Agenda and minutes

Virtual meeting, Cabinet - Wednesday, 20th January, 2021 6.00 pm

Venue: Online via the Zoom app.

Contact: Amanda Coombes, Democratic Services Officer  01395 517543 or email


No. Item


Public speaking


Jill Anderson spoke at minute 308, Business Support Grant measures.


Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 231 KB


The minutes of Cabinet held on 6 January 2021 were confirmed as a true record with one amendment to the REASON in minute 295. This now reads;


‘It has been accepted that Cranbrook Town Council are best placed to deliver the project and that they have appropriate resources to enable them to do so.’


Declarations of interest

Guidance is available online to Councillors and co-opted members on making declarations of interest


Min 308. Business Support Grant measures.

Councillor Ian Hall, Personal, Chair of Cloakham Lawn Sports Club.


Min 308. Business Support Grant measures.

Councillor Paul Arnott, Personal, Had a B&B that had been in receipt of a previous grant.


Min 308. Business Support Grant measures.

Councillor Paul Hayward, Personal, Represents a charity that has claimed twice for funding and has been approached by businesses regarding ARG and LRSG applications.


Min 309. Mental Health Challenge for local authorities.

Councillor Ian Hall, Personal, Mental Health Champion for DCC and Vice-Chair for ARC a mental health charity in Axminster.



Matters of urgency

There are two late reports to be dealt with in this way at agenda items 7 and 8.


Information on matters of urgency is available online


There were two late items dealt with under minutes 308 and 309.


Councillor password data breach pdf icon PDF 391 KB

This report is to update members and the public following the discovery and subsequent reporting of Councillor passwords being visible in November 2020.


The Monitoring Officer presented the report that updated members and the public following the discovery and subsequent reporting of Councillor passwords being visible in November 2020. There was immediate action taken by Strata to correct the breach as well as reporting the breach to the ICO; who had recently closed the case. He stated that due to its sensitivity and technical matters that could not be discussed in public, all members had had the opportunity to attend an officer briefing earlier in the day to discuss this in more detail where lots of information had been covered. He told members that shortly after the briefing he had received confirmation that updates to the software would allow members to reset their own passwords in Issue Manager.


Discussions included the following:

·         The report concentrated on fixing the breach and making good procedures

·         Strata provided an excellent service

·         This was a wakeup, call for more regular reviews of security procedures

·         To have occasional independent audits

·         Recommend multiple factor authentication


Through the Chair Cabinet wished to thank Cllr Paul Millar for bringing this crucial matter to the attention of the council.


RESOLVED that Cabinet;

note the content of the report and invite Strata to approach Devon Audit Partnership to maintain a regular review of internal data processes, and that EDDC approaches SWAP for a similar assessment.



It was considered that the Strata Investigation Report and commentary in the report should reassure members around the concerns that had been raised.


Business Support Grant measures pdf icon PDF 465 KB

To seek approval on the government grant scheme policies that need to put in place, including changes to the Additional Restrictions Grant Discretionary Policy now that there is a further period of national restrictions as of 5 January 2021.


Jill Anderson spoke as Chairman of Cranford Sports and Fitness Club, Exmouth.

She stated the club had made an application under the ARG scheme for a grant under the special cases section back in December, just after the second lockdown and asked for consideration to be given to this application. She was acutely aware of the impact that the pandemic and resulting lockdowns had had on the physical, mental and emotional wellbeing of individuals and communities. The Club contributed an important and cost-effective role in supporting the local communities, the NHS and many other local organisations and individuals to recover from this immensely challenging pandemic.


Cranford Sports and Fitness Club was a true independent community amateur sports and fitness club that provided extensive support and facilities to worthwhile community groups and activities such as Help for Heroes, Parkinson’s support groups and disabled sport to name but a few. They provided jobs in the local community having 16 employees and 20 fitness instructors. They use all local companies for all its maintenance and business support and had over 1200 members (pre pandemic) ranging in age from 6 months to nearly 90 years of age. Governance and leadership were provided by an expert volunteer pro bono Board of Directors.


