Decisions

Use the below search options at the bottom of the page to find information regarding recent decisions that have been taken by the council’s decision making bodies.

Alternatively you can visit the officer decisions page for information on officer delegated decisions that have been taken by council officers.

Decisions published

22/02/2024 - Insurance tender 2024 - 2029 ref: 2105    Recommendations Approved (subject to call-in)

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 14/02/2024

Effective from: 01/03/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform has approved the following contract awards:

Contract

Insurer

Year 1 Premium

Estimate five years premium

Contract Period

Lot 2 Combined Liability

 Zurich Insurance Company PLC (UK Branch) trading as Zurich Municipal  BR000105

£313,605.44

£1,568,027.20

5 years

Lot 3 Terrorism

 

Lloyd’s Market via Marsh Limited Co. Reg. 01507274

£144,775.29

£723,876.44

5 years

Lot 4 Director & Officers Liability

Lloyd’s Market via Marsh Limited Co. Reg. 01507274

£92,881.60

£464,408.00

5 years

Lot 5 Crime

Zurich Insurance Company PLC (UK Branch) trading as Zurich Municipal  BR000105

£47,040.00

£235,200.00

5 years

Lot 6 PA and Travel

Aon UK Limited Trading as Maven Public Sector

(Company number 210725)

£17,758.42

£88,792.10

5 years

Lot 7 School Journey

Zurich Insurance Company PLC (UK Branch) trading as Zurich Municipal  BR000105

£4,502.40

£22,512.00

5 years

Lot 8 Motor Fleet

Zurich Insurance Company PLC (UK Branch) trading as Zurich Municipal  BR000105

£15,746.52

£78,732.62

5 years

Lot 10 Engineering Inspection

Zurich Insurance Company PLC (UK Branch) trading as Zurich Municipal  BR000105

£178,290.56 exc VAT

£891,452.80 exc VAT

5       years

 

The Cabinet Member has agreed not to award Lot 1 (Property) & Lot 9 (Residential leasehold buildings) at this time and will be subject to a further tender process as detailed in paragraphs 4.25-4.28 of the report.

The Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform has delegated authority to the Executive Director of Finance and Resources to subsequently approve the award of Lots 1 and 9, noting they need to be in place prior to 1 April 2024.

 

Reasons for Decision 

In respect of the award of leasehold buildings insurance the Council needs to award a contract of insurance to comply with the Council’s legal obligations under the leasehold agreement entered into at the time of sale of the lease to the leaseholders the covenant to insure their asset and ensure the relevant portion of the Councils freehold is insured.

In respect of the award of Property insurance this is to provide funds to reinstate Council assets following damage by insured perils, in the absence of which the financial costs of re-instatement would place considerable or impossible financial demands upon the Council.

In respect of the award of Combined Liability Insurance this is to indemnify the Council against legal costs and damages arising from legal claims against the Council in Negligence, Nuisance, Libel, and Slander. The absence of which would place considerable or impossible financial demands upon the Council.

It is a requirement of the Public Contract Regulations 2015 that these insurance contracts are competitively procured and as established above, the non-purchase of insurance coverage would result in uncapped financial exposures for the Council and for which the potential value of losses could exceed reserves. Prudence would therefore dictate purchase of insurance to mitigate against this and to comply with statutory requirements.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Beverley Mills


21/02/2024 - Harrow Road Open Space improvements ref: 2104    Recommendations Approved (subject to call-in)

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 13/02/2024

Effective from: 29/02/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member has approved formal spend approval totalling £1,946,802 to undertake canal wall repairs and refurbishment of the public open space at Harrow Road Open Space as outlined in Appendix A of the report.

 

 

Reason for Decision

The recommendations in this paper will lead to a significant improvement to the public space at Harrow Road Open Space, opposite Queens Park Library. It will also resolve long-standing issues with the Canal Wall at this location which if remain could lead to significant future challenges for Westminster City Council.

The project responds to key community aspirations and priorities set out in the Queens Park Neighbourhood Plan. It will also support the local high street by providing an important space of respite alongside the Harrow Road, facilitate improvements in biodiversity within an area of deficiency and ensure accessibility improvements are made to the open space to ensure equal access for everybody.

A Cabinet Member Decision is required in accordance with the Scheme of Delegation due to the value of the decision.

 

Wards affected: Queen's Park;

Lead officer: Rebecca Cloke


05/02/2024 - 291 Harrow Road Multi-Disciplinary Consultant Team (MDCT) Appointment(s) - Executive Director Delegations ref: 2103    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning

Decision published: 09/02/2024

Effective from: 05/02/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member Report of 06 December 2023 delegated:

·       Authority to the Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy, and Planning (REP) to approve other Professional Services and associated costs and contingency totalling £3.44m, subject to no individual contract exceeding £300k.

·       The approval to spend of contracts less than £300k.

 

This report records the decisions taken under this delegated authority.

 

Reasons for Decision

As per 3.1, 3.2 and 3.3 of the Cabinet Member report:

·       The reason for the recommendation is to secure fees and appoint the design team to enable design development to be progressed and produce the Outline Business Case in Spring 2025. 

·       To support design development, the following core MDCT consultants are required to provide technical and specialist support: Architect, Project Manager, Cost Consultant, Structural & Civil Engineer, Mechanical, Electrical and Plumbing (MEP) Engineer, Planning Consultant and Landscape Architect.

 

The proposed redevelopment of 291 Harrow Road is in line with the Council’s ambitions for a Fairer Westminster and aims to deliver on the following objectives:  

·       Re-provision of existing homes and explore opportunities to deliver high quality new homes of all tenures including Truly Affordable Homes and specialist housing such as Learning Disability housing. 

·       Improvement to place shaping including play space, bio-diverse green space and enhancement of the public realm including increasing permeability and connectivity with the canal and surrounding areas. 

·       Construction of high quality and energy efficient sustainable new buildings which utilise cutting edge design and technological innovation. 

·       Promoting a safer and vibrant neighbourhood, which encourages positive community interaction.   

·       Enhancing community assets and maximising impact through linking to wider provision in the surrounding area.   

·       Encouraging and facilitating strong public participation in community participation in the design and development of the scheme.   

·       Encouraging and enhancing the local economy through the Creative Enterprise Zone. 

·       Increasing opportunities for employment and business growth and initiatives.

·       Responsible Procurement ensuring ethical treatment and consideration and mitigation of environmental impacts. 

Wards affected: Westbourne;

Lead officer: Joe Smith


16/02/2024 - Approval of recommendations from the Rating Advisory Panel - 23.01.24 ref: 2102    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 08/02/2024

Effective from: 16/02/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member has approved the recommendations of the Rating Advisory Panel held on 23 January 2024 and determines the applications for NNDR Discretionary and Hardship relief set out in Appendix A.

 

Reasons for Decision

The Rating Advisory Panel has set out the reasons for the recommendations in each case considered by the Panel in the recommendations in Appendix A.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Gemma Williams


06/02/2024 - Grant Authority for the acquisition of 45 affordable homes at West End Gate Block H from Berkeley Homes ref: 2101    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning

Decision published: 06/02/2024

Effective from: 06/02/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member report dated 19 January 2024 delegated authority to the Executive Director REP in consultation with the Director of Legal to enter into the Development Agreement and Agreement for Lease for Block H1 Lease and Block H2 Leases (x13) and all associated legal documents required by the recommendations of the report.

 

Reasons for Decision

To enable the Council to purchase 45 affordable homes under the agreed terms of the Development Agreement and Agreement for Lease.

Wards affected: Church Street; Little Venice;


13/02/2024 - Rent Review of Barclays bank 40 Wellington Road, NW8 9LT ref: 2099    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 05/02/2024

Effective from: 13/02/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member has delegated the approval of the 25 March 2022 upward only rent review with Barclays PLC and signing of Rent Review Memoranda to the Executive Director of Finance and Resources.

 

Reasons for Decision

Under the WCC constitution Cabinet Member approval is required where the rent under consideration is in excess of £125,000 per annum which applies in this case.

 

Wards affected: Church Street;

Lead officer: Sarah-Jayne Hurst


13/02/2024 - Supply and Allocation of Social and Intermediate Housing 2023/24 ref: 2100    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Housing Services

Decision published: 05/02/2024

Effective from: 21/02/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Housing Services has agreed:

1.     The approach to social lettings set out in section 8 of the report and Appendix B 

2.     The changes to the Allocation Scheme outlined in section 6 of the report

3.     The updated Accommodation Procurement Policy Action Plan 2023/24 in Appendix D.

 

Reasons for Decision 

The council’s Housing Allocation Scheme is read alongside the annual Supply and Allocation of Social Housing Report, which sets out the proportion of social housing the council expects to let to the different groups in need. These lettings projections are needed to guide the approach to lettings during the year. 

 

The Report is also needed in order to consider and update wider policies relating to the allocation of social and private housing for households on the council’s housing register and to update any policy changes in relation to intermediate housing.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Sally Ann Nott


07/02/2024 - Approval of recommendations of the Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) Review Panel 16.01.24 ref: 2097    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 30/01/2024

Effective from: 07/02/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

That the Cabinet Member approves the recommendations of the Discretionary Housing Payment Review Advisory Panel meeting of 16 January 2024

 

Reasons for Decision 

The Discretionary Housing Payment Review Advisory Panel has set out the reasons for the recommendations in each case considered by the Panel in the recommendations in Appendix A, which are more fully set out in the case papers submitted to the Panel.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Gwyn Thomas


07/02/2024 - Writing off of irrecoverable debt (quarterly report) - Quarter 3 2023/24 ref: 2098    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 30/01/2024

Effective from: 15/02/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member has approved the write-off of debts over £100k, having taken all appropriate action.

 

The amounts shown in paragraph 6.4 as written-off under officer delegated authority, have been noted.

 

Reasons for Decision 

The recommendation to write-off the amounts detailed in this report is proposed as all other avenues available to the Council for the recovery of these debts have been exhausted, including, where appropriate, the issue of court and distress proceedings.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Martin Hinckley


29/01/2024 - Minutes ref: 2094    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 29/01/2024 - Cabinet

Decision published: 29/01/2024

Effective from: 29/01/2024

Decision:

Cabinet agreed that the minutes of the meeting held on 11 December 203 were a true and correct record of the proceedings.


29/01/2024 - Safeguarding Executive Board Annual Report 22/23 ref: 2092    Recommendations Approved

The annual review by Cabinet of the report of the independently chaired Safeguarding Adults Executive Board 

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 29/01/2024 - Cabinet

Decision published: 29/01/2024

Effective from: 29/01/2024

Decision:

Cabinet approved the following recommendations:

·       Considered the Annual Report 2022/23 of the Safeguarding Adults Executive Board (SAEB), with particular regard to the arrangements that have been put in place to meet the requirements of the Care Act 2014.

 

Reasons for decision

The report is the 2022/23 Annual Report of the Safeguarding Adult Executive Board (SAEB) who provide the leadership for adult safeguarding across Westminster and RBKC, and complies with the Council’s statutory duty to publish an annual report which includes business plan for the year and any Safeguarding Adult reviews.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Bernie Flaherty


06/02/2024 - Contract Award School Health (School Nursing) Service ref: 2096    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector

Decision published: 29/01/2024

Effective from: 14/02/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector has approved the contract award for the delivery of School Health (School Nursing) Services to Central & North West London (NHS Foundation Trust).

The total sum is for £5,924,800 (£7,109,760 including VAT*) for the period February 2024 to January 2027, with the option to extend for an additional period of 2 years at an additional cost of £4,288,029 (£5,145,634 including VAT*).

The full contract term is for 5 years (3+2) at a total contract value of £10,212,829 (£12,255,394 including VAT*).

*To note that VAT is for reference only and is not payable for this service.

 

Reasons for Decision

The current contract is delivered by Central and North West London NHS Trust (CNWL) and has been in place since 1 April 2017.

The original award was for a period of five years which expired 31 August 2022. A further direct award was granted for 12 months, to align with the end of the academic year, that expired on 31 August 2023. This direct award was endorsed by the Commercial Gateway Review Board (CGRB).

The current service is currently operating out of contract as there is no agreed scope for a further extension or variation.  As this is a statutory service, there can be no gap in delivery and consequently the service has been operating at risk whilst the re-tendering process took place.  There are no issues or concerns with the performance or service delivery of the current service. Risks associated with being out of contract are being mitigated by continual performance monitoring, in line with the original contract, and by expediting the execution of the new contract as a matter of urgency. 

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Shazia Ghani


29/01/2024 - The Future of Regent Street and Haymarket ref: 2091    Recommendations Approved

The decision seeks approval for the next steps of the project to revitalise Regent Street and Haymarket. 

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 29/01/2024 - Cabinet

Decision published: 29/01/2024

Effective from: 06/02/2024

Decision:

Cabinet approved the following recommendations:

·       Noted the findings from the 'Future of Regent Street' ("Regent Street") engagement, and approve the vision and project priorities to guide the development of the public realm design from All Souls to Regent’s Crescent.

·       Approved the partner requirements for Regent Street to make financial contributions totalling £1,786,000 (£893K each) to continue to progress the first phase ("Phase 1") of the project.

·       Noted the work to date by The Crown Estate on the vision and priorities for Haymarket District Plan and the planned development investment for this part of the West End, and agree to extend the scope of the Regent Street project to include Haymarket, Charles II Street, Jermyn Street East and Pall Mall East public realm ("Haymarket"), and to consider proposals for Piccadilly Circus and Pall Mall East as part of a second phase ("Phase 2") of the project.

·       Approved the partner requirements for Haymarket and Piccadilly Circus to secure financial contributions totalling £2,200,000 (£1.1m each) to continue to progress Haymarket and Piccadilly Circus ("Phase 2b") of the project, and agree that the £4m capital funding approved by Full Council on 8 March 2023 for Regent Street can also be utilised for this Phase.

·       Approved the concept of piloting and testing of ideas for the Regent Street and Haymarket projects to support the evidence-based approach for the public realm and highways design. The implementation of any pilots will be delegated to the Director of City Highways in conversation with the Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality.

·       Delegated any decisions relating to the above scope to the Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality leading up to the public consultation in 2025 on the final public realm proposals for Phases 1 and 2.

 

Reasons for decision

This report approves the next steps for a permanent public realm scheme for Regent Street and Haymarket, following extensive public engagement undertaken by the Council and the Crown Estate in summer 2023.

