Agenda and minutes

Policy Overview Committee
Tuesday 11 September 2018 7.00 pm

Venue: B12

Contact: Email: 

Note No. Item


Apologies for Absence


Apologies for absence were received from Councillors S H Brown, J Burrell, Mrs. D Page and A S Sandhu MBE.


The Chairman welcomed Members and Officers to the meeting together with Mrs Patricia Chapman, Dartford Tenants’ & Leaseholder’ Forum representative.



Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations of interest from Members including the terms(s) of any Grants of Dispensation.


There were no declarations of interest made.


Confirmation of the minutes of the Policy Overview meeting held on 12 June 2018 pdf icon PDF 157 KB




That the Minutes of the Policy Overview Committee meeting held on 12 June 2018 be confirmed as accurate.


Urgent Items

The Chairman will announce his decision as to whether there are any urgent items and their position on the agenda.


The Chairman confirmed that he had to items of urgency to bring to Members attention.


To consider references from other Committees (if any)

There are no references from other Committees at present.


There were no references from other Committees for Members to consider.


Regulation 9 Notice pdf icon PDF 62 KB

To consider any issues arising from the Regulation 9 Notice for the period 10 August 2018 to 31 December 2018.




1.    That the contents of the Regulation 9 Notice for the period 10 August 2018 to 31 December 2018 be noted.



Action Points Arising from the Policy Overview Committee Meeting held on 12 June 2018 pdf icon PDF 56 KB

To note the list of action points arising from the Policy Overview Committee meeting held on 12 June 2018.


The standard update report from the Committee Clerk asked Members to note the list of Action Points arising from the previous meeting of the Committee held on 12 June 2018.


Members were advised of the following further developments and proposed action:


Item 1 Health Funding


The Strategic Director (External Services) informed Members that following discussions with Mike Gilbert at DGS CCG, it was suggested that the Committee would not write a further letter to the Minister in support of a funding increase for the CCG and the NHS Trust at this stage, but assess the case for increased funding for the CCG and Trust logically, through the Council’s review process of the current Local Infrastructure Delivery Plan (LIDP).


As part of that review, the Council would consult the CCG, NHS Trust and the GP Federation (given the pressure on Dartford GP resources) on their future need under the revised LIDP, before making a further bid for increased funding to NHS England based on the needs identified in the review. The review process was expected to take some 6-9 months commencing with the necessary data gathering exercise.  As a long-standing Committee item, the outcome of this research would be reported back to the POC.


Item 2: Charing for GP Referral Letters


The Vice-Chairman advised that the surgery in question, in isolation, continued to charge for non-clinical referral letters despite her representations. She would continue her dialogue with the surgery and other Members also undertook to speak to the surgery manager on the issue and report back.


Item 3: Presentation from the Chairman of Relate Medway & North Kent


The Chairman advised that Dan McDonald had been unable to address Members that evening due to other pressing diary commitments. A further invitation would be issued to Relate to attend POC and address Members in December 2018.


Item4: Local Community Pharmacy Services


Members noted a written response from the DGS CCG concerning the points raised by John O’Sullivan (Kent Local Pharmaceutical Committee) in his presentation to the Committee on 12 June 2018.


Whilst noting the CCG response to the points raised by KLPC, some Members expressed their continued concern that whilst many non-prescription items were available cheaply over the counter, many residents were still paying excessively for other non-prescription items.


Item 5: Welfare Reform Update


Members noted the proposal by the Strategic Director (Internal Services) that the next Welfare Reform Update be taken in December 2018 and that the Work Plan had been amended to reflect the proposal.


Item 6: Presentation by Virgin Care


Members were advised that it had not been possible to contact Virgin Care in the required time-frame for a presentation that evening. It was now proposed that Virgin Care attend POC in March 2019; together with representatives of the DGS CCG and the NHS Trust, to enable Members to be briefed on all the health care services available to Dartford residents. The Work Plan would be updated accordingly.




1.    That the list of Action Points arising from the Committee’s  ...  view the full minutes text for item 21.



To receive a presentation from the Chairman of Relate Medway & North Kent (including Dartford) Mr Dan McDonald.


In the absence of a Relate representative, this item was rescheduled for the Committee’s meeting on 11 December 2018 [Min. No. 21 – Item 3 refers]. 


Virgin Care

To receive a presentation from a representative of Virgin Care (South) on the company’s contribution to overall care provision in Dartford.


In the absence of a Virgin Care representative, this Item was re-scheduled for March 2019 [Min. No. 21 – Item 6 refers].


