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ENVIRONMENTAL AND CONSUMER PROTECTION

MINUTE of MEETING of the ENVIRONMENTAL AND CONSUMER PROTECTION COMMITTEE held in the Town and County Hall, Forfar on Tuesday 22 February 2000 at 4.00 pm.

Present: Councillors SHEENA WELSH, IAN ANGUS, BILL CROWE, FRANK ELLIS, ALISTAIR GRAY, JOHN HENDERSON, IAN MACKINTOSH, JOY MOWATT, PETER MURPHY, ROBERT MYLES, PETER NIELD and BILL ROBERTON.

Apology: An apology for absence was intimated on behalf of Councillor STEWART McGLYNN.

Councillor WELSH, Convener, in the Chair.

1. EXCLUSION OF PUBLIC AND PRESS

The Committee resolved, in terms of Standing Order 27(2) that the public and press be excluded from the meeting during consideration of item 2 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.

2. LEASED ESTATE CARS ­ ACCEPTANCE OF TENDERS

There was submitted Report No 188/00 by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection giving details of tenders received for the supply of leased estate cars for Roads Department Supervisors.

The Committee agreed to approve the acceptance of the lowest tender for the supply of 11 leased Ford Focus 1.8Tdi CL 5 door Estate Cars, equipped with Climate Pack at a cost of £298.61 per month per car for a three year period.

3. MINUTE OF PREVIOUS MEETING

The minute of meeting of this Committee of 11 January 2000 was approved as a correct record and signed by the Convener.

4. AUTHORISATION OF OFFICERS UNDER THE CLEAN AIR ACT 1993

There was submitted Report No 189/00 (9k) by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection giving details of new regulations relating to the control of the storage of leaded petrol and diesel in connection with the control of pollution. The Report accordingly sought authorisation for certain officers within the Department to enforce provisions contained in Part IV of the Clean Air Act 1993.

The Committee agreed to authorise Trading Standards Officers and Advisers, employed by the Council, to enforce the provisions of Part IV of the Clean Air Act 1993, for the purpose of, inter alia, enforcing the Motor Fuel (Composition & Content) Regulations 1999 made under the said Act.

5. REVIEW OF FEES AND CHARGES ­ WEIGHING AND MEASURING EQUIPMENT ETC

With reference to Article 5 of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 6 April 1999, there was submitted Report No 190/00 (9k) by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection giving details of increased fees and charges for testing and calibration of weighing and measuring equipment etc for 2000/2001.

The overall increase detailed in the Schedule and Appendix to the Report would amount to approximately 2.5% in line with inflation. Provision had also been built into the fee structure to ensure that additional travel costs associated with European Community verification work were charged to ensure that visits, which might be carried out in neighbouring authorities, were cost effective.

Fees for petroleum storage licences were controlled by statute and had last been increased in early 1999. It was likely that increases in these fees would be reported in due course. However, petroleum licensing was due to be phased out and replaced in 2001, with a resultant impact on income.

The Committee agreed:-

  1. to adopt the fees and charges detailed in the Schedule and Appendix to the Report for the year 2000/2001; and
  2. that the contents of the Report be otherwise noted.

6. FOOD SAFETY

  1. National Food Safety Week: 12-18 June 2000

    With reference to Article 6 of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 23 February 1999, there was submitted Report No 191/00 (11k) by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection advising that Angus Council had again been asked to participate in the National Food Safety Week which was due to take place from 12-18 June 2000.

    The Report indicated that the key aim of the event was "Keep it Safe", encompassing all aspects of looking after food safely to prevent food poisoning and reverse the upward trend in the instances of food poisoning. The Environmental and Consumer Protection Service would be using material provided by foodlink to publicise the key themes throughout Angus offering advice, in particular, on food safety issues associated with barbeques.

    The Committee agreed:-

    1. to note the contents of the Report; and
    2. to support the National Food Safety Week Campaign.
  2. The Revision of Codes of Practice Made Under Section 40 of the Food Safety Act 1990

    There was submitted Report No 192/00 (13k) by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection advising the Committee of proposals by the Joint Food Safety and Standards Group to amend Codes of Practice made under Section 40 of the Food Safety Act 1990. The Report set out the proposed changes to the Codes of Practice and indicated that the cost to the Council of implementing the proposals could not be assessed or defined at present.

    The Committee agreed:-

    1. to note the contents of the Report; and
    2. to instruct the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection to respond to the consultation exercise.
  3. EC White Paper on Food Safety

    There was submitted Report No 193/00 (28k) by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection advising that the European Commission had adopted a White Paper on food safety which proposed the establishment of a European Food Authority and set out a "farm to fork" legislative programme. The European Food Authority would be based on the principle of independence, scientific excellence and transparency at all levels of food safety policy implementation, which would foster consumer confidence in food safety policy.

    Having heard