Wards affected: Marylebone; St James's; West End;

Lead officer: Debbie Jackson


29/01/2024 - Capital Budget Re-profiling & Budget Changes 2023/24 ref: 2093    Recommendations Approved

That Cabinet: 

1.     Approves net changes of £67.181m for individual projects as part of the 2023/24 GF capital budget.  

2.     Approves re-profiling of £36.875m for individual projects as part of the 2023/24 HRA capital budget.  

3.     Approves the Place Shaping Virement of £3.064m.  

 

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 29/01/2024 - Cabinet

Decision published: 29/01/2024

Effective from: 06/02/2024

Decision:

Cabinet approved the following recommendations:

·       Approved net changes of £67.181m for individual projects as part of the 2023/24 GF capital budget

·       Approved re-profiling of £36.875m for individual projects as part of the 2023/24 HRA capital budget.

·       Approved the Place Shaping Virement of £3.064m.

 

Reasons for decision

This report requests approval for changes to the profiles and/or budgets of several capital schemes have been identified as likely to have changed delivery profiles and thus led to in year variances to budget, as well as others that have reported as either likely to under or overspend.

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Gerald Almeroth


05/02/2024 - Church Street Site A – Outline Business Case Update ref: 2090    

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Climate Action, Regeneration and Renters

Decision published: 26/01/2024

Effective from: 05/02/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

That the Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Renters endorses the Updated OBC as set out in Appendix 1 and its conclusion that joint venture partner delivery, on appropriate terms, remains the preferred option for the delivery of Church Street Site A.

 

Reasons for Decision

The Council has undertaken a procurement of a joint venture partner for the delivery of Church Street Site A in line with the recommendations of the Original OBC. Before the outcome of that procurement, the Council considered it appropriate to revisit this decision, given the amount of time elapsed since the Original OBC was prepared and resulting change in market and policy environment, to confirm it remains the preferred option for the delivery of Church Street. This is a prudent approach particularly ahead of significant decision points.

 

Wards affected: Church Street;

Lead officer: Timothy Hampton


25/01/2024 - Introduction of a 14-day response period for Highway Defects ref: 2089    For Determination

A report seeking approval to create a new 14 day response period for defects on the highway

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality

Decision published: 25/01/2024

Effective from: 26/01/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The City Council responds to defects in the public highway to different timescales depending on the seriousness of the defect. Response times vary from between 2 hours and 10 weeks

In recent months the number of P2 defects (48-hour response), have increased significantly. This is undesirable as responding to defects within 48 hours is more expensive and can be less efficient. Introducing a new 14-Day defect response period will ease the pressure on P2 numbers and provide the Inspectors with an alternative option between 28 days and 48 hours to correct defects in the highway.

 

Reasons for Decision

The introduction of the 14-Day defect response time allows for effective management and programme of Highways works, will ease the pressure on delivering an increasing number of 48-hour defects and provide mitigation for  an estimated £60,000 cost increase if the new priority is not introduced.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Andy Foster


31/01/2024 - Direct award for interim contracts for Learning Disability accommodation based services ref: 2115    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector

Decision published: 23/01/2024

Effective from: 08/02/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector has:

1.      Approved the direct award of contracts for the 4 services confirmed below from 1 April 2023 to 31 March 2025, with a break clause at 30 September 2024:

 

ii)          Elmfield Way – Yarrow

iii)         Cambridge Gardens – London Cyrenians

iv)         Queens Park – First and Fifth Avenue – Yarrow

v)          Lapworth Court – Support for Living / Certitude.

 

2.     Noted the expenditure from 1 April 2023 to 31 January 2024. The existing contracts expired on 31 March 2023 therefore the current suppliers are working at risk.

 

3.     Approve a waiver of the Procurement Code from the requirement to undertake a competitive tendering exercise in order to directly award the aforementioned contracts.

 

Reasons for Decision 

The Council has a statutory duty under the Care Act 2014 to:

·     Ensure appropriate personalised care and support to meet the individual assessed needs of Service Users

·     Maximise independence, focusing on choice and control for people in receipt of Learning Disability Services

·     Ensure consistency and continuity of care, minimising service disruption for vulnerable adults with learning disabilities living in the community.

 

These direct awards will meet these aims and provide the necessary time to complete the development of a framework for the tendering of these services.

Under the Council’s Scheme of Delegation, a Cabinet Member Decision is required due to the value of the contracts.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Oliver Nolan


31/01/2024 - Belgravia Neighbourhood Plan Decision Statement ref: 2088    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 23/01/2024

Effective from: 31/01/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development has agreed:

 

   i.          That the recommendations of the Examiner as set out in the Council’s Decision Statement (refer to Appendix 1) and Examiner’s Report (refer to Appendices 3 and 4) be accepted.

 

 ii.          That in accordance with the Examiner’s recommendation, the Belgravia Neighbourhood Plan (refer to Appendix 2) and accompanying Belgravia Design Codes (refer Appendix 2A), as modified within the Examiner’s Report, proceed to local referendum.

 

iii.          That in accordance with the Examiner’s recommendation, the referendum area be restricted to the Neighbourhood Area designated by the Council on 27 March 2014 as the Belgravia Neighbourhood Area.

 

iv.          That in the event of a positive referendum result, the Executive Director of Innovation and Change be authorised to publish an Adoption Statement and formally ‘make’ (adopt) the plan.

 

Reasons for Decision

 

The Examiner’s recommendations will ensure the Belgravia Neighbourhood Plan is clear and effective as a framework for making decisions on planning applications in the Belgravia Neighbourhood Area.

 

The recommendations address the concerns raised by the Council during consultation and the subsequent examination, as well as matters raised by a number of other stakeholders during consultation. The cumulative effect of these modifications is that the plan is considered to meets the ‘basic conditions’ prescribed by legislation and discussed in greater detail Section 4 below.

 

Before a neighbourhood plan can be made, it is a statutory requirement that it is first subject to local referendum within the Neighbourhood Area, as well as any additional areas as considered appropriate by the Examiner. Before this happens, the Council must publish a Decision Statement setting out the actions it proposes to take in response to the Examiner’s Report. Where the Council decides to proceed to referendum, in the case of a successful majority vote in favour of the plan, the Council must formally ‘make’ the plan.

Wards affected: Knightsbridge and Belgravia;

Lead officer: Brandon Avery


11/12/2023 - “Care Leaver” to be considered alongside Protected Characteristics ref: 2033    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 11/12/2023 - Cabinet

Decision published: 19/01/2024

Effective from: 11/12/2023

Decision:

Cabinet approved the following recommendations:

·       Approve the inclusion of ‘Care Leaver’ to be taken into account alongside the nine protected characteristics already legislated for in the Equality Act 2010.

·       Note that Westminster City Council’s senior leaders will work together to providing enhanced work experience, apprenticeship, and employment opportunities as part of their corporate parenting responsibilities, including cognising their particular needs systematically as part of EQIAs and ensuring that they are considered across all strategies, responsible procurement and commissioned contracts.

·       Note the commencement of a programme of work which includes:

o   Reviewing our EQIA and Equalities programming (internal and corporate) to include care leavers

o   Adapting our EQIAs to include consideration of care leaver status

o   Reviewing and adapting recruitment policies and procedures in order to guarantee care leaver applicants an interview where when they meet the essential criteria for a role being advertised

o   That every Directorate commits to providing mentoring, work experience and apprenticeship opportunities to care leavers

 

Reasons for decision:

As corporate parents, it is the Council’s collective responsibility to support children that have been in our care to ensure they receive the same opportunities that we would want for our own children. This support should include the promotion of good health and education, nurturing talent and providing stability, thus enabling successful adult lives.

 

Services across the Council will commit to providing opportunities and support to young adults with care experience to improve their outcomes and show a genuine and demonstrable commitment to supporting them to develop skills in order to thrive. This will require some time and effort on the part of Westminster’s leaders and staff to ensure that those leaving our care are continually championed and supported to achieve in all areas.

 

Westminster City Council will explicitly and systematically recognise ‘Care Leaver’ as a consideration, alongside the nine protected characteristics already legislated for in the Equality Act 2010. In doing so the Council can monitor and measure the impact that it is having to support those leaving our care in their life journey and make appropriate arrangements or adjustments to provide this support.

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Helen Farrell


29/01/2024 - West End Gate (Acquisition of Block H) ref: 2086    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Renters

Decision published: 19/01/2024

Effective from: 06/02/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Regeneration and Renters has:

 

·                Approved the acquisition of 45 affordable homes at West End Gate Block H from Berkeley Homes for the price set out in Appendix A, on the terms in Appendix C.

 

·                Approved further spend of £400,000 to meet legal costs, monitoring costs and specification changes required to match those on earlier phases.

 

·                Approved expenditure from the central contingency to fund this acquisition, noting that the draft budget 2024/25 includes a line item for the scheme. (Further details set out in Appendix A)

 

·                Delegated authority to the Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning in consultation with the Director of Legal to enter into the Development Agreement, Agreement for Lease, Block H1 Lease and Block H2 Leases (x13) and all associated legal documents required by the recommendations of this report.

 

Reasons for Decision

 

The Council has acquired 130 homes across the earlier phases of West End Gate which have provided high quality homes for residents and an opportunity to decant existing social tenants from Church Street Site A. The 45 under construction in Block H would complement these homes, providing more decant opportunities and high-quality Council managed homes near Church Street.

 

The homes are required to be built by Berkeley as a S106 obligation, regardless of whether the Council acquires them or not, with nomination rights for the Council. However, by acquiring them the Council can ensure high quality management to its residents and has been able to influence the type of tenancies and procured a further variation to the S106 agreement to convert the 33 shared ownership homes into London Living Rent. A deed of variation to the s.106 will need to be entered into and it will be a condition of the Agreement for Lease. Berkeley must satisfy this condition before the Council completes the acquisition. If Berkeley do not satisfy this condition within one year of exchange the deposit (detailed below) shall be returned to the Council and the Development Agreement shall be terminated.

 

Further to the above, the Council can convert the larger homes from intermediate rent to social rent increasing the total provision on the site. To avoid undue delay and complication, the Council will implement this after entering into contract with Berkeley but before the end of construction.

 

The average acquisition cost as set out in Appendix A is less than the cost of self-building and therefore represents value for money. The Council has significant waiting time on larger homes and converting intermediate rent to social will provide much needed permanent social housing.

 

 

Wards affected: Church Street;

Lead officer: Timothy Hampton


24/01/2024 - Re-Designation of Mayfair Neighbourhood Forum ref: 2085    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 16/01/2024

Effective from: 24/01/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development has agreed:

 

       i.          To re-designate the Mayfair Neighbourhood Forum for a further period of five years; and

 

     ii.          To authorise the Executive Director of Innovation and Change to formally publish a designation notice.

 

Reasons for Decision 

 

Section 61F(7) of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990, as inserted into that Act by Schedule 9 of the Localism Act 2011, sets out the conditions that a Neighbourhood Forum must meet, as well as the considerations that a local planning authority must take into account when determining an application for the designation of a Neighbourhood Forum. These legislative aspects are set out in greater detail in Section 6 of this report.

 

This legislation states that a local planning authority may designate an organisation or body as a Neighbourhood Forum if the authority is satisfied that a number of conditions have been met. The existing Mayfair Neighbourhood Forum (the Forum) meets all of these conditions, and there has been no change in this since the original designation.

 

The City Council is also required to have regard to whether membership is drawn from different places in the applicable Neighbourhood Area and from different sections of the community in that area. The application submitted by the Forum indicates their membership consists of 630 members, comprised of a mixture of residents, businesses, organisations, land owners and community associations. It is therefore considered that the Forum satisfies this requirement in that it represents the interests of a diverse and representative group drawn from the designated Neighbourhood Area.

 

The City Council is also required to assess whether the purpose of the Neighbourhood Forum reflects, in general terms, the character of the area. The submitted application for re-designation states that the Forum was established to promote and improve the social, economic, and environmental well-being of Mayfair through the production of a Neighbourhood Plan along with following on to deliver on that plan. The Mayfair Neighbourhood Plan became formally ‘made’ on 24 December 2019, meaning it was adopted as part of Westminster’s statutory development plan and is operational in the designated Neighbourhood Area for the purposes of assessing planning applications. This demonstrates that the Forum has fulfilled their primary objectives in preparing and having adopted a Neighbourhood Plan for their area, with the focus now shifting to delivering the plan through implementation and monitoring.

 

Consultation on the re-designation of the Mayfair Neighbourhood Forum resulted in no objections or competing applications.

Wards affected: West End;

Lead officer: Brandon Avery


23/01/2024 - Cost of Living Projects 2024/25 ref: 2084    Recommendations Approved

This decision will seek approval for the latest investments to support the cost of living for those living in Westminster.

Decision Maker: Leader of the Council

Decision published: 15/01/2024

Effective from: 31/01/2024

Decision:

 

Summary of Decision

 

The Leader of the Council has approved: 

 

1.     That the council invests a further £1m in cost-of-living projects starting from April 2024 to address the ongoing crisis.

 

2.     That Phase 1 projects from the £1m amounting to £367,779 are agreed and that the Executive Directors of Finance Resources and Innovation and Change have the delegated authority to manage these individual allocations and to make any necessary changes to them.

 

3.     That agreement for the remaining allocation of the £1m is made in two further phases as set out in Section 5 and is delegated to the Executive Directors of Finance Resources and Innovation and Change, in agreement with the relevant Cabinet Members. The Executive Directors will also have the delegated authority to manage these individual allocations and make any necessary changes to them.  

 

Reasons for Decision   

 

While there are national interventions to address the cost-of-living crisis, as Section 4 shows, there is still a crisis and living costs will outstrip national support in 2024/2025 making further intervention necessary to help households most at risk.  

 

The projects put forward in Phase 1, which use 38% of the funding, will ensure that vital advice and food support services can continue in 2024 / 2025 to meet the ongoing high demand. Funding for a dedicated post also ensures that cost-of-living projects can continue to be delivered.

 

Two further phases are needed to allocate the remainder of the £1m as it is uncertain whether there will be a further Household Support Fund in 2024 / 2025, and this will affect how it is spent. It is also needed to ensure the right interventions are in place for Winter 2024 which won’t be known until later in the year.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Gerald Almeroth


22/01/2024 - Safer Westminster Partnership Strategy 2024-27 ref: 2083    For Determination

That the cabinet member recommends to Council that the proposed Safer Westminster Partnership Strategy for 2024-27 be approved

 

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Communities and Public Protection

Decision published: 12/01/2024

Effective from: 22/01/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

That the cabinet member:

1.     Notes the content of the report and the ongoing contribution of the Safer Westminster Partnership to crime and disorder issues in the borough and the overarching themes and priorities for the partnership.

2.     Recommend to Council that the proposed Safer Westminster Partnership Strategy for 2024-27 be approved.

 

Reasons for Decision

The Fairer Westminster Strategy sets out the outcomes and key ambitions which inform decisions at the Council; delivering safer streets is one of these but we cannot achieve this on our own.  The Safer Westminster Partnership Strategy seeks to ensure the Council and partner agencies work together to make Westminster safer for everyone who lives, works, and visits the borough.

