Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Bromley Civic Centre

Contact: Steve Wood  020 8313 4316

Items
No. Item

STANDARD ITEMS

42.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND NOTIFICATION OF SUBSTITUTE MEMBERS

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Cllr Kathy Bance and Cllr Ryan Thompson attended as alternate.

 

Apologies were received from Cllr David Cartwright and Councillor Keith Onslow attended as substitute.

 

Apologies were received from Alf Kennedy.

 

Post meeting apologies were received from Jacob Eyers.

43.

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

 

44.

MINUTES OF THE PUBLIC PROTECTION AND ENFORCEMENT PDS COMMITTEE HELD ON 10th NOVEMBER 2021 pdf icon PDF 273 KB

Minutes:

The Committee considered the minutes of the meeting of Public Protection and Enforcement PDS Committee held on 10th November 2021.

 

RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting held on 10th November 2021 be agreed and signed as a correct record.

 

45.

QUESTIONS FROM THE PUBLIC AND FROM COUNCILLORS

In accordance with the Council’s Constitution, questions from the public that are not specific to reports on the agenda must have been received in writing by 5pm, 10 working days before the date of the meeting. For this meeting, questions not specific to the agenda should have been received by 5pm on 18th January 2022

 

Questions specifically regarding reports on the agenda should be received within two working days of the normal publication date of the agenda. The deadline is given on each agendaFor this meeting, any questions relating to reports on the agenda should be received by Democratic Services by 5pm on Wednesday 26th January.

 

The Council is now taking both oral and written questions.

 

When submitting questions, each question should be limited to approximately 50 words, and please specify if you would like to attend the meeting and receive an oral response, or if you would like to receive a written response post meeting.

 

Minutes:

One written question from the public was received. The response had been disseminated to Members and to the questioner.

46.

PROTECT DUTY-BROMLEY

Minutes:

Fiona Baker (Met Counter Terrorism Security Advisor) attended and updated the Committee on the new Protect Duty for Bromley.

 

The Home Office had been consulting on how legislation could be used to enhance the protection of Publicly Accessible Locations (PALS) across the UK from terrorist attacks and to ensure widespread organisational preparedness. There had been 2700 responses to the consultation. At the moment what the Committee was being briefed on was ‘proposals’—a Bill was not yet being considered by Parliament. The aim of the briefing was therefore pre-emptive. The consultation had come about as a result of terrorist attacks in the UK and also as a result of the diligent work of Figen Murray.  Figen Murray was the mother of Martyn Hett, who at 29 years of age was tragically killed in the terrorist attack at the Manchester Arena in May 2017.She championed ‘Martyn’s Law’. 

 

The consultation looked at the following areas:

 

1.  Who (or where) should the legislation apply to?

2.  What should the requirements be?

3.  How should compliance work?

4.  How should the Government best support and work with

  partners?

 

In terms of who or where the legislation should apply to the following was noted:

 

1)  Public venue owners and operators with a capacity of

  100 persons or more.

 

2)  Large organisations with 250 staff or more who

  operate within PALS.

 

3)  Consideration of responsibilities at Public Spaces

 

A ‘Publicly Accessible Location’ (PALS) was defined as any place to which the public or any section of the public had access, on payment or otherwise, as of right or by virtue of express or implied permission. It was noted that these areas could be parks, high streets, hospitals, public transport, beaches, festivals and sporting locations. 

 

Those organisations and businesses affected by the proposed legislation would need to consider terrorist threats and methodologies and assess the potential impact of these to the general public and to their staff. They would also need to consider and take forward reasonably practicable and proportionate protective security and organisational preparedness measures.

 

In terms of compliance to the legislation, it was not clear at this stage if this would come via the Home Office or self-regulation. It was anticipated that financial sanctions would be imposed for repeated non-compliance.

 

The Government would provide support and guidance in various ways; one of these would be via an online platform called ‘Protect UK’ where amongst other things there would be help with undertaking risk assessments. There was also the option to get advice from private sector sources and also via Counter Terrorism Advisors like Ms Baker.

