Agenda item


To consider notices of motion.


The Chairman outlined a correction to the title of Councillor AJW Power’s motion. The motion should have been titled ‘climate emergency’ in the report.


Motion 1 – Climate Emergency


Councillor AJW Powers outlined an alteration to the motion to replace the words ‘its own’ with ‘this council’s’ in recommendation a).     . 


The seconder and Council agreed to the alteration and to debate the altered motion.


In moving the motion Councillor AJW Powers made the following points:


·         Councillors often look at the local picture without considering the bigger picture. The perception that nothing could be done was lazy.

·         The motion called on Herefordshire Council to take the lead with partners to make a change; to set targets and allocate resources to address the climate emergency;

·         30 other areas and cities had passed motions to declare a climate emergency and commit to take actions in response to the climate emergency;

·         The large turnout at the meeting and the involvement of students and young people in the extinction rebellion was inspiring. The motion focused on the future of all young people and it was important that the younger generation showed the council what it must do to respond to the climate emergency.


The following principal points were raised by members in the debate:


·         The installation of LED streetlights in Herefordshire was raised and the saving of a significant level of carbon over 10 years. The council would publish a list of those measures it had undertaken and proposals for the future.

·         It was important that cross-party work was undertaken on actions and that the public was involved. It was acknowledged that some of the actions would result in unpopular decisions which would have to be understood in the context of responding to the climate emergency.

·         It was important that all members of the community and young people were involved in determining future actions of the council. 

·         The motion contained details of what would be done going forward but the council had established plans over the previous 12 years. Meetings of local bodies regularly discussed sustainability and had items on agendas at meetings.

·         Through planning policies the council needed to ensure that construction in the county meets the highest standard, including the installation of insulation.

·         It was commented that prior to 2011 the relevant committee at the council received regular reports on progress with carbon reduction actions being taken.

·         Work needed to be undertaken on collecting rainfall and electricity generation and such notions needed to be proposed to house builders.

·         The rubbish evident in hedgerows in Herefordshire was raised.

·         The motion was a signal of intent which would ensure that the council considered the climate emergency in all work that it undertook and decisions it made.

·         The Wye Valley AONB regularly considered environmental issues including Ash die back which was caused by climate change.

·         The motion would provide an overarching commitment to carbon reduction. All actions of the council should be informed by a priority to reduce carbon emissions.

·         The need to work in partnership with parish councils was raised particularly on those functions which had been delegated from the council.


Councillor PD Price proposed an amendment to the motion to add an additional paragraph as follows – f) The council requests the executive to arrange a full day interactive seminar for all councillors this year to be briefed on and discuss the options that might be open to Herefordshire Council to expedite its carbon footprint reduction aspiration and improve further the natural environment of Herefordshire.


The amendment was seconded by Councillor MT McEvilly.


Councillor AJP Powers and Councillor PP Marsh accepted the amendment subject to the wording ‘as soon as possible’ replacing the words ‘this year’. This change was acceptable to the proposer and seconder of the amendment and was therefore incorporated into the original motion and became the substantive motion.


The following principal points were raised in the debate on the substantive motion:


·         It was noted that there was consensus across the Council for the motion;

·         It was important that all members reflected on their personal carbon footprints and as individuals and community leaders set an example.

·         Concern was raised regarding the number of bio digesters and maize which was grown as a feed crop. The growth of maize was felt to contribute to soil erosion in the county.

·         The Council needed to show leadership and it was important that developers were encouraged to build environmentally friendly homes and that planning policies included the requirement to include the installation of charging points for electric cars.

·         The staggering of school drop off and pick-up times would help ease congestion in Herefordshire.

·         In the new Council term, following the elections, a full audit of what the Council has achieved was needed to assess what had been accomplished and what more was required.

·         The proposed western bypass as a method of growing the economy of Herefordshire was a 19th century solution. In order to address the impact of fossil fuels, the building of new roads was counter-productive.

·         Climate change was a worrying trend and a significant threat.

·         Electric charging points installed by the council needed to be properly maintained and those that were currently not working required repair.

·         The ‘stop the drop’ and the ‘Great Herefordshire Spring Clean’ were raised and the work that was going on with parish council to improve the county.

·         The amendment was supported and would ensure that new members were engaged in the work being undertaken and would understand the issues. A better forum was required for members to understand and discuss the issues.