The Crime and Disorder Act 1998 sets out the requirement for responsible agencies, including Westminster City Council, to work together in formulating a strategy to reduce crime and disorder in an area.

Additionally, the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Act 2022, placed a duty on specified authorities to work together and plan to prevent and reduce serious violence in their area.  The Safer Westminster Partnership Strategy is the means through which we are discharging that duty.

The proposed strategy will replace the existing strategy (2020-23) with a clearer focus on a smaller number of priority areas, and a greater emphasis on engaging with and ensuring local communities have a voice in tackling crime and disorder priorities in their area.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);


18/01/2024 - Voluntary Service Charge Payment option ref: 2082    Recommendations Approved

To consider additonal payment options.

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Housing Services

Decision published: 11/01/2024

Effective from: 26/01/2024

Decision:

Executive Summary

The last review of major works service charge payment plans was undertaken in January 2023. Following this the Cabinet Member for Housing Services extended the 60-month payment plan to 120 months (60 months interest free, with up to an additional 60 months, subject to interest). As part of this review a discretionary service charge loan option was also introduced enabling leaseholders to pay their major works service charge invoice using a legal charge against the property and to make payment over a period up to 25 years, subject to interest.

 

Summary of Decision

  1.  The Cabinet Member for Housing Services has agreed to the introduction of the ‘Voluntary Service Charge Loan’ payment option for leaseholders.
  2. The Voluntary Service Charge Loan will complement the existing payment plans available to our leaseholder and will allow a charge to be placed on the property. The capital sum and any interest will only be repaid when the property is sold (assigned). The fee to set up the loan and to register the charge against the property can also be added to the loan
  3. The Cabinet Member for Housing Services has agreed to the eligibility criteria (paragraph 4.6) and the recommendations from Finance (paragraphs 5.1 – 5.8) as to which bill range is sustainable

 

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);


18/01/2024 - Approval of recommendations from the Rating Advisory Panel - 12.12.23 ref: 2081    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 10/01/2024

Effective from: 18/01/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

That the Cabinet Member approves the recommendations of the Rating Advisory Panel held on 12 December 2023 and determines the applications for NNDR Discretionary and Hardship relief set out in Appendix A.

 

Reasons for Decision

The Rating Advisory Panel has set out the reasons for the recommendations in each case considered by the Panel in the recommendations in Appendix A.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Gemma Williams


22/12/2023 - Response to Petition Titled 'Save Covent Garden Street Performers' ref: 2076    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Director of Public Protection and Licensing

Decision published: 22/12/2023

Effective from: 22/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

To respond to the petition titled ‘Save Covent Garden Street Performers’ 

 

Reasons for Decision

The Council’s Constitution requires a formal response to a petition within 28 days.


04/01/2024 - Grant of New Lease for an Academy School ref: 2077    Recommendations Approved

To approve the grant of a 125 year lease to Ark Schools on the terms within the confidential appendix. 

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 22/12/2023

Effective from: 04/01/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member has approved the grant of a 125 year lease from 06 March 2013 to Ark Schools by WCC in accordance with the Academies Act 2010 and on the terms within the exempt appendix.

 

Reasons for Decision 

WCC is required under the terms of the Act to grant a 125 year lease to Ark Schools at a peppercorn rent.

 

A Cabinet Member Decision is required due to the length of the lease.

 

Wards affected: Westbourne;

Lead officer: Claire Nangle


03/01/2024 - Authority to Enter into a Section 75 Agreement Between the City of Westminster and North West London Integrated Care Board (NWL ICB) ref: 2075    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector

Decision published: 21/12/2023

Effective from: 11/01/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector has agreed to delegate the authority to the Executive Director for Adult Social Care and Public Health:

1.              To negotiate and finalise the terms for the s75 Agreement for Better Care Funded Services between the City of Westminster and the NWL ICB.

2.              To negotiate and finalise appropriate terms for any variations to the s75 Agreement for Better Care Funded Services, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector.

Reasons for Decision

One of the most ambitious programmes ever introduced across the NHS and local government, the Better Care Fund (BCF) encourages integration by requiring ICBs and local authorities to enter into pooled budget arrangements and agree an integrated spending plan.

The BCF national condition for grant funding is that a signed s75 agreement is in place between the local authority and the ICB. If this condition is not met, NHS England is able to direct the ICB in our Health and Wellbeing Board area about the use of the funding.

A Key Decision is required if the local authority incurs expenditure which is, or the making of savings which are, significant having regard to the relevant local authority’s budget for the service or function to which the decision relates or has significant local impact on communities living across two or more wards of the borough.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Grant Aitken


03/01/2024 - Response to Petition: Relocation of the Street Cleaning Depot from 215 Lisson Grove to 61 Harewood Avenue ref: 2074    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 21/12/2023

Effective from: 03/01/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

That the Cabinet Member approves the undertaking of a detailed design and planning feasibility for the relocation of the Council’s street cleaning depot from the basement car park at 215 Lisson Grove to 61 Harewood Avenue.

 

 

Reasons For Decision

 

The report has been written in response to a petition received and sets out the Council’s approach to the site.

Wards affected: Regent's Park;

Lead officer: Claire Nangle


02/01/2024 - Neighbourhood CIL Decisions: Summer 2023 Application Round ref: 2072    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 20/12/2023

Effective from: 10/01/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development has approved the following Neighbourhood CIL bids:

          I.          Maida Vale Hanging Baskets

        II.          Paddington Street Gardens Site Investigation

      III.          Shepherd Market Public Realm Improvement

      IV.          St Mary Bryanston School Playground

       V.          Adventure Playground Sensory Classroom

      VI.          Replacement Pagoda at Newport Place

    VII.          Soho Kids Xmas Lights

 

The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development has approved the following Neighbourhood CIL bids subject to certain conditions being met as detailed in the report:

 

          I.          Park Lane Transformation Study

        II.          All Souls Primary School (Fitzrovia) Playground Drainage

 

Reasons for Decision 

 

To ensure robust and effective expenditure and reporting in line with the Planning Act (2008) and the Community Infrastructure Levy Regulations 2010 (as amended) and in accordance with the council’s strategic priorities, the revised CIL Spending Policy Statement (2022), and the council’s frameworks for resource allocation and management.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Alex Csicsek


20/12/2023 - Designation of supermarket, ground floor 2-4 Dean Street as an Asset of Community Value ref: 2073    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Executive Director Innovation and Change

Decision published: 20/12/2023

Effective from: 20/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Supermarket, Ground Floor, 2-4 Dean Street, London, W1D 3RF has been designated as an asset of community value and included in the List of Assets of Community Value. 

 

Reasons for Decision

It is a valid community nomination

To be valid, a nomination can to be made by a “voluntary or community body”, as defined in Regulation 5 of the 2012 Regulations. The Society has made nomination as “a charity” (Regulation 5(1)(c)). The Charity Commission for England and Wales Register of Charities confirms that the Society is a registered charity (Registration no, 1146589).

 

To make a valid nomination the Society have a local connection. This is defined in Regulation 4(a), which states that a body will have a local connection with land in a local authority’s area if the body’s activities are wholly or partly concerned with the local authority’s area. The Society’s charitable objectives relate solely to Soho, which falls wholly within the Council’s area, so the local connection test is satisfied. The Property lies within the Society’s “area of benefit”, as set out in its governing document. Additionally, the Charity Commission confirms that the Society operates within the City of Westminster.

 

Wards affected: West End;

Lead officer: Ezra Wallace


29/12/2023 - Temporary Accommodation acquisitions programme update and governance proposals ref: 2070    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Housing Services

Decision published: 19/12/2023

Effective from: 09/01/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Housing Services, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform has:

1.      Approved the proposed catchment area in section 4.11 of the report for acquiring Temporary Accommodation;

2.      Approved the acquisition of properties for the purpose of TA subject to meeting the criteria as per this report and supporting appendices (and that properties which do not fully meet the criteria may still be pursued subject to Cabinet Member consultation);

3.      Delegated the approval of each individual acquisition that meets the criteria in recommendation 2 to the Strategic Director for Housing and Commercial Partnerships (or such officer whom they delegate to);

4.      Approved the proposed team structure and associated costs of the team;

5.      Noted the updated financial information provided in the report;

6.      Delegated approval to the Executive Director of Democracy, Law and People, subject to recommendation 3, to enter into any legal agreements required to facilitate the acquisitions of the TA properties.

 

 

Reasons for Decision 

The Council has a statutory obligation to provide housing for those in housing need. The on-going purchase of units for use as TA (and the extension of this programme) has two key benefits. Firstly, it helps the Council to meet increasing demand from homeless households by providing a ready supply of accommodation. Secondly, it provides security for the Council in terms of the cost of this provision and leaves it less exposed to fluctuations in rent costs in the private market and using hotel accommodation.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);


29/12/2023 - Beachcroft Care Home - Direct Award ref: 2071    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector

Decision published: 19/12/2023

Effective from: 09/01/2024

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector has:

1.       Noted the expenditure from 17 December 2022 to 29 December 2023, for an amount of £4,993,253.54.

2.       Approved the Direct award for the delivery of the Beachcroft Care Services Contract to Gold Care Housing (GCH) (Alan Morkill House) Ltd (08130202) from 29 December 2023 to 31 March 2025 with the option to extend for an additional period of 1 year for an amount of £11,234,820.46; and a total contract maximum value of £16,228,074 (£19,473,688.80 including VAT, although VAT is not payable for this service).

3.       Approved a waiver request to directly award the proposed service contract to Gold Care Housing (GCH) (Alan Morkill House) Ltd (08130202).

Reasons for Decision 

The current service is being delivered at risk due to contracts expiring in December 2022. There is no option to formalise an alternative arrangement that can commence with immediate effect without significantly disrupting the care for elderly and vulnerable residents accessing the service. The only option to immediately mitigate the risk is to directly award a new contract to the incumbent supplier, Gold Care Homes (GCH).

 

The recommended initial term of 27 months has been devised to enable retrospect delivery from December 2022 until March 2023 (3 months) and to then run in parallel with the financial years for the remainder of the contract term April 2023 to March 2025 (24 months). An optional 1-year (12 month) extension period is also included to potentially enable the contract to run until March 2026.

 

The aim is to have an agreed position on either tendering or insourcing by mid-2024, this should enable completion of the chosen option prior to the expiration of the initial contract term in March 2025, or if a joint tender is deemed appropriate by 2026.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Shazia Ghani


14/12/2023 - Authority to sign BT Openreach wayleave for the 300 Harrow Road Development site ref: 2087    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Strategic Director, Housing and Commercial Partnerships

Decision published: 14/12/2023

Effective from: 14/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Strategic Director of Housing and Commercial Partnerships has delegated authority to the Executive Director of Regeneration Economy and Planning (REP) to allow officers to enter into the agreement specified below:

Authority to sign BT Openreach wayleave for the 300 Harrow Rd. Development site

 

 

Reasons for Decision

To allow the progress of the project in line with the agreed programme and costs, as set out within the FBC Cabinet Member report.

 

This scheme involves the redevelopment of Warwick Community Hall to provide new residential accommodation alongside a new community centre, nursery and enterprise space. During October 2022 the Labour administration approved proposals for the conversion of 300 Harrow rd. to a 100% affordable scheme delivering 77 social rent and 35 intermediate homes. Construction of the scheme is nearing completion with the residential blocks now complete and phased handover underway during November and December 2023.

 

The Executive Director for Environment, Climate and Public Protection has delegated all functions relating to the provision of Housing Services to the Strategic Director for Housing and Commercial Partnerships.

 

Wards affected: Harrow Road;


14/12/2023 - Church Street Regeneration - Site A, B & C Multi-Disciplinary Consultancy Appointment ref: 2039    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 14/12/2023

Effective from: 22/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Climate Action, Regeneration and Renters has:

-        Approved the variations to the Arcadis contract of £1.78m under the procurement regulations, following their approval at CGRB on 30th August 2023.

-        Noted the expenditure to date of £6.8m, including £1.2m of spend above the previous financial authority of £5.6m. The expenditure to date is set out in detail in section 5 of this report.

-        Delegated authority to the Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy & Planning to approve the appointment and the enactment of a further phase of work (phase four) of the contract with Arcadis LLP, if deemed appropriate by the Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy & Planning.

-        And approved the spend of £925k which is the balance of the £1.78m variation. This is detailed in table 1 and will take the project up to the Final Business Case stage, following endorsement at CRG on 23rd May 2023 and CGRB 30th August 2023.

 

Reasons for Decision 

 

The Multi-Disciplinary Consultant Team (MDCT), led by Arcadis LLP (Arcadis) have been instrumental in the progress of the project. As is the nature of large regeneration schemes, the project requirements have evolved throughout the lifetime of the project and the brief has had to be varied in response to that.

 

The key reasons for the contract variations: 

 

·       A full review of the Stage 2 design, by new architects, early 2020. 

·       Additional requirements to improve sustainability and NZCO status. 

·       Additional project management support for JV Procurement and an additional round of soft market testing. 

·       Options analysis work to consider design changes to Fire Safety Regulations (draft BS9991), tenure mix options and library options from November/December 2022.  

·       Design work required to incorporate the additional staircase, design coordination through planning submission and amendments to technical documents due to design change, Jan/Feb 2023.

 

Wards affected: Church Street;


21/12/2023 - Acquisition of leasehold interests in London W9 ref: 2037    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 13/12/2023

Effective from: 21/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform has approved:

 

1.               The acquisition of the two superior leasehold interests in Flat 15, Barnard Lodge, Admiral Walk, London (W9 3TD) and Flat 10, Florey Lodge, Admiral Walk, London (W9 3TF) (subject to legal and physical due diligence), on the terms set out in the confidential Appendix 1.

 

2.               The arrangement and entering into all necessary legal documentation (including any deed of variations and maintenance agreements, subject to legal due diligence and any landlord’s consent) and payment of any tax, charges or fees, in association with the purchase of the two properties.

 

Reasons for Decision

The freehold of the building is currently owned by Pertinax Limited. Pertinax Ltd are the landlords to NHS, of the Properties. The NHS have a long lease of 125 years from 1 January 1989 with the freeholders for Flat 15, Barnard Lodge, Admiral Walk, London (W9 3TD) and Flat 10, Florey Lodge, Admiral Walk, London (W9 3TF).  The NHS have subleased the two Properties above to the Council for the provisions of care services. 

 

The Council currently lease the above flats from the NHS at RPI linked (and capped) market rentals for terms of 10 years from September 2018, with mutual rolling breaks in September 2025 onwards.  The flats are currently void, and the Council will need to invest in the refurbishment of the flats to enable them to be fit for occupation by adults with complex physical needs.

