Agenda and draft minutes

Public Services Board Overview & Scrutiny Committee
Thursday, 23rd January, 2020 1.30 pm

Venue: Chamber, Civic Centre, Hanbury Road, Pontypool. NP4 6YB

Contact: Rachel Beale  Senior Business Support Officer - Democratic Services

Items
No. Item

1.

Welcome & Apologies / Croeso ac Ymddiheuriadau

Minutes:

1.1       Apologies were received from Councillors Huw Bevan and Peter Jones.

2.

Declarations of Interest / Datganiadau o Fuddiant

Minutes:

2.1       There were no interests declared.

3.

Minutes - 12/06/2019 / Cofnodion - 12/06/2019 pdf icon PDF 401 KB

Minutes:

3.1       The minutes of the meeting held on 12th June 2019 were confirmed as an accurate record of the meeting.

4.

Action Sheet / Taflen Weithredu pdf icon PDF 99 KB

Minutes:

4.1       Members noted the content of the action sheet.

5.

Development of the Public Service Board Shared Green Infrastructure Strategy / Datblygu Strategaeth Seilwaith Gwyrdd a Rennir y Bwrdd Gwasanaethau Cyhoeddus pdf icon PDF 362 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

5.1       The Chair thanked everyone for attending and asked the Chair of the Public Service Board (PSB) to give an introduction.

 

5.2       Councillor Anthony Hunt highlighted the following points:

·         Objective 1 of the PSBs well-being plan was to develop a functional, connected network of natural areas that support the current and future well-being needs of local populations.

·         Establishing a green infrastructure was a key component to the objective and involving all partners to sign up to a Green Infrastructure Strategy was the first step.

·         Work had been taking place over the past 18 months to further explore the issues raised in the assessment of well-being and the well-being plan, working with experts in the field and community to draft the Green Infrastructure Strategy.

·         The Board received a presentation of the draft strategy in November and made suggestions on the content which had been addressed including the balance between green spaces and land for employment use.

·         The PSB were about to start a public consultation and further involve communities, businesses and landowners in shaping the document.

·         Today was an opportunity for scrutiny to be involved in the work and the PSB would welcome insight, comments and questions from scrutiny members.

 

5.3       The Group Leader, Economy, Environment & Culture added the following further information:

·         The development of the strategy works to deliver objective 1 and it was a shared approach with PSB partners.

·         The strategy sets out the approach to maximise and increase the well-being benefits that sustainably managed good quality greenspaces provide for current and future well-being needs of local populations.

·         Green spaces provide a range of opportunities such as recreational use, climate change mitigation, flood protection, reclamation of polluted areas, water management and food production.

·         Historically green spaces have not been managed in the best way, however the strategy sets out a new approach in line Welsh Government legislation that better utilises the benefits of green spaces.

 

5.4       Members asked invitees and officers a series of questions and the following responses were given:

·         The Council along with each PSB partner had their own operational budgets which would be adjusted to enable the delivery of the strategy to be funded via those budgets. Natural Resources Wales were also looking for external grants that could be used to help fund the delivery.

·         The final strategy would have page numbers and a contents page to help with navigating through the document.

·         The shared vision in the strategy came out of the wellbeing plan which integrates the requirements of Wellbeing and Futures Generations Act and was broad enough to incorporate a number of wellbeing objectives.

·         Officers agreed to reword the vision to ensure that it was forward vision rather than a current vision, the vision was changed to, Torfaen will have a well-connected and multi-functional green infrastructure network of distinctive, biodiverse and resilient natural spaces, providing social, environmental and economic wellbeing benefits for people. Our natural resources and ecosystems will be managed in sustainable ways to maintain, protect and enhance the network’s integrity and  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.