·         There was an urgent need for the council to address carbon reduction. 

·         In response to the public questions there was concern that the council’s primary priority was on economic growth but there was not sufficient understanding as to how the economic model would align with measures to address the climate emergency.


In seconding the motion Councillor PP Marsh made the following points:


·         The legacy of this Council should be to address climate change.

·         The next steps needed to be defined and how the council would work with businesses, the voluntary sector and local communities.

·         There was common ground for the motion across the chamber.

·         The actions required in response to the motion would be a long haul and would require a re-imagining and re-engineering of the delivery of services. Innovation and ingenuity were important and work with the new university could help determine actions the council could take.

·         The use of grants and loans should be assessed and how they could be used to advance the principles of the motion.


In closing the debate Councillor AJW Powers explained that action needed to be taken now; there was no longer any room for delay. There may be additional costs to the council in addressing the climate emergency but such investment would be in response to the concerns of the public.


Councillor AJW Powers proposed a recorded vote which was supported by more than eight members of the Council.


The motion was put to the recorded vote and was agreed unanimously.


For (43): SP Anderson, PA Andrews, BA Baker, JM Bartlett,  WLS Bowen, TL Bowes, H Bramer, CR Butler, ACR Chappell, EE Chowns, MJK Cooper, PE Crockett, P Cutter, BA Durkin, PJ Edwards, CA Gandy, KS Guthrie, EPJ Harvey, TM James, PC Jinman, AW Johnson, JF Johnson, JLV Kenyon, JG Lester, MD Lloyd-Hayes, PP Marsh, RI Matthews, MT McEvilly, PD Newman, FM Norman, CA North, RJ Phillips, AJW Powers, PD Price, P Rone, A Seldon, NE Shaw, J Stone, D Summers, EJ Swinglehurst, A Warmington, DB Wilcox, SD Williams.


Against (0)

Abstentions (0)


RESOLVED: that –


This Council declares its recognition of the climate emergency and calls on the executive to:


a)    Commit to an accelerated reduction of the Council’s carbon emissions, with the aspirations to be carbon neutral by 2030; and to change its energy supply to 100% renewable source;


b)    Produce a successor to the current Carbon Management Plan (2019-2023) within the early months of the new Council;

c)    Work with partners to produce an action plan, covering all relevant council strategies, and to submit this plan via Scrutiny to Cabinet by the end of 2019;

d)    Call upon our ‘Re-Energise’ partners to match or better the council’s commitment; to publicise their response and to lead on working with the public to promote and encourage carbon reduction in all aspects of the county’s life;

e)    Provide the necessary resource for officers to deliver on the council’s carbon reduction commitments, and to monitor and report annually on the county position; and

f)    The council requests the executive to arrange a full day interactive seminar for all councillors as soon as possible to be briefed on and discuss the options that might be open to Herefordshire Council to expedite its carbon footprint reduction aspiration and improve further the natural environment of Herefordshire.



There was an adjournment at 12.21 p.m. The meeting reconvened at 12.38 p.m.


Motion 2 - Minister for Borderlands


Council considered a motion concerning a minister for borderlands.

In moving the motion Councillor EPJ Harvey made the following points:


·         Herefordshire was a county which lived on the edge of the border with Wales.

·         Devolution of powers had resulted in a number of borderland issues but these were not acknowledged in parliament or the regional assembly.

·         There were different education and health arrangements on either side of the Welsh border. Access for people in the West of the county to education in Wales was hampered. Access to health facilities in Herefordshire came from Wales but no additional funding was available.

·         Legal and customary differences compromised the establishment of partnership and joint arrangements with authorities and providers in Wales. Access to internal investment was also problematic.

·         Brexit was likely to exacerbate borderland issues.

·         The motion sought to encourage all authorities on the border to investigate ways of working with Welsh partners and to lobby for greater recognition of the issues.


The following principal points were raised by members in the debate:


·         A minister for borderlands could be an advantage for Herefordshire to highlight the positive contributions made by the county.

·         It was noted that farmers bought and sold produce across the Welsh border.

·         A member raised the prospect of the reconstitution of the Council of Marches.

·         A member was concerned that the motion did not make reference to the Welsh Assembly or the memorandum of understanding that existed. It was important that work with the Welsh Assembly was undertaken to address cross-border issues.