 

Acquisition of the superior long leasehold interests from the NHS provides the long-term security required to invest in the properties.  The capital premium paid for the peppercorn headleases is also cost effective relative to the annual rental cost of the current Council subleases.

Wards affected: Maida Vale;

Lead officer: Rupert Grass


13/12/2023 - Increased FPN Levels ref: 2038    Recommendations Approved

The Environmental Offences (Fixed Penalties) (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2023 that came into force on the 31st July 2023 have given local authorities the option to increase the fines issued under fixed penalty notices for the unauthorised or harmful deposit, treatment or disposal of waste and duty of care for household waste.

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality

Decision published: 13/12/2023

Effective from: 13/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

The Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality has authorised the Director of Public Protection & Licensing to implement new rates for Fixed Penalty Notices as set out in option 3 in section 5 below (increase fine levels for all three offence types (Littering, Fly Tipping, Duty of Care (Residential)) to below the maximum amount), with immediate effect.

 

Reasons for Decision 

 

The option to increase to the maximum fine levels for these offences may, as explained, have a detrimental effect on our ability to enforce, resulting in more court cases being contested which bring the risk of a) lower fines than our current FPN rates b) cases where we are unsuccessful in court.

 

That a suitable penalty is an appropriate consequence for non-compliance and acts as a suitable deterrent to drive compliance and improve our street scene for those who live, work in and visit our City.

 

An assessment of other local authorities’ intentions would suggest that all are intending to increase fine levels and the risk of us not doing so (the do nothing option) would potentially leave Westminster as an outlier, also potentially increasing the likelihood of people from outside Westminster choosing to fly tip in Westminster due to the lower fine levels.

 

Therefore, it is felt an increase in line with the thinking and decision of other local authorities would be the optimum decision.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);


20/12/2023 - Oxford Street Programme - Henrietta Place and Cavendish Square Scheme ref: 2036    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 12/12/2023

Effective from: 30/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development has approved:

1.     The scope and proposals for Margaret Street, Cavendish Square and Henrietta Place, as part of the Marylebone/Fitzrovia Traffic Scheme, and the investment required to design and build the corresponding projects.

 

2.     The capital expenditure of £917,945 to progress the items outlined in the report.

 

Reasons for Decision 

The projects proposed within the Marylebone/Fitzrovia Traffic Scheme area are being progressed as part of wider OSP initiatives and support the Oxford Street design. The interventions aim to simplify the road network by converting several streets to two-way streets, thereby creating calmer and safer environment. These projects offer an opportunity to rebalance road space and traffic signal timings to enhance the pedestrian experience while maintaining appropriate traffic capacity and discouraging high speeds.

Expenditure is required to progress the design, including Stage 1 (feasibility) and Stage 2 (initial) design for the Margaret Street, Cavendish Square and Henrietta Place projects.

 

Wards affected: Marylebone; West End;

Lead officer: Manisha Patel


20/12/2023 - Oxford Street Programme - Oxford Street West Schemes ref: 2035    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 12/12/2023

Effective from: 30/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development has: 

1.     Approved the scope and proposals for the Oxford Street West Scheme area and the investment required to design the corresponding projects.

 

2.     Approved capital expenditure of £2.442m to progress the design for the items outlined in 1.2 above.

 

Reasons for Decision 

The projects proposed within the Oxford Street West Scheme area are being progressed as part of wider OSP initiatives and are complementary to the Oxford Street design. The interventions aim to reduce traffic reduction in Marylebone and Mayfair and enhance traffic resilience in the surrounding network through the introduction of right-hand turning movements at two junctions to the north of Oxford Street resulting in shorter vehicular journeys.

Expenditure is required to progress the design of the Oxford Street West projects to allow for their construction in 2025.

 

Wards affected: Marylebone; West End;

Lead officer: Manisha Patel


11/12/2023 - Council Tax Discounts (including Council Tax Local Reduction Scheme) and Council Tax Base report ref: 2032    Recommendations Approved

Sets out Council Tax base for 24/25 and recommendations on Council Tax discounts

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 11/12/2023 - Cabinet

Decision published: 11/12/2023

Effective from: 11/12/2023

Decision:

Cabinet approved the following recommendations:

·       Approve the following recommendations for the financial year 2024/25:-

(i) that the Council Tax discount for second homes remains at 0%

(ii) that 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 continues at the maximum percentages allowed for by the current legislation for the 2024/25 financial year. which includes commencing the premium a year after a property has been empty, rather than the current 2 years.

(iv) that the Director of Revenues & Benefits be given delegated authority to determine any individual local discount applications received from Council Taxpayers during the 2024/25 financial year under section 13A(1)(c) of the Local Government Finance Act 1992.

·       Recommend that the Council approves the same Council Tax Reduction Scheme for 2024/25 which has operated successfully since 2013/14. The scheme is 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).

·       Recommend to the Council to resolve that the Council Tax Base for 2024/25 for the Whole City is 137,295.64 equivalent Band D properties, for Montpelier Square alone 96.96 equivalent Band D properties and for Queen’s Park 3,700.40 equivalent Band D properties.

·       Recommend to the Council to resolve that the figures set out in the above paragraph for the Council Tax Base for 2024/25 be used by the Council to make a determination pursuant to the requirements of the Local Government Finance Act 1992.

·       Determine to implement a 100% Second Home Premium for the 2025/26 financial year, which is the earliest date allowed for under the new legislation.

 

Reasons for decision:

The taxbase decision is sought in order that the Council complies with the requirements of the Local Government Finance Act 1992.

 

The retention of the same levels of Council Tax discount, for empty properties and second homes will continue to deliver additional Council Tax income for the Council without disadvantaging any vulnerable members of the community.

 

The recommendation to allow the Director of Revenues and Benefits to continue to determine any individual local discount claims will enable assistance to be given to individual Council Taxpayers. This will provide the mechanism for granting the local Council Tax discount for Care Leavers, flood victims and other vulnerable Council Taxpayers in line with the Council’s Council Tax Ethical Recovery procedure.

 

The Council’s proposed 100% Council Tax Reduction Scheme will mean that the level of Council Tax support provided to the borough’s working age claimants will effectively mirror that previously provided under the national Council Tax Benefit scheme.

 

The recommendation to continue the Long-Term Empty Property Premium at the maximum allowed for within current legislation aligns with the Council’s Fairer Westminster agenda and the aim to bring empty properties back in to use.

 

The recommendation to determine to implement a 100% Second Home premium for the 2025/26 financial year will deliver additional income for the council, without affecting vulnerable residents.

Lead officer: Martin Hinckley


11/12/2023 - Oxford Street Programme - complementary schemes ref: 2031    Recommendations Approved

To approve activation of the final area of the programme and commencement of design for the three proposed OSP complementary schemes and the funding approach.

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 11/12/2023 - Cabinet

Decision published: 11/12/2023

Effective from: 11/12/2023

Decision:

Cabinet approved the following recommendations:

·       Approve the activation of the final area of the programme and commencement of design for the three proposed OSP complementary schemes as set out in the report; and

·       Approve the funding approach for the three complementary schemes as set out in the report.

 

Reasons for decision

The complementary schemes seek to extend the public realm benefits being achieved on Oxford Street into adjacent neighbourhoods through an improvement of pedestrian access and comfort, additional seating and greening, enhanced lighting and better-quality surfacing materials. Furthermore, they will create new or improved amenity areas for potential future activation. The decision was made to retain the three schemes from a larger number of possible schemes contained in the previous OSD programme based on their contribution to achieving the benefits noted above.

 

The Davies Street scheme provides a vital gateway on Oxford Street to Mayfair and the recently opened Elizabeth Line station. The street is currently open to vehicular traffic and the proposed closure will secure an additional and safer space for pedestrians leading to Oxford Street. This will also create a new public amenity space and provide an opportunity for seating and greening resulting in a more comfortable and attractive experience.

 

The Grosvenor Square scheme will provide safer pedestrian and cycling facilities, reducing the dominance of the carriageway around the square. This will be achieved through the delivery of wider footways and the improvement of pedestrian crossings.

 

The James Street scheme is intended to provide a pedestrian and cycle friendly environment in James Street south along with operational changes to Barrett Street, Picton Place, James Street north. An improved public realm space is envisaged to the north of Bird Street and permanent footway build outs are proposed at the junction of Picton Place with James Street to convert a temporary measure introduced during the pandemic.

Wards affected: Marylebone; West End;

Lead officer: Manisha Patel


11/12/2023 - Fees and Charges Review ref: 2034    Recommendations Approved

This report sets out the context for this year’s annual review of fees and charges.

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 11/12/2023 - Cabinet

Decision published: 11/12/2023

Effective from: 11/12/2023

Decision:

Cabinet approved the following recommendations:

·       Approve the changes to fees and charges as outlined in Appendix 2 of this report 2.

·       Approve that authority be delegated to the Executive Director for Finance and Resources to make minor or technical adjustments to any fees and charges in year, in consultation with the relevant Cabinet Member.

·       Approve the unchanged Fees and Charges Policy at Appendix 1.

·       Note the outcome of the call-in on the parking fee structure review which is being heard on 6 December 2023, the outcome of which will be reported to the Cabinet orally at the meeting.

 

Reasons for decision:

To agree the Council’s fees and charges position and changes from 1 January 2024 at the earliest.

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Gerald Almeroth


08/12/2023 - Increase in homecare workers' hourly rate of pay ref: 2030    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector

Decision published: 08/12/2023

Effective from: 08/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform has approved the grants for the purposes outlined in the Cabinet Member Report dated 27 November 2023 to include Sage Care Limited and not MiHomecare Limited.

HEALTH VISION UK LIMITED

Company Number 06407941

LONDON CARE LIMITED

Company Number 03117278

SAGE CARE LIMITED

Company number 03288501

VINCENTIAN CARE PLUS

Company Number 05321333

SMITHFIELD HEALTH & SOCIAL CARE LTD t/a VERILFE

Company Number 07522706

 

Reasons for Decision

 

An amendment to the Cabinet Member Decision dated 27 November is necessary as set out in paragraph 1.1, requiring a new Cabinet Member Report in accordance with the Cabinet Member Terms of Reference.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Gareth Wall


06/12/2023 - 291 Harrow Road - Multi-Discipline Consultant Team (MDCT) Appointment ref: 2029    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Climate Action, Regeneration and Renters

Decision published: 06/12/2023

Effective from: 14/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

The Cabinet Member for Climate Action, Regeneration and Renters has approved:

 

1.     The Council to enter into Professional Services contracts with a value greater than £300k totalling £4.84m to carry out design development., including the appointment of the following:

1.1.     Carter Gregson Gray as Architect (contract value £1.74m)

1.2.     Arcadis LLP as Project Manager (contract value £1.14m)

1.3.     Ward Williams Associates as Cost Consultant (contract value £606k)

1.4.     CR8 Structures as Structural and Civil Engineer (contract value £456k)

1.5.     Hoare Lea as Mechanical, Electrical & Plumbing Engineer (contract value £566k)

1.6.     Farrer Huxley as Landscape Architect (contract value £329k)

 

2.     The delegation of authority to the Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning (REP) to approve other Professional Services and associated costs totalling £3.44m. Where the Constitution does not allow for the Cabinet Member to delegate authority (namely for the award of Consultancy contracts with a value greater than £300,000).

 

3.     Additional expenditure of £796k to progress the scheme to Outline Business Case Part 2 (total expenditure £2.148m).

 

4.     The noting of the balance of expenditure under these contracts and other Professional Services and associated costs (totalling £6.128m) will come forward for approval once an OBC is concluded in 2025. A breakdown of the costs can be found in Appendix A (Financial Implications).

 

5.     The noting that any potential additional development options to be progressed beyond the feasibility stage options analysis (RIBA Stage 1) would be the subject of a separate decision which is required to return to CRG in consultation with the Cabinet Member for additional budget and expenditure approvals.

 

Reasons for Decision

The reason for the recommendation is to secure fees and appoint the design team to enable design development to be progressed and produce the Outline Business Case in Spring 2025.

In order to support design development, the following core MDCT consultants are required to provide technical and specialist support:

·       Architect

·       Project Manager

·       Cost Consultant

·       Structural & Civil Engineer

·       Mechanical, Electrical and Plumbing (MEP) Engineer

·       Planning Consultant

·       Landscape Architect

 

 

Wards affected: Harrow Road;

Lead officer: James Green


05/12/2023 - City Highways - Planned Preventative Maintenance (PPM) programme for 2024/25 ref: 2028    Recommendations Approved

Planned Preventative Maintenance (PPM) programme for 2024/25 in respect of Highways, Public Lighting & Bridges and Structures.

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality

Decision published: 05/12/2023

Effective from: 13/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

The Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality has approved the

proposed 2024/25 annual programme of Planned Preventative Maintenance (PPM)

work in respect of Highways, Public Lighting, Bridges and Structures. 

 

The Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality has also approved the to

undertaking of all the initial designs and approximately 50% of the detailed design of

the schemes in the 2025/26 programme.

 

Reasons for Decision

 

All assets deteriorate over time and any work aimed at maintaining the durability of

the asset is classed as programmed maintenance. Such work prolongs the life of the

asset and/or maintains structural capacity and is therefore considered as capital

expenditure.

 

Each year the City Council’s regular inspection and testing programmes determine the current condition of the various highway assets (Carriageways, Footways, Lighting and Bridges & Structures) and identifies the forward investment needs that will keep the highway network in a safe and reliable condition.

 

Provision has been made in the capital programme for this expenditure to enable these programmes of work to be implemented together with preparation of forward programmes of work for 2024/25.

 

The proposed Planned Preventative Maintenance programme set out in this report will ensure that the City Council’s highway assets remain safe and effective.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Philip Robson


01/12/2023 - Oxford Street Programme - Wigmore Street and Mortimer Street Schemes ref: 2027    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 01/12/2023

Effective from: 09/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development has agreed the capital expenditure of £7.178m to progress the Wigmore Street and Mortimer Street projects to construction.

 

Reasons for Decision

The Wigmore Street and Mortimer Street projects have been progressed as part of the OSP and aim to improve traffic movement in the Fitzrovia and Marylebone area and are integral to the overall improvements creating calmer and safer streets. Expenditure is required to progress the Wigmore Street and Mortimer Street schemes to construction in 2024.

 

Wards affected: Marylebone; West End;

Lead officer: Manisha Patel


30/11/2023 - Commemorative Green Plaque for Stanley Kwai-Tsun Tse ref: 1955    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Young People, Culture and Learning

Decision published: 30/11/2023

Effective from: 30/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The nomination for a Westminster Commemorative Green Plaque to Stanley Kwai-Tsun Tse at 19 Lisle Street, WC2H 7BA has been approved.

