Venue: St. Philips Church Hall, Evington Road, Leicester, LE2 1QJ
Contact: Laura Burt, Ward Community Engagement Officer (tel: 0116 454 1876 email: Laura.Burt@leicester.gov.uk ) Aqil Sarang, Democratic Support Officer (tel: 0116 454 5591 e-mail: Aqil.Sarang@leicester.gov.uk )
INTRODUCTIONS AND DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
Councillors will elect a Chair for the meeting.
The Chair will introduce those present and Councillors will make any declarations of interest as required by the Councillors Code of Conduct.
Councillor Thalukdar was appointed as chair for the meeting
A welcome was given to the City Mayor.
APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
There were no apologies for absence.
The Action Log of the previous Stoneygate Community Meeting, held on 12 March 2018 is attached, and Members will be asked to confirm them as a correct record.
Amendments were requested to be made to the previous Action Log and were noted.
“Works were due to be completed summer time” to be amended to read ‘Works were due to start summer time.’
WARD COUNCILLORS FEEDBACK
Ward Councillors will provide an update on local ward issues.
· Concerns were raised with the number of Houses in Multiple Occupancies (HMO’s) trending in the South Highfields area.
· Residents were informed that houses with more than six occupants needed to be registered and logged.
· Houses with less than six occupants did not require planning permission or to be registered with local authorities.
· A Ward Profile which was circulated, containing information and data collated from different sectors such as population, housing, Census information, crime and different services available on the ward.
· Councillor Chaplin thanked everyone for the well wishes she had received.
· There were six different homelessness groups around the city of which three were based on the ward.
· Residents were made aware of two types of HMO’s; one being hostels which tried to try and get service users back on their feet and the other being in the private rental market.
· Obtaining information on HMO’s was difficult, although the electoral register is up to date the information changed regularly and information on room capacity was unknown.
· Landlords turning homes into HMO’s was an issue that has been raised at planning.
· At a meeting with the City Mayor and Andy Keeling the issue about regulations around housing and the duty of care held by the council and maintaining communities with the national demand on social housing had been raised.
· Residents shared their concerns of family homes being converted into HMO’s and families having to share studios and incidents of a resident “sofa surfing.”
· Residents also shared their concerns with enforcement as some properties had more people then beds and were housing people who need help but were not receiving it.
· Councillors had been asking for the regulation of landlords turning large houses into HMOs, and the issue had been raised with the Planning and Development Control Committee. It would also form part of the Local Plan consultation, the second phase of which was due to commence.
· Other issues raised included private landlords not accepting those on social welfare and planning applications being approved.
· Councillors assured residents that regulatory standards were met before planning applications are approved.
· An update would be brought back to the next meeting.
· Prebend Park had been consulted upon and proposals were still being worked on. Feedback would be given to residents and if required a public meeting would be planned.
· Works on St Stephens Road on resurfacing, additional parking spaces, improved shop fronts and addition of new bollards.
· Safer routes had been added to schools with new signs and road markings.
· A five-minute waiting period for parking prior to enforcement and ticketing had been removed. Additional Parking Enforcement Officers were in post.
· Additional parking enforcement patrols for Evington Road have been requested for the evening period when the food outlets were busy.
Residents from around the Cedar Park area shared their concerns over safety.
· Recent incidents and on-going issues with knife crime and other issues had left residents feeling vulnerable.
· Due to safety concerns residents were not willing to park their cars many ... view the full minutes text for item 4.
Information on Air Pollution within the ward will be provided.
Matthew Mace from the Transport Strategy Team gave an update on air pollution in the city, all to note:
· Leicester meets all current EU air quality objectives, except for annual Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) levels – (40ug/m3).
· Primary source of NO2 identified as fossil fuelled vehicles.
· Government have identified only three areas of concern in the city,
o Glenhills Way / Soar Valley Way
o St Matthews Way
o Vaughan Way
o Leicester was generally very good, and the government had decided not to issue a mandate.
· Melton Road was compliant with the EU targets for the first time.
· Use of computer model using meteorological and traffic congestion information to estimate concentrations showed the average NO2 levels on Evington Road being in the low to mid 20’s ug/m3, well below the EU limit of 40ug/m3.
· Leicester City Council had implemented an Idling Policy for areas such as schools and would be investigating its viability for implementation in other areas too.
· The aim is to shift from driving to using alternatives such as walking and using public transportation.
· Bus companies are moving towards Euro 6 Standard engines.
· 40% of bus fleet is currently Euro 6 Standard engines.
· Bus companies have secured retrofitting technology funding for 109 buses. This time next year these should all be fitted making the buses Euro 6 compliant by 2020.
