Decision Maker: Strategy and Resources Committee
Decision status: For Determination
Is Key decision?: No
Is subject to call in?: No
The Committee considered the report of the Director of Resources seeking Members’ consideration of the fees and charges for 2021 / 22 that generated greater than £2,000. For those fees and charges that generated less than £2,000 delegation to the Director of Resources for their review and setting was sought.
The report advised that the proposed fees and charges for 2021 / 22 (set out in Appendix A to the report) had been based on policy decisions recently updated and agreed by this Committee at its last meeting. A number of new charges were being introduced in place of old ones and a summary of the changes was set out in Appendix B.
The Finance Working Group were proposing changes to the Wharfage fees and section 4 of the report set out the three options put forward for consideration by the Committee. The Chairman referred to the Working Group being newly created, the work it had undertaken and thanked both Members and Officers for their hard work and contributions.
The Chairman put the recommendations as set out in the report and this was duly seconded.
During the debate that ensued support was given by some Members to the proposed 50% reduction for barge owners in respect of Wharfage costs with particular reference being made to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, tourism and the importance of maintaining the barges within the District. Some concern was raised regarding setting a precedent and not applying a similar discount to other businesses on the prom, such as kiosks.
In response to a question regarding previous discounts applied to Wharfage fees, the Commercial Manager reported that in December 2019 the Council had agreed to apply a 50% discount to end March 2020 and from April 2020 a new baseline figure was applied which in real terms related to a 40% discount. The Director of Service Delivery, in response to a further question, highlighted that if barge operators met certain criteria there was a grant available in respect of the COVID-19 pandemic.
For the recommendation:
Councillors M R Edwards, K M H Lagan, R H Siddall, W Stamp, Mrs J Stilts and C Swain.
Against the recommendation:
Councillors Mrs P A channer, M F L Durham and M W Helm.
(i) That subject to recommendation (ii) the detailed Fees and Charges for 2021 / 22 as set out in Appendix A to the report be agreed;
(ii) That wharfage fees be reduced by 50% in 2021 / 22 to £1,787.50 for annual fees and £164 for monthly fees, excluding VAT.
Councillor Miss S White joined the meeting during this item of business.
Publication date: 11/02/2021
Date of decision: 28/01/2021
Decided at meeting: 28/01/2021 - Strategy and Resources Committee