To consider the report of the Director of Resources, (copy enclosed).
The Committee considered the report of the Director of Resources seeking Members’ consideration of the fees and charges for 2022 / 23 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 2022 / 23 (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 summary of the changes proposed was set out in Appendix B.
It was noted following the last meeting of this Committee the fees and charged now included an increase to Promenade Park Coach Parking previously reported as ‘no increase’. Appendix C set out proposals in relation to Hythe Quay Parking on which agreement to undertaken further consultation was sought.
Councillor K M H Lagan provided the Committee with additional information regarding barge operators and charges on the Hythe Quay. He referred to the revenue that such businesses brought into the town through running heritage assets. Councillor Lagan proposed that recommendation (ii) be amended removing all text following “…Strategy and Resources Committee” and that the Council continued consultation with stakeholders.
Some debate ensued and in respond to comments Councillor Lagan amended his earlier proposition, proposing that recommendation (ii) be amended to read “…implementing proposed new Strategy of Fees and Charges from 1 October 2022”. This was duly agreed by assent.
Councillor A S Fluker referred to how the barge operators were businesses, and that the Council should not be seen to treat businesses differently. He proposed an amendment to recommendation (i) that the barge wharfage charges increase by the rate of inflation.
Following some discussion, Councillor Fluker amended his proposal to state from April 2023 the barge wharfage charges are increased by inflation every year. In response the Chairman advised Members that they should only be discussing increased fees for the next budget year and not those beyond. He then reminded the Committee of the original recommendation made by Councillor Fluker, to increase the barge wharfage charges by the rate of inflation for 2022 / 23 .
Councillor Lagan proposed that recommendation (i) as set out in the report be agreed without any amendment. This proposal was duly seconded.
It was confirmed at this point that Councillor Fluker’s proposal had been seconded.
In accordance with Procedure Rule No. 13 (3) Councillor K M H Lagan requested a recorded vote. This was duly seconded.
In response to a question the Director of Resources clarified that if agreed, a rate of inflation increase of 3.2% would be applied as this was consistent with any other inflation related increases to the proposed fees and charges.
At this point clarification was provided in relation to the process for dealing with the proposed amendment to recommendation (i). The Chairman then put the proposed amendment in the name of Councillor Fluker, to increase the barge wharfage charges for 2022 / 23 by the rate of inflation, to the Council and the voting was as follows:
For the recommendation:
Councillors M F L Durham, A S Fluker, Mrs M E Thompson and Miss S White.
Against the recommendation:
Councillors K M H Lagan, S P Nunn, N G F Shaughnessy, R H Siddall, W Stamp and E L Stephens.
Councillors Mrs P A Channer and C Swain.
The motion was declared lost.
Councillor Lagan proposed that recommendation (i) as set out in the report be agreed. This was duly agreed by assent.
(i) That subject to recommendation (ii) the detailed Fees and Charges for 2022 / 23 as set out in Appendix A to the report be agreed;
(ii) That the proposals around Hythe Quay Parking in Appendix C to the report be consulted on, and a separate report brought back to the Council via the Strategy and Resources Committee with a view to implementing proposed new Strategy of Fees and Charges from 1 October 2022.