Agenda and minutes

Environment Scrutiny Panel - Monday 10th July, 2023 10.00 am

Venue: Spencer Room, Town Hall

Contact: Joanne Dixon 

No. Item


Declarations of Interest


There were no Declarations of Interest made by Members at this point in the meeting.


Minutes of the Previous Meeting of the Economic Development, Environment & Infrastructure Scrutiny Panel, held on 22 March 2023 pdf icon PDF 132 KB

Item for Information


The minutes of the previous meeting of the Economic Development, Environment and Infrastructure Scrutiny Panel held on 22 March 2023 were submitted for information and noted.



Minutes of the Previous Meeting of the Culture & Communities Scrutiny Panel, held on 23 March 2023 pdf icon PDF 362 KB

Item for Information.


The minutes of the previous meeting of the Culture and Communities Scrutiny Panel held on 23 March 2023 were submitted for information and noted.



Overview of Environment & Community Services pdf icon PDF 289 KB

The Director of Environment and Community Services will be in attendance to provide the Panel with an overview of the services provided across the Directorate and will also highlight the strategic and departmental priorities for the coming year.


Recommendation: That the Panel notes the information provided and considers the information when formulating its Work Programme at the next meeting.


G Field, Director of Environment and Community Services, was in attendance at the meeting to provide the Panel with an overview of the services within the Directorate, which fell within the Panel’s remit, and to highlight the key priorities for the year ahead which the Panel may wish to consider when planning its work programme at the next meeting.


Environment and Community Services covered the following areas:-


·        Environment Services

·        Highways and Infrastructure

·        Property and Commercial Services

·        Community Services

·        North East Migration Partnership


The Panel was provided with information in relation to each of the above areas, as follows:-


Environment Services


·        Waste Services and Recycling – This service provided collection of domestic household waste, recycling and green waste as well as the collection of bulky household items (by arrangement), pest control and the Waste Disposal Contract.


The Panel was informed that Middlesbrough Council was part of a procurement exercise being undertaken alongside the Tees Valley local authorities (Stockton, Hartlepool, Redcar and Cleveland and Hartlepool Councils), as well as Newcastle and Durham Councils to procure an operator for a new Energy from Waste facility.  Middlesbrough Council’s current waste disposal contract with the Energy from Waste plant located at Haverton Hill was due to expire in 2025 and succeeded by the joint waste management contract, with the other north east councils.  It was anticipated that the new facility would be built on land at Teesworks near Redcar and be operational from 2026.  The contract to run the facility on behalf of the Councils would be for a period of 24 years, with an option to extend.  It was hoped that further details regarding a successful bidder would be available by early 2024.


·        Area Care – Responsible for the Green Strategy; cleaning and maintenance of play areas, alleyways, grounds maintenance, streets, trees and arboriculture, parks maintenance and burials.  Also included safe and appropriate disposal of dead animals and needles.


·        School Catering – The majority of schools now had contracts with external catering providers.


During discussion, the following issues were raised:-


·        A Panel Member queried the current position regarding the standards of grass cutting and weeding across the town and whether Councillors could provide this information to residents who had raised it as an issue.  The Director explained that the frequency of grass cutting and weed spraying had been reduced due to available resources.  Weed spraying had decreased from three to four times per year to once or twice per year and that the strength of weedkiller permitted for use had reduced which meant that it was not as effective.


·        A Panel Member stated that he had received complaints regarding grass cuttings not being blown away/collected and the Director confirmed that staffing levels no longer allowed for blowers to be used and that the grass was only cut.


·        Reference was made to alley cleansing and it was explained that this was undertaken with mechanical brushes.  It was acknowledged that complete alley cleansing was no longer undertaken due to limited resources and discussion took place amongst  ...  view the full minutes text for item 23/4


Proposed Schedule of Meeting Dates for 2023/24 pdf icon PDF 14 KB

Recommendation: The Panel is asked to consider the proposed schedule of meeting dates for 2023/24 and to agree a finalised schedule.


A proposed schedule of meeting dates for the Environment Scrutiny Panel for the 2023/24 Municipal Year was submitted for the Panel’s consideration.


AGREED that future meetings of the Environment Scrutiny Panel would take place on the following dates, all at 10.00am:-


·        Tuesday, 12 September 2023

·        Monday, 9 October 2023

·        Monday, 13 November 2023

·        Monday, 11 December 2023

·        Monday, 15 January 2024

·        Monday, 5 February 2024

·        Monday, 4 March 2024

·        Tuesday, 2 April 2024