Executive Minutes

Executive Minutes

Friday 22 February 2019
1:00 p.m.
Mandela Room, Town Hall, Middlesbrough

Attendance Details

Mayor D Budd (Chair), Councillors M Carr, C M Rooney, D Rooney, J Rostron, M Thompson, N J Walker and L Young
A Cain, A Hoy, D Johnson and Councillor L Lewis
Councillor J Sharrocks
P Clarke, S Dorchell, A Humble, G Moore, E Scollay, M Walker and I Wright
Apologies for absence:
Councillor J Brunton Dobson
Declarations of interest:

There were no Declarations of Interest made by Members at this point in the meeting.

Item Number Item/Resolution

The minutes of the Executive meeting held on 22 January 2019 were submitted and approved as a correct record.


The minutes of the Executive Sub-Committee for Property meeting held on 19 December 2018 were noted.

The Mayor

The Mayor and the Strategic Director of Finance, Governance and Support submitted a report that detailed the recommended Revenue Budget of £111.9m, Council Tax of 4.99% (see paragraphs 52 to 69 of the submitted report) and Capital Strategy Report for 2019/2020 (see paragraphs 102 to 111 of the submitted report). The report also provided a refreshed Medium Term Financial Plan for the period 2019/2020 to 2021/2022 to reflect the 2019/2020 Local Government Finance Settlement (see paragraphs 70 to 101 of the submitted report).


The Medium Term Financial Plan update in the report was integrated with the £166.1 million Investment Strategy for Middlesbrough for the period to 2021/2022, supported by £105.4 million of the Council’s own resources, an update of which was agreed by Council on 5 December 2018. The updated Investment Strategy was attached at Appendix 8 of the submitted report. The strategy was intended to attract a total of over £700 million of third party investment into the town and its infrastructure.


The budget continued to support the Mayor’s commitment to invest in Middlesbrough and transform service delivery for residents. It was intended that through the strategy the Council planned to achieve the challenging financial targets faced in the Medium Term Financial Plan period whilst ensuring that there was a minimum impact on the level of service delivered to the public.


The Strategic Director for Finance, Governance and Support confirmed that the budget calculations for 2019/2020 were robust in that:

  • Proper medium term budget planning and monitoring processes were in place and maintained, which ensured that known commitments were provided for and budgets were set in real terms with the effect on service delivery clearly identified.
  • Appropriate provisions were made within the budget for pay and inflation.
  • A prudent view of the net costs of the Council’s overall cash flow and prudential borrowing was taken.
  • An analysis of financial risks affecting the budget were completed.
  • Appropriate consideration was given to the level of Council Tax and external funding available to the Council.

The revenue and capital budgets formed part of the Council’s Policy Framework and as such had to be agreed by Full Council.




Other potential decisions and why those had not been recommended


Not applicable



  1. That the budget savings initiatives for 2019/2020 be endorsed and the proposed budget savings initiatives for 2020-22, which would have required further development prior to being brought forward for approval (Appendices 1-3), be noted.
  2. That the budget requirement for 2019/2020 to be set at £111,926,328, as detailed in Appendix 4, be endorsed.
  3. Having taken into account the matters set out in Section 32 of the Local Government Act 1992 and the items set out within the report - that the basic amount of Council Tax (Band D) for 2019/2020 to be set at £1,644.99, be endorsed, which was a 2.99% increase in general Council Tax and an annual precept of 2.00% for Adult Social Care, which was introduced by Government in November 2015 to contribute towards the shortfall of funding for adult social care. The Council Tax increase was in line with Government assumptions relating to the funding available to the Council. In total that represented an increase of 4.99% in the basic amount of Council Tax for the whole of the Borough.
  4. That the actual amount of Council Tax (Band D) for areas with parish precepts (excluding Fire and Police) to be set at :-  Nunthorpe Parish - £1,648.76, Stainton and Thornton Parish - £1,653.82, be endorsed.
  5. That the actual amount of Council Tax for each category of dwelling, set in accordance with table 4 of Appendix 7 within the report, be endorsed.
  6. That the refreshed Medium-Term Financial Plan position for 2019-2022, set out in the report, be noted.
  7. That the updated Investment Strategy, for the period to 2021/2022, set out in Appendix 8, be noted.
  8. That the Capital Strategy Report (Prudential indicators, Investment Strategy and Minimum Revenue Provision) 2019/2020, outlined in Appendix 9, be endorsed.
  9. That the updated Treasury Management Practices Statement, outlined in Appendix 10, be endorsed.



