WSCC – MIDDLETON DIVISION
County Councillor Report for Parish Councils November 2017
Love West Sussex
Continued plea to all councillors and members of the Public to use Love West Sussex to report highways defects, uneven pavements, and potholes.
Around 60 children will need adopting this year
Last year in West Sussex around 40 children were found permanent homes with local families through adoption.
However, there are currently very few people ready to adopt a child compared to a large number of children expecting to need adoption in the next year.
WSCC Recommendations for A27 by-pass improvements around Chichester
The County Council has decided that no scheme to improve the Chichester stretch of the A27 should be taken forward in the RIS1 period (2015-20) and that it will continue to work with the local community and key stakeholders to develop a scheme supported by the community as a whole and to bid for funding to deliver that scheme in the RIS2 period (2020-25).
Arun has a new Inspector who is now responsible for both Chichester and Arun Districts. His name is Daniel West (e mail: email@example.com ). The name of the Neighbourhood Police teams has changed to ‘Prevention Teams’. Across the Chichester/Arun Districts there will be 15 PCs dedicated to prevention work, 9 of which will be Prevention Officers and 4 of which will be Sergeants plus 2 admin. There will also be 27 PCSOs who will not have specific areas but work as a team where needed. Enforcement Officers will consist of 6 PCs and 1 Sergeant. Communities are asked to raise local issues in order to ensure that officers are focused where they are needed.
Safer West Sussex Partnership
Key priorities for 2017 to 2020 are Child Sexual Exploitation, Serious Organised Crime, Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence, Drugs and Alcohol, Modern Slavery and the ‘Prevent’ Programme.
Child Sexual Exploitation
Following a serious review case involving child sexual exploitation in Littlehampton, WSCC are keen to encourage all elements of the community, and in particular other local councils, to be vigilant to the signs of children being abused. Training is available if required. A Child Sexual Exploitation toolkit for local Elected Members (including Town & Parish Councils), containing information and practical advice, will be launched on National CSE day on 18th March 2018.
Serious Organised Crime
West Sussex Police are focusing on disrupting pathways into our area from large urban conurbations and protecting vulnerable people who might be pressured into supporting criminal activity
A crime where people are exploited for criminal gain, modern slavery includes domestic servitude, sexual exploittion, forced begging, forced marriage, forced and compulsory labour and human trafficking. There is often coercion involved, such as threats, use of force, deception or abuse of power.
A programme to engage with communities and reduce the risk of terrorism.
Even Better Pavements Programme
About 70 sites have been improved so far in the 2017/18 financial year (at a cost of approx.. £3 million) – compared to 90 for the whole of 2016/17 (at a cost of £2 million) with nearly 4,000km of pavements in the County and every pavement is inspected at least once a year. The Even Better Pavements work is above and beyond the annual road improvements and maintenance programme.
Priority is given to pathways used for approaches to schools, clinics and hospitals, and areas with high footfall, with the aim of helping to protect the most vulnerable in the community from slips, trips and falls on uneven surfaces.
Pavements are reconstructed or given a new asphalt surface. The programme is subject to change, dependent on weather and other factors.
Arun District Council’s Strategic Transport Study Stage 3 assesses the cumulative impacts of development on the network, including A259. It should also be read alongside Arun District Council’s Enterprise Bognor Regis Transport Review 2017, which provides some updates to the transport forecasts. The reports identify the need for some improvements to junctions on the A259, including junction capacity at the A259 / Church Lane junction and safety at the Oystercatcher and Comet Corner junctions. The County Council have said that improvements to the links between the junctions on the A259 may also be required in the plan period.
A feasibility study will need to be commissioned to develop detailed proposals for the junctions on the A259 from Littlehampton Bridge to Hoe Lane and links on this corridor beyond those that are needed to mitigate the severe impacts of development. WSCC have acknowledged that there is a potential to identify improvements that would provide a greater level of mitigation than is required by the NPPF in order to provide betterment compared to existing conditions and to cater for background traffic growth. It will consider this as a potential priority for investment when the Strategic Transport Investment Programme is reviewed in 18/19.
