Agenda and minutes

Environment and Community Safety Scrutiny Panel
Thursday, 5th March, 2020 7.00 pm

Venue: Civic Centre, High Road, Wood Green, N22 8LE. View directions

Contact: Philip Slawther, Principal Committee Co-ordinator 

No. Item



Please note that this meeting may be filmed or recorded by the Council for live or subsequent broadcast via the Council’s internet site or by anyone attending the meeting using any communication method. Although we ask members of the public recording, filming or reporting on the meeting not to include the public seating areas, members of the public attending the meeting should be aware that we cannot guarantee that they will not be filmed or recorded by others attending the meeting. Members of the public participating in the meeting (e.g. making deputations, asking questions, making oral protests) should be aware that they are likely to be filmed, recorded or reported on. 


By entering the meeting room and using the public seating area, you are consenting to being filmed and to the possible use of those images and sound recordings.


The chair of the meeting has the discretion to terminate or suspend filming or recording, if in his or her opinion continuation of the filming, recording or reporting would disrupt or prejudice the proceedings, infringe the rights of any individual or may lead to the breach of a legal obligation by the Council.


The Chair referred Members present to agenda Item 1 as shown on the agenda in respect of filming at this meeting, and Members noted the information contained therein’.


Apologies for Absence


Apologies for absence were received from Cllr Emery.


Apologies for lateness were received from Cllr Ahmet and Cllr Ogiehor.


Items of Urgent Business

The Chair will consider the admission of any late items of urgent business (late items will be considered under the agenda item where they appear. New items will be dealt with as noted below).   


There were no items of urgent business


Declarations of interest

A member with a disclosable pecuniary interest or a prejudicial interest in a matter who attends a meeting of the authority at which the matter is considered:


(i) must disclose the interest at the start of the meeting or when the interest becomes apparent, and

(ii) may not participate in any discussion or vote on the matter and must withdraw from the meeting room.


A member who discloses at a meeting a disclosable pecuniary interest which is not registered in the Register of Members’ Interests or the subject of a pending notification must notify the Monitoring Officer of the interest within 28 days of the disclosure.


Disclosable pecuniary interests, personal interests and prejudicial interests are defined at Paragraphs 5-7 and Appendix A of the Members’ Code of Conduct


Ian Sygrave advised that as Chair of the LCSP he had been in contact with the Cabinet Member to raise concerns about the impact of traffic overspill in and around the Ladders that had occurred following he Liveable Crouch End trial.



To consider any requests received in accordance with Part 4, Section B, Paragraph 29 of the Council’s Constitution.




Minutes pdf icon PDF 194 KB

To approve the minutes of the previous meeting.


The Panel noted concerns with the response to the action around the CCTV enforcement of HGV weight limits being received on the afternoon of the meeting. The Panel also commented that the numbers of HGVs seemed to be on the increase and questioned whether usage by HGVs that was not deemed to be legitimate was resulting in prosecution. In response, officers acknowledged these concerns and apologised for the late response. Officers advised that they didn’t have the figures to hand but would come back to members with numbers of prosecutions and FPNs issued. Officers also set out that some work was being undertaken to assess the impact on adjacent roads and would provide a response on alternative locations for cameras, such as the Ladders. (Action: Stephen McDonnell).


In response to a previous action from the 17th December meeting, the Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Sustainability confirmed that she met with members of the deputation party from the Climate Change Action Group.



That the minutes of the meeting on 17th December were agreed as a correct record.


Liveable Streets update pdf icon PDF 164 KB


The Panel received a written update on the Liveable Neighbourhoods scheme in Crouch End. The report was introduced by Peter Watson, Major Schemes Project Manager, as set out in the agenda pack at pages 11-13. The following was noted in discussion of the report:

a)    The Panel raised concerns about the impact of the trial road closure which took place between 7-20 October on the displacement of traffic to  the surrounding roads including the Ladders and Wightman Road. The Panel suggested that it was important to engage with residents and to bring them along with the scheme.  The impact of traffic displacement and a failure to properly engage with those residents was likely to be perceived negatively.

b)    In response, the Cabinet Member acknowledged these concerns and advised that officers were continuing to implement an engagement programme, undertake a design survey and that she had met with residents recently.  The Cabinet Member also set out that ward councillors have joined the stakeholder forum and their concerns and comments had been taken on board. The Panel were advised that the pre-election Purdah period was due to start on 23rd March and that this would have an impact on the timescales for agreeing phase 2 of the scheme. Consultation would continue following the expiry of Purdah.

