To disclose the existence and nature of any Disclosable Pecuniary Interests, other Pecuniary Interests or Non-Pecuniary Interests relating to items of business on the agenda having regard to paragraphs 6 - 8 inclusive of the Code of Conduct for Members.
(Members are reminded that they are also required to disclose any such interests as soon as they become aware should the need arise throughout the meeting).
Local Government Finance Act 1992 – Section 106
Will any Members affected by Section 106 please note that any declarations to that effect should be made on the commencement of the meeting or immediately on arrival if this is later. Under Section 106 a Member who has not paid an amount due in respect of their Council Tax for at least two months after it became payable is precluded from voting on any matters affecting the level of Council Tax or the arrangements for administering the Council Tax. (The Member is, however, entitled to speak).
The Lead Legal Specialist and Monitoring Officer advised Members that the Joint Standards Committee at its last meeting had under Section 33 of the Localism Act considered a dispensation request from Councillor S P Nunn. Although the Committee had agreed that the dispensation should be granted to Councillor Nunn and all Members upon further investigation the Officer had ascertained that Section 33 could only apply to the Member who had made the request and not all Members. The Lead Legal Specialist and Monitoring Officer reported that Councillor Nunn had disclosed a pecuniary interest to him and the Joint Standards Committee had granted Councillor Nunn a dispensation to remain in this meeting, debate and vote on all items of the budget.
Councillor Nunn thanked the Officer for explaining this and declared a pecuniary interest in relation to Fees and Charges (Agenda Item 5c Discretionary Fees and Charges 2021-22) specifically in relation to Wharfage or the like for barges as his wife worked as a caterer for one of the barge companies and he had given history tours from the barges. He explained that this was why he had sought a dispensation.
Councillor C Mayes disclosed a non-pecuniary interest in Agenda Item 5c Discretionary Fees and Charges 2021-22 as she was secretary to the Maldon and Heritage Harbour Association.
Councillor R G Boyce raised a point of order referring the Local Government Act 2011 Section 33 and a challenge he had made of the Lead Legal Specialist and Monitoring Officer’s report to the Joint Standards Committee (JSC) meeting in relation to the dispensation. He believed a point of order he had raised at the JSC was correct and that this matter should not have been brought forward. In response the Chairman advised that the matter had been corrected by the Officer and clarified that the dispensation only applied to Councillor Nunn.
In response to another Point of Order raised by Councillor Boyce, the Chairman outlined the correction as advised by the Lead Legal Specialist and Monitoring Officer and that he was happy with the decision.
Councillor M F L Durham declared a non-pecuniary interest as a member of Essex County Council and a governor of the Essex Partnership University NHS Trust in a voluntary position.
Councillor K M H Lagan declared a non-pecuniary interest in Agenda Item 5c Discretionary Fees and Charges 2021-22 as he was a member of the Maldon Harbour Commissioners and had had discussions with barge owners and operators over the years.
Councillor N Skeens clarified that normally in budget meetings he would declare an interest in relation to West Quay Houseboats Association which held a lease with the Council. He advised that this was not connected to the Discretionary Fees and Charges report but should any matter relating this organisation arise in the future he had a pecuniary interest.
Councillor J Stilts declared a non-pecuniary interest in Agenda Item 5c Discretionary Fees and Charges 2021-22 as she sat on the Maldon Heritage Harbour Committee and Little Ship Club Committee.
Councillor Mrs P A Channer declared a non-pecuniary interest as a Member of Essex County Council who were named in a number of the reports for consideration at this meeting. She also declared a non-pecuniary interest in Agenda Item 5a Capital and Investment Strategies for 2021-22 as it referred to houseboats and the vessel Llys Helig. Being on the Crouch Harbour Authority she had previously removed herself from discussions relating to this vessel but believed she could remain for this item of business as matters regarding that vessel had moved on. Councillor Mrs Channer advised that she had never participated in discussions when Crouch Harbour Authority may have discussed the Llys Helig.
Councillor M S Heard declared a non-pecuniary interest in Agenda Item 5c Discretionary Fees and Charges 2021-22 as he was a trustee of the steam tug Brent moored at Maldon, although he had no financial involvement.
Councillor M R Edwards declared a non-pecuniary interest in Agenda Item 5c Discretionary Fees and Charges 2021-22 as a member of the Thames Barge Sailing Trust.
After a short statement Councillor C Morris left the meeting and advised that he would be expressing his views through a different means.