The junction improvements identified to date in the Clymping and Ford area represent what was identified as necessary to meet the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) requirements to avoid “severe residual cumulative impacts” that would otherwise prevent the Arun District Local Plan strategic developments from coming forward. The study has also identified a feasible route for a bridge over the rail line to replace the Ford level crossing.
Provided that identified improvements are technically feasible, they would require external funds beyond those that could be secured through the planning system which would require a Business Case that demonstrates the scheme would be good value for money. Before a Business Case can be produced, it would be necessary to undertake a technical feasibility study to explore possible options as part of the Strategic Transport Investment Programme (STIP).
Local members and stakeholders (including parish councils) will be invited to put forward suggestions for inclusion in the STIP when it is reviewed in summer 2018. These will then be considered and prioritised using an established methodology prior to a draft programme being discussed at the Environmental and Community Services Select Committee in Autumn 2018 prior to a key decision. A feasibility study will only be commissioned once this has been identified as a priority for investment in the STIP.
A259 Cycle pathway from Hoe Lane to Oystercatcher junction
Work has now commenced resulting in delays to traffic on the A259. The work is planned to take up to 6 months. However the contractors are avoiding peak rush hour times to help alleviate some of the congestion.
Cycling and Walking for good health.
A recent cycle seminar has identified the benefits to health, pollution control and minimising fuel costs and consumption. Local Council are encouraged to appoint a cycle champion who would join others to encourage cycling in the local areas focusing particularly on journeys of less than 5 miles and in particular talking to local schools about encouraging children and their parents to not travel by car to school unless absolutely necessary and to cycle to work, to shop and to get to leisure activities locally. A cycle champion could also help define what cycle paths would look like in the local area.
Disposing of waste at local facilities
The County Council will not be charging for the DIY element of ‘non household’ waste at its Household Waste Recycling Depots in West Sussex with effect from 1st. October 2017 until further notice. Charging for disposing of waste had previously been suspended since April this year.
In addition, charges for the disposal of Construction Waste such as Soil, Hard-core, DIY and plasterboard waste will also not apply. However, they have decided to maintain the charging for the disposal of Car and Van Tyres.
The Council will continue its drive to increase recycling in order to drive down the amount that ends up in landfill sites and put material into good use, whilst driving down the £3m of recycling material which is thrown away in general rubbish each year.
Plans are being put in place for the routes which will be gritted during cold weather. These will be confirmed once they are complete.
Even Better Pavements programme locally
Local sites completed in this financial year include:
In Bognor Regis:
- London Road,
- Glamis Street
- William Street,
- Victoria Drive,
- Shripney Road, connecting Shripney village to the rest of Bognor Regis
Community Resilience Programme
The ‘What If’ Community Resilience Programme is offering training for Parish Councils against the backdrop of developing non-emergency community resilience, helping the most vulnerable feel supported and safe, doing the thing in the community that are best delivered collectively and to be there at times of crisis, such as fire, flood or loss of utilities.
The aim is to enable and empower communities in helping recover more quickly and to minimise the burden of local taxation.
They have developed training support modules in order to deliver ‘What If’ training. Modules current and future are:
- Introduction to Emergencies
- You Can Make a difference
- First aid
- Task leadership
- Community Recovery
- Rest Centre Support/Provision of Emergency Welfare.
For those parishes who already have an Emergency Plan in place, they will review it, and following training each parish will receive items of equipment to support the safe engagement of community resilience activities.
Contact is via the Parish Clerk or parish Chair – contact details firstname.lastname@example.org
Outstanding Ford Issues:
Road signs by Ford station level crossing
WSCC are investigating where the original signage went to. They have indicated that the Parish Council might need to pay for reinstatement due to shortfalls in WSCC budgets.
Sproule Close, Johnson Way, Rollaston Park, Ford.
Unfortunately, this project was not considered to be high enough priority to warrant a TRO. However, the support which had been gained from the Parish Council and from a Resident petition for traffic calming and parking restrictions and is now under consideration as a Community Highways Scheme.
Rollaston Park, Johnson Way Resurfacing Work
Re-surfacing work will start taking place between 27th. November and 4th. December and will last for 3 nights.