Questions to CM Streetscene

Member question: Councillor Chris Evans, received 6 July 2017

Subject: Car park charge points

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/volvo-signals-end-of-road-for-diesel-and-petrol-cars-qsckrx7pj 

Dear Cabinet Member, I'm sure you've read the recent article in The Times in which Volvo have announced they intend to end production of petrol cars within a few years, see link above.

The article goes on to point out the lack of 'charge points' available, this problem is particularly true in Newport.  

Independents are committed to a greener future, and, would like to see Newport lead the way in providing charge points in council owned car parks, our Vision document stated:  

Encouraging a greener lifestyle.

We will work to provide electric car charging points in council car parks at zero cost by working with supply partner.   

What plans does the current administration have to introduce charge points in council owned car parks?  

Response:

The authority has recently recruited an Energy and Sustainability Manager tasked with identifying carbon reduction opportunities for the council.

As part of his work he is currently reviewing the opportunities for both electric vehicle charging infrastructure for both for council employees and residential use. We are also reviewing our existing fleet to identify opportunities to utilise electric vehicles. Issued 17 July 2017


Member question: Councillor Richard White, received 12 October 2017

Subject: Defunct sewage works serving St Peters Crescent, Peterstone 

Can the Cabinet Member tell me what progress is being made to end the tankering of sewage from the defunct sewage works serving the houses in St. Peters Crescent, Peterstone.

This has been going on for over ten years now and although planning permission was granted for a new pumping station some months ago nothing further has happened.

Is it also possible to know the annual costs of the tankering since it first started please.

Response:

The council is currently considering the cost implications of a capital investment in a pumping station at this location, however it needs to be considered alongside other demands for capital and justify a return on investment. 

The cost of tankering is only available for the last 7 years and is as follows:  

2011       £7,220

2012       £24,840

2013       £16875

2014       £15,660

2015       £16,727

2016       £19,403

2017       £42,130

Issued 27 October 2017  

 

Member question: Councillor Matthew Evans, received 11 October 2017

Subject: Newport Castle – removal of flags and repair of floodlights

I recently noticed that the flags from Newport Castle have been removed and the LED floodlighting installed in 2010 is not working. I am not sure who was responsible for removing the flags perhaps you could let me know?

Can you also confirm when the floodlights will be repaired at this landmark site because I have been informed Newport council is responsible for their upkeep.

Response:

Newport Castle belongs to and is the responsibility of Cadw, not the council . The installation of the original lighting scheme and banners were part of the city dressing and enhancement work for the Ryder Cup 2010 and were carried out with one-off Newport Unlimited and Welsh Government grant funding.

The banners were installed with Cadw’s consent and they approved the design and materials for the monument. The original floodlighting contract was arranged by the council, at Cadw’s request, and included LED lighting, as a low-maintenance option.  

In preparation for the NATO conference in 2013/14, we received a request from Welsh Government, via Cadw, to replace the banners which had become worn.

This was funded out of the council tourism budget as part of the marketing of the city. Since then, the banners became damaged beyond repair and were in danger of falling down, so they had to be removed. Again, Cadw agreed to their removal, as the responsible body. 

The column mounted floodlighting maintained by Streetscene remains fully operational. However, there are issues with the LED lights attached to the castle walls.

This LED lighting is not a council asset because it is attached to a building within CADW control. The lighting has now exceeded its design life and it is likely that all the units would have to be replaced due to their age and the harsh environment they have been installed in. 

The council is not responsible for the replacement of the banners or the replacement of the LED lighting and there is no available budget for this. Cadw would have to agree to any further work at this ancient monument site and they would have to identify a budget for this. Issued 20 October 2017 

Member question: Councillor Carmel Townsend, received 9 October 2017

Subject: National Express Coach Stop on Kingsway

Does the Cabinet Member agree that the current coach stop on Kingsway consisting of two small bus shelters is inadequate for passengers?

Large numbers of passengers regularly wait in pouring rain and are not shielded from the wind which is coming off the river.  

Could the Cabinet Member confirm if the council – in conjunction with National Express – has any plans to upgrade the stop at this location?  Could the Cabinet Member also confirm whether there have been direct conversations with National Express about the stop and securing funding to get it improved?   

I am aware of the previous plan for the stop to be located within the Friars Walk bus station but this had to be scrapped when the designed bays were found to be too narrow for coaches.

Response:

National Express  were consulted on the location of the coach stop when there was a problem with them accessing the bus station.

They chose to move from the railway station to Kingsway as it was easier access for the vehicles and for the public as there are closer car parks and it is closer to the bus station.

There have been no issues reported by National Express about the shelter provision at this stop. 

The council will speak with National Express to see if they have any concerns over this stop and will work with them to look at solutions if necessary. Issued 18 October 2017  

Member question: Councillor Matthew Evans, received 5 September 2017

Subject: Parking improvements, city centre

I have been led to believe the Council received a grant from Welsh Government to go towards parking improvements in the city centre. Can you tell me, if this true, how much money was received and what improvements have been made?

Response: 

Newport has not received a specific grant for free parking. The Revenue Support Grant included a notional element, however as the overall settlement for Newport in 2017-18 was lower than the previous year, there was no money to allocate for this purpose. Issued 19 September 2017

Member question: Councillor Chris Evans, received 6 July 2017

Subject: Car park charge points

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/volvo-signals-end-of-road-for-diesel-and-petrol-cars-qsckrx7pj 

Dear Cabinet Member, I'm sure you've read the recent article in The Times in which Volvo have announced they intend to end production of petrol cars within a few years, see link above. The article goes on to point out the lack of 'charge points' available, this problem is particularly true in Newport.  

Independents are committed to a greener future, and, would like to see Newport lead the way in providing charge points in council owned car parks, our Vision document stated:  

Encouraging a greener lifestyle.

We will work to provide electric car charging points in council car parks at zero cost by working with supply partner.  

What plans does the current administration have to introduce charge points in council owned car parks?  

Response:

The authority has recently recruited an Energy and Sustainability Manager tasked with identifying carbon reduction opportunities for the council.

As part of his work he is currently reviewing the opportunities for electric vehicle charging infrastructure for both council employees and residential use. We are also reviewing our existing fleet to identify opportunities to utilise electric vehicles.  Issued: 17 July 2017

Member question: Councillor Matthew Evans, received 15 June 2017

Subject: Parking enforcement

The following information has been received via the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner: 

The decision on parking enforcement is ultimately an operational matter, which presently rests within the remit of the Chief Constable. We can confirm however that, following conversations between the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner, the Chief Constable and the local authorities, starting in the next financial year (April 2018) the Chief Constable has authorized the transfer of authority for parking enforcement directly to local councils. 

This seems to intimate that Newport City Council has agreed to take over parking enforcement next year. Prior to the elections and after a number of concerns were raised about this from members, it was agreed Scrutiny would investigate the issues and make a recommendation to Cabinet. Can you confirm whether or not this is still the case, or has an agreement been reached with the police over this?

Response:

I can confirm that no agreement has been made for the council to take over parking enforcement from next year or at any future date. Officers have spoken with Scrutiny to begin the process of investigating options. Issued 29 June 2017