Air Quality Annual Status Report 2018 pdf icon PDF 63 KB

This report and attached Appendix A provides for Members’ information the Council’s Air Quality Annual Status Report 2018.


Additional documents:


The covering report from the Council’s Scientific Officer provided Members with information on pollution levels across the Borough, and within the 4 (four) declared Air Quality Management Areas, together with an update on the Council’s Air Quality Action Plan.


The Council’s 2018 Air Quality Status Report (ASR) was attached at Appendix A to the report, in fulfilment of Part IV of the Environment Act 1995, Local Air Quality Management.


The Council’s Senior Environmental Health Officer (SEHO) referred the Committee to paras 3.1 to 3.8 of the covering report [agenda pages 25/26] regarding measures to tackle roadside nitrogen dioxide concentrations, and highlighted the following key points:


·         Previous discussion at POC had centred on DEFRA’s published Plan for tackling roadside NO2 concentrations, and discrepancies within the  Plan’s predicted/modelled data used to assess those authorities failing to meet national objectives, and the Council’s own measurements to measure roadside NO2 concentrations. Whilst the Council’s data did not tally with DEFRA’s it remained valid and the Council continued to have duties to mitigate against poor air quality under the Local Air Quality Management regime;


·         As a result of the divergence in data between DEFRA’s UK Plan and the Council’s data the Council was not compelled to either implement a Clean Air Zone or undertake a scoping exercise, and the money ring-fenced by DEFRA for such measures was not therefore available to the Council to undertake such work independently, if it chose to do so;


·         The UK Plan had been challenged by Client Earth in the High Court in February 2018 on a number of issues, including the validity of the methodology used by DEFRA to generate results, but the High Court had ruled that DEFRA’s methodology was compliant with EU requirements;


·         In essence, the High Court ruling meant that DEFRA’s methodology for measuring roadside concentrations of NO2 emissions could not be compared with the Council’s on a like for like basis (comparing apples with pears principle), that Dartford’s exclusion from the UK Plan could be justified by DEFRA and that it would be fruitless for the Council to challenge this point further.


The SEHO gave the following summary in regard of the 2018 Annual Status Report (ASR) – Appendix A to the report;


·         The ASR was a DEFRA requirement from all local authorities and presented the results of the Council’s air quality monitoring undertaken in 2017;


·         The overall headline from the ASR was that air quality was improving across the Borough in line with national trends and improvements in other Districts.


He made the following detailed comments with regard to:


Air Quality Monitoring Stations


The Council currently operated three real time Air Quality Stations [Appendix D agenda p. 81] located at:


·         Dartford Town Centre

·         Bean Interchange

·         St Clements Roundabout


·         Page 21 of the ASR  [agenda p. 55] showed the NO2 Annual Mean Concentration (ug/m3) from each of the three sites;


·         In 2017 exceedances of the national objective level for NO2 emissions were monitored at St Clements Roundabout and the Bean Interchange whilst the Town Centre  ...  view the full minutes text for item 24.


Corporate Plan - Key Actions and Performance Indicators Monitoring Report pdf icon PDF 54 KB

This report provides the progress with the latest set of Corporate Plan key actions and performance indicators for Quarter 1 of 2018/19.

Additional documents:


The Chairman noted that the standard report noting progress on the latest set of Corporate Plan Key Actions and Performance Indicators for Quarter 1 of 2018/19 had been noted by CAP B the previous week without comment.




1.    That Members note the contents of the report and the detail set out in Appendices A and B respectively.



Policy Overview Committee Rolling Work Plan 2018-19 pdf icon PDF 55 KB

This report and Appendix A sets out the Committee’s rolling Work Plan for the remainder of the current 2018-19 municipal cycle.

Additional documents:


The report set out the Committee’s rolling Work Plan for the period September 2018 to March 2019 as recorded in the attached Appendix A. The report also listed (para 3.6) additional work areas for consideration by the Committee yet to be scheduled.


The Chairman confirmed the following amendments/additions to the published Work Plan as agreed by Members during the consideration of earlier agenda items:


·         Renewed invitation to Mr Dan McDonald, Chair of RELATE (Medway and North Kent) to brief the Committee on the organisation’s work with Dartford residents (first mooted for September 2018) – December 2018;

·         Invitation to Virgin Care to address the Committee on their service provision to Dartford NHS Trust (first mooted for September 2018) – to be re-scheduled for March 2019 to co-ordinate attendance with DGS CCG and NHS Trust representatives.




1.    That the published Work Plan at Appendix A to the report, together with the additions/amendments Minuted above, be noted;


2.    That Appendix A to the Work Plan record 4 (four) quarters of proposed activity.