Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

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No. Item




Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Bishop, Patrinos and Turton.


To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meetings held on 29th February 2024 and 7th March 2024 (attached). pdf icon PDF 434 KB

Additional documents:


RESOLVED, that the minutes of the special meeting held on held on 29th February 2024 and the minutes of the meeting held on 7th March 2024 (circulated previously) be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.


Items brought forward which in the opinion of the Chair should be considered by the meeting as a matter of urgency.


The Chair addressed the Committee regarding the response received from the North Devon MP regarding the long term funding for Street Marshalls, which had been circulated to all members of the Committee via email.


RESOLVED, that the response together with the content of the letter be noted.


Declarations of Interest.

Please telephone the Corporate and Community Services team to prepare a form for your signature before the meeting. Interests must be re-declared when the item is called. A declaration of interest under the Code of Conduct will be a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest, an Other Registrable Interest or a Non-Registrable Interest.  If the item directly relates to your interest you must declare the interest and leave the room for the item, save in the case of Other Registrable Interests or Non-Registrable Interests where you may first speak on the item as a member of the public if provision has been made for the public to speak.  If the matter does not directly relate to your interest but still affects it then you must consider whether you are affected to a greater extent than most people and whether a reasonable person would consider your judgement to be clouded, if you are then you must leave the room for the item (although you may speak as a member of the public if provision has been made for the public to speak) or, if you are not, then you can declare the interest but still take part).



There were no declarations of interest announced.


Actions and outcomes from the special meeting of the Committee held on 29th February 2024. pdf icon PDF 288 KB

The Committee to discuss the actions and outcomes from the special meeting held on 29th February 2024 and agreed in principal at the meeting held on 7th March 2024. Briefing paper (attached).


The Committee considered and discussed the actions and outcomes from the special meeting held on 29th February 2024 and agreed in principal at the meeting held on 7th March 2024, which were detailed on page 27 of the agenda.


In response to a statement made by a Member of the Committee that Members from Torridge District Council had not been invited to attend the special meeting on 29th February 2024. The Clerk and the Chair both confirmed that this was not the case and that an email had been sent to the Democratic Services team at Torridge District Council and that their Clerk advised that she would forward the invitation on to the members of the Committee.


During their discussions, the Committee raised the following:


·       Members of the Committee expressed their disappointment that there were no planning officers from North Devon Council in attendance at the briefing to members from South West Water (SWW) on 1st March 2024 at Caddsdown Business Support Centre, Bideford.

·       A suggestion was made by a member of the Committee with regards to the actions and approach that should be taken regarding the outcomes of the special meeting:


Ø  Focus on water catchment area management.

Ø  Look at offsetting processes to address problems further upstream.

Ø  Challenge why there was nothing in the Councils planning policies with regards to water runoff, which meant that the Council was unable to reinforce.

Ø  Request that the Service Manager for the Planning department listen to the recording of the special meeting held on 29th February 2024 together with the minutes and come up with some actions that the Committee could realistically address.

Ø  Explore the ecological side of the planning process and utilising nature to clean the water i.e. reed beds and willow trees.

Ø  Understand why soakaways were identified on planning applications but were not being installed as part of the build project.

Ø  Explore how much influence the planning officers had with regard to surface run off, soakaways and permeable surfacing.

Ø  Acknowledged the shortage of enforcement officers nationally.

Ø  Agreed that Planning/Building Control should work together more closely.


·       The SWW embargo on developers connecting to existing sewage networks meant that septic tanks were installed as part of planning applications for new builds. However, when the existing system was upgraded, those properties were linked to the existing system.

·       There were things that we could do as a Council to strengthen our local plan.

·       When allocating development land as part of the emerging local plan, planners will often look at an area and identify potential sites where developers might build and often conclude that the existing sewage system had capacity. However, in reality that was not always the case.

·       Lobby the government to change the planning process.

·       Acknowledged the requirement for changes to the sequential test for sewage and how it was applied, as currently the Councils was restricted by national policy.

·       Acknowledged that sewage management needed to be dealt with further up the chain  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.


Work programme 2024/25. pdf icon PDF 221 KB

To consider the work programme (attached).


The Committee considered the work programme 2024/25 (circulated previously).


The Clerk to the Committee advised that a provisional date of Thursday 23rd May 2024 had been agreed to hold a special meeting of the Committee to discuss agriculture. She added the date would be confirmed as soon as the final organisation had confirmed their panel member.


In response to a question regarding building control, Councillor P. Leaver advised that regulations were set by central government. However, he had been appointed to the Building Control Joint Committee and would mention the Committee’s concerns regarding the lack of communications from the Building Control service.




a)    That the work programme be noted; and


b)    That the item in relation to transport and infrastructure be added to the meeting in March 2025 as agreed at the meeting of the Committee on 7th March 2024.