 

Reasons for Decision

Stanley Kwai-Tsun Tse founded the SeeWoo Asian Supermarket on Lisle Street in 1975 and was instrumental in shaping the area into the cultural hub it is today. He was a pioneer in bringing Chinese ingredients to London’s restaurants and dinner tables. The original supermarket expanded into four units and now supplies many of Chinatown’s restaurants.

The nomination is supported by the independent Green Plaque panel in recognition of Stanley Kwai-Tsun Tse’s contribution to Chinatown in London.

Wards affected: St James's;

Lead officer: Claire Appleby


29/11/2023 - Approval of recommendations of the Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) Review Panel 10.10.23 ref: 2025    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 29/11/2023

Effective from: 29/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member has approved the recommendations of the Discretionary Housing Payment Review Advisory Panel meeting of 10 October 2023.

 

Reasons for Decision 

The Discretionary Housing Payment Review Advisory Panel has set out the reasons for the recommendations in each case considered by the Panel in the recommendations in Appendix A, which are more fully set out in the case papers submitted to the Panel.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Gwyn Thomas


29/11/2023 - Approval of recommendations of the Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) Review Panel 14.11.23 ref: 2026    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 29/11/2023

Effective from: 29/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member has approved the recommendations of the Discretionary Housing Payment Review Advisory Panel meeting of 14 November 2023.

 

Reasons for Decision 

The Discretionary Housing Payment Review Advisory Panel has set out the reasons for the recommendations in each case considered by the Panel in the recommendations in Appendix A, which are more fully set out in the case papers submitted to the Panel.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Gwyn Thomas


27/11/2023 - Appointment of a main contractor for corporate property capital works ref: 2023    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 27/11/2023

Effective from: 05/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform has approved the award to Logan Construction (South East) Ltd (Companies House registration no. 03167858) to deliver capital minor works projects within the Corporate Property estate.  The Contract will be for 3 years with the option to extend an additional 2 years by annual increments.  The total contract value for the proposed contract period is estimated to be £35m excluding of VAT (£42m including VAT) including the potential extension period.

 

Reasons for Decision

The requirement is to cover all Capital Minor works projects to buildings managed by Corporate Property, which will include maintenance, refurbishment, alterations and extensions.  The need for the work is identified in a variety of ways, including stock condition surveys, compliance inspections, service requirements, strategic requirements.  The work includes minor works identified but not classed as emergency/urgent.

 

Works will be completed on the Council’s corporate estate of approximately 100 buildings including Libraries, Leisure Centres, Schools, Offices, Public Buildings, Cemeteries, or similar, as well as some of the Council’s investment estate including housing (which would be ancillary to the main building use) and retail.

 

Works will be varied in nature and value anticipated to range from £10,000 to £2,000,000 per project, with multiple sites running concurrently.  Works will vary in urgency with some planned works and some more reactive in nature due to defects affecting the operation of the building requiring quick action.

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Claire Barrett


27/11/2023 - Increasing home care workers' pay for a Fairer Westminster ref: 2024    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector

Decision published: 27/11/2023

Effective from: 05/12/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform, has:

(a)  Agreed that the Council uses the MSIF to provide subsidy grants for paying homecare workers (who work on block contracts and via direct payments) an additional £1.50 (above London Living Wage) per hour for the period to which the grant applies, starting in December 2023.

 

(b)  Approved grants for the purposes outlined in (a) above for the period to which the grant applies, commencing December 2023 to the following providers:    

HEALTH VISION UK LIMITED

Company Number 06407941

LONDON CARE LIMITED

Company Number 03117278

MIHOMECARE LIMITED

Company Number 03203080

VINCENTIAN CARE PLUS

Company Number 05321333

SMITHFIELD HEALTH & SOCIAL CARE LTD t/a VERILFE

Company Number 07522706

 

(c)   Noted the estimated annual cost of £1.2m; the indicative amounts of the grants set out in Table 1 in the exempt Appendix A to this report; and that the actual amounts of the grants will vary based on the actual hours delivered.

 

Reasons for Decision

The increased pay will support the delivery of the Council’s Fairer Westminster ambitions to tackle inequality, deliver high-quality adult social care services, and ensure its procurement is responsible. This will also help tackle low pay in the care workforce.

 

A Cabinet Member Decision is required in accordance with the Cabinet Terms of Reference due to the value of the decision.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Shazia Ghani


21/11/2023 - Adpar Street: Digital fixed line infrastructure Wayleave Agreement ref: 2080    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning

Decision published: 21/11/2023

Effective from: 21/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

Approve and enter into a Digital fixed line infrastructure wayleave agreement with Community Fibre Limited.

 

Reasons for Decision

To allow the progress of the project in line with the agreed programme and costs, as set out within the FBC Cabinet Member report.

 


21/11/2023 - Torridon House Car Park: Digital fixed line infrastructure Wayleave Agreement ref: 2078    For Determination

Decision Maker: Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning

Decision published: 21/11/2023

Effective from: 21/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

Approve and enter into a Digital fixed line infrastructure wayleave agreement with Community Fibre Limited in line with authority delegated at the Cabinet Member Report.

 

 

Reasons for Decision

To allow the progress of the project in line with the agreed programme and costs, as set out within the FBC Cabinet Member report.

 


20/11/2023 - Queens Park Court: Digital fixed line infrastructure Wayleave Agreement ref: 2079    For Determination

Decision Maker: Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning

Decision published: 20/11/2023

Effective from: 20/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

Approve and enter into a Digital fixed line infrastructure wayleave agreement with Community Fibre Limited.

 

Reasons for Decision

To allow the progress of the project in line with the agreed programme and costs, as set out within the FBC Cabinet Member report.

 


17/11/2023 - Waste and Recycling Infrastructure - Housing Estates ref: 1986    Recommendations Approved

Recommendations

 

 

 

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality

Decision published: 17/11/2023

Effective from: 25/11/2023

Decision:

Recommendation

That Appendices A, B and C be exempt from disclosure by virtue of the Local Government Act 1972, Schedule 12A Part 1, paragraph 3 (as amended), in that it contains information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information).

That the Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality approves the spend of £1.5M for the Purchase and installation of Smart housing bins infrastructure across council housing estates through Veolia ES (UK) Ltd.

 

Reasons for Decision 

To improve the recycling rates across the City of Westminster, helping to protect the environment and meeting the council’s fairer environment commitment. 

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Mark Banks


17/11/2023 - Avenues Youth Project ref: 1975    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 17/11/2023

Effective from: 25/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development has approved the grant award to the Avenues Youth Project (04045031) of £353,222 in financial year 2022/23.

 

Reasons for Decision

 

A new approach is being taken by the Council to support the resilience of the Voluntary and Community Sector (VCS) to ensure they survive and thrive in Westminster. The VCS is a key partner which works towards achieving the shared social, health, economic and environmental outcomes stipulated in the Fairer Westminster Strategy. However, long term under investment in the sector combined with the challenges of the Covid Pandemic has led to organisational and financial challenges impacting on the sector’s ability to deliver additional or enhanced outcomes or expedite the delivery of outcomes.

 

Discretionary capital funding, alongside other revenue grants (VCS Sector Core grants) is being proposed to improve the financial and organisational resilience of the sector.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Ezra Wallace


17/11/2023 - Kerbside Household Waste and Recycling bins and On-Street Litterbins ref: 1976    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality

Decision published: 17/11/2023

Effective from: 25/11/2023

Decision:

Recommendations

That Appendices A, B and C be exempt from disclosure by virtue of the Local Government Act 1972, Schedule 12A Part 1, paragraph 3 (as amended), in that it contains information relating to the financial or business affairs of any particular person (including the authority holding that information).

That the Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality approves the spend of £3.5M for the Purchase and installation of Kerbside waste and recycling bins and on-street litterbins through Veolia ES (UK) Ltd.

Reasons for Decision

To improve the recycling rates across the City of Westminster, helping to protect the environment and meeting the council’s fairer environment commitment. 

 

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Mark Banks


15/11/2023 - Parking Fee Structure Review ref: 1974    Recommendations Approved

Recommendations

The Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality has approved the following:

·       The proposed charging regime and necessary operational changes for the pay-to-park scheme, as outlined in section 6.

·       The proposed charging regimes and necessary operational changes for the resident permit scheme, as outlined in section 7.

·       The necessary amendments to the existing Parking Place Traffic Management Orders to enable the new schemes.

·       The proposed Implementation schedule and dates, as summarised in section 13.

 

 

Reasons for Decision

The proposals for both the pay-to-park and resident permit schemes align with the Fairer Westminster strategy and complement a number of corporate environmental policies, strategies and commitments as outlined in section 4.2 of the May 2023 report - ‘Parking Fee Structure Review – Approval Of Concept’. The improvement of air quality is an important priority for the Council and these policies support this aspiration.

 

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality

Decision published: 16/11/2023

Effective from: 25/11/2023

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Darren Montague


10/11/2023 - Shepherd Market public realm improvement scheme ref: 1973    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality

Decision published: 14/11/2023

Effective from: 10/11/2023

Wards affected: West End;


13/11/2023 - Approval of recommendations from the Rating Advisory Panel - 31.10.23 ref: 1972    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 13/11/2023

Effective from: 13/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member has approved the recommendations of the Rating Advisory Panel held on 31 October 2023 and determines the applications for NNDR Discretionary and Hardship relief set out in Appendix A. 

 

Reasons for Decision

The Rating Advisory Panel has set out the reasons for the recommendations in each case considered by the Panel in the recommendations in Appendix A. 

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Gemma Williams


10/11/2023 - Balmoral Castle and Darwin House Development Legal Agreements ref: 1971    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning

Decision published: 10/11/2023

Effective from: 10/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

To enter into the following legal agreements in relation to the Balmoral Castle and Darwin House Development scheme.

 

·       Substation lease with UKPN

·       Dead of Easement with Cadent

·       Section 105, Section 104 and Section 116 application with Thames Water

 

 

Reasons for Decision

To allow the progress of the project in line with the agreed programme and costs, as set out within the FBC Cabinet Member report.

 

Wards affected: Pimlico South;


10/11/2023 - Torridon House: s106 Unilateral Undertaking, changing the tenure of 8 homes from Intermediate Rent to Social Rent ref: 1970    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning

Decision published: 10/11/2023

Effective from: 10/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

To sign the updated Unilateral Undertaking which changes the 8 Intermediate Rent homes to Social Rent

 

Reason for Decision

To implement the Truly Affordable Housing Cabinet Paper approved on 11/10/2022

 

 

 

 

Wards affected: Maida Vale;


10/11/2023 - Ebury Bridge Estate Renewal - Phase 1 Agreements ref: 2049    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning

Decision published: 10/11/2023

Effective from: 10/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

Approval to enter into other agreements and property documents including but not limited to leases, warranties, substation leases, wayleaves, licences, deeds of easement, asset protection agreements, section 104 agreements, section 185 agreements and any other statutory agreements and utilities agreements in connection with ancillary works required to facilitate the construction works at Phase 1 of the Ebury.

 

Reasons for Decision

All utilities agreements are required to complete the constructions works and handover for occupation by Westminster City Council.

 

Authority was delegated to the Executive Director for Regeneration, Economy and Planning in the Cabinet Member Decision of 11 July 2023.


07/11/2023 - Revenues & Benefits service - Utilisation of the existing contract extension facility ref: 1968    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 07/11/2023

Effective from: 15/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform has approved the utilisation of the existing contractual option to extend the current Revenues & Benefits contract with Capita Business Services Ltd by three years from 1 November 2025 to 31 October 2028 for an amount listed in the exempt Part B report.

 

Reason for the Decision

The recommendation for the utilisation of the existing contractual extension option is made on the basis of very good service provision to date (including throughout the pandemic and the current cost of living crisis). These factors, alongside the costs of re-tendering, and associated implementation costs if we were to transfer to a new provider, means that utilising the existing contract extension provision is the most economical advantageous option for provision of this service.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Martin Hinckley


07/11/2023 - Variation to Existing Lease and Agreement to Reversionary Lease at Alfred Road, W2 ref: 1967    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 07/11/2023

Effective from: 07/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

The Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform has:

 

1.              Approved the principle of the Council varying the existing lease between DLL and the Mayor and the Citizens of the City of Westminster and entering into an Agreement For Lease (AFL) between the same parties, on the terms set out in the report; and

 

2.              Delegated authority to the Director of Corporate Property following consultation with the Executive Director of Finance and Resources, to approve the Council entering into any necessary legal documents required to facilitate the transactions.

 

 

Reasons for Decision

Subject to approval, the variation and the agreement for lease enables the Council to receive a significant rental increase from the tenant and ensures the Council receives income from the asset for the longer term. Not proceeding with the recommendation would result in a lower rental return and a lack of certainty of income at the end of the current lease in 2030.

 

Wards affected: Westbourne;

Lead officer: Sarah-Jayne Hurst


06/11/2023 - Balmoral Castle and Darwin House: Phase 2 - Appropriation of land at Balmoral Castle Public House and Vacant Garages ref: 1969    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning

Decision published: 06/11/2023

Effective from: 06/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The purpose of this appropriation is to move the land at the former Balmoral Public House and 23 vacant garages including an area of land measuring 378 sq. metres forming part of an open space (Balmoral Phase 2) from planning purposes for development (General Fund (GF)) to housing use (Housing Revenue Account (HRA)). This will enable the delivery of a housing development scheme, including 34 new community supported housing units, by the Council.

 

The Council gave authority to appropriate by way of a Cabinet Member decision on 11 May 2023. In accordance with that decision the Executive Director of Growth, Planning and Housing now directs that the Balmoral Phase 2 land be transferred from the GF Account to the HRA at the current red book value.

 

 

Reasons for the Decision

The Council is satisfied that the scheme will contribute towards meeting the Fairer Westminster objectives, specifically Fairer Housing, Environment, communities, and Fairer Council.

 

The development offers an opportunity to deliver housing that will meet the needs of residents and social care users in Westminster through the provision of housing that is both greener and more genuinely affordable.

 

The proposals for development are in line with both the existing and emerging London Plans and Westminster City Plans. The proposed development will contribute to achieving the promotion or improvement of the Economic, Social, and Environmental well-being of the area.

Wards affected: Pimlico South;


30/10/2023 - Capital investment in community assets ref: 1956    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Decision published: 30/10/2023

Effective from: 08/11/2023

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Ezra Wallace


30/10/2023 - VCS Core Funding ref: 1957    Recommendations Approved

This report will seek approval for a programme of core funding grants for small to medium sized voluntary and community sector organisations as well as approval for a wider approach to supporting key strategic VCS partners in the borough, especially those considered community anchor organisations.

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Decision published: 30/10/2023

Effective from: 08/11/2023

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Serena Simon


30/10/2023 - Review of housing delivery governance and arrangements ref: 1952    Recommendations Approved

This report will note the findings of a review of the Council’s affordable housing delivery programme and the governance of subsidiary companies.

