Venue: Council Chamber Town Hall. View directions
Contact: Debbie Parker-Jones
To receive the apologies of any Member who is unable to attend this meeting.
There were no apologies for absence, although it was noted that Councillors Pat Witherspoon and Debbie Taylor were both absent as they were the subject of reports at Item 3 on the agenda.
Declarations of Interest
To invite Councillors to declare any interests they may have in items on the agenda.
There were no declarations of interest.
To consider applications for the granting of dispensations to Councillors Greg Chance, Debbie Taylor and Pat Witherspoon to allow them to participate in a meeting of the Licensing Sub-Committee.
The Committee considered three requests to grant a dispensation to allow Members to participate in a meeting of the Council’s Licensing Sub-Committee. The Monitoring Officer described the arrangements that were in place for dealing with requests for dispensation, explaining that it had been agreed by Council that all such requests would be directed to her in the first instance and thereafter passed to the Committee for determination.
The Committee considered the requests from Councillors Greg Chance and Debbie Taylor in the first instance. Both Councillors were the relevant Ward Councillors in respect of an application to vary a premises licence which was to be the subject of a hearing of the Licensing Sub-Committee. Both also lived in close proximity to the licensed premises and, therefore, had a disclosable interest in the variation application. The Deputy Monitoring Officer informed the Committee that the dispensation would only allow the Ward Councillors to speak on behalf of local residents and to put forward the views of those residents rather than their own personal views on the application. On this understanding the Committee was minded to grant these dispensations.
The request from Councillor Pat Witherspoon was in respect of the same application to vary a premises licence, however her involvement was as a near neighbour and a party to the hearing as she had made relevant representations. The reason given for granting the dispensation to Councillor Witherspoon was to allow her the same right to represent her views to the Licensing Sub-Committee as would be enjoyed by any other resident. It was noted that the report in respect of Councillor Witherspoon incorrectly asserted that she would be representing residents who had asked her to represent them. It would be made clear that Councillor Witherspoon was there in her capacity of a Councillor with a dispensation should the dispensation be granted and that she should leave the Chamber once she had presented her views to the Sub-Committee. Again, the Committee was minded to grant the dispensation.
1) Councillor Greg Chance be granted a dispensation as it was considered to be in the interests of persons living in the authority’s area and in view of the circumstances of this matter as set out in the report;
2) Councillor Debbie Taylor be granted a dispensation as it was considered to be in the interests of persons living in the authority’s area and in view of the circumstances of this matter as set out in the report; and
3) Councillor Pat Witherspoon be granted a dispensation as it was considered to be otherwise appropriate to grant such a dispensation and in view of the circumstances of this matter as set out in the report.