Cranford Sports and Fitness Club had exhausted the support available so far. They were asking for help us to survive this period through to completion of the vaccination programme. 


The Service Lead for Revenues, Benefits, Customer Services and the Service Lead for Growth, Development and Prosperity presented the report which sought approval to launch further grant schemes as well as to make changes to the existing Additional Restrictions Grant policy. These were needed as a result of further period of national and local restrictions from 2 December 2020.  There was an update on the various schemes the council had been running since going into national restrictions from 5 November 2020 including the grant schemes available whilst in Tier 2 and Tier 3.


Discussions included the following:


·         The need for clarity on the role of the Councillor Panel in relation to the ARG scheme, for example to determine special case applications

·         Local businesses cannot prosper until the whole supply change is up and running

·         Leisure facilities need to be given due weight in consideration to these grants

·         Acknowledgment to how tough things were for businesses at the moment therefore it was urgent to move ahead with the East Devon leisure Strategy

·         Armed Forces personnel need the support offered by the Cranford Sports Club as well as young people with mental health issues


The Chair and Vice-Chair wished to thank Libby Jarrett, Andy Wood and their teams for dealing with and understanding all the government guidance with its complexities, and doing this additional work over the last year on behalf of the council which was very much appreciated.



1.    To approve the LRSG (Closed) Addendum & the CBLP Scheme policies.

2.    To delegate authority to the Service Lead for Revenues, Benefits, Customer Services & Corporate Fraud  ...  view the full minutes text for item 308.


Mental Health Challenge for local authorities pdf icon PDF 248 KB

This report explores the Local Authority Mental Health Challenge and considers the implications of signing up to the commitments as a way of promoting mental health awareness and maintaining good mental health for elected members, staff and communities.

Additional documents:


The Strategic Lead Housing, Health & Environment presented the report that explored the Local Authority Mental Health Challenge and considered the implications of signing up to the commitments as a way of promoting mental health awareness and maintaining good mental health for elected members, staff and communities.


The Council already had a number of programmes designed to maintain good mental health and the challenge builds on existing commitments in our Public Health Strategic Plan and our Happy, Healthy, Here programme.


Cllr Steve Gazzard wished to thank John Golding and Cllr Paul Millar for their valuable input into the report. He reminded members that as councillors they were all responsible for the health and well-being of staff as without them the council could not function. He stated that larger workloads were also putting pressure on councillors themselves.


Cllr Tony Woodward as Member Champion for Mental Health thanked John Golding and supported the recommendations in the report.


Further discussions included the following:

·         Councillors must be supportive of staff who were continuing to deliver council services, from the CEO to frontline staff

·         From councillors to staff everyone was having to deal with working as well as their own personal issues brought about through the pandemic making life very difficult for many at the present time

·         The issue of mental health needed to be embraced across all parties to make the best of the new officer post, Member Champion and other initiatives available

·         Welfare of officers should be on the forefront of everyone’s mind. Hope this initiative would help towards a mutual understanding between officers and members

·         Huge stress from increased workloads and especially remote working. Recommendations need thorough risk analysis

·         Councillors need to consider their wording in group emails to each other so as not to come across as insulting



1.    that the Council adopt and sign up to the Local Authority Mental Health Challenge;

2.    that the appointed Mental Health Member Champion have regard to the guidelines contained in the Local Authority Mental Health Challenge in carrying out their role;

3.    a Lead Officer is identified and additional officer capacity is approved to further support staff and facilitate positive mental health for elected members;

4.    the commitment is captured in the updated Council Plan and in our Public Health Strategic Plan, and

5.    that the new officer act as a liaison between the council and other authorities and outside bodies concerned with mental health, as well as the new mental health officer within EDDC housing team and the Mental Health Member Champion. This is to ensure that they have the most current and up to date advice to assist members and officers with signposting should members of the public approach them for assistance.



6.    To approve the Lead Officer role on the basis of a 1 year fixed term post and the necessary budget of circa £50k be taken from the £700k funding provided by Government in relation to COVID.



To take forward the Cabinet’s request to further  ...  view the full minutes text for item 309.