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ANGUS COUNCIL

MINUTE of MEETING of the ENVIRONMENTAL AND CONSUMER PROTECTION COMMITTEE held in the Town and County Hall, Forfar on Tuesday 11 August 1998 at 4.00 pm.

Present: Councillors STEWART MOWATT, STEWART McGLYNN, HELEN ANGUS, IAN ANGUS, WILLIAM CROWE, FRANK ELLIS, Mrs RENATE LAMONT, GLENNIS MIDDLETON, Mrs KATHLEEN RITCHIE, DAVID SELFRIDGE and THOMAS I N YOUNG.

Apologies: Apologies for absence were intimated on behalf of Councillors GEORGE ALLAN and RICHARD SPEIRS.

Councillor MOWATT, Convener, in the Chair.

 

1. REQUEST FOR DEPUTATION

Prior to the commencement of business, the Convener advised that a request had been received from Hospitalfield Area Residents’ Committee for a deputation to be heard in connection with Seed Crushers (Scotland) Limited plant at Arbroath.

The Committee agreed to hear the deputation whereupon Mr Peter Neild and Mrs Jean Meldrum (a) spoke in support of the decision by Arbroath Sheriff Court to impose a fine on Seed Crushers (Scotland) Limited for contravention of its SEPA Authorisation with respect to malodour and nuisance emanating from its premises at Elliot Industrial Estate, Arbroath, (b) expressed concern that local residents continued to experience severe problems of noise and malodour from the plant, and (c) called on Angus Council to apply to the Secretary of State for permission to serve an abatement notice on Seed Crushers (Scotland) in respect of nuisance.

After questions had been asked and answered, Mr Neild and Mrs Meldrum were thanked for their attendance and withdrew to the public benches.

2. MINUTE OF PREVIOUS MEETING

The minute of meeting of this Committee of 26 May 1998 was approved as a correct record and signed by the Convener.

3. SEED CRUSHERS (SCOTLAND) LIMITED, ELLIOT INDUSTRIAL ESTATE, ARBROATH

With reference to Article 4 of the minute of the meeting of this Committee of 26 May 1998, there was submitted Joint Report No 773/98 by the Director of Law and Administration and the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection giving an update on the current position in relation to ongoing legal proceedings with regard to complaints of malodour and noise nuisance emanating from the Seed Crushers (Scotland) Limited premises at Elliot Industrial Estate, Arbroath.

The Committee heard Councillors Angus and Ellis express concern on (a) the problems emanating from the Seed Crushers’ plant and (b) the need to support SEPA.

Thereafter, the Committee agreed:-

(i) to note the contents of Report No 773/98 in relation to the legal proceedings taken thus far;

(ii) to approve the course of action outlined in paragraph 8 of the Report (that, at this stage, the Council should continue to liaise closely with SEPA and support them fully in taking action to bring a resolution to this problem);

(iii) that Angus Council should call upon SEPA to use their full powers to bring a resolution to this problem in the interests of the local residents of Hospitalfield; and

(iv) to instruct the Director of Law and Administration to write to the Secretary of State demanding that he ensure that SEPA should have the powers and resources required to bring the matter to a speedy and satisfactory conclusion.

4. VISIT TO FORFAR RECYCLING CENTRE

The Convener reported on a visit by members of this Committee to the Recycling Centre, Queenswell Road, Forfar earlier this day. Members had viewed the facilities at the recycling centre and had been given a demonstration on the concept of "a recycling lifestyle" which would become part of daily life in the millennium. The visit had also highlighted the recent success of the Department in making compost from garden waste which could lead to savings in landfill tax.

The Committee thanked the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection for an interesting visit.

5. ENVIRONMENTAL AND CONSUMER PROTECTION DEPARTMENT - PLANS

(a) Service Plan 1998/99

There was submitted Report No 774/98 by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection together with the Business and Development Plan for the Environmental and Consumer Protection Department for the year 1998/99 which had been updated to reflect changing circumstances, including the introduction of Best Value, and was designed to act as a focus for all staff in the Department to encourage the ongoing delivery of high quality services.

Having noted that it was likely that this would be the last of the Department’s annual plans following a move towards three year planning, the Committee approved the Environmental and Consumer Protection Department’s Business and Development Plan for 1998/99.