· Residents referred to standing taxis which were idling. It was noted to be an enforcement matter. The City Mayor was keen to have a taxi clean air zone and the council had bought an Ultra Low Emissions Vehicle (ULEV) to be used as Dial-a-Ride.
· Schools had been encouraged to ask parents around schools to turn engines off.
· Officers were working with public health on their strategy to discuss the issue with cardiac units. There were many studies and interactions building evidence as to the effects of traffic.
· Residents referred to cyclists disregarding notices, and were informed the council was looking to use control through companies such as fast food deliverers to use the road. With other cyclists, additional signage, changing pavement colours would be used to show pedestrians and cyclists where they should walk/ride.
STONEYGATE WARD PROFILE
There will be a discussion on the Stoneygate Ward Profile.
The Community Ward Profile was circulated at the meeting. It was collated using data from the last census report and other more up to date data.
The City Warden will be present to provide an environmental update.
City Warden Darren Evans gave an update on the work he had been involved in on the ward. All to note:
· Ongoing Problem with fly tipping showing an increase but are being tackled with Community Protection Notices and Fixed Penalty notices were having positive effect.
· Investigations have led to fixed penalties being issued.
· Stage one was complete with businesses on Evington Road being visited and issued with a Section 34 Duty of Care, to check if their waste was being deposited correctly.
· Stage two was planned with businesses to maintain the fronts of their businesses and containing their waste at all times.
· Future projects looking at bins on streets, major fly tipping hotspots and community clean up days.
Councillor Master informed residents and gave his approval on City Warden Darren Evans for the excellent work he has done in bringing down fly tipping on the ward. Residents were reminded of the Love Leicester app that was identified as being the easiest most efficient way of getting simple problems solved.
Councillor Chaplin added that the app would require an update for complex tasks and recommended this be passed to the Digital Team.
Action: Ward Community Engagement Officer.
LOCAL POLICE UPDATE
An update will be provided on local Policing matters within the Ward.
Sergeant Merrall introduced himself as he was newly appointed to his role. All to note:
· As the new Sergeant he was looking to find long term solutions to resolve issues on the ward.
· There were 3 police officers and 5 PCSO’s assigned to the ward.
· Main issues being around street drinking, drug taking and all the implications attached to these.
· Prebend Gardens was a hot spot for street drinkers and drug takers but compared to June through till August last year the numbers of offences had dropped by half.
· Police officers have assured residents that the Cedar Park incident was a rare incident and confirmed the suspect has been charged and was awaiting trial.
· Police were aware of who was causing the problems on the ward and informed residents there was no reason to panic.
· Police would be working alongside Ward Councillors and City Wardens to gather intelligence for those committing crime, manage punishments and develop long-term solutions to the issues.
Inspector P. Allen updated residents, all to note:
· Although police numbers had seen decline, Inspector Allen assured the residents that there has been investment in Neighbourhood Policing and in Neighbourhood Teams, and there would be a more visible focus of PCSO’s in the ward.
· Authorisation levels for issuing a Section 60 (Stop and Search) were very high and had to go through the Chief Constable. If intel was received there was likely to be an outbreak of disorder, for example, at the carnival event, it was considered to be appropriate to have a Section 60, which was then implemented following a stabbing.
· The impact felt by communities was severe. For knife crime, there was a dedicated officer. Operation Viceroy saw drugs seized and knives recovered.
· Education and talking to young people was key around the dangers of knife crime.
· The PCCs office had written to the Home Office for more intervention funds to work with community groups and voluntary sector to support the police.
· A resident asked that appeal for information notices be removed when then were no longer required, which was noted.
· With the fear of crime in the area, it was suggested that female officers meet with women in the ward to discuss what was bothering residents. Councillor Chaplin agreed to assist with the arrangements. A resident also suggested that the police and Councillor Chaplin attend the liaison group meeting at the University, as there were a lot of female students in attendance at the meeting.
WARD COUNCILLORS FEEDBACK
Councillors are reminded that they will need to declare any interest they may have in budget applications, and/or indicate that Section 106 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 applies to them.
An update on the Ward Community budget will be given.
· 11 applications had been approved and funded with 3 still to be approved.
· Remaining balance of budget was £13,093.05
Action: Ward Community Engagement Officer to get the cost of additional bins and installation cost. To be added to the requested amount of funding for Onslow Park.
ANY OTHER BUSINESS
Dashwood Road Street party to be held on 29 September 2018 from 2PM-5PM. The application to close at Evington Road end had been approved in principal.
CLOSE OF MEETING
The meeting closed at 8:27PM