Agenda and minutes

Council - Tuesday, 22nd November, 2022 5.00 pm

Venue: Council Chambers - Civic Centre

Contact: Anne Jenkins  Governance Team Leader


No. Item



        i.           To receive any apologies for absence.

      ii.           To receive any declarations of interest.

     iii.           To receive any announcements by the Presiding Member.

Additional documents:


1.i  Apologies

None received.


1.ii  Declarations of Interest

None received.


1.iii  Presiding Member’s Announcements

The Presiding Member mentioned that it was Gareth Price, Monitoring Officer’s last meeting. 


The Leader, Councillor Evans, Whitehead, Jordan, Morris and Al-Nuaimi all took the opportunity to say a few words of personal thanks for Gareth’s hard work and support during his 39 years of working for the Council and wished him a long happy retirement.


The Chief Executive also extended her thanks to Gareth for his sterling work and strength and support over the past two years.


The Presiding Member also echoed the comments of colleagues.  Gareth’s door was always open.  The Presiding Member also thanked Gareth for his support over the years.


Gareth Price also said a few words of thanks for everyone’s support over the years.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 151 KB

To confirm and sign the minutes of the last meeting.

Additional documents:


The Minutes of 27 September 2022, subject to the following:


Councillor Lauren James was marked down as present but had sent her apologies.

Item 3, Councillor Appointments should have read Councillor Clarke and not Councillor James.


Appointments pdf icon PDF 93 KB

To consider any proposed appointments.

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Councillor Clarke moved the appointments set out in the report, as agreed by the Business Managers, subject to the additional appointments set out below.

The appointments were seconded by Councillor Fouweather and put to the vote.


Resolved: That the appointments set out in the report to Council be agreed, together with the following additional appointments.


Governing Body

No of Vacancies / Re-appointments

Nominations Received

Llanwern High School


Mark Spencer

St Julians School


Deborah Davies

St Julians School


Tracy McKim

St Julians School


Phillip Hourahine

Glan Usk Primary School


Paul Bright

Pillgwenlly Primary School


Saeed Adan



Police Issues

30 minutes is allocated for questions to the Gwent Police representative.

Additional documents:


The Presiding Member welcomed Chief Inspector Hannah Lawton, who provided council members with an update on Police issues within East, West and Central Newport.


The Presiding Member invited the Leader to put question to Chief Inspector Lawton.


The Leader thanked the Chief Inspector for the support the Police had provided for the events held by the Council, such as the Food Festival, Remembrance and the Christmas lights celebration.


On behalf of the ward members and residents, the Leader thanked Chief Inspector for the continued presence in the Malpas Ward, in particular, around Pillmawr Road over the past week.


Questions to the Police raised by Councillors:


§  Councillor Morris asked was there any update on guidance in relation to electric bikes from Parliament.  With Christmas approaching, a local safety campaign was being launched to encourage parents to buy safety gear and a highway code book to accompany the e-bike to protect younger children.  Councillor Morris and ward colleagues had met with Jessica Morden, MP and Police.  The Chief Inspector advised that the Police were still waiting on the information to come through.


§  Councillor Evans referred to Asylum Seekers and refugees being placed in Newport without the police  being notified.  Whilst this was not an issue for the majority of placements, there could be people with criminal backgrounds being placed in the city.  Was there anything that the Police could do to rectify this? The Chief Inspector advised that the Police were notified by the Home Office if a criminal was being placed as well as the Local Authority, the police were reliant on the Home Office to receive this information.


§  Councillor Cleverly referred to the recent fires in Bettws area.  One incident was an owner of a local chip shop,  whose delivery car was set on fire and another was a resident of Lambourne Hill,   whose car was also set on fire. The Chief Inspector was not aware of this and would look into this and get back to Councillor Cleverly.


§  Councillor Harvey thanked the Chief Inspector on behalf of Alway ward colleagues and residents for the safer streets initiatives.  Residents were given window alarms, security water markers, which was well received by residents. The Chief Inspector mentioned that when the bid was put in, it was the most money they had received from Home Office. Part of the initiative was also looking at causes of anti -social behaviour and victims of crime.


§  Councillor Whitehead mentioned the recent Ward report and noticed there was a spike in recent anti-social behaviour, particularly in the Bettws shopping area. The police had made promises of patrol, however residents did not want police patrols for two or three times during the period of a week.  Regular patrols over a longer period would be the preferred option for residents.  The Chief Inspector advised that resourcing could not be planned and there were other long term solutions and other ways of preventing behaviour rather than patrols, such as identification of who was  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.


