Council meeting update - Tuesday 7th December 2021
Thu, December 09, 2021
A full meeting of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council was held on Tuesday 7th December 2021.
Speaking at the opening of the meeting, the Mayor, Councillor Richard Holmes, said he had recently visited Ballykelly Primary School where he took part in a Question and Answer session with one pupil posing a question about potential future use of artificial Christmas trees as a more environmentally-friendly alternative. The Mayor said he was very impressed by the pupil’s interest in the world around them, and he asked that further information about the suggestion be brought back for consideration.
The Mayor also informed members about his recent visit to the Ulster Memorial Tower at the Somme, and said it was a privilege to lay a wreath on behalf of the Borough.
In other matters, members agreed to write a letter to Derek McCallan, the outgoing Chief Executive of NILGA with the Mayor praising him for the passion he showed for his work.
Alderman Michelle Knight-McQuillan referred to the UN’s 16 Days of Activism campaign against gender-based violence which continues until December 10th. She urged everyone to take notice of those around them and look out for any signs, including hand gestures, which might be used by someone seeking help. She also encouraged pharmacies to participate in the Ask for ANI (Action Needed Immediately) scheme as another avenue of support – “Look out for each other and don’t ignore the signs’, she said.
Alderman John Finlay called on Council to write a letter of thanks to the Chief Fire Officer following the recent blaze at a former factory outside Ballymoney. He paid tribute to all those who helped bring the fire under control, and said firefighters often risked their lives in the course of their work.
Councillor Russell Watton referred to the deaths of two men in Ballysally, and he thanked the emergency services and the local community for their support in the wake of the tragedy.
During the meeting, elected members ratified the following decisions:
Environmental Services committee
Street Trading Applications
Recommend that Council continue to require the production of an Access NI Criminal Check as a requirement for Street Trading Applications including permanent and non-permanent trading.
Repairs to Ballycastle Depot Garage Floor
Approve remedial work to be carried out to a damaged section of floor at Ballycastle Depot garage workshop at an approximate cost of £15,000.
Purchase of Tow Behind gritter
Approve the purchase of a ‘tow behind’ gritter to improve Council resources to clear ice/frost from both civic car parks and public car parks. This will enhance existing resources to deal with icy car park surfaces at an affordable cost and reduce the potential for slips, trips and falls in icy weather.
Convention Avenue Car Park, Portstewart
With the car park lease due to expire on December 31st 2021, members agreed not to enter a new lease with the trustees of the car park – saving Council £82,500 over a 5-year period.
Refuse Collection Vehicles
Due to three lorries requiring replacement, members agreed to procure three new vehicles through the Crown Commercial Service.
Leisure and Development committee
Strategic Review of Council Tourism Events
Recommend the approval of a 10-year strategic approach for Council’s Tourism Events remit.
Community Festival Fund
Approve awards for funding through the second round of Community Festivals Fund.
Sustainable Food & Essential Supplies Grant Programme
Allocate funding to 24 eligible applicants to the first round of the grant, totalling £54,491.54, funded by the Department for Communities. The fund has since opened for a second round.
It was also unanimously agreed that any underspend would be used to fund food vouchers for the most vulnerable in our society (subject to DfC approval).
4C UR FUTURE event
Approve Council’s participation in the 4CUR FUTURE event for the Borough, planned for June 2022. This not-for-profit Community Interest Company exists to engage, inform, and inspire young people to make more empowered education and career choices.
Contracts for additional Community Support Programme
Funded by Department for Communities, members agreed to award the following contracts for three different COVID recovery programmes:
Wraparound Support Project (budget £50,000) awarded to LCDI as lead in a consortium including Vineyard Compassion, Ballycastle Foodbank, Ballymoney Foodbank, Community Advice Causeway and LCDI Advice Centre.
Well-being Project (budget £53,000) awarded to Northern Area Community Network.
Participatory Budgeting Project (budget £15,000) awarded to Northern Area Community Network.
Lower Bann Cruiser appointment
Appoint Lower Bann Cruises Ltd to operate a leisure cruiser hire business at Drumaheglis Marina for one year from April 1st 2022, and extend it by a further four years, subject to an annual review after 12 months.
Holiday and Leisure Parks fees
Agree an increase based on average Consumer Price Index (1.6%)
Lands at Mountsandel
Agree that Council negotiates to purchase lands at Mountsandel in Coleraine and avail of grant assistance under DAERA’s Environment Challenge Fund 2021/22, subject to a Council investment decision of £10,000. This will provide Council with outright ownership of the site and secure it for public recreational benefit and the potential for future advancement for education and regeneration.
William Dunlop Memorial project
Agree to fund £13,867 to enable the William Dunlop Memorial project to be completed in the Memorial Gardens in Ballymoney. The money will help to fund necessary ground works and a plinth for a life size bronze sculpture, which has been created using fundraising generated by the project Working Group. The sculpture will cost £31,000 including delivery, and the remainder of the money raised will also go towards making the site ready.
Corporate Policy and Resources
Biblical text at the Crescent, Portstewart
Permit the re-painting of the text without carrying out an equality screening and give permission for the individual to renew the text as and when required.
Rescission of a Preceding Resolution (Dunluce Centre, Portrush)
A majority of members voted to rescind the following motion which was previously ratified at the Council meeting held on November 2nd 2021.
“That Council does not sell to the preferred bidder, but instead repeat the process, go out to the market for a third time with a view to attracting bids which will enhance the town of Portrush and the entire Borough by bringing a year-round experience which can be enjoyed by local families and families visiting the area”.
A new vote was taken on the initial substantive motion:
“Accept Mr O’Donnell’s financial bid of £1.21m and his proposal for the development of a Family Entertainment Centre at the Dunluce Centre subject to due legal process being completed for the transfer of title and any legal covenants concerning the development of the site.”
This motion was subsequently carried.
As per normal Council procedures, all decisions are subject to the ‘call-in’ process.
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