 

In January of 2022, the consultation process ended and Homeland Security would look at the results of the consultation as they prepared to draw up legislation to put forward to Parliament in a Bill. It was originally anticipated that this work would be completed by July 2022, but it would probably be delayed because of the effects of Covid. 

 

Ms Baker summarised the benefits of the Protect Duty as follows:

 

•  ...  view the full minutes text for item 46.

47.

MATTERS OUTSTANDING pdf icon PDF 124 KB

A report is received at every meeting that details any matters that may be outstanding.     

Minutes:

CSD 22008

 

The Portfolio Holder informed the Committee that there had been no response yet from London Councils with respect to the queries that the Council had made regarding police enforcement of speeding traffic violations. It had been clarified that in actuality this matter lay under the remit of the ECS Portfolio. The Portfolio Holder would update the Committee further when a response was received and the response would be shared across the PP&E and ECS Portfolios.

 

Members heard that a new Assistant Director for Public Protection and Enforcement had now been appointed and it was hoped that she would take up her position within the next three months.

 

RESOLVED that the Matters Arising report be noted.

48.

POLICE UPDATE pdf icon PDF 21 KB

An update from the police is provided at every meeting.

Minutes:

The police were not required to attend on this occasion but had submitted a data report. The Chairman stated that he was glad to see that overall the figures were coming down but there was some concern expressed with respect to the figures relating to Race/Hate Crime. Also disappointing was the fact that the figures regarding satisfaction with the police had dropped. This seemed to be a national trend currently.

 

A Member expressed the view that ASB had not in reality decreased by 33%. He said that at the next meeting he would like to ask the police why the number of ASB calls had decreased by 33%. Was it perhaps the case that the public were not bothering to report it?

 

A Member requested that the police be asked to explain how they were currently treating ‘non crime hate incidences’.

 

A Member noted that burglary offences had decreased by 45% (probably because more people were working from home). She said that if the police were present she would have like to have asked them what number of reported offences resulted in a criminal prosecution. The Chairman requested that the Portfolio Holder prepare the police for this question to be asked at the next meeting.

 

A Member suggested that the increase in the figures for Race Hate Crime could be because there was a greater confidence in reporting these offences.

 

RESOLVED that the police update be noted and that the Portfolio Holder notify the police of questions that Members would like to put to them at the next meeting.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HOLDING THE PORTFOLIO HOLDER TO ACCOUNT

49.

UPDATE FROM THE PORTFOLIO HOLDER

Minutes:

The Portfolio Holder for Public Protection and Enforcement updated the Committee as follows:

 

On November 21st 2021, the Portfolio Holder visited the Bethlem Royal Hospital where the relevant protocols were discussed. Also on November 21st, the Portfolio Holder joined a virtual Mayoral Tackling VAWG Strategy Workshop with London Councillors; this was hosted by the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, Sophie Linden.

 

On December 21st,  the Portfolio Holder had a meeting with Chief Superintendent Dave Stringer. Also on December 21st, the Portfolio Holder joined the virtual launch of the draft Police and Crime Plan Consultation meeting with the Deputy Mayor for Policing and Crime, Sophie Linden.

 

On January 21st 2022, the Portfolio Holder chaired the Bromley Mentoring Initiative Steering Group.

 

A Member queried if the Out of Hours Noise Service still existed and it was confirmed that it did exist and was operational.

 

RESOLVED that the update from the Portfolio Holder be noted.

50.

PPE PERFORMANCE OVERVIEW UPDATE pdf icon PDF 116 KB

Minutes:

Members expressed difficulty in reading the Performance Overview data sheet. They asked if this could be looked into, possibly using a larger font or spreading the data over two pages instead of one.

 

The Director briefed the Committee that all areas were performing efficiently and effectively, except for one area which was the area relating to food safety inspections. It was noted that some issues existed around recruiting staff and retaining staff.

 

RESOLVED that the Public Protection and Enforcement Performance Overview update be noted.

51.