Corporate Plan 2022/2027 pdf icon PDF 206 KB

Additional documents:


The Presiding Member invited to the Leader to present and move the recommendations in the report.


Newport Council was required as part of the Well-being of Future Generations Act to carry out sustainable development to improve Wales’ economic, social, environmental and cultural well-being. 


The Council had a duty to fulfil its statutory and non-statutory duties to support citizens, businesses and stakeholders.   This Plan prioritised the Council’s long-term strategic focus and met the requirements of the Well-being Act.


The development of the Council’s new Corporate Plan (2022-27) was undertaken between senior officers and the Council’s Cabinet Members through a series of workshops.


This Plan also considered the short and long term opportunities and risks to the Council, its residents, economy and environment. 


In the development of the Plan,  the Council consulted with residents on the Well-being Objective themes which were positively received. 


Over the next five years Newport Council’s mission statement would be working to deliver an ‘Ambitious, Fairer, Greener Newport for everyone.’


To support this goal, there would be four Well-being Objectives to deliver these strategic priorities:


1.      Economy, Education and Skills - Newport is a thriving and growing city that offers excellent education and aspires to provide opportunities for all.

2.      Environment and Infrastructure - A city that seeks to protect and enhance our environment whilst reducing our carbon footprint and preparing for a sustainable and digital future.

3.      Quality Social Care and Community Services - Newport is a supportive city where communities and care are at the heart of what we do.

4.      An Inclusive, Fair and Sustainable Council - Newport City Council is an inclusive organisation that places social value, fairness and sustainability at its core.


The next five years was going to be challenging as we balanced the Council’s Medium Term Financial Plan whilst delivering our strategic priorities.  It would require the Council to take innovative and transformative decisions and it must be recognised that the achievement of these objectives could not be delivered by Newport City Council alone which was why key principles were followed throughout the delivery of the Corporate Plan:


·        Fair and Inclusive – We will work to create fairer opportunities, reduce inequalities in our communities, and encourage a sense of belonging.

·        Empowering – We will work with and support communities, groups and partners to thrive.

·        A listening council – The views of communities, service users and partners will shape the services we deliver and the places you live in.

·        Citizen Focussed – Everyone who works and represents Newport City Council will put the citizen first, focusing on our core organisational values.


The Corporate Plan would also be underpinned by key programmes and projects that aimed to improve the economy and communities of Newport and the delivery of Council services.

Each one of the Council’s service areas would develop a service plan that outlined their own strategic priorities to support the delivery of Newport City Council’s Corporate Plan and continuous improvement of Council services.


To ensure the delivery of these plans, the Service  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.


Strategic Equality Plan Annual Report pdf icon PDF 161 KB

Additional documents:


The Presiding Member invited the Leader to present the next item, which was the Council’s Annual Report on the progress against its Strategic Equality Plan 2020-24.


The Leader presented the report.  Under the Equality Act (2010) the Council was required to report annually on the progress it made against the strategic equality objectives contained within its Strategic Equality Plan.


Newport Council’s Equality Objectives were developed in partnership with key internal and external stakeholders and was subject to extensive community engagement.


This Strategic Equalities Annual Report was reviewed by the Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Management Committee and Cabinet, comments were included in the final report.


The impact of the pandemic continued to present challenges in delivering against some areas of work in 2021/22, however Newport’s equalities work continued to be flexible, responding to emerging challenges, particularly around access to information, education and addressing hate crime.


Highlights from the past year were outlined by the Leader to Council colleagues including inclusive Leadership training completed by nearly 300 Senior Leaders and Managers and the recent appointment of the Leader as WLGA Spokesperson for Equalities, Migration and Anti-Poverty.


Significant dates, including LGBT+ History Month, Ramadan, Holocaust Memorial Day, Pride Month, Refugee Week, Windrush Day, Gypsy Roma Traveller History Month, Black History Month and Hate Crime Awareness Week, were recognised and promoted across the city.

Fairness and Equality Impact Assessments including the Socio-economic Duty against policy/decision making were ongoing and been considered against a range of decisions.  Our good practice here was recently cited in a national Audit Wales report.


£415,000 of funding was distributed to 79 community projects, overseen by and a representative community steering group, working closely with Newport’s Fairness Commission.