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 30/10/2023 - Cabinet

Decision published: 30/10/2023

Effective from: 08/11/2023

Decision:

Cllr Hug introduced the item and invited Cllr Noble to speak to the report.

 

Cllr Noble noted that this item was the product of an extensive programme of work, with the work undertaken by 31Ten carried out in tandem with the Future of Westminster Commission, as well as he and the officer team looking at the existing delivery programme.

 

Cllr Noble noted that the recommendations are brief and that most are either already in place or being taken forward, and where they aren’t they were not suitable for Westminster and its existing policies.

 

Cllr Noble noted that the new governance arrangements will ensure a more strategic vision and bring together stakeholders from across WCC.

 

James Green highlighted that the key point of the report is a collaborative approach to decision making with a strategic board to run monthly and will give opportunities to Members to contribute to key projects and decisions.

 

James Green noted that the recommendations were already strongly aligned to work the Council is doing and only a few were a surprise and had since been adopted over the past year, which gave confidence that the Council is doing the right thing to deliver as much affordable housing as possible.

 

James Green advised that the proposal is to explore a housing working group that sits across the wholly owned subsidiaries and is in essence a joint board that will report into the Shareholder Committee. 

 

Cllr Barraclough highlighted the upcoming work the Council is undertaking which will back up the drive for affordable housing with changing to planning policies and City Plan revisions in the new year.

 

Cllr Barraclough noted that the initial draft of the Housing Needs Assessment indicated that the majority of new housing provision should be affordable. The final document will be published in the New Year. He added that officers were also working on new policies covering retrofitting and that these would support the building of new affordable housing.  

 

Cllr Hug agreed that the new governance model will help the Council achieve its ambitions.

 

RESOLVED: Cabinet approved the following recommendations:

1.     Note the findings of the 31Ten report and the Council’s proposals for developing their recommendations.

2.     Approve the creation of a Member-led Housing Supply Strategic Board (HSSB).

3.     Note the proposals for changes to Westminster Builds Board which will be tabled at a future shareholder committee for approval.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: James Green


25/10/2023 - Direct award for contracts for Home Care Services ref: 1948    Recommendations Approved

Approval of direct award of contracts to four patch home care providers in Westminster until November 2024.

 

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector

Decision published: 25/10/2023

Effective from: 02/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care Public Health and Voluntary Sector has authorised:

(i)          the direct award of contracts to four patch home care providers in Westminster for a for total contract period covering dates and costs associated with each contract are set out in table 1 below.

(ii)         a waiver of the Contract Regulations from the requirement to undertake a competitive tendering exercise in order to directly award the above contracts.

 

Reasons for Decision

The Council has a statutory duty under the Care Act 2014 to:

·     Ensure appropriate personalised care and support to meet the individual assessed needs of Service Users

·     Maximise independence, focusing on choice and control for people in receipt of Home Care

·     Ensure consistency and continuity of care, minimising service disruption for vulnerable adults and younger adults with disabilities receiving home care.

Over the last year commissioning has been working on developing the new model for home care and the transformational strategy. As these are some of the most significant social care contracts that the Council lets, sufficient time has been needed to develop a new, innovative, and sustainable home care model. In the short term it provides consistency of providers and carers to ensure the continuation of positive outcomes for people in receipt of home care and offer stability to a volatile market during a period of extreme unrest due to the pandemic.

 

The transformation strategy for homecare is a five - seven year plan with ambitions to radically change all aspects associated with care in the home including the way the provider market is structured offering a wider choice of providers including commissioned, personal assistants, self-employed and micro organisations; a new onboarding processes for vetting and setting up suppliers quickly; a tiered approach to the types of interventions being delivered  so the complexity of the activity delivered is paid accordingly and staff have the right training and skills; and new arrangement and payment of care and support and a greater use of digital technologies.

 

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Sharon Grant


25/10/2023 - Writing off of irrecoverable debt (quarterly report) - Quarter 2 2023/24 ref: 1949    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 25/10/2023

Effective from: 02/11/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

That, having taken all appropriate action, the Cabinet Member approves the write-off of debts over £100k, as set out in section 5.

 

That the amounts shown in paragraph 6.4, as written-off under officer delegated authority, be noted.

 

Reasons for Decision 

The recommendation to write-off the amounts detailed in this report is proposed as all other avenues available to the Council for the recovery of these debts have been exhausted, including, where appropriate, the issue of court and distress proceedings.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Martin Hinckley


23/10/2023 - New core funding grant agreement for the Abbey Centre ref: 1943    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector

Decision published: 23/10/2023

Effective from: 31/10/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector has approved the award of a grant to Abbey Community Association Limited for a term of 10 years and a total value of £1.7m (plus indexation) as detailed in the report.

 

Reasons for Decision 

This decision will enable the well-performing grant arrangement that the council has with the Abbey Centre to continue, supporting communities that benefit from the services of the Abbey Centre.

A Cabinet Member Decision is required due to the value of the decision.

 

Wards affected: St James's;

Lead officer: Genevieve Peattie


23/10/2023 - 470 Harrow Road Contract Variation ref: 1946    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 23/10/2023

Effective from: 31/10/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development has approved the contract variation of £280,267.49 required for the Council to settle Rooff Limited’s final account submitted for payment.

 

Reasons for Decision

The works have now been completed and the contractor’s Final Account has been finalised with the contractor. Approval is required for the contractor’s Final Account sum so it can be paid by the Council.

A Cabinet Member Decision is required due to the total contract value.  

 

Wards affected: Harrow Road;

Lead officer: Gaurav Choksi


20/10/2023 - Lisson Arches Development ref: 1945    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 20/10/2023

Effective from: 28/10/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform has, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Climate Action Regeneration and Renters and the Cabinet Member for Housing Services:

 

·         Approved the additional £3,203,958 variance spend to the original signed construction contract so the final account to be agreed between the Council and ULS for the works delivered shall be £27,801,133.

 

·         Noted the increase in budget of £3.3m will be funded from the Affordable Housing Fund receipts.

 

Reasons for Decision

The project is approaching the practical completion stage and under the construction contract, a final account agreement is required between the WCC and ULS.

The original Cabinet Member decision was published on 8th March 2021. Throughout the course of the project, a number of changes have been instructed under the contract. There have also been loss & expense claims submitted by the contractor. WCC and ULS have now come to a commercial agreement with regards to the final account. The proposed final account now stands at £27,801,133 this represents a variance of £3,203,958 against the original contract sum approved and awarded by the Council.

 

Wards affected: Church Street;

Lead officer: James Green


19/10/2023 - Approval of recommendations from the Rating Advisory Panel - 19.09.23 ref: 1944    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 19/10/2023

Effective from: 19/10/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

The Cabinet Member has approved the recommendations of the Rating Advisory Panel held on 19 September 2023 and determines the applications for NNDR Discretionary and Hardship relief set out in Appendix A.

 

Reasons for Decision

The Rating Advisory Panel has set out the reasons for the recommendations in each case considered by the Panel in the recommendations in Appendix A.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Gemma Williams


10/10/2023 - Grant of rights to UKPN of WCC land at Woodfield Road, London W9 ref: 1941    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 10/10/2023

Effective from: 10/10/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

That the Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform approve the disposal of a leasehold interest on the terms in Appendix 1.

 

Reasons for Decision

 

Under the Council’s constitution Cabinet Member approval is required to enter into a lease of more than 25 years.

Wards affected: Harrow Road;

Lead officer: Rupert Grass


10/10/2023 - Approval of recommendations of the Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) Review Panel 12.09.23 ref: 1940    Recommendations Approved

Approval of recommendations of the Discretionary Housing Payment (DHP) Review Panel to be held on 12 September 2023.

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 10/10/2023

Effective from: 10/10/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

the Cabinet Member has approved the recommendations of the Discretionary Housing Payment Review Advisory Panel meeting of 12 September 2023

 

Reasons for Decision 

The Discretionary Housing Payment Review Advisory Panel has set out the reasons for the recommendations in each case considered by the Panel in the recommendations in Appendix A, which are more fully set out in the case papers submitted to the Panel.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Gwyn Thomas


09/10/2023 - Property Management Support Advice ref: 1938    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 09/10/2023

Effective from: 17/10/2023

Decision:

Reasons for Decision

 

The Cabinet Member for Climate Action, Regeneration and Renters in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform has approved the appointment of SAY Property Consulting LLP to provide property management support and advice at a maximum contract value of £600,000 (excluding VAT and £720,000 including VAT) and for a maximum contract period of 4 years.

 

Summary of Decision

 

The appointment of SAY Property Consulting LLP will enable the development and implementation of a standardised and consistent approach to management, maintenance, operational costs and service charges across the Regeneration and Development programme, tailored only to any specifics of a scheme.

 

 

 

                                                                                

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Vikki Everett


06/10/2023 - Older People's Day Opportunities Preventative Services ref: 1937    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector

Decision published: 06/10/2023

Effective from: 14/10/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector has approved:

 

The interim short term direct award contracts for the following services:

 

 

 

Provider

Provider Category

Service

Direct Award Period

Value of the

Direct Award Contract

1

London Care

(03117278)

 

Commercial

Westbourne Dementia Day Service

1.10.2020 – 30.9.2024

£1,782,300.00

(£2,138,760 inc VAT)

 

2

London Care

(03117278)

Commercial

Pullen OP & Dementia

Day Service

1.10.2020 – 30.9.2024

£796,728.00

(£956,073.60 inc VAT)

 

3

Octavia

Housing

(IP13991R)

Not for profit

Befriending & Outreach

1.10.2022 – 30.9.2024

£258,274.00

(£309,928.80 inc VAT)

4

Open Age

(CE002845)

 

Charity

Community Hubs

1.10.2022 – 30.9.2024

£435,572.00

(£522,686.40 inc VAT)

5

Westway Community Transport

(IP27317R)

 

Charity

Community Transport

1.10.2022 – 30.9.2024

£339,296.00

£407,155.20 (inc VAT)

Total

 

£3,612,170.00

 

 

To waive the requirement under Westminster City Council’s Procurement Code to undertake competitive exercises in respect of the services listed above.  

 

Reasons for Decision

Westminster City Council (WCC) has clear duties around service provision and prevention under the Care Act 2014. The Council must provide or arrange services that help prevent people developing needs for care and support or delay people deteriorating such that they would need ongoing care and support.

 

These older people’s day opportunities preventative services are required to meet the statutory duties as well as the aims and objectives of the Council.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Sharon Thurley


05/10/2023 - The Appropriation of land for planning purposes at 45 Kilburn Park Road ref: 1935    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 05/10/2023

Effective from: 13/10/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

The Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform, following consultation with the Cabinet Member for Climate Action, Regeneration and Renters and the Cabinet Member for Housing Services, has approved:

1.          The appropriation of the Council’s land at 45 Kilburn Park Rd, London NW6 5XD shown for planning purposes pursuant to section 122 of the Local Government Act 1972 and subsequent use of the Council’s powers under section 203 of the Housing and Planning Act 2016.

 

2.          To delegate authority to the Executive Director for Regeneration, Economy and Planning:

2.1.     To appropriate the Council’s land at the Site from planning purposes pursuant to section 232 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 to those purposes permitted under Section 17 of the Hosing Act 1985 including the construction of homes;

2.2.     To deal with any necessary arrangements to record the appropriation of the land at the Site for purposes permitted under Section 17 of the Housing Act 1985 including the transfer of the land from the General Fund account to the Housing Revenue Account at the current red book value;

2.3.     To deal with any necessary arrangements to record the appropriation of the Site for planning purposes;

2.4.     To negotiate and enter into agreements by deed and payment of compensation for the release of third-party rights where this can be achieved on reasonable terms within a reasonable timescale; and

2.5.     To take all necessary steps to settle claims for compensation under section 204 of the Housing and Planning Act 2016.

 

Reasons for Decision

 

The former Carlton Dene care home and Peebles House buildings were no longer fit for purpose and no longer met the modern standards for a care facility. The care home was closed in 2020 and both the Carlton Dene and Peebles House dwellings have been demolished. Therefore, the site isno longer required for the purpose for which it is held by the Council.

 

To progress the scheme and avoid delays to the programme, officers are seeking Cabinet Member authority to be able to appropriate the Site and authorise the use of any necessary powers under section 203 Housing and Planning Act 2016 if required. By exercising its powers, the Council will ensure that its development of the land proceeds in accordance with the planning permission already granted.

 

Appropriating the land for planning purposes would enable certain private third-party rights to be overridden, subject to payment of statutory compensation to those affected. This will help to ensure that development of the Site can proceed in accordance with the planning permission granted and meet the scheduled completion date.

 

After appropriating for planning purposes the Council will need to further appropriate the land at the Site for its intended permanent purpose to provide 100% affordable housing at social rents. This report is therefore seeking delegated authority to further appropriate for the intended permanent use of the land.

 

Wards affected: Maida Vale;

Lead officer: Farah Hassan


05/10/2023 - Huguenot House Delivery Route ref: 1936    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 05/10/2023

Effective from: 13/10/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

The Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform has:

1.              Approved the Outline Business Case for the redevelopment of Huguenot House by means of a partnership delivery model via a development agreement with headlease;

2.              Approved any additional legal agreements to facilitate the recommendations; and

3.              Noted the procurement strategy – competitive procedure with negotiation to support preparation of the Final Business Case

 

Reasons for Decision

The outline business case has been prepared to give assurance over the viability of the proposals. The Council is satisfied that the redevelopment of Huguenot House may enable Westminster City Council to meet its commitments to the Fairer Westminster strategy. This has been designed to ensure that we can build a more inclusive city that celebrates our diverse communities, and where residents, workers and visitors from all backgrounds will feel welcome and safe.

 

A process of resident and stakeholder consultation determined redevelopment as the optimum solution when considering possible interventions whereby to do nothing would:

·         realise no change or improvement from the existing provision

·         not improve the income into the Council to support services

·         not have the full support of resident and local stakeholders

Wards affected: St James's;

Lead officer: Beth McNeil


25/09/2023 - North Paddington Programme Project Work: First Year ref: 1933    Recommendations Approved

This paper seeks Cabinet Member approval for the Programme’s first year of project delivery and authorisation to commence these works. It will outline the decision making process and outline how projects under the programme will be monitored.

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 25/09/2023

Effective from: 03/10/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development has approved:

1.          The programme of works for North Paddington area and updated governance arrangements, as set out in the report and appendices.

2.          The revised funding allocations for the Programme as set out in section 9.3 of this report.

3.          The delegation of authority to the Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning in consultation with the Director of Legal Services to commence with the programme of works, agree commercial terms and allocation of approved funding and enter into all associated legal agreements.

 

Reasons for Decision 

A decision is required to initiate practical delivery of the first-year programme of work, for the Programme to respond to the findings of the Future of Westminster Commission about the needs of the North Paddington area.

These decisions reflect approvals for the programme of work, delegated authority, the governance, and the community engagement approach, which will govern the overall Programme.

Finally this paper sets out the Community Engagement approach, which will underpin, inform, and drive delivery and the development of the strategic transformation programme.

Wards affected: Harrow Road; Queen's Park; Westbourne;

Lead officer: Sarah Crampton


25/09/2023 - Recognition of HyPER as an amenity society ref: 1932    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Resident Participation, Consultation Reform and Leisure

Decision published: 25/09/2023

Effective from: 25/09/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Resident Participation, Consultation Reform and Leisure, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development, has agreed to formally recognise HyPER as an amenity society within the area of Hyde Park

 

Reasons for Decision 

 

HyPER has demonstrated that it meets the council’s criteria for recognising amenity societies. 

 

Wards affected: Hyde Park;

Lead officer: Serena Simon


20/09/2023 - Response to Petition: Sussex Street Play Area ref: 1931    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 20/09/2023

Effective from: 20/09/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

The Cabinet Member has approved the examination of options for the redevelopment of the site at the corner of Sussex Street and Alderney Street to include public open space.

 

Reasons for Decision

 

This report has been written in response to a petition received and sets out the Administration’s approach to the site.

 

Wards affected: Pimlico North;

Lead officer: Claire Nangle


15/09/2023 - Delegation of authority to approve reservations and sale terms of units at Ebury Phase 1 ref: 1930    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Climate Action, Regeneration and Renters

Decision published: 15/09/2023

Effective from: 23/09/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Climate Action, Regeneration and Renters, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform, has approved:

·       The sale of homes to Returning Leaseholders, as defined in the Council’s Unilateral Undertaking dated 6 October 2021.

·       The delegation of authority to the Executive Director of Regeneration, Economy and Planning or Director of Development and Regeneration and Heads of Development and Development Services to:

o   Approve reservations and the sale terms of private sales homes at Phase 1 of Ebury Bridge.

o   Approve reservations and the sale terms to Returning Leaseholders in Phase 1 of Ebury Bridge.

o   Enter into all associated legal agreements.

 

Reasons for Decision

The disposal of private sale homes at Phase 1 of Ebury Bridge will cross subsidise the provision of affordable housing at the scheme as well as supporting the overall affordability of Ebury Bridge Estate regeneration.

When the Council sells an asset with a value greater than £500,000, the scheme of delegation and financial regulations require the disposal to be approved by a Cabinet Member. By delegating the ability to accept offers above a minimum threshold the Council can act at a pace in line with normal market practice while ensuring the required cross subsidy is achieved.

 

Wards affected: Knightsbridge and Belgravia;

Lead officer: James Green


15/09/2023 - CCS Energy Purchase Agreement for 2024 - 25 Supply Period ref: 1929    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 15/09/2023

Effective from: 15/09/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform has approved:

·       The continued commitment to the CCS energy framework (RM6011) for the provision of gas and electricity for a further 12-month period from 1 April 2024 to 31 March 2025 at a cost of circa £18m.   

·       The delegation to the Director of Corporate Property to enter into such legal agreements as may be necessary for WCC to achieve paragraph 1 above.

 

Reasons for Decision 

 

This decision will ensure the supply of Gas and Electricity continues at favourable market rates to all Westminster corporate and housing assets for the period April 2024 to March 2025. 

The CCS energy framework has a deadline of 15 September 2023 for WCC to be included in the purchasing window for energy supplies for 2024-25. If it does not meet this deadline the Council would have to seek its energy provision elsewhere which may lead to increased costs.

 

Reasons for Urgency

Under provision 33.14 of the Access to Information Procedure Rules in the Council’s Constitution, the Council may apply a case of special urgency to the rule to publish notice of a decision 28 days in advance of that decision being taken with the agreement of the Chair of the relevant Policy and Scrutiny Committee. Cllr Paul Fisher, Chair of the Finance, Planning and Economic Development Policy and Scrutiny Committee agreed to this decision being treated as a matter of special urgency on 15 September 2023. The decision could be taken immediately after this agreement was given.

 

Adherence to the normal access to information rules, and specifically the 28 day rule, are not practical in these circumstances as Westminster City Council must commit to the purchase window for the 2024/25 financial year by 15 September 2023, and not doing so would leave the Council liable to increased costs.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Claire Barrett


13/09/2023 - Ashbridge, Ashmill & Cosway sites - settlement of the main construction contract final account with Geoffrey Osborne Limited ref: 1928    Recommendations Approved

Settlement of main construction contract account

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform

Decision published: 13/09/2023

Effective from: 21/09/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Finance and Council Reform and the Cabinet Member for Climate Action Regeneration and Renters in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Housing Services have:

 

·       Approved the additional £7,760,002 variance sum to the signed construction contract between the Council and Geoffrey Osborne Limited. The interim final account for the works delivered and agreed with the contractor amount to £51,250,000 (excluding VAT).

 

·       Approved the additional spend of £8.8m against the previously approved spend set out in the FBC to complete the scheme.

 

·       Noted the increase in budget requirement of £4.347m above existing provision which will be funded from the Affordable Housing Fund.

 

Reasons for Decision

The project is approaching the practical completion stage and under the construction contract, a final account statement is required to be agreed and signed between the Council and Osborne.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: James Green


11/09/2023 - Minutes of the last meeting ref: 1924    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 11/09/2023 - Cabinet

Decision published: 12/09/2023

Effective from: 11/09/2023

Decision:

Cabinet agreed that the minutes of the meeting held on 10th July 2023 were a true and correct record of the proceedings.


11/09/2023 - Oxford Street Programme ref: 1925    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 11/09/2023 - Cabinet

Decision published: 12/09/2023

Effective from: 20/09/2023

Decision:

Cabinet approved the following recommendations:

1.     Approve the full business case for the Oxford Street and Oxford Circus projects;

2.     Approve the draw-down of £7.767m from the OSP budget for Stage 2 of the Oxford Street project, Stage 1 of the Oxford Circus project and all associated costs for both.

 

Reasons for decision

 

A new full business case has been prepared, which considers the costs and benefits of the Oxford Street and Oxford Circus projects and confirms the case for investment in consideration of the proposed funding strategy.

 

Expenditure is required to progress the Oxford Street and Oxford Circus design which forms the basis for engagement with local communities and other stakeholders.

Wards affected: Marylebone; West End;


11/09/2023 - Neighbourhood CIL Applications (Greenhouse Sports Centre) ref: 1926    Recommendations Approved

Greenhouse Sports is seeking funding to repair the roof of its Grade II listed building. Greenhouse provides sporting activities to young people in the local area, but has been closed since November 2021 following identification of water ingress and structural issues with the roof. The NCIL would leverage other funding from other sources to support the works which are required before Greenhouse Sports can reopen. 

 

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 11/09/2023 - Cabinet

Decision published: 12/09/2023

Effective from: 20/09/2023

Decision:

Cabinet approved the following recommendations:

1.     Approves in principle £0.45m of NCIL funding to Greenhouse Sports.

2.     Delegates authority to the Executive Director of Innovation & Change to produce a final funding agreement in conjunction with the Director of Law and Governance that ensures value for money and safeguards the investment for community benefit.

 

Reasons for decision

 

Allocating £0.45m to Greenhouse Sports will provide 10% match funding for the total cost of the scheme, meeting a funding shortfall. This will make sure that service delivery is not put at risk and enable Greenhouse Sports to develop and grow its offer to the local community, supporting the delivery of the council’s Fairer Community strategic outcome.

 

These improvements to the Greenhouse Centre deliver on the priority in the council’s CIL Spending Policy Statement to support community facilities, and will contribute towards creating an enhanced sports centre to meet the anticipated additional demand for local facilities that will be created by local development, in particular the nearby Church Street regeneration scheme.

 

This decision, and supporting grant agreement, will ensure robust and effective expenditure and reporting in line with the Planning Act (2008) and the Community Infrastructure Levy Regulations 2010 (as amended) and in accordance with the council’s strategic priorities, the revised CIL Spending Policy Statement (2022), and the council’s frameworks for resource allocation and management.

Wards affected: Church Street;

Lead officer: Alex Csicsek


11/09/2023 - Citizens Climate Assembly - Recommendations ref: 1927    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Made at meeting: 11/09/2023 - Cabinet

Decision published: 12/09/2023

Effective from: 11/09/2023

Decision:

Cabinet approved the following recommendations:

 

1.     Notes the final recommendations from the Westminster Citizens’ Climate Assembly, as set out under Appendix 1 of this report.

2.     Approves the initiation of a programme of cross-council work, led by individual Cabinet Members, to develop responses to each recommendation of the Climate Assembly, identifying what action is possible or where the Council may need to influence stakeholders to take them forward.

3.     Approves that all recommendations brought forward for implementation will be subject to further financial and legal consideration and, where necessary, individual Cabinet or Cabinet Member decisions will need be undertaken.

 

Reasons for decision

 

The Westminster Citizens’ Climate Assembly was commissioned as part of the Council’s efforts to address climate change, strengthen the citywide response to the climate crisis and improve representation of residents’ views on how to tackle the climate emergency. The Assembly has now delivered its final recommendations, please see Appendix 1 of this report.

 

The Council has committed to working together with Westminster residents to respond to the climate emergency. The Assembly forms part of this process. The Council will continue to work in partnership with Assembly participants to review progress in addressing the outputs of the Assembly and collectively develop further work to help tackle the climate emergency in Westminster.

 

All Assembly recommendations will be considered and assessed individually with a view to determining a response. This will have due regard to the council’s ability to deliver on recommendations directly, in partnership with wider stakeholders, or via external engagement (where actions sit outside of the council’s direct control). Where required, further financial and legal consideration will have to be undertaken before implementation.

Wards affected: (All Wards);


07/09/2023 - Amenity Societies - Interim Approach to Recognition ref: 1923    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 07/09/2023

Effective from: 07/09/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Resident Participation, Consultation Reform and Leisure and the Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development have agreed to:

·       Approve the amendment to the existing process for recognising amenity societies to allow the submission of interim applications from amenity groups seeking to be recognised as amenity societies.  

·       At any time prior to the next full review milestone in 2028 applications be assessed against the current criteria as and when they are submitted to the Council.

 

Reasons for Decision

This decision will offer organisations with aspirations of becoming a recognised group within their area a process to apply without waiting for the 10 year full review cycle.

A strategic goal set out in the council’s Fairer Westminster strategy is to build a more inclusive city that celebrates its diverse communities, and where residents are at the heart of decision making.  The purpose of assessing individual applications between review times, (currently at 10 year intervals) helps to ensure that the process for recognition of amenity societies is more inclusive and effective and aligns with our council commitment to more effectively include the resident voice in decision making. 

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Serena Simon


30/08/2023 - Maida Hill Market, Public Realm Improvements ref: 1922    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 30/08/2023

Effective from: 07/09/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Members have approved:

·       To proceed with detailed design and implementation of the proposed public realm improvements on Maida Hill Market.  

·       The capital expenditure commitment of £2.713m necessary to carry out the detailed design and implementation of the proposals for the Maida Hill Market Public Realm Project.

·       The modification and making of traffic regulation orders in accordance with the Road Traffic Regulations Act 1984, necessary to accommodate the new highways improvements for the scheme. 

 

The Cabinet Members have delegated authority to the Director of City Highways and Transportation to approve minor modifications as necessary to the approved scheme and any advance order of materials to meet the programme outlined.

 

 

Reasons for Decision 

 

The recommendations in the report will lead to a significant improvement to the public space at Maida Hill Market, supporting the local high street by providing an important space of respite away from the busy road and pavements.

 

A Cabinet Member Decision is required in accordance with the Scheme of Delegation due to the value of the decision.

Wards affected: Harrow Road;

Lead officer: Sarah Crampton


30/08/2023 - Neighbourhood CIL Decisions: Spring 2023 Application Round ref: 1921    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development

Decision published: 30/08/2023

Effective from: 30/08/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development has approved the following Neighbourhood CIL bids:

i)                Covent Garden Conservation Area Audit

ii)               Feathers Club Management System and Operations

iii)             Marylebone Bangladesh Society Basement Improvements

iv)             Marylebone War Memorial (The Annunciation Bryanston Street) Revitalisation

v)              Soho Poly Theatre Restoration Supplement

vi)             Christ Church Bentinck CE Primary School - Community Playground /Pitch Renovation

vii)           St Peter’s Eaton Square Primary School - Playground Extension Feasibility and Design

viii)          Soho Public Convenience Project Feasibility Study

 

The Cabinet Member for Planning and Economic Development has approved the following Carbon Offset bids:

i)                    English National Opera LED Lighting Replacement

ii)                  WECH Power Station

 

Reasons for Decision 

With regard to Neighbourhood CIL, the decision ensures robust and effective expenditure and reporting in line with the Planning Act (2008) and the Community Infrastructure Levy Regulations 2010 (as amended) and in accordance with the council’s strategic priorities, the revised CIL Spending Policy Statement (2022), and the council’s frameworks for resource allocation and management.

 

The decision ensures with regard to carbon offset funds robust and effective expenditure in line with the Town and Country Planning Act (1990), the Greater London Authority guidance for London’s Local Planning Authorities on establishing carbon offset funds (2022), and in accordance with the council’s strategic priorities, the Westminster Carbon Offset Fund Guidance (2023), and the council’s frameworks for resource allocation and management.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Alex Csicsek


30/03/2022 - NATIONAL POLICY & PLANNING REFORM UPDATE ref: 1647    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Planning & City Development Committee

Made at meeting: 30/03/2022 - Planning & City Development Committee

Decision published: 29/08/2023

Effective from: 30/03/2022

Decision:

4.1       The Committee received a report which provided an update on changes to     national planning policy & planning reform that has occurred following the            government’s Planning White Paper that was published in August 2020. It           also identified the impacts these changes are having in Westminster.

 

4.2       The government set out plans for extensive and ambitious changes to the             planning system in its ‘Planning for the Future’ White Paper, published in      August 2020. The White Paper received in excess of 40,000 representations           in response to consultation held during the second half of 2020 and the            Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) has been             considering these consultation responses in the period since. To date there       has been no firm commitment from government on when a formal response to      the consultation on the white paper may be expected. Recent press             speculation indicates that that a significant number of the proposals for reform    in the white paper may be dropped or scaled back and that planning reform           may now form part of a wider package of reforms included in a Levelling Up       and Regeneration bill, which is likely to be laid before Parliament later in            2022.