c)    The Panel sought clarification on how the final report would be publicised when released in March. In response, the Cabinet Member advised that she had prepared a video blog for the website and that leaflets had been sent out to libraries etcetera.

d)    The Chair sought reassurance around whether engagement had been undertaken with traders on Hornsey High Street, given the disproportionate impact on those traders. In response, the Cabinet Member acknowledged that the engagement to date had been focused on Crouch End but that additional resources were going to be available from the Regen team going forwards. The Cabinet Member agreed that she would commit to engaging with the Hornsey traders as well as any other groups that the Panel would like to put forward. (Action: Cllr Hearn).

e)    Officers clarified that they had not yet reached the design phase and that before extensive engagement took place on these proposals, they would like to have design proposals in place.

f)     The Panel noted the 500 email addresses received as part of the initial stage of engagement and questioned whether the results of the survey had been shared with these people. In response, officers advised that the survey had not been completed yet but that extensive consultation would take place once it had been finalised. In response to questions around the extent to which local MPs and GLA members had been engaged with, the Cabinet Member advised that formal consultation had not taken place but that she was meeting Catherine West MP tomorrow.

g)    The Panel acknowledged the extent to which residents had responded to the survey, with 2493 responses received to date, but cautioned the need for the Council to listen to those  ...  view the full minutes text for item 7.


Update on Single Use Plastics

Verbal Update


The Panel received a verbal update from Joe Baker, Head of Carbon Management on actions taken to date to reduce the amount of single use plastics and the development of a single use plastic policy.  The draft Single Use Plastics policy was scheduled to go to Corporate Board in May before being agreed by Cabinet in June. The following update was given in relation to the work undertaken to date:


  1. George Meehan House no longer used plastic stirrers, lids, cups, individual milk containers or cutlery.
  2. From 31st January, new staff were given a reusable coffee cup at their Corporate Induction, which would reduce the number of disposable single use plastics coffee cups being purchased by staff.
  3. The Council’s café (Podium) introduced a charge for the provision of disposable cups and plastic containers and is offering reusable coffee cups for sale.
  4. A Staff Waste Reduction Network had been set up with 30 members. The network would be working on waste and plastic reduction goals and help with communications to improve the rate of recycling and prevent contamination of recycling. Plastic cups were no longer being ordered for water dispensers and the current stock was being run down.
  5. Investigations had begun regarding the provision of food waste bins in office kitchen areas.
  6. The recycling bins at the back of River Park House were now locked, which had significantly reduced contamination.
  7. An audit has been sent out to all senior staff to identify areas for plastic and waste reduction in service areas.
  8. The Events Team sent a questionnaire out to all past event organisers to determine what single use plastics they used and how we could work to reduce them.  The Parks and Green Spaces Strategy would include new policies on single use plastics.
  9. Officers were working on the installation of up to 5 water fountains across the borough with the GLA – providing publicly accessible drinking water.
  10. Work was ongoing with procurement to include weighting towards not using single use plastics in our procurement processes.
  11. The Council was working with the North London Waste Authority (NLWA) to deliver waste reduction and single use plastic workshops in two Haringey schools.
  12. Work has also been undertaken with the NLWA and Plastic Free Crouch End to work towards achieving ‘low plastic zone’ accreditation in Crouch End.
  13. Many of the actions identified were cost-free or low cost and can be delivered without significant resources.


The following was noted in discussion of this item:

  1. The Chair raised concerns that there was no written briefing circulated in advance of the meeting and requested that a written briefing be provided in future. Officers agreed to circulate a note on single use plastics to the Panel. (Action: Joe Baker).
  2. The Chair requested that Councillors also be given a reusable plastic cup as well as new staff members. Officers agreed to look into this. (Action: Joe Baker).
  3. In response to a question around whether consideration had been given to providing water fountains in parks, officers advised that they were looking  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.