(b) Development Plan - Achievements 1997/98

With reference to Article 8 of the minute of meeting of this Committee held on 12 August 1997, there was submitted Report No 775/98 by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection summarising the main achievements of the Environmental and Consumer Protection Department in the year 1997/98.

The Committee congratulated the Director and staff on the achievements of his Department and noted the contents of the Report.

(c) Best Value Service Review Plan

With reference to Article 7 of the minute of meeting of this Committee held on 12 May 1998, there was submitted Report No 776/98 by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection setting out in an Appendix the proposed Best Value Service Review Plan for the Environmental and Consumer Protection Service for the next five years and explaining the priority given to services in the plan.

The Committee agreed to approve, in principle, the Environmental and Consumer Protection departmental five year Best Value Service Review Plan.

6. COMMERCIAL WASTES - REVIEW OF CHARGES

There was submitted Report No 777/98 by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection setting out proposals for increases in the charges for (a) collection by the Council of commercial and industrial wastes, and (b) commercial and trade concerns depositing wastes at the Recycling Centres.

Having noted that 50% of the increase was due to the landfill tax, the Committee agreed that the undernoted charges be applied from 1 December 1998:-

(i) for commercial and industrial wastes uplifted by the Council:-

£
Two wheeled 240/360 lt - 0.89 (+VAT) per lift
Four wheeled bins 1100/1280 lt - 4.02 (+VAT) per lift
Sacks - 0.70 (+VAT) per lift

(ii) for mixed loads of commercial waste received at the Council Recycling Centres:-

£
Cars, car based vans - 0.89 (+VAT) per load
Medium vans under 3.5 tonnes GVW - 4.02 (+VAT) per load
Trailers up to 2 tonnes GVW and - 4.02 (+VAT) per load

(iii) that no charge be made where the total load/item consisted of uncontaminated materials acceptable by the Council for recycling.

7. FOOD SAFETY - TRAINING SEMINARS

With reference to Article 9 of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 13 January 1998, there was submitted Report No 778/98 by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection advising that, in response to concerns expressed by Food Safety Officers that food business proprietors were failing to comply with the risk assessment provision of the Food Safety (General Food Hygiene) Regulations 1995, a series of seminars were being held in Arbroath, Montrose and Forfar to encourage proprietors to comply with the Regulations.

The Committee agreed:-

(i) to note the initiative to assist food business proprietors in complying with Regulation 4(3) of the Food Safety (General Food Hygiene) Regulations 1995; and

(ii) to urge food business proprietors to take advantage of the seminars being provided by the Environmental and Consumer Protection Department.

8. REVISED GUIDANCE ON COOKING BURGERS

There was submitted Report No 779/98 by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection advising that revised guidance by the Chief Medical Officer of Health in Scotland had been issued in response to concern expressed regarding the safe cooking of minced meat products at barbecues.

The Committee agreed:-

(i) to note the contents of Report No 779/98; and

(ii) to urge members of the public to follow the "Food Safety Checklist for Barbecues" appended to the Report.

9. EXCLUSION OF PUBLIC AND PRESS

The Committee resolved, in terms of Standing Order No 27(2) that the public and press be excluded during consideration of items 10 and 11 below so as to avoid the disclosure of information which was exempt in terms of Part 1 of Schedule 7A of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973, paragraphs 6, 8 and 9.

10. ATTENDED PUBLIC TOILET ("SUPERLOO") - CARNOUSTIE TOWN CENTRE

With reference to Article 28 of the minute of meeting of the Policy and Resources Committee of 23 June 1998, there was submitted Report No 780/98 by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection setting out various options for the provision of an attended public convenience for the centre of Carnoustie.

The Committee agreed:-

(i) to note the terms of Report No 780/98;

(ii) to instruct the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection and the Director of Property Services to enter into discussion with the owners of any suitable properties on the possibility of acquiring a building to provide a "Superloo" public toilet in Carnoustie; and

(iii) to instruct the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection to report back to this Committee on the outcome of such discussion.

11. SURPLUS LAND DISPOSAL - GUYND QUARRY, CARMYLLIE

Having noted that the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection had very recently received further information with regard to Report No 772/98, the Committee agreed that the Report be deferred for further consultation.