To enable the Council to meet its statutory responsibility to set a balanced revenue budget for the financial year 2019/2020, and to ensure that a proper framework was in place for the medium term financial management of the Council.

18/65 STRATEGIC PLAN 2019-2022

The Mayor and Chief Executive submitted a report that sought endorsement of a proposed revised Strategic Plan, for the period 2019-2022, prior to consideration by full Council in March 2019.


On 28 March 2018, Council approved a Strategic Plan for 2018-2022 that clearly set out how the Council contributed to the Elected Mayor’s Vision for Middlesbrough. The Council’s contribution to delivering the vision was reflected in its three interrelated strategic aims of business imperatives, physical regeneration and social regeneration. This strategic plan set out the Council’s priorities in respect of each aim, over a three year period. The strategic priorities set out in the plan had been informed by consultation with elected members, local residents, businesses and partners, and reflected feedback received in the 2017 Middlesbrough Community Survey.


The design of the plan was aligned with that of the Middlesbrough Investment Prospectus, and for the first time for any such Council document, received the Plain English Campaign’s Crystal Mark accreditation.


Progress in delivering the plan was reported to the Executive and to the Overview and Scrutiny Board on a quarterly basis. The report set out positive performance in many areas, 26 of the 30 priorities within the current plan were on target to be achieved by 2022, and 17 of 28 measures of success showed improvement.


Key highlights and current challenges were detailed in submitted report.


The proposed revised Strategic Plan for 2019-2022 was attached at Appendix 1 of the submitted report. The plan set out a comprehensive programme of activity to promote improved quality of life across Middlesbrough, which met the Council’s legal obligations and was within its financial means.




Other potential decisions and why those had not been recommended


It was imperative that the Council effectively articulated and communicated an overarching plan to direct activity across Directorates toward the achievement of corporate strategic objectives. The only other feasible decisions therefore related to the structure of the document, and its horizon (i.e. reverting to an annual plan). It was strongly in the Council’s interest to plan over the medium-term, in line with the indicative budgets over that period outlined by the Government. The proposed document achieved that whilst providing an appropriate level of detail for all audiences on the Council’s planned activity over that period.




That the proposed Strategic Plan for 2019-2022 be endorsed.




To enable full Council to consider a robust and comprehensive plan for the 2019-2022 period at its meeting in March 2019.

Deputy Mayor and Executive Member for City Centre Strategy

The Deputy Mayor and Executive Member for City Centre Strategy and the Executive Director for Growth and Place submitted a report, which detailed the aspirations for Centre Square and the principles of the masterplan.


The Council’s vision, working with Ashall Projects Ltd., was for Centre Square to be the premier office development in the Tees Valley, which framed the public open space with buildings of the highest architectural quality, with a variety of high calibre restaurants and dining options that appealed to a wide spectrum of visitors.


The quality of the buildings and overall environment planned to rival any development in the region, attract inward investment and create significant employment opportunities.


The masterplan helped realise the ambitions highlighted in Middlesbrough’s City Centre Strategy. It provided reasons for people to visit Middlesbrough’s city centre, stay in the city centre and spend in the city centre. The introduction of the Grade A offices brought professional services back into the city centre, improved Middlesbrough’s leisure and cultural offer, undoubtedly helped rebalance Middlesbrough’s economy and supported its retail sector.


The vision for Centre Square - The Masterplan for Middlesbrough’s Cultural Quarter, which was appended to the submitted report, provided detailed information on the overall objectives of the project.




