Your Councillors

Draft Low Emission Strategy Consultation Response

STRATEGIC PLANNING & SUSTAINABLE TRANSPORT COMMITTEE

8th March 2016

Is the final decision on the recommendations in this report to be made at this meeting?

No

                                                                                                                             

Draft Low Emission Strategy Consultation Response

 

Final Decision-Maker

Communities, Housing & Environment Committee

Lead Director or Head of Service

John Littlemore Head of Housing & Community Services

Lead Officer and Report Author

Dr Stuart Maxwell

Classification

Non-exempt

Wards affected

All

 

 

This report makes the following recommendations to the final decision-maker:

 

That the Committee notes the report and the decision of the Communities, Housing & Environment Committee.

 

 

 

This report relates to the following corporate priorities:

·         Keeping Maidstone an attractive place for all – the Low Emission Strategy contributes towards providing a clean and safe environment that in turn will promote good health and well-being.

 

 

Timetable

Meeting

Date

Strategic Planning and Sustainable Transport Committee

8 March 2016



Low Emission Strategy

 

 

1.         PURPOSE OF REPORT AND EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

 

1.1      Maidstone Borough Council is developing a Low Emission Strategy.  The themes of the Low Emission Strategy were agreed by the Communities, Housing and Environment Committee in June 2015 and went out to public consultation during November and December of 2015. The consultation results were presented to the Communities, Housing and Environment Committee in February 2016, and the Committee made a number of recommendations, given in Section 5

 

1.2      The purpose of this report is to update members with regard to the responses received from the consultation and how they have been used to develop the Framework for the Low Emission Strategy, and the recommendations of the Communities, Housing and Environment Committee

 

 

 

2.         INTRODUCTION AND BACKGROUND

 

 

2.1      The Council is developing a Low Emission Strategy in response to high levels of air pollution in specific parts of the Town Centre and other areas of identified concern. The Low Emission Strategy is designed to complement the existing Air Quality Action Plan, by addressing vehicle and other emissions.

 

2.2      Eight themes were previously approved by the committee for the Low Emission Strategy, namely:-

 

1)    Transport Emissions

2)    Public Health

3)    Carbon Management

4)    Planning and Development Control

5)    Procurement

6)    Non Transport Emissions

7)    Economic Development

8)    Air Quality Management Area

 

2.3      These themes were put forward for public consultation between 28th October and 24th December 2015. The consultation comprised three questions, which are given as Appendix A, along with the consultation responses and the responses of the Environmental Health Team.

 

2.4      It is proposed that the Strategy is delivered through a ‘live’ and evolving action plan. The Environmental Health Team will coordinate and meet with key internal and external agencies in order to develop the feasibility of individual actions that contribute to the specific themes.

 

2.5      Where the actions can be delivered from within existing resources and are not contentious the team will go ahead and deliver the action under the direction of the Head of Service. Actions that require new or additional resource, or are likely to prove contentious will be reported first to the Communities, Housing & Environment Committee for approval before implementation.

 

 

3.         AVAILABLE OPTIONS

 

3.1     The Strategic Planning and Sustainable Transport Committee notes the content of the framework for the Low Emissions Strategy and endorses the approach taken.

 

3.2     The Committee may decide to recommend changes to the framework within its remit for consideration by the CHE Committee.

 

 

4.         PREFERRED OPTION AND REASONS FOR RECOMMENDATIONS

 

4.1     As the Low Emission Strategy supports a range of key priorities for the Council, including keeping Maidstone Borough an attractive place for all and encouraging good health and well-being, it is recommended that the Council has a Low Emission Strategy. The preferred option is for the Committee to keep the list of previously approved themes unchanged and that the Low Emission Strategy is adopted in its current form.

 

4.2     The Environmental Health Department will then liaise with both internal and external partners in order to develop and evaluate specific actions to be carried out under each of the themes. Where simple, straightforward actions are identified; that can be funded from existing budgets, the Environmental Health Team will implement them without further reference to the Committee.

 

4.3     Where the actions identified have unbudgeted cost implications, or might be controversial, the Environmental Health Team will bring the action back to the Committee for approval.

 

4.4     In addition the Head of Housing & Community Services will provide an annual report to the Committee on progress with the Low Emission Strategy.

 

 

5.         CONSULTATION RESULTS AND PREVIOUS COMMITTEE FEEDBACK

 

5.1      The results of the consultation are given in Appendix A

 

5.2      The consultation response was very limited, with only three respondents taking part.  Two of the three respondents agreed with the aims of the Low Emission Strategy, and all three respondents agreed with the themes.

 

5.3      The comments received generally referred to a lack of detail, however, the   purpose of the exercise was only to agree the themes of this high level strategy with specific actions being evaluated and decided upon in due course.

 

5.4      This report was presented to the Communities, Housing and Environment Committee on 16th February 2016, where the following recommendations were approved

 

 

1)  That the framework for the Low Emission Strategy attached at Appendix B of the report of the Head of Housing and Community Services be adopted.

 

2)  That authority be delegated to the Head of Housing and Community Services to develop an action plan to deliver against the priorities in the framework for the Low Emission Strategy. The development work should be informed by the views of representatives from all stakeholder groups.

 

3)  That the resulting Low Emissions Strategy be reported back to the Committee once the actions have been prioritised and Council actions have been identified separately from other stakeholder actions. Actions that are resourced should be identified separately from actions that require resourcing.

 

4)   That an annual update on progress of the actions in the Low Emissions Strategy be provided to the Committee once agreed.

 

 

6.         NEXT STEPS: COMMUNICATION AND IMPLEMENTATION OF THE DECISION

 

6.1         The following timetable is proposed:

 

Action

Start

End

The CH&E Committee approves the Framework for the Low Emission Strategy

 

16/02/2016

Framework approved, implementation commences

 

17/02/2016

March 2021

Workshop comprising representatives of various committees plus relevant officers, to develop the specific actions of the strategy

June/July 2016

 

Liaison with internal and external partners on detailed actions in support of each theme assessment of benefits, risks, costs, and feasibility of actions.

17/02/2016

March 2021

An annual report submitted to CH&E Committee on actions taken to implement the Strategy

March 2017

March 2021

Actions incorporated in annual service plans and delivered/implemented

March 2017

March 2021

 

 

7.         CROSS-CUTTING ISSUES AND IMPLICATIONS

 

Issue

Implications

Sign-off

Impact on Corporate Priorities

Covered in the report

Head of Housing & Community Services

Risk Management

 

 

Financial

Actions that can be delivered within existing budgets will be delivered but actions that require growth will be brought to the Committee for consideration.

 

Staffing

 

Head of Housing & Community Services

Legal

 

Legal Team

Equality Impact Needs Assessment

None identified at this stage. Further consideration of equality impacts may need to be considered following the formulation of the action plan.

Clare Wood. Policy & Performance Officer

Environmental/Sustainable Development

 

Head of Housing & Community Services

Community Safety

None

Head of Housing & Community Services

Human Rights Act

None

Head of Housing & Community Services

Procurement

 

 

Asset Management

 

 

 

 

8.         REPORT APPENDICES

 

The following documents are to be published with this report and form part of the report:

·               Appendix A Low Emission Strategy; Consultation Questions and Responses

·               Appendix B Draft Low Emission Strategy

 

 

 

 

9.         BACKGROUND PAPERS

None identified.