 

4.3       Principal Changes to Planning Legislation and Guidance Since August 2020      includes: -

 

·       Amendments to the Use Classes Order & Associated Permitted Development Rights

·       Amended Requirements for Removal of Statues, Monuments and Memorials

·       Introduction of the National Model Design Code Amended National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF)

·       Fire Safety – Introduction of Planning Gateway One

·       Environment Act 2022 – Introducing Biodiversity Net Gain

·       Permitted Development Rights for Moveable Structures ‘Levelling Up the United Kingdom’ White Paper

 

4.4       Members held a discussion and noted the following: -

 

·       That there will be consultation on the Design and Heritage SPDs later in 2022/ early 2023.

 

·       Members welcomed the reduction in the pre-application advice fees for sustainability improvements and were advised that this would encourage householders to use the service. The Service will also shortly be publishing ‘How to Guides’ to support applicants to make more successful applications for sustainability improvements to their homes.

 

·       That the committee report format was to be amended following changing focus of the National Planning Policy, the adoption of the new City Plan and new London Plan in 2021, and the adoption of the Environmental SPD in March 2022. The updated format will focus greater attention on material considerations such as energy performance and sustainability, biodiversity gain, community engagement and economic benefits, as well as ensuring that the reports identify relevant policies in made neighbourhood plans. The new reports will be introduced from late April 2022 onwards.

 

·       Members noted that there were new limits on the use of Article 4 Directions which could restrict permitted development rights and that specific evidence of significant harm was required for streets and areas for this protection to be introduced. Officers reminded Members that the Class E Use Class was much wider than previous Use Classes that it replaced and encompassed a wide range of land uses. The Sub-Committee were advised that the City Plan policy areas and Town Centre Health Checks could be used to support identification of which areas of the City need to be protected using Article 4 Directions.

 

·       That the built environment in Westminster is ‘hyper mixed used’. Members were informed that this position enabled for a large amount of data to be collated about ‘mixed usage’ in comparison to other Local Planning Authorities and this ensured that decisions were fully evidence based and help determined what was feasible in areas and were specific. Members were reminded that the aims of permitted development rights were to increase housing stock, and this was aligned with the City Plan.

 

·       Members agreed that the local community, Amenity Societies, and planning experts should be engaged when creating Design Codes and noted that the Early Community Engagement guidance promotes this type of engagement. Members further noted that there had been interest from the aforementioned parties in contributing to formulation of future policies. There have been pilot schemes undertaken by other Local Planning Authorities regarding Design Codes and learning from these examples will be taken into consideration.

 

·       That the Conservation Area Audits would be considered when devising Design Codes. It is planned that the existing audits will be updated, with the aspiration that this process will lead to full coverage of all conservation areas.

 

·       That the heritage setting of sites would be taken into consideration when devising Design Codes and that these areas were protected. Members were advised that amenity societies and neighbourhood forums had approached the Service around this issue.

 

·       Members agreed that ‘Moveable Structures’ which were allowed under the Permitted Development Rights should be closely monitored by the Planning Enforcement Team where concerns about them were reported to the Service.

 

·       That they would appreciate clarification as to whether the future statutory requirement for delivery of 10% biodiversity net gain applied to all new developments (major and non-major development) and development that is permitted development. Members noted that officers would review the legislation and report back on what type of development the statutory requirement for 10% biodiversity net gain will apply to.

 

·       That conditions imposed on Class E developments to limit the use of developments within Class E were widely acknowledged by developers and planning agents as being reasonable and necessary to control the impacts of new development. Members were informed that conditions must meet the tests set out in the NPPF if they are to be enforceable.

 

·       Members noted that officers were liaising with the Department for Levelling Up and Communities (DLUC) to ensure that an Article 4 Direction that meets the tests in the NPPF can be introduced for the CAZ to protect certain areas within the CAZ from harmful changes of use from Class E to residential which would erode the contribution the CAZ makes to the Westminster economy and the wider London and UK economy. Officers advised Members that where there is not an Article 4 Direction, applicants proposing Class E to residential permitted development are still required to seek prior approval and that the prior approval regime is more extensive than for many other permitted developments rights.

 

·       That the New Article 4 Direction relating to parts of the CAZ is expected to come into force in August 2022 

 

·       Members requested that prior approval applications for change of use from Class E to residential be included in the Weekly List.

 

·       That the Affordable Housing and Planning Obligations SPD was being consulted on and that the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) now includes First Homes as a type of affordable housing. Officers advised that First Homes would be unlikely to be an appropriate form of affordable housing in Westminster due to the cost of housing in many parts of the city. Officers are working on the council’s position on First Homes.

 

4.5       Members held a discussion regarding imposing a deadline for the submission of late representations to Planning Sub-Committees and were advised by officers that a transitional period would need to be factored before a cut off period is introduced. Members were informed that deadlines for late representations could be reviewed and formalised as part of the ‘Statement of Community Involvement’. Members were advised that clear protocols which provided guidance and timeframes would be required and were informed that this area was potentially an area that could be subject to legal challenge should clear protocols not be adopted.

 

4.6       Members agreed that a pilot scheme should take place before deadlines for          late representations are adopted and that the new process would need to be      embedded and carefully worded. Members agreed that Ward Councillors      should also be encouraged to adhere to these deadlines and that the Chair             should retain some discretion regarding accepting late representations.          Members agreed that the proposed process should be fair and should guard        against attempts to delay determinations. 

  

RESOLVED:

 

1.     Members noted the contents of the report and noted the recent changes to national planning policy and guidance and the implications these have for planning decision making in Westminster, as detailed in the report. 

 

2.     That Officers explore introducing a deadline for late representations being submitted to Planning Applications Sub-Committees.

 

3.     That prior approval applications for change of use from Class E to residential be included in the Weekly List

 


23/08/2023 - Extending the Free Meal Offer to Nurseries and Secondary Westminster Pupils ref: 1919    Recommendations Approved

Summary of Decision

 

The Cabinet Member for Young People, Culture and Learning approves:

·       a total of £932,030 (£2.47) to enable nurseries to develop a universal meal offer based on £2.47 per meal to nurseries for academic year 2023-24.

·       a total of £771,780 to enable schools to provide a Free Lunch Offer to resident pupils in KS3 (Years 7-9) academic year 2023-24.

·       A total of £189,924 to top up the meal price for the Mayor of London’s offer from £2.65 per meal to £3 per meal for the academic year 2023-24.

 

The Cabinet Member for Young People, Culture and Learning accepts the GLA’s allocation of £1,390,478.00 and transferring this to primary schools so that they are able to implement a free lunch offer.

 

 

Reasons for Decision

 

Cost-of-Living

 

·       The Cost-of-Living crisis is one of the greatest challenges currently facing the city council and other Local Authorities. In Westminster, around a quarter of households across the city (approximately 32,000 households) are particularly vulnerable to rises in living costs, with some people facing extreme hardship. At a meeting of Full Council on 21st September 2022, Councillors approved a motion to declare a Cost-of-Living Emergency, stating that the scale of the challenge needs “urgent and substantial action” from the Council, Government, and others with the ability to help.

·       The impact on children and young people is a real concern, and we have growing evidence of families in Westminster finding themselves unable to cover the costs of necessities. Schools tell us that they are seeing a lot more families struggling, including those not eligible for Free School Meals (FSM), which is manifesting in what they can afford to put into a child’s lunchbox. FSM play a crucial role in ensuring that all eligible children can eat a healthy and nutritious meal, which in turn supports their ability to learn and improves their mental health.

 

New Mayor of London Free School Meal Offer in Primary School Pupils

 

·       The original key decision committed the council to funding £2,781,784 of which £1,053,864 was allocated to fund the Spring and Summer terms in 2023 and £1,627,920 was allocated to fund the 2023/24 academic year. This cost was based on £3 per pupil per day.

·       Since this decision was taken, the Mayor of London has made the decision to fund the extension of a free meal offer to primary aged pupils in London attending state schools. This will commence from September 2023 and will last one academic year. The Greater London Assembly (GLA) have allocated £1,390,478 for Westminster schools, and this is based on a meal cost of £2.65 per pupil per day and will be based on190 days a year and at a take up of 90% of pupils.

·       The Council has already allocated £1,014,814 for the Spring and Summer terms in 2023 for the Council led scheme that commenced in January 2023. However, as a result of the Mayor’s offer, the Council will be able to extend the Free Lunch Offer to Support more pupils in the Borough.

 

Health, Wellbeing and Educational attainment

 

·       Currently, one in five children start school overweight or with obesity. Offering free nutritional meals from an early age, will enable children and their families to develop good habits in relation to healthy eating and nutritional meals. This in return, will enable children to access the early years curriculum more consistently as poor nutrition and development impacts not only children’s health, but also their readiness to learn. This will enable our most vulnerable two-year-old children and all of our three- and four-year-old children to have the best possible start in life by developing good habits around their diet and nutrition, increasing their attendance and accessing education and learning more effectively. This additional offer to early years children could potentially have a huge impact on children’s future attainment and in essence, improve their life chances. 

 

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Young People, Culture and Learning

Decision published: 23/08/2023

Effective from: 31/08/2023

Wards affected: (All Wards);


23/08/2023 - PDHU Renewal and Decarbonisation - Technical Services ref: 1920    Recommendations Approved

Summary of Decision

 

The Cabinet Member has approved the appointment of Aecom to provide technical services support to the PDHU Renewal and Decarbonisation Outline Business Case

 

The Cabinet Member has also approved a maximum expenditure of £524,751 for the Outline Business Case (stage 2) to cover design services up to the end of the Outline Business Case. This will be a maximum fee and will be reduced where efficiencies are possible.

 

 

Reasons for Decision

 

Pimlico District Heat Undertaking (PDHU) is an important asset for Westminster City Council. PDHU provides heating and hot water to 3,300 homes and over 50 commercial buildings in the Pimlico area.

 

The existing PDHU network is over 50 years old. Due to its age, maintenance costs are increasing and WCC spend £1.97m per annum maintaining and repairing the network, with a further £1.7m on in flat repairs related to PDHU. The number of leaks from the network is increasing every year, a growing problem as the pipework deteriorates.

PDHU is currently powered by three 8MW natural gas boilers which emit 16k Tonnes of CO2 per annum, this equates to 39% of the Council’s total carbon emissions in 2021/22. Reducing this carbon footprint is considered vital in reaching the Councils 2030 net zero target and Fairer Environment ambitions outlined in the ‘Fairer Westminster Delivery Plan’

 

The project is an opportunity to modernise the network including installation of advanced heat metering technology, improved energy management and greater control – all of which improve the experience for residents connected to the network

 

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Housing Services

Decision published: 23/08/2023

Effective from: 01/09/2023

Wards affected: Pimlico South;

Lead officer: Chief Executive


22/08/2023 - Dockless Bike Scheme ref: 1908    Recommendations Approved

To approve the establishment of designated bays for dockless bike parking across the city.

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for City Management and Air Quality

Decision published: 22/08/2023

Effective from: 31/08/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

 

·       The Cabinet Member has approved the proposal by Westminster City Council to establish and designate approximately 220 bays for both dockless bike and e-scooter parking across the city. The recommendation from officers is that all bays are established via Experimental Traffic Orders to allow for flexibility regarding both bay locations and either an increase or decrease in demand.

 

·       The Cabinet Member has delegated authority to the Executive Director for Environment, Climate and Public Protection to agree on final arrangements, and to enter into any formal agreements with dockless bike operators where necessary.

 

·       The Cabinet Member has delegated authority to the Executive Director for Environment, Climate and Public Protection to approve any future development or adaptation of the scheme based upon changes in the market or review in demand. Any approved development is expected to be delivered on a cost-neutral basis.

 

Reasons for Decision

 

·       Provide our residents, businesses and tourists access to on demand dockless bike hire within Westminster;

·       Increase the uptake of e-bike usage in the borough to support our environmental objectives set out in the Fairer Westminster strategy and reduce reliance on private car and capacity restricted public transport;

·       Promote responsible and safe dockless bike usage, including responsible parking of the vehicles; and to

·       Provide a designated bay network for e-bike users that encourages growth across all user groups and accessibility in all areas across the city.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Daisy Gadd


22/08/2023 - Achieving Health Equity: A proposal to launch a new Public Health partnership fund for voluntary and community organisations serving Westminster residents ref: 1907    Recommendations Approved

Voluntary and community organisations in Westminster work daily with the people the Council most wants to reach, support and empower to improve their health.  In 2023/24, a £1m investment is proposed to enable selected voluntary and community sector (VCS) organisations to initiate health-promoting activities with target communities and codesign a further three-year £4m funding programme to improve resident health and wellbeing and address health inequalities.

 

Public Health will administer the grants, with support from the Communities directorate initially with future administration of the fund being part of the codesign process.

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector

Decision published: 22/08/2023

Effective from: 31/08/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member has approved the launch of a new voluntary and community sector (VCS) grant programmes, totalling up to £5m, to be mobilised over the next four years to: build capacity and expertise of the VCS to improve health outcomes of residents through health-based training; deliver health improvement activities and advice which improve health behaviours and address the wider determinants of health which may present as barriers to resident engagement; and ensure sustained health promotion in the community past the funding period. 

 

 

Reasons for Decision 

 

Westminster has the highest life expectancy for males in the country (85 years) and the third highest in the country for females (87 years). It also has the highest life expectancy gap in the country for males.

 

A needs assessment on the health inequalities experienced by Global Majority communities in Westminster suggests that people may face specific barriers to getting the health services that they need, due to experiences of discrimination, challenges navigating the health system and receiving care, understanding of health conditions and barriers to accessibility, and that their experiences and outcomes from services can be poorer. 

 

Population-level interventions that are less reliant on individual choice aim to alter the environments in which people live, and they are the most effective and equitable way to improve physical activity, reduce smoking, improve diets, reduce harmful alcohol use and promote social connection.

 

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Sarah Crouch


21/08/2023 - Direct award for interim contracts for Learning Disability accommodation based services ref: 1906    Recommendations Approved

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector

Decision published: 21/08/2023

Effective from: 30/08/2023

Decision:

Summary of Decision

The Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Voluntary Sector has:

·       Approved the direct award of contracts for four learning disability supported housing and living services from 1 April 2023 to 31 March 2025

·       Approved a waiver of the Procurement Code from the requirement to undertake a competitive tendering exercise in order to directly award the contracts.

 

Reasons for Decision 

The Council has a statutory duty under the Care Act 2014 to:

·     Ensure appropriate personalised care and support to meet the individual assessed needs of Service Users

·     Maximise independence, focusing on choice and control for people in receipt of Learning Disability Services

·     Ensure consistency and continuity of care, minimising service disruption for vulnerable adults with learning disabilities living in the community.

 

Under the Council’s Scheme of Delegation, a Cabinet Member Decision is required due to the value of the contracts.

Wards affected: (All Wards);

Lead officer: Shazia Ghani