Agenda and draft minutes

Council - Wednesday 25th January, 2023 7.00 pm

Venue: Westminster Council House, 97-113 Marylebone Road, London, NW1 5PT

Contact: Janis Best, Committee and Councillor Support Manager  Email:  jbest@westminster.gov.uk Tel: 07971 920521

Note: Please note that due to technical issues in the Chamber there is no audio on the recording until 20 minutes into the meeting. An additional recording will be uploaded to cover that time as soon as possible. 

Media

Items
No. Item

1.

Appointment of Relief Chair

To appoint a relief Chair.

Minutes:

1.1           Motion moved by the Lord Mayor and seconded by Councillor Paul Swaddle, that Councillor Louise Hyams be elected as Relief Chair.

1.2           Motion put, and on a show of hands, declared CARRIED.

 

2.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 81 KB

To sign the Minutes of the Meetings of the Council held on 9 November.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

2.1      The minutes of the proceedings at the Council meetings held on Wednesday 9 November 2022 were, with the assent of the Members present, signed by the Lord Mayor as a true record of the proceedings.

 

3.

Lord Mayor's Communications

1.      The Lord Mayor to report that, on Wednesday 2nd November, he attended the Capco Armistice Day celebration in Covent Garden, the Citizens Advice AGM in Harrow Road and the Royal African Society’s 120th Anniversary Celebration at Aqua Shard. 

2.       The Lord Mayor to report that, on Thursday 3rd November, he attended the Portman Estate Champagne Reception at the Wallace Collection.

3.      The Lord Mayor to report that, on Friday 4th November, he attended the Lord Mayor of Westminster Cup at Porchester Hall.

4.      The Lord Mayor to report that, on Saturday 5th November, he attended the West London Synagogue Remembrance Shabbat, the Royal Automobile Club’s Chairman’s Lunch in Pall Mall and the Queen’s Park fireworks in Queen’s Park Gardens.

5.      The Lord Mayor to report that, on Monday 7th November, he attended the Sir Simon Milton Foundation Anniversary Dinner at the Londoner Hotel.

 

6.      The Lord Mayor to report that, on Tuesday 8th November, he attended the British Moroccan Society Gala Dinner at the St James’ Court Hotel.

 

7.      The Lord Mayor to report that, on Thursday 10th November, he attended the opening of the Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey and the Marylebone Christmas Lights on Devonshire Street.

 

8.      The Lord Mayor to report that, on Friday 11th November, he attended the Investing in Morocco conference on Kensington High Street and the Muslim Women Awards in Cavendish Square.

 

9.      The Lord Mayor to report that, on Saturday 12th November, he attended the Lord Mayor’s Show in the City of London and the Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance at the Royal Albert Hall.

 

10.  The Lord Mayor to report that, on Sunday 13th November, he attended the Remembrance Sunday service at Westminster Abbey and the Paddington Service of Remembrance at the Lancaster Gate War Memorial.

 

11.  The Lord Mayor to report that, on Tuesday 15th November he attended the Dance Westminster Celebration Final at Porchester Hall.

 

12.  The Lord Mayor to report that, on Wednesday 16th November, he visited Essendine Primary School.

 

13.  The Lord Mayor to report that, on Thursday 17th November, he attended the opening of the Soho London Independent Film Festival in Soho, the Westminster Property Association’s Annual Lunch at the Grosvenor House Hotel and the Lord Mayor’s Football tournament at Paddington Recreation Ground.

 

14.  The Lord Mayor to report that, between 18th and the 20th November he visited Oslo, Norway.

 

15.  The Lord Mayor to report that, on Tuesday 22nd November, he attended the State Visit of the President of the Republic of South Africa at Horseguards Parade and Westminster Abbey and the State Banquet for the President of the Republic of South Africa at Buckingham Palace.

 

16.  The Lord Mayor to report that, on Wednesday 23rd November, he attended the NWEC Community and Corporate Reception at Hush Mayfair and the City of London State Banquet at Guildhall.

 

17.  The Lord Mayor to report that,  ...  view the full agenda text for item 3.

Minutes:

3.1      The Lord Mayor referred to these as set out on the agenda.

 

3.2      The Lord Mayor invited the Council to join him in observing a minute’s silence in memory of Phillipa Roe, former Leader of the Council, who had sadly passed away, following which Councillor Robathan and Councillor Hug spoke in tribute.

 

4.

Declarations of Interest

Minutes:

4.1      There were no declarations of interest.

 

5.

Statement on Urgent Matters

With the approval of the Chair of the meeting, the Leader of the Council may make a statement on an urgent matter and the Leader of the Opposition will have an equivalent right of reply.

 

Minutes:

5.1      There were no urgent matters.

 

6.

Petitions and Deputations, if any

Minutes:

6.1      There were no petitions or deputations received.

 

7.

Questions

The Lord Mayor will call Members who have indicated that they wish to ask a question after the Leader of the Opposition has asked her questions.

 

Minutes:

7.1      The questions, supplementary questions and replies are included as a recording on the Council’s website.

 

8.

Councillor Issues

Councillor Judith Southern – End of Life Care

 

Councillor Amanda Langford - ASB, Community and Abbey Road Ward

Minutes:

8.1      End of Life Care

 

Councillor Judith Southern spoke and Councillor Nafsika Butler-Thalassis replied.

 

ASB, Community and Abbey Road Ward

 

Councillor Amanda Langford spoke and Councillor Aicha Less replied.

 

9.

Future Policy Plan pdf icon PDF 98 KB

Minutes:

9.1      The meeting debated the items chosen for debate from the Future Policy Plan by the Majority Party.

 

           School Meals

 

9.2      The Majority Party selected item number 83 on the Future Policy Plan, School Meals. The debate would be referred to the relevant Executive Director for consideration when reporting on the subject.

 

           City Management

 

9.3      The Majority Party selected item number 105 on the Future Policy Plan, City Management. The debate would be referred to the relevant Executive Director for consideration when reporting on the subject.

 

9.4      The meeting debated the item chosen for debate from the Future Policy Plan by the Opposition Party.

 

           Public Health

 

9.5      The Opposition Party selected item number 49 on the Future Policy Plan, Public Health. The debate would be referred to the relevant Executive Director for consideration when reporting on the subject.

 

10.

Report for Full Council: Council Tax Discounts (including Council Tax Local Reduction Scheme) and Council Tax Base pdf icon PDF 167 KB

To receive, consider and debate, if chosen, the following report which contains a recommendation to the Council for approval and adoption.

 

Minutes:

10.1    RESOLVED:

 

1)        That the Council accepted the recommendations of the Cabinet and that the Council approved the following recommendations for the financial year 2023/24:-

 

(i)              that the Council Tax discount for second homes remained at 0% unless the government brought forward legislation to enable a Second Home Premium to be charged for the 2023/24 financial year. If this was the case, the premium should be set at the highest level allowed for by the legislation.

 

(ii)       the Council Tax discounts for empty properties, including the discounts that replaced the previous Class A and C Council Tax exemptions, remain at 0%.

 

(iii)      that a Long-Term Empty Property Premium continued at the maximum percentage allowed for by the current legislation for the 2023/24 financial year. and to charge the said premium a year after a property had been empty if the government brought forward legislation to allow this.

 

(iv)      that the Director of Revenues & Benefits be given delegated authority to determine any individual local discount applications received from Council Taxpayers during the 2023/24 financial year under section 13A(1)(c) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992.

 

2)        That the Council approved the same Council Tax Reduction Scheme for 2023/24 which had operated successfully since 2013/14. The scheme was based on the Default Scheme Regulations, updated to reflect changes made via the Prescribed Requirements Amendment Regulations and with War Disabled Pensions, War Widow, Pensions and Armed Forces Compensation scheme payments disregarded in full when calculating a claimant’s income. The same disregards should also apply to Housing Benefit and claims for Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP).

 

3)       That the Council resolved that the Council Tax Base for 2023/24 for the Whole City is 135,955.46 equivalent Band D properties, for Montpelier Square alone 91.68 equivalent Band D properties and for Queen’s Park 3,637.83 equivalent Band D properties.

 

4)        That the Council resolved that the figures set out in paragraph 3 above for the Council Tax Base for 2023/24 be used by the Council to make a determination pursuant to the requirements of the Local Government Finance Act 1992.

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