Agenda and minutes
Community Scrutiny and Review
To receive apologies for absence.
Apologies were received from Councillor Roger Yeates.
To confirm the minutes of the meeting held on 14 October 2010 (attached).
The minutes of the meeting held on the 14 October 2010 were confirmed and signed as an accurate record.
The chairman to identify any items of urgent business.
There was no urgent business for this meeting.
Declarations of Interest
To receive any declarations of interest in any matter to be discussed at the meeting. Members and officers are requested to identify the nature of the interest and indicate whether it is personal or prejudicial.
There were no declarations of interest for this meeting.
To consider any questions from members of the public in accordance with the ‘Protocol for Public Questions at Scrutiny Meetings’.
There were no public questions for this meeting.
Six monthly Boar Review
Kevin Stannard, Deputy Surveyor and Operations Manager, from the Forestry Commission to update the meeting on the current position regarding the boar in the district.
The chairman introduced and thanked Kevin Stannard, Deputy Surveyor for attending the meeting and for updating the committee on the current situation regarding the boar and other forest issues.
Copies of a draft Feral Wild Boar Management plan – Forest of Dean were sent out to the committee with the agenda, copies were also available at the meeting.
Kevin Stannard advised that in the draft Feral Wild Boar Management Plan set out a range of issues on how the Forestry Commission plan to pertain feral wild boar on the public forest estates in the Dean Forest District.
He advised that an estimated number of boar moving through the Forest of Dean at the moment was approximately two hundred to two hundred and fifty, however the figures were reliant on estimates and stated that there was no realistic reliable means for establishing the size of the feral wild boar population in the district, as the boar move around regularly and wander freely, there is no proven pattern. Between April 2010 to 16th December 2010 eighty four animals had been culled with an expectation that the end cull would finish somewhere between one hundred and twenty and one hundred and fifty animals by the end of March 2011.
Councillor Jane Horne stated that she thought that breeding season for boar was in the spring.
Kevin Stannard replied that boar had their young all the year round.
Councillor Andrew Gardiner asked what the Forestry Commission did with the carcasses.
Kevin Stannard answered that the Forestry Commission culled the boar in the same way as the deer and the boar also go through the same processes to enter the human food chain.
Councillor Carole Allaway Martin enquired if there was any genetic material available regarding research that has been done regarding the boar in the district.
Kevin Stannard advised that research by FERA (Food and the Environment Research Agency) is still ongoing regarding fertility control, and movement patterns. Theresults and benefits of the fertility control work would not be concluded for several years.
Councillor Graham Morgan enquired if it was costly to the Forestry Commission to manage the boar in the district.
Kevin Stannard stated that the Forestry Commission employed three Wildife Rangers they deal with the boar issues the salaries allocation to this work was approximately £70,000 to £80,000 per year a further £17,000 cash was allocated to boar control, primarily for trapping.
Councillor Morgan further added that he commended the Forestry Commission for the work they do and thought they did an excellent job.
Councillor Andrew Gardiner enquired if the Forestry Commission got a reasonable return from selling boar to the food chain.
Kevin Stannard replied that there was no profit from boar, returns from carcass sales covered the cash costs of boar control, but not salary costs.
The Chairman commented that there had been several incidents where the boar had got in to sports grounds and damaged the pitches.
Kevin Stannard advised that if its private land, the land-owners were responsible, ... view the full minutes text for item 6.
Councillor Bruce Hogan to present the Local Economic Partnership draft terms of reference for the committee to consider.
Councillor Bruce Hogan explained that he did not know nothing about the Local Economic Partnership until two months ago, when he had read a Cabinet Digest. He said he had concerns that the Forest of Dean District Council was being left off the agenda and was unaware what this new body was about, therefore there was a need to investigate how it operated, he stated that Gloucester, Swindon and Wiltshire had set up their own partnership.
Councillor Hogan believed that this council needed to put something in place to pass on to the new elected council in May 2011 and had drafted some terms of reference and suggested that a task group be set up.
Peter Hibberd, Strategic Director advised that Gloucestershire First had halved in size the Local Economic Partnership emerged in the summer, he said the future of LEP was a virtual organisation which had no budget or building.
Councillor Marrilyn Smart proposed that a task group should be set up, Councillor Kirkpatrick seconded the proposal, it was agreed a meeting would be arranged, and that the group would report back to the Community and Scrutiny Review on 3 February 2011.
To set up a Local Economic Partnership Task Group
To arrange a date for the group to meet
Invite members who have shown an interest in joining the group
To report back to the Community and Scrutiny Review on 3 February 2011
Councillor Marion Winship to update the meeting on the responses she has received from members regarding Community Consultation.
Councillor Marion Winship said she had brought this issue to this meeting because she was aware that some parish councils were not satisfied with the community consultation process, and wondered if community consultation could be conducted in a different way opposed to questionnaires being sent out, she believed that questionnaires with a tick box format were not worth the paper they were written on unless the person could write their own views, she believed members needed to approach the community and listen to their concerns.
Councillor Carole Allaway Martin agreed with Councillor Winship regarding paper questionnaires and said she had conducted her own survey by speaking with one hundred people face to face she said it gave her more clarity and truthful feedback.
At the meeting an information report from Phil Jones, Principle Policy Officer was circulated to members detailing recent consultations.
Peter Hibberd, Strategic Director suggested that a stronger role for parishes by means of L.S.P and modern parish plans a process that could be shaped into the work plan.
Councillor Winship stated that the GRCC have funding problems that may put a halt to parish plans.
Councillor Brian Robinson commented that we should not undermine the views of the community, members should find out view of their ward members.
The chairman said as district councillors there is a lot we can take back to the parish councils, without adding costs to the district council.
Councillor Max Coborn stated that there is something which members could do which would not cost anything, this would be to knock on forty people’s doors and have a chat, that way you would get feedback good and bad.
Councillor Winship and Daziel liked Councillor Coborn’s idea, Councillor Hogan said that he hoped that it would not be up to the council who the members spoke to.
Peter Hibberd, Strategic Director, advised that he would bring back ideas to the next Community Scrutiny and Review meeting.
Thursday 3 February 2011
Thursday 7 April 2011
3 February 2011
7 April 2011