Other potential decisions and why those had not been recommended


The other options were for Executive:

  1. Not to endorse the vision and masterplan, however, that would have been a lost opportunity to create the right environment for attracting further visitors and high value employment. It would have adversely impacted on the Centre Square ambitions described in Middlesbrough’s Investment Prospectus (2017); or
  2. To endorse minimal intervention only, such as the paving improvements absolutely necessary following Ashall’s development, however, that would not have fulfilled the ambitions and objectives highlighted.


  1. That the principles of the masterplan (see Appendix 1 of the submitted report), which were described in the future ambitions of the report, be endorsed;
  2. That the progress feasibility works, for the redevelopment of the municipal side of the Town Hall (see paragraph 14 of the submitted report), be endorsed;
  3. That the implementation of the public realm improvements, subject to the Medium Term Financial Plan (see paragraph 20 of the submitted report) be endorsed; and,
  4. That the implementation of the events infrastructure, subject to funding (see paragraphs 21 and 22 of the submitted report) be endorsed.



In enhancing the functionality of Centre Square, the Council supported its strategic aims of attracting new investment, supporting the city centre’s economy, creating high value employment and animating the city centre.


There had been significant consultation with key stakeholders during the production of the masterplan. Individual briefings were held with:

  1. Ward Councillors;
  2. The Executive Member for City Centre Strategy and Economic Development
    and Infrastructure;
  3. Middlesbrough Council’s Head of Culture;
  4. Middlesbrough Council’s Events Officer;
  5. Middlesbrough Council’s Development Control Manager;
  6. Central Library’s management team;
  7. Head of Culture at Tees Valley Combined Authority (TVCA);
  8. Ashall Projects Ltd;
  9. mima;
  10. Holiday Inn Express;
  11. Law Courts;
  12. Central Library Architects (Ryders);
  13. Teesside University;
  14. North East Chamber of Commerce;
  15. The Smeltery;
  16. Cleveland Shopping Centre;
  17. Centre Square office letting agents; and,
  18. Civic Engineers.

Further consultation on individual schemes, driven by the masterplan, could have been required, as and when they were taken forward.

Executive Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health

The Executive Member for Adult Social Care and Public Health and the Director of Public Health and Public Protection submitted a report that provided an update on the work carried out to assess the levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) in the town and the plan to develop a Middlesbrough Clean Air Strategy to achieve the cleanest air possible.


Whilst Middlesbrough NO2 levels had been found to be below the national standard, it was recognised that preventative measures were still necessary to ensure that Middlesbrough’s air quality was as good as it could have been.


A coordinated approach to minimising the harmful effect of air borne pollutants planned to ensure that standards did not deteriorate and that air quality impacts were considered in all Council’s policies, strategies and activities.


Other potential decisions and why those had not been recommended


There were no alternative decisions which could have been made in relation to the outcome of the NO2 work. The recommended decision had been confirmed by the Secretary of State for the Environment. A Clean Air Strategy aimed to protect the health and wellbeing of Middlesbrough’s residents from harmful levels of air pollution. A coordinated approach would have reduced the risk that air quality standards would have deteriorated to a level which could have exceeded national standards. If that occurred, Middlesbrough Council would have been required to declare an Air Quality Management Area and produce an Air Quality Action Plan to ensure that compliance would have been met at a future date.



  1. That the findings of the local air quality modelling, which showed that the NO2 levels in Middlesbrough were not exceeding the national standards, be noted.
  2. That the development of a Clean Air Strategy for Middlesbrough, to ensure that the best air quality possible was achieved for the town, be noted.


The Minister had confirmed that the work carried out in Middlesbrough demonstrated that the NO2 levels were compliant and that Executive noted the outcome of that work.


Air Quality was currently being examined by the Economic Development, Environment and Infrastructure Scrutiny Panel. A final report was to be presented at the scrutiny panel's next meeting.

Executive Member for Culture and Communities

The Executive Member for Culture and Communities and the Executive Director for Growth and Place submitted a report that sought approval to roll out Selective Landlord Licensing within a proposed area of Newport Ward.