Staff networks for disabled, LGBTQ+ and ethnic minority staff continued to provide a platform for staff from under-represented groups to influence the workplace policy, service delivery and strategic decision making.


Significant support provided to EU citizens in Newport ensured eligible residents could submit late applications to the EU Settlement Scheme post deadline.


Equality, Hate Crime and EUSS awareness sessions delivered to senior customer service staff.


Preparing schools for the requirements of the Relationships and Sexuality Statutory Education Code (RSE).


During the year over 2,665 people were supported by all floating support schemes to access and maintain their accommodation, including adults with learning disabilities and refugees.


The council’s ethnic minority representation remained similar this year despite a slight increase in staff numbers, and our gender pay gap had reduced for this period.


The council still had work to do to improve the representation of minority ethnic staff at all levels of the organisation, and this would be a focus for our work during 2022/23.


The Leader moved acceptance of the Strategic Equality Plan Annual report asked the Presiding Member if the Cabinet Member for Organisational Transformation could second the motion and say a few words.


Councillor Batrouni seconded the motion and added that the report was a summary of the work undertaken during the second year of the Strategic Equality Plan. It set  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.


Climate Change Plan Annual Report pdf icon PDF 137 KB

Additional documents:


The Presiding Member invited the Leader to present the report to Council, which was the introductory annual report for our Climate Change Plan.


As a globally responsible organisation, the Council declared an ecological and climate emergency last November and stated   that the Council would: 


§  Develop a clear Climate Change Organisational plan, in consultation with citizens, for the next five years that would set out the actions needed to achieve this.

§  In March, of this year Council agreed the Climate Change Plan for the next five years.  This plan set out how we would:

Reduce council carbon emissions to net zero carbon by 2030


Review the services the council provided to ensure it supported the city’s journey to both net zero carbon and adapting to the impacts of climate change.


The plan ran from 2022-27, this was an introductory report setting out where we were at the start of the plan and detailed some of the important projects already taking place.


The plan was a key document for the Council and was now guiding our direction of travel as an organisation in tackling the climate and nature emergency and their impacts. 


The Leader moved acceptance of the report and asked the Presiding Member if the Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Biodiversity could second the motion and say a few words.


Councillor Forsey seconded the motion and advised colleagues that the Council had already made a substantial reduction in carbon emissions exceeding targets set out in the Carbon Management Plan.  Councillor Forsey looked forward to further reductions as we continued to retrofit council buildings, and further increase our electric fleet vehicles.


There was however, still much more that needed to be done as an organisation to mitigate and adapt to the nature and climate emergency and our Climate Change Plan set us on the right path for this journey to ensure we acted on behalf of current and future generations.


As Cabinet Member with responsibility for the climate change and biodiversity, Councillor Forsey was pleased to see this positive introductory report and would be monitoring progress of the plan closely and requesting regular progress updates to ensure that we continued to proceed at the required pace.


Comments from Councillors:


§  Councillor Davies recommended that councillors view the animation that was accessed via a link on the front of the report.  Councillor Davies was pleased that schools were locked into this plan, Bassaleg was being built as a carbon neutral school and there was focus on retro fitting, this was seen already in Kimberley Nursery, which was now Ysgol Bryn Derw, this was fitted with two air source heat pumps.  Other schools would also be retro fitted across Newport to be net carbon zero going forward.  It was pleasing to see that children were working with teachers to address this issue.  Young people had also become advocates, speaking on the national stage.


§  Councillor Routley considered that it was a good plan that would protect the future of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.


Democratic Services Committee Annual Report pdf icon PDF 173 KB

Additional documents:


The Presiding Member invited the Chair of the Democratic Services Committee to present the report.


Councillor Fouweather introduced the 2021/22 Democratic Services Committee Annual Report to Council.


The Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011 required the Committee to report annually to the Council on the work that it carried out in the past 12 months and its future work programme.


The annual report covered the period from November 2021 to November 2022.  The Committee was a politically balanced group which worked together in a non-partisan manner to consider various aspects of the Constitution and other matters that impacted on the governance of the Council.  


Councillor Fouweather moved acceptance of the Annual Report and this was seconded by Councillor Stowell-Corten.



Council agreed the Committee’s annual report in order to meet the requirements of

the Local Government Measure.



Standards Committee Annual Report pdf icon PDF 107 KB

Additional documents:


As a Member of the Standards Committee, the Presiding Member presented the report to Council.