·         Some members were concerned that the proposal for a minister for borderlands would introduce an additional layer of bureaucracy. Work across the border already took place with the Marches Local Enterprise Partnership and arrangements currently in place were felt to be sufficient to manage cross-border working.

·         Cross-border working took place at a local level and the functioning of the AONB was presented as evidence of partnership arrangements.

·         Some members referred to a gap in representation of border communities which a minister for borderlands would address. Regional arrangements in the West Midlands were felt to be dominated by large urban areas such as Birmingham.

·         The motion represented an interesting proposal which should be investigated and encouraged.


In seconding the motion Councillor A Seldon made the following points:


·         The distinctions between the systems and arrangements on either side of the border were acknowledged. The respective healthcare systems were posed as an example.

·         It was important that a minister in government had strategic oversight of the issues affecting border communities;

·         The proposals would not inhibit or hinder the functioning of other authorities or arrangements.

·         The proposal would enhance cross-border opportunities and Herefordshire would be used as a point of access for the border.

·         It was recognised that greater liaison was required on both sides of the border which the proposal in the motion would help to facilitate.


In closing the debate Councillor EPJ Harvey explained that the motion did not propose significant change but asked for recognition that there were border issues and press for a minster for borderlands to advocate and lobby on behalf of borderland communities. Recognition of borderland concerns started in Northumberland with issues across the border to Scotland. The motion before Council would encourage local authorities on both sides of the Welsh border to recognise cross border issues.


The motion was put to the vote and carried by a simple majority of the Council.




This Council:


- recognises that local authorities located immediately adjacent to the national borders for England, Wales and Scotland face particular challenges associated with devolution, region initiatives, planning cross-border health, education, public transport, infrastructure investment, economic growth.


- warmly congratulates the northern communities submitting their bids to the recently announced 'Borderlands Inclusive Growth Deal', covering the cross-border local authority areas of Northumberland County Council, Scottish Borders Council, Cumbria County Council, Carlisle City Council and Dumfries and Galloway Council.


- supports the principle of proposing the appointment of a 'Minister for Borderlands'; and resolves to join Northumberland County Council in writing to Her Majesty's Government, namely the First Lord of the Treasury (Prime Minister), the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government and the Secretaries of State for Scotland and for Wales to support a request the creation of such a position in government.


- resolves to encourage all borderland council’s on the England-Wales border to add their support to this Ministerial appointment and to lobby the LGA for its support to this request, through its recently created ‘People and Places Board’.


Motion 3 – Eastern River Crossing


Councillor JLV Kenyon introduced an alteration to his motion and requested that the altered motion below was discussed and determined by Council:


This council asks the executive to consider including in the forthcoming core strategy review a consideration of options for a route corridor for a full city ring road for Herefordto include an Eastern city bridge.


The seconder and Council agreed to the alteration and to debate the altered motion.


In moving the motion Councillor JLV Kenyon made the following points:


·         A full city ring road would be an excellent opportunity for cycling in the city. A ring road could prioritise cycling, electric charging points and electric buses.

·         Currently there were no protected routes around the city. The land on which an Eastern route could run had been subject to previous planning applications.

·         There was a possibility of an Eastern route that was built by developers.

·         The proposal of an additional bridge to the East of Hereford had the support of the local MP Jesse Norman as a method of reducing congestion in the city.


In seconding the motion Councillor SD Williams explained that he was supportive of methods to improve transport in Hereford.  


The following principal points were raised by members in the debate:


·         A member explained that support had been expressed for an Eastern river crossing had been expressed at consultation events for the Hereford Area Plan (HAP). The HAP should consider approaches to Hereford from either side of the city.

·         A member stated that businesses were reluctant to move to Hereford because of congestion; it was important to keep options open and protect an Eastern route to alleviate congestion.

·         A member considered the motion to be contrary to the earlier motion approved by Council to declare a climate emergency; alternative forms of sustainable transport should be investigated rather than proposals for new roads.


In closing the debate Councillor JLV Kenyon highlighted the support from the Green party for a Leominster bypass.


The motion was put to the vote and carried by a simple majority of the Council.


RESOLVED: That – this council asks the executive to consider including in the forthcoming core strategy review a consideration of options for a route corridor for a full city ring road for Herefordto include an Eastern city bridge.







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