...

A: East Riding working jointly with Officers to align our resources.  Four years ago little work together, now we have a working relationship. A common need to promote the same coastal agenda.

Cllr Bill Chatt:  Thanks for the £1mil for Barrowcliff. 

David - We are getting involved in Barrowcliff and more deprived areas.  We have much Council Officer support through Kerry, Jo and the team.

Item 8 - Fracking

Chair - The Ordinary Petition of Cllr Cluer and the Motion by Cllr Challen;

The Council - this is not a deciding meeting - The Minerals & Waste Authority - SBC is only a Consultee. 

Cllr Cluer - 500 people signed the peition - we need to discuss this now at council...

Cllr Challen - We need to adopt a precautionery approach and need to look at our own policy areas to reduce the risks.  We have very few powers over determining 'fracking' but residents look to us as Councillors for information and advice. To submit to County Consultation by late February.  We need a Task Group and a full review. 

Chair - It is important to remain neutral.

Cllr David Jeffels:  SBC doesn't have the power ... but the opportunity to influence.  Mark Hill has given until mid January for further representations.  There is a Public Meeting on 12th December.  We need to get as much inforamtion as we possibly can.

Steve Wilson -(SBC Forward Planning Dept) - stepped in to advise:  The Minerals & Waste Joint Plan has been put back until after the election.  We are a consultee, ... the benefits of fracking .. look at planning issues.  What we can and cannot consult on. We have to be careful we do not stray beyond our remit.  It is the EA that give out licences.  The County Council's Minerals & Waste Joint Plan ..... ( and then started banging on about the new Join Plan ...)

Q: Cllr Dilys Cluer:  Since there won't be a M& W Join Plan what decisions can be made? 

A: The most up to date & current policy ...   

Result:   To Form a Task Group:

Was quite cross about Steve Wilsons intervention into this debate and shouted he was using contradicting policies ie he was quoting from the Minerals & Waste Joint Plan  that hadn't come into force yet he had also confirmed that the Planning Authority have to use current planning policies.

Caught him outside of the meeting;   You are quoting from a Planning Policy that is still being consulted on.  And when you refer to fracking under current planning - I say to you that the current and enforceable policy does not include or even mention fracking .  Answer - it is out of date.  Q:  Oil and Gas are not minerals.  A: Yes they are, Oil and Gas are in the Joint Minerals Plan. Q: Yes but they have different planning criteria. A: No they don't, they are in the JM & WP.    Yes but please show me where in the current planning policy it mentions fracking or hydraulic fracturing.  Steve Wilson than moved to another person wanting to ask questions.  I persisted: Who asked you to speak at this Council meeting on fracking? What is the current policy on fracking?  (he handed me a sheet of notes printed off from the DECC website dated that morning 1st December 2014)   Then turned to speak to an other. 

I asked you @ Steve Wilson, Forward Planning, a question about the validity of your contribution to the 'fracking' discussion at this meeting and you did not answer, and  in fact, quite rudely you avoided further questions.  Schmuck!

Anyhow thanks to some vexatious responses and sheer lack of transparency that daunts the Town Hall I have decided to throw my hat in to Haunt the Hall. 

The Flame of Anger and the Flame of Hope: :- ))

Yeah Yeah, some of my misifs only reveal my own ignorance on matters, but hey ho.

First Draft E&OE

Further reading:

for details on the Agenda - open the reports:








Mortal Mindy's picture

Bingo calls SBC "just plain wrong" re A64

The SN have captured the disappointment by Members of Scarborough Council inlcuding local leading Tories, Derek Bastiman, and Tory 'activist' John Senior on news that the A64 will only be upgraded at the Hopgrove Roundabout.

Interestingly, they state that Goodwill has not yet been selected as the Tory Parliamentary Candidate for Scarborough and Whitby. With former candidate John Senior being hailed within the comments section.  John Senior, Chair of the Southbay Traders Association, Leader of Armed Forces Day, Director of the Scarborough Academy, Member of Scarborough Business Ambassadors, and recently took over as the RNLI/Life Boat leader, all round action man about town etc etc .... hmmm