Waste Recycling and Cleansing data pdf icon PDF 522 KB


The Panel received a report which set out current performance on waste and recycling and progress against Borough Plan commitments for waste and street cleansing, including fly-tipping. The report was introduced by Ian Kershaw, client and Commissioning Manager. The following was noted in discussion of this report:

a.    The Panel sought assurance around what was being done to tackle contamination of recycling from items such as nappies and whether producing comms materials in different languages was required. In response, officers acknowledged that kerbside contamination was a key issue and that communication leaflets were produced in a number of different languages for residents. Officers agreed to share the work review undertaken by the NLWA with the Panel. (Action: Stephen McDonnell).

b.    In response to a query about the response to contaminated bins and whether they were rejected at the kerbside, officers advised that the most effective response was to put a label or sticker on the bin in question. If the bin was still contaminated the following week then the bin would be collected to prevent overflowing rubbish. If the same thing happened again then a letter would be sent out. In severe cases, the Council could remove the recycling bin altogether, especially in regards to HMOs.

c.    The Panel commented that they would like to see additional enforcement taken against rogue landlords, particularly in light of the further rollout of mandatory licensing. Officers advised that letters were being prepared in conjunction with the licensing scheme and should be sent out in the next two weeks.

d.    In response to concerns about those without English as a first language, officers advised that leaflets were designed to be as pictorial as possible in order to be easily understood by different community groups.

e.    The Panel enquired about whether additional rollout of CCTV cameras was in the pipeline. In response, the Panel was advised that the Council was undergoing a significant upgrade of its CCTV facilities. The Cabinet Member also acknowledged the role that education played but emphasised the fact that people already knew that flytipping was against the law and that it was necessary to create a risk factor.




That the Panel noted performance to date and comments on progress against Borough Plan objectives.


Engaging with our Communities

Verbal Update


*Clerk’s note: The Chair requested that agenda items 10 and 11 be combined and that the Cabinet Member provide a short combined verbal update, followed by the scheduled question and answer session.*


The Panel received a verbal update from the Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods in relation to how the Council sought to engage with residents and communities and involve them in service delivery. The Panel also received a more general update on the Cabinet Member’s portfolio. This was followed by a question and answer session. The following was noted in relation to the verbal update:

a.    The Panel were advised that the AD Stronger Communities was now responsible for the contract management of Veolia as well as waste enforcement. It was noted that the merging of those teams reflected a clear synergy and provided greater opportunities for joined up working across this area, including HMO licencing and ASB.

b.    The Panel noted that work was ongoing with bringing the Street Enforcement Team back in-house, following the conclusion of the pilot with an outsourced service through Kingdom. Staff were being recruited and it was anticipated that this should be in place by May. The in-house service would have a wider remit than Kingdom and would be responsible for general flytipping and trade waste enforcement.

c.    The Cabinet Member advised that 280 FPNs for flytipping had been issued since April 2019. Work was also continuing with increasing signage about flytipping/dumping across the borough.

d.    The CPZ policy was due to be considered by Cabinet in March, which would provide an updated and refreshed strategy to reflect current parking pressures and new housing developments. 

e.    The Highways Plan was also due to be considered at Cabinet at the meeting taking place the following week. This would set out the planned highways maintenance works for the next 12 months and would reflect an increased investment in highways. The plan would also include the upgrading of around 4000 street lights. Some of which were identified as being over 30 years old.

f.     The Cabinet Member advised that she was working to bring reactive highways maintenance back in house and that the additional investment into highways infrastructure would make this economically viable and allow significant improvements to be made.

g.    The Cabinet Member advised the Panel that she was also seeking to bring the reporting of potholes back from Customer Services in order to improve the service and make it more joined-up.

h.    The Cabinet Member characterised the overall strategy as one of ensuring that the Council responded to residents properly and that it did what it said it would.


The following was noted in discussion of this item:

a.    The Panel sought assurance about the length of time it had taken to bring the street enforcement service back in-house. In response, the Cabinet Member acknowledged that initial discussion about insourcing of the service began two years ago. The Cabinet Member set out that a lot of work had been undertaken since then looking at a  ...  view the full minutes text for item 10.


Cabinet Member Q&A with Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods


As per the minutes for Agenda Item 10.


Scrutiny Review into Blue Badges pdf icon PDF 152 KB

Additional documents:


The Panel considered the Scrutiny Review report on Blue Badges and improving access to disabled parking services.


The Panel raised concerns about the fact that Blue Badge holders had to buy tickets/permits to park in Apcoa managed car parks, but without any apparent facility to purchase them on site. In response the Chair advised that this was outside the scope of the review and instead he would address the issue with the Cabinet Member directly. (Action: Chair).




     I.        That the Panel noted the report and approved its recommendations.

    II.        That the report be submitted to Overview and Scrutiny Committee for formal approval at its meeting on 12th March.


Work Programme Update pdf icon PDF 400 KB


The Panel suggested that they would like to see a future agenda item looking into why the recycling rate had dropped.




The Panel noted the Work Plan.


New items of urgent business

To consider any items admitted at item 3 above.





Dates of Future Meetings


There are no further meetings in the current municipal year.