The Housing Act 2004 provided the Council with powers to introduce Selective Landlord Licensing for privately rented properties, in areas experiencing low housing demand and/or significant persistent antisocial behaviour. The purpose of such schemes was to improve standards of property management in the private rented sector. Councils had the option to introduce Selective Landlord Licensing if it was believed that the scheme, along with other measures, would have led to improved social and economic conditions in the area.


Following on from the success of the North Ormesby scheme that was introduced in 2016, at a meeting on 1 October 2018, the Executive Member for Culture and Communities approved the commencement of appropriate consultation that related to the rollout of a Selective Landlord Licensing scheme to part of the Newport Ward.


Newport was experiencing major challenges associated with social and economic decline, that included:

  • high levels of crime and antisocial behaviour;
  • high levels of private rented properties and poor living conditions;
  • high levels of empty properties; and
  • a transient population.

Consultation on the scheme proposal was carried out over an 11 week period between 12 November 2018 and 28 January 2019. Respondents to the consultation overwhelmingly (80%) agreed that the introduction of Selective Landlord Licensing planned to help tackle some of the issues in the proposed zone. In respect of consultation responses, generally, residents and interested parties were in favour of introducing the scheme and landlords were generally opposed to it. A small consortium of (3) landlords had asked the Council not to implement the scheme in the Newport Ward and had urged the Council to use alternative
powers instead. Two of the landlords from that consortium (Jomast Accommodation Ltd. and Python Properties) had provided written responses to the consultation setting out their objections (see Appendix B of the submitted report). 


A representative from Python Properties was in attendance and spoke in objection to the scheme. The representative requested that an alternative to Selective Landlord Licensing be developed by formalising a Public/Private Sector Partnership. In response, the Executive Member for Communities and Culture advised that although approval was sought for the introduction of Selective Landlord Licensing in the proposed area of Newport Ward, it was highly important to involve Python Properties and other landlords in the introduction of the scheme.


A full consultation report was attached at Appendix D of the submitted report.



Other potential decisions and why those had not been recommended

Accreditation Scheme: Accreditation was a mechanism that helped landlords or agents meet agreed standards of competence, skills and knowledge about the business of owning, managing or letting a private rented home.


Due to its voluntary nature many good Landlords joined accreditation schemes voluntarily, however, those schemes were less effective at engaging some of landlords that could have poorer properties that were causing many of the issues. Based on previous experience, it was not considered that an accreditation scheme would have been effective in addressing the issues in Newport. In addition to that, the council would not have been in a position to invest the necessary resources to implement an accreditation scheme.


Enforcement of Housing Standards: The Housing Act 2004 introduced the Housing Health and Safety Rating Scheme (HHSRS), which allowed local authorities to inspect privately rented properties to ensure the condition of that property did not have an adverse effect on the health, safety or welfare of tenants or visitors to that property.


Where necessary the Council would have served statutory enforcement notices to ensure the condition was improved. Whilst that approach did improve property conditions it did not have a concentrated impact in one area. In addition that power did not tackle property management standards. Through the selective licensing designation and associated training advice and support, landlords would have recognised what improvements needed to be made to their properties, reducing the need for action under the HHSRS.


Management Orders: Part 4 of the Housing Act 2004 introduced the use of
Management Orders. The general effect of a Management Order was that the Council took control of the property, although legal ownership did not transfer from the landlord. There were two forms of Management Order, interim and final. Interim lasted for a period of 12 months which could have then been followed by a final Management Order which lasted for a maximum of 5 years.


Once a Management Order was in place the Council took over the management of the property. The occupiers paid their rent to the Council and any repair costs, such as routine repairs or building insurance, were taken from the rent before any surplus was given to the owner (landlord). That power only dealt with individual properties and was resource intensive.


That approach did not present a long term solution to address poor management of privately rented stock as the property was returned to the original owner who would not have necessarily improved their management standards in the interim.


Private Sector Leasing scheme: A Private Sector Leasing Scheme was where the Council took out a lease, normally 3 to 5 years in duration, from a private owner or landlord on their property. The Council then used the property to provide affordable accommodation for homeless families.


There was no guarantee that landlords, especially the worst, would have joined the scheme and the Council could not have compelled them to do so. As with Management Orders the scheme did not address poor management practices as the landlord did not gain experience, advice or training during the lease meaning that once handed back, management standards would have once again been unsatisfactory.


In summary, the alternative options to selective licensing would have required some, if not all, of the investment from the Council and Council Tax Payer.


Selective licensing would have been funded through the cost of licenses paid for by those landlords included in the scheme.


There was no single solution and each alternative would have its limitations. No single intervention, including selective licensing, could have solved the problem and therefore a coordinated strategy was required, which linked a full range of agencies and services using various interventions.



That the results of the consultation be noted and the roll out of Selective Landlord Licensing within the proposed area of Newport Ward be approved.



Implementing the next phase (Newport 1 area) would have allowed the Council to progress with the original implementation plan as set out in the Executive Report that was approved on 9th December 2014.


The introduction of selective licensing was considered to have the potential to make a major contribution to address social and economic issues as part of the Newport Neighbourhood Action Plan.

Executive Member for Finance and Governance

The Executive Member for Finance and Governance and the Strategic Director of Finance, Governance and Support submitted a report to set out the Pay Policy Statement for 2019/20.


To comply with the Localism Act 2011 the Council was required to approve a Pay Policy Statement, which set out details of the Council’s policies on the following:

  • the level of remuneration of Chief Officers
  • the level of remuneration paid upon recruitment
  • the payment of increments
  • the enhanced / additional pension contributions
  • the payment of bonuses, performance related pay and severance pay for Chief Officers
  • the awarding additional fees for election work
  • the creation of new posts with a salary package over £100,000 per annum
  • the employment of individuals already in receipt of a local government pension
  • the employment of ex-employees as Chief Officers under a contract for Services

The Pay Policy Statement also set out:

  • the Council’s approach to the pay of its lowest paid employees
  • the relationship between Chief Officer pay and the Council’s remaining employees as set out within the context of the pay multiple calculation
  • how the Pay Policy Statement would have been publicised

A copy of the full Pay Policy Statement for 2019/20 was included at Appendix 1 of the submitted report.




Other potential decisions and why those had not been recommended


The only other option available would have been to not approve a Pay Policy Statement. That was not recommended because it would have resulted in failure to comply with the Localism Act 2011.




That the Pay Policy Statement be endorsed and submitted to full Council for approval.




The Pay Policy Statement was being recommended to ensure that the Council complied with statutory requirements in relation to publication of information required by the Localism Act 2011.


The Executive Member for Finance and Governance and the Strategic Director of Finance, Governance and Support submitted a report that detailed the progress against the 2018-22 Strategic Plan, and the Council’s projected year-end financial position, at Quarter Three 2018/19.


A document detailing the progress against the Council's Strategic Plan 2018-2022 and the projected financial position at Quarter 3 2018/19 was appended to the submitted report. There had been positive performance in many areas, notably:

  • 26 of the 30 priorities within the 2018-2022 Strategic Plan were on target to be achieved, with 17 of 28 measures of success showing improvement at Quarter Three; and
  • all KPIs within the Middlesbrough Investment Prospectus remained on target to be achieved, and the Council had made continued good progress in delivering its capital investment strategy in support of physical regeneration in the town.

Key performance issues identified in the report were broadly unchanged from Quarter Two, and aimed to improve local life expectancy and address increased recorded crime in the town (both of which were national issues that affected many councils) and more locally, the need to link local job seekers to opportunities that arose from the Investment Prospectus, and the transformation of children’s social care.


In spring 2019, the Council would have launched a Social regeneration Prospectus that would have set out plans to address the issues set out above and other social issues evident across the town in a systematic and integrated way in the coming years.


The Council continued to project an overspend, which in percentage terms was minor on its revenue budget, due principally to continued pressures in Children’s Care (further information was detailed at paragraph 18 of the submitted report), in line with what was now a national trend. Strong action would have continued to be taken throughout the remainder of the year to mitigate the spending pressures.




Other potential decisions and why those had not been recommended


Not applicable.



  1. That the Council’s Quarter Three 2018/19 Results report (Appendix 1 of the submitted report), and the actions to be taken to address the issues set out within it, be noted
  2. That the proposed revised Investment Strategy to 2021/22 (Appendix 2 of the submitted report) be approved.
  3. That the utilisation of the remaining £82,000 of the Social Care Demand Risk Reserve and the remaining £15,000 of the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) Reserve, to mitigate increased demand in Adult Social Care in 2018/19, be approved.
  4. That the Section 31 Business Rates Relief Grant received by the Council in 2018/19 was £736,000 more than anticipated, and the proposed use of the one-off income to mitigate the Council’s overall projected overspend in 2018/19, be noted.



To enable the effective management of finances, performance and risk in line with the Council’s Local Code of Corporate Governance, the Scheme of Delegation and agreed corporate financial regulations.

Overview and Scrutiny Board

There were no items for consideration.


There were no items for consideration.


The Monitoring Officer advised that the exclusion clauses specified by the report (paragraphs 1 and 2 of Schedule 12a of The Local Government Act 1972) may not have been the most appropriate, as the identity of individuals was not revealed in the report’s content. The Monitoring Officer determined that it would have been more prudent to apply an exemption in respect of paragraph 4 - information relating to any consultations or negotiations. However, it was advised that the committee could have resolved to revise the exemption. Furthermore, a decision as to whether to exclude the public, weighing the public interest, was also required by the committee. The exclusion was amended and Members decided that public interest outweighed the commercial sensitivity of the report, therefore, there was not a requirement to pass a Resolution Pursuant to Section 100A (4) Part 1 of the Local Government Act 1972.



  • That the exclusion clause be amended to site Paragraph 4 of Schedule 12a of The Local Government Act 1972.
  • That, as public interest outweighed the commercial sensitivity of the report, it was not required to pass a Resolution Pursuant to Section 100A (4) Part 1 of the Local Government Act 1972.
Lead Executive Member for Children's Services

The Lead Executive Member for Children's Services and the Executive Director of Children’s Services provided an update on the development of the South Tees Multi-Agency Children’s Hub.


Middlesbrough Council and Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council were working together in partnership with Cleveland Police and South Tees Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) to implement a South Tees MACH.


The main aim / purpose of the South Tees MACH was:

  • to bring partners together for Early Help and Safeguarding;
  • to ensure the right agency was dealing with the referral;
  • to ensure that resources were effectively deployed; and
  • to ensure appropriate decision-making regarding Safeguarding interventions.

The overall benefits of developing the South Tees MACH were as follows:

  • Children and families received the right services at the right time;
  • Decision making in the context of an holistic picture of the child’s world;
  • Single point of contact for advice, guidance, support and access to
  • Opportunities to proactively support families and avoid the unnecessary
    escalation of need; and,
  • Robust integrated pathways into services.

The overall benefits for the organisations involved were as follows:

  • Coordinated use of intelligence to inform timely and proportionate decision-making;
  • More efficient use of multi-agency resources;
  • Development and sharing of expertise;
  • Streamlining processes;
  • Using intelligence to identify vulnerable children and families;
  • Opportunity for a multi-agency response;
  • Facilitating early intervention; and
  • To inform local need and commissioning priorities.

The aim was to go live with the South Tees MACH in summer 2019, with Redcar and Cleveland Council assuming responsibility for its operation.


Other potential decisions and why those had not been recommended

Whilst other options had been considered, for example, joint location and secondment - those had not been taken further given the fact that as statutory responsibility was transferring, staff would have transferred also.



That the creation of the South Tees MACH be approved and Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council act as the lead authority for the South Tees MACH.


Children and families who needed help and protection would have benefitted by implementing the report’s recommendations. The lives of vulnerable children would have been improved by the delivery of robust and integrated safeguarding services.

Guidance from LGA would have recommended that where responsibility / accountability for statutory delivery was transferred to another local authority then it followed that the staff should have transferred too.

The decision(s) will come into force after five working days following the day the decision(s) was published unless the decision becomes subject to the call in procedures.
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