Councillor Cockeram was happy to present the 2021/22 Standards Committee Annual Report to Council.


This was the ninth Standards Committee annual report and covered the period from November 2021 to November 2022, and followed on from the last report presented to Council in November 2021.


This Annual Report was previously presented to Council on a voluntary basis.  However, since May 2022, it was now a statutory requirement under the Local Government & Elections (Wales) Act 2021 for Standards Committee to make an annual report to Council. In addition, this statutory Annual Report included an assessment of the extent to which leaders of political groups on the Council had complied with their new duties to promote and maintain high standards of conduct within their groups.


The Committee has met on five occasions during the last twelve months. The earlier Committee meetings were conducted remotely but, since May 2022, the meetings were conducted on a “hybrid” basis, with some members present in person and others joining remotely. 


Last year, Standards Committee was called upon for the first time to conduct a misconduct hearing and to impose a sanction on an elected member. This year, we were pleased to report that, once again, no serious complaints of misconduct were referred to the Standards Committee by the Ombudsman during the past 12 months and no complaints were referred for determination by the Committee under Stage 3 of the Local Resolution Protocol during 2021/22.


The Report confirmed that six complaints were referred to the Ombudsman about City Councillors during the last 12 months and five complaints were made during this period about community councillors. At the time of presenting this annual report to Council, only one complaint remained outstanding and all of the other 10 complaints were not accepted for investigation.


Standards Committee met with group leaders earlier this month, and was pleased with the level of commitment demonstrated and the general levels of training undertaken by Councillors. However, further Code of Conduct training sessions would be beneficial for those Councillors who were unable to attend the induction training on 16 May. There did not appear to be any significant issues in terms of standards of behaviour or complaints that needed to be addressed


The Annual Report also contained a draft forward work programme for the forthcoming 12 months.  The training requirements for City Councillors, community councils and their clerks would continue to be monitored and reviewed as part of the Committee’s forward work programme.


The Presiding Member moved acceptance of the Annual Report and this was seconded by Councillor Harvey.



Council received the Standards Committee Annual Report for 2021/22 and noted the

forward work programme.


Democratic Services Committee Minutes: 18 October 2022 pdf icon PDF 126 KB

Additional documents:


The Minutes of the Democratic Services Committee of 18 October were attached to the Agenda papers.


There were two recommendations to Council contained within the minutes:


§  That Council formally adopts the statutory Guide to the Constitution, as agreed by Democratic Services Committee;

§  That Council formally adopts the changes to the Constitution to reflect arrangements for Job-Sharing of Cabinet posts and the appointment of Executive Assistants


Councillor Fouweather, as Chair of Democratic Services Committee formally moved the recommendations, which were seconded by Councillor Stowell-Corten. The recommendations were put to the vote and were duly carried.



§  That Council formally adopts the statutory Guide to the Constitution, as agreed by Democratic Services Committee;

§  That Council formally adopts the changes to the Constitution to reflect arrangements for Job-Sharing of Cabinet posts and the appointment of Executive Assistants



Questions to the Leader of the Council

To provide an opportunity for Councillors to ask questions to the Leader of the Council in accordance with the Council’s Standing Orders.



No more than 15 minutes will be allocated at the Council meeting for questions to the Leader of the Council.


The question must be addressed through the Mayor or the person presiding at the meeting and not directly to the person being questioned.

Additional documents:


Before commencement with questions, the Leader made the following announcements:


Christmas and Small Business Saturday

Last Saturday saw the Countdown to Christmas event held in the city centre. It was amazing to see so many people gathering together to mark the start of the festive celebrations. Thank you to Newport NOW and everyone involved in making the afternoon a success.


The Leader reflected that this year was going to be difficult for many; individuals and businesses alike and continued to urge people to shop locally and spend wisely. 


To that end, The Council was also supporting Small Business Saturday which would take place on Saturday 3 December.  Newport was very lucky to have some amazing small and independent businesses that offered a range of services and products that could not be matched by the larger chain stores.


Street entertainment had been arranged for the day to ensure added atmosphere, it was hoped that there would be a huge turnout in the city centre to support businesses and possibly find some personal and unique gifts.


There would be more news on our social media sites as well as information from our local traders about their own special offers.


Knife Angel


In the city centre over the weekend, an impressive Knife Angel stood proud on Usk Plaza.


We have supported the Police and Crime Commissioner for Gwent who brought this towering figure to the area as part of a national anti-violence tour.


The 27ft sculpture was made from more than 100,000 knives would stand in Newport until the end of the month as a prominent reminder of the devastating effects of violence and aggression.


Supported by a series of engagement and educational events, it was hoped that the Council would raise awareness and start important conversations.


Cost of living support


Earlier this month the Council hosted a cost-of-living information event and the Riverfront theatre. There was an excellent turn-out on the day and with partners, the Council was able to help many people access the support and advice that was critical in these challenging times.


Work was continuing in this area and there would be further outreach activities and a dedicated advice area on the council website. Following a strategic event with key partners, we were also progressing our coordinated work with partners to ensure we do all we can together to help our communities.


Carers Rights Day


This year Carers Rights Day would take place on Thursday 24 November and was a time to raise awareness of the rights of unpaid carers and recognised their contribution to our society.


To mark Carers Rights Day, our community connector team would be hosting an information event at The Riverfront Theatre and would be on hand between 1pm and 6pm and to provide information and advice on for unpaid carers of all ages and backgrounds.


Carers carry out such an important role; this could be looking after someone who is wall, disabled, has mental ill health, substance misuse problems or needed a bit more  ...  view the full minutes text for item 11.


Questions to the Cabinet Members

To provide an opportunity to pose questions to Cabinet Members in line with Standing Orders.



No more than 10 minutes will be allocated at the Council meeting for questions to each Cabinet Member.


Members must submit their proposed questions in writing in advance in accordance with Standing Orders.  If members are unable to ask their question orally within the allocated time, remaining questions will be answered in writing.  The question and response will be appended to the minutes.


The question must be addressed through the Mayor or the person presiding at the meeting and not directly to the person being questioned.


Questions will be posed to Cabinet Members in the following order:


        i.           Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Education and Early Years

      ii.           Cabinet Member for Community and Wellbeing

     iii.           Cabinet Member for Strategic Planning, Regulation and Housing

    iv.           Cabinet Member for Social Services

      v.           Cabinet Member for Organisational Transformation

    vi.           Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Bio-Diversity

   vii.           Cabinet Member for Infrastructure and Assets

Additional documents:


There is 1 written questions to the Cabinet Members:


Question 1 – Cabinet Member for Education and Early Years


Councillor Routley


At the recent Cabinet meeting you stated it has been reported to you that school children are shaking with hunger and are starving in certain schools.


What have you done Cabinet Member to raise this issue and alleviate the suffering?


Response from Councillor Davies


Thank you for your question, which I am pleased to answer.


You have quoted me without providing the context on why I was speaking about child hunger and poverty. I was responding to the update published by Newport City Council on our response to external pressures impacting on Council Services. The paper explicitly describes the impact of the cost of living crisis on our communities.


Indeed over the last 18 months communities across Newport are facing unprecedented financial pressures resulting from inflationary increases in the cost of energy, food, mortgages and rent along with other household costs.


Currently the financial stability of the UK remains in a precipitous position despite the autumn statement published last Thursday, which for Wales will leave a budget shortfall. The extra £1.2 billion will not offset or address increased costs due to soaring inflation and is actually £300 million less than was set last year. Furthermore, OBR analysis following this budget makes it clear that real disposable income will fall to its lowest level since ONS records began in 1956. Globally we are falling behind our economic partners and who is overseeing this mess? The Tories -twelve years of mismanagement and incompetence. As a Labour administration in Newport we are working hard to support our residents and help them to survive during this cost of living crisis. Something I firmly believe would not have been necessary if a Labour Government was in power.


Returning to my comments in the Cabinet meeting last week the actions we have undertaken so far include the setting up of a task and finish group to help support households to access additional financial help from Welsh Government, along with drop in sessions in Pill and the Riverfront where NCC and partners provided advice, support and guidance. The intention is to coordinate support so that our most disadvantaged and vulnerable residents get the support and help they need. A summit was recently held so that plans can be coordinated to ensure there is local access to food banks and warm rooms in preparation for this winter.


In my reply to the Leader at Cabinet I listed what actions are being undertaken within our schools to ensure children are fed and support is also given to families. I made clear that 10 years ago when I was first elected I did not envisage visiting schools and being introduced to family liaison officers who have been employed using grant funding to support parents with financial advice, housing advice and links to healthcare professionals as well as providing counselling where there is a breakdown in parental relationships.


Along with  ...  view the full minutes text for item 12.