FLY TIPPING ACTION PLAN UPDATE pdf icon PDF 2 MB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

ES20156

 

The report was being presented to outline the actions that were being planned to support the Council's Fly Tipping Action Plan.

 

It was noted that the Portfolio Plan for Public Protection and Enforcement included a commitment to keep Bromley's streets clean and green, to reduce fly tipping, littering and dog fouling. A target had been set to reduce the number of fly tippings within the borough to less than 3000 per annum. This included a commitment to commence enforcement action against 10% of incidents of fly tipping.

 

In the first 3/4 of 2021/22 Veolia had attended and removed 2157 fly tipping incidents--226 of these had been subject to enforcement activity. A new project had been initiated by Veolia under the umbrella of ‘Your Waste is Your Responsibility’. A campaign had been run by Veolia in Penge and a second  campaign was due to be run in Mottingham.

 

In November 2021, a target hardening scheme was put in place at Mottingham Recreation Ground at a cost of £85,000. During the first quarter of 22/23 it was the aim of the Department to launch a new Action Plan; this was anticipated to be a more robust Action Plan to deter fly tipping within the Borough. The Enforcement Team had recently been subject to restructuring, this meant the team’s flexibility had been increased, along with its robustness to deal with fly tipping--as the number of officers that were available to deal with fly tipping had been increased from 1 to 4.

 

The Chairman was pleased to note the reduction in the number of fly tipping incidents, especially in Penge. A key factor in the reduction in the number of flight tipping incidents was attributed to better education, engagement and general raising of awareness. The Portfolio Holder pointed out that the Street Enforcement Manager had been working closely with Veolia to help their operatives become more successful in finding relevant evidence in fly tipped rubbish which could indicate who had been responsible for the fly tipping incident.

 

A Member referenced page 23 of the report and noted that out of 226 enforcement referrals, 77 enforcement actions had been undertaken of various types and she asked what had happened with respect to the remaining 149? She also asked if the public took any notice of warning letters and formal notices.

 

The Street Enforcement Manager answered and said that the remaining 149 had not progressed beyond the investigation stage for various reasons which included the unwillingness of witnesses to come forward and an inability to track down the offenders. He had drafted new notices for the Enforcement Team to work with and he expected this situation to improve. He was looking at new ways to gather information and subsequently enforce. He felt that in the past Bromley had been too insular in its approach and felt that a more intelligence based approach was required and to this end he had made new contacts with other councils and with the Environment Agency. It was hoped that  ...  view the full minutes text for item 51.

52.

PUBLIC PROTECTION AND ENFORCEMENT PORTFOLIO DRAFT BUDGET 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 342 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

FSD22013

 

Members were asked to note the report and to provide comments to the Executive.

 

RESOLVED that the Draft Budget report be noted.

53.

PUBLIC PROTECTION AND ENFORCEMENT RISK REGISTER pdf icon PDF 318 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

ES20146

 

The Committee noted that although the ‘Out of Hours Noise Service’ was still running using volunteers, it was still considered a risk. Consideration was being given to firmer funding and formalising the service. It was suggested that this may be a matter that could be referred back to the Executive for consideration.

 

The second area of risk that was discussed was with respect to the Coroner’s Service, as the Coroner had requested a significant additional financial contribution from the Council. The Director of Environment and Public Protection explained that he had met with the Coroner's Consortium the previous week and disappointedly, there had been no movement concerning the issue of Bromley’s  contribution in respect of costs to the Consortium since the previous year. The Director was due to attend another meeting with the Chief Coroner the following week. The Coroner had requested a significant increase in the financial contribution from the Council which the Director was querying. This was because no evidence had been provided to support the request for additional funding. The Director held the view that additional funding with respect to the Coroner's Service could largely be met from various COVID grants and not from the councils that were part of the consortium.

 

At the time of writing there was no impact on the Council's Budget.

