Agenda

Full Council - Tuesday, 11th January, 2022 2.00 pm

Venue: The Council Chamber - City Hall, College Green, Bristol, BS1 5TR. View directions

Contact: Sam Wilcock 

Link: Watch the Webcast

Items
No. Item

1.

Welcome and Introductions pdf icon PDF 411 KB

2.

Apologies for Absence

3.

Declarations of Interest

To note any declarations of interest from the Councillors.  They are asked to indicate the relevant agenda item, the nature of the interest and in particular whether it is a disclosable pecuniary interest.

 

Any declarations of interest made at the meeting which is not on the register of interests should be notified to the Monitoring Officer for inclusion.

 

4.

Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 422 KB

To agree the minutes of the following previous meeting as a correct record:

12th October Extraordinary Full Council

9th November Extraordinary Full Council

9th November Full Council

7th December Extraordinary Full Council

7th December Full Council

 

Additional documents:

5.

Lord Mayor's Business

To note any announcements from the Lord Mayor

6.

Public Petitions, Statements and Questions pdf icon PDF 2 MB

Public forum items from members of the public who live or own a business in Bristol can be about any matter the Council is responsible for or which directly affects the city. Submissions will be treated in order of receipt and as many people shall be called upon as is possible within the time allowed within the meeting (normally 30 minutes).

Further rules can be found within our Council Procedure Rules within the Constitution.

Please note that the following deadlines apply to this meeting:

a. Public petitions and statements: Petitions and written statements must be received two working days prior to the meeting - by 12 noon on Friday 7th January 2021 at latest. One written statement per member of the public is permitted.

b. Public questions: Written public questions must be received three clear working days prior to the meeting - by 5pm on Wednesday 5th January 2022 at latest. A maximum of 2 questions per member of the public is permitted. Questions should be addressed to the Mayor or relevant Cabinet Member.

c. Members of the public who wish to present their public forum in person during the meeting are asked to inform Democratic Services of their intent to attend by midday on Friday 7th January 2022 to help plan for covid secure measures within the meeting room and Council building.

Public forum items should be e-mailed to democratic.services@bristol.gov.uk 

Please note that members of the press and public may be asked to watch the meeting on a screen in another room due to the maximum capacity of the venue.  Those who registered their intention to attend for public forum will be prioritised for the meeting room public gallery.

7.

Petitions Notified by Councillors

Please note: Up to 10 minutes is allowed for this item.

 

Petitions notified by Councillors can be about any matter the Council is responsible for or which directly affects the city.  The deadline for the notification of petitions to this meeting is 12 noon on Monday 10 January 2022.

 

8.

Petition Debate - Keep green urban spaces safe from sudden 'Brownfield' labelling. pdf icon PDF 436 KB

Recommendation: That Full Council debates the petition and refers it to the Mayor / relevant Cabinet member for a formal response

9.

Political Proportionality and Allocation of Committee Seats

Recommendation

 

Recommendation

 

To review and approve the allocation of seats on committees in accordance with the statutory requirements concerning political balance and to approve the allocation of Committee Seats as set out in the report

 

10.

Appointment of Chair of Audit Committee

Recommendation

 

That Councillor Andrew Brown be appointed as Chair of the Audit Committee.

11.

Council Tax Base 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 697 KB

Recommendation

 

Agree, in accordance with the Local Authorities (Calculation of Council Tax Base) (England) Regulations 2012, the amount calculated by Bristol City Council as its Council Tax base for the financial year 2022/23 shall be 127,917.

 

12.

Collection Fund Surplus/Deficit 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 787 KB

Recommendation

 

1.         That an estimated deficit as at 31 March 2022 on the Council Tax element of the Collection Fund, net of grants, of £9.763m be declared for 2021/22 and shared between this Council, the Police and Crime Commissioner for Avon and Somerset and the Avon Fire and Rescue Service in proportion to their 2020/21 precepts on the Collection Fund.

 

2.         That an estimated deficit as at 31 March 2022 on the Non-Domestic Rates (NDR) element of the Collection Fund, net of grants, of £4.236m be declared for 2021/22 and shared between this Council, Avon Fire and Rescue Service and the West of England Combined Authority (WECA) in proportion to the appropriate year demands (Bristol 94%, WECA 4%, Avon Fire and Rescue Service 1%).

 

13.

Appointment of External Auditor for 2023/24 and onwards pdf icon PDF 657 KB

Recommendation

 

Full Council approves the recommendation of the Audit Committee to accept Public Sector Audit Appointments’ (PSAA) invitation to ‘opt in’ to the sector led scheme to appoint an external auditor to audit Bristol City Council’s Financial Statement for financial years commencing 2023/24 onwards.

 

14.

Annual Report of Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman Decisions pdf icon PDF 639 KB

Recommendation:

 

That Full Council note the report.

Additional documents:

15.

Motions pdf icon PDF 524 KB

Note:

Under the Council’s constitution, 30 minutes are available for the consideration of motions. In practice, this realistically means that there is usually only time for one, or possibly two motions to be considered.

 

With the agreement of the Lord Mayor, motion 1 below will be considered at this meeting, and motion 2 is likely to be considered, subject to time.

 

Details of other motions submitted, (which, due to time constraints, are very unlikely to be considered at this meeting) are also set out for information at the end of the agenda pack.

 

MOTIONS RECEIVED FOR FULL COUNCIL

 

Golden Motion: Stamping out discrimination against renters.

 

This Council notes that: 

  

·         The private rented sector (PRS) in Bristol has grown to circa 30% * of homes in the city. 

·         Private renters face a host of challenges, including disrepair and lack of affordable rent.

·         Local Housing Allowance covers very few properties in the private rented sector due to soaring and out of control rents.

·         Tenants in receipt of housing benefit or universal credit may also face the prospect of ‘DSS (Department of Social Security) discrimination’, where landlords and estate agents refuse to rent properties to welfare recipients.  

‘No DSS’ policies have been found to be unlawful and discriminatory under the Equality Act.**

 

 

This Council observes that: 

  

·         It may be that landlords and letting agents overtly practice DSS discrimination, e.g. by listing properties as ‘no DSS’ on websites; 

·         More likely is that some landlords and letting agents indirectly discriminate against benefits claimants, e.g. by using affordability or referencing checks that automatically fail benefit recipients, or by systematically favouring non-benefit claimants when assessing tenancy applications.  

·         Despite alleviating measures such as the council tax reduction scheme, people are struggling financially. More people currently rely on benefits due to the pandemic, so the effects of any DSS discrimination is likely to be acutely felt.  

·         Bristol City Council has limited powers over the private rented sector, however, the Bristol City Council landlord licensing scheme may refuse to license landlords where there is sufficient evidence that they practice direct or indirect discrimination. This will include any ‘no DSS’ policies relating to prospective tenants. 

·         It may also include refusing to allow prospective tenants on Housing Benefit and Universal Credit to view affordable properties and requiring guarantors in cases where that prospective tenant’s income from their benefits is sufficient.   The evidence would have to show that renters on benefits have been treated differently to others not on benefits.

 

·         DSS discrimination is only one of many issues facing benefits claimants, and one of the primary issues is the current level of Universal Credit.

 

 

This council resolves:

 

·         To defend the right to decent and affordable housing; and will work to eliminate DSS discrimination from Bristol.

·         To strengthen our work further, include explicit anti-discrimination clauses in all future property licenses. In practice, this would mean that landlords are contractually required to not refuse to rent to people based on their age, sex, race, disability, if they have children, or their type of employment  ...  view the full agenda text for item 15.