 

The Coroner was also seeking funding for a second Coroner’s Court and the Director was challenging the need for this, given that activity had remained static. Members expressed the view that as the Coroner had not as yet provided sufficient justification for the proposed increased costs, the Director should maintain his current position and not agree to additional contributions to the Coroner’s Service until evidence was provided to justify the request.

 

RESOLVED that the Public Protection and Enforcement Risk Register be noted.

 

54.

PUBLIC PROTECTION AND ENFORCEMENT CONTRACTS REGISTER pdf icon PDF 704 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

ES20141

 

RESOLVED that the Public Protection and Enforcement Contracts Register Report be noted and that an update on the Dogs and Pest Control contracts be brought to the March 2022 meeting.

 

55.

MINUTES OF THE PREVIOUS MEETING OF THE SAFER BROMLEY PARTNERSHIP BOARD

Minutes:

The Chairman pointed out that LBB had the third best ‘Violence Reduction Action Plan’ in London and this was something to be proud of.

 

RESOLVED that the minutes of the previous meeting of the Safer Bromley Partnership Board be noted.

56.

SBP PARTNER UPDATE--COMMUNITY SAFETY VERBAL UPDATE ON SUPPORTING THE ELDERLY AND VULNERABLE

Minutes:

It had previously been agreed that different partners from the Safer Bromley Partnership Board would provide updates to the scrutiny committee with respect to the specific priorities of the Safer Bromley Partnership Board. This would mean that going forward, various partners would provide updates and would be scrutinised, whereas before this was just confined to the police. The first of these updates was provided by the Head of Trading Standards and Commercial Regulation.

 

The specific scrutiny question to be addressed was:

 

Crime against the elderly and vulnerable is an area that is tackled under this priority. Can you let us know the action you take, and demonstrate the effectiveness of this, including any return on investment as benefitted by the broader society?

 

This question had been drafted on behalf of the Committee in its role under the Police and Justice Act to challenge and scrutinise the work of Trading Standards in its response to the aims and objectives set out in the Safer Bromley Partnership Strategy. It was the first in a series of questions relating to each of the priorities of the SBP, which would be presented at each of the PP&E PDS meetings going forward.

 

The Head of Trading Standards and Commercial Regulation updated the Committee as follows:

 

Response:

 

The Bromley Community Safety Partnership Strategy has FOUR priorities, one of which is Safer Neighbourhoods, which sets out ambitions to reduce crimes that are deemed by MOPAC, police and residents to be local priorities. This includes reducing crime against the elderly and vulnerable from financial abuse.

 

The Strategy states “This will be achieved by working with all stakeholders to protect older or otherwise vulnerable residents from scams and doorstep crime and targeted communications campaigns and enforcement”. By way of a reminder, the average age of a victim of these crimes is 74, and older people are more likely to be targeted, especially those living alone. We also know loneliness is linked with the deterioration of health and the effects of being defrauded in your own home can be life changing, often leading to a loss of confidence and becoming more susceptible to repeat crime. Becoming a victim of fraud can also lead to depression and withdrawal and this can give rise to additional costs on the health sector.

 

So what action do we take?

 

We work with our partners to raise awareness of scams and doorstep crime. This is important, as its believed that these crimes are grossly under reported.

We have been raising the profile of our work and these crimes for many years in an effort to increase reporting, allowing early intervention and disruption, but more importantly empowering our residents to recognise a scam and protect themselves.

 

We work with professional partners like Social Services and the police, and we attend community groups such as Residents’ Associations and Women’s Institutes. We also work closely with the National Trading Standards Scams Teams, adopting their ‘Friends Against Scams’ campaign as our own.

 

We are re-visiting our colleagues  ...  view the full minutes text for item 56.

57.

WORK PROGRAMME pdf icon PDF 355 KB

Minutes:

CSD 21116

 

The Chairman requested that for the March agenda, the SBP update from the police with respect to their plan for 2022/23 be added.

 

The update concerning the Mortuary Contract would come in due course. A Member requested that the Committee consider a visit to the Bethlem Royal Hospital in Beckenham.

 

RESOLVED that the Work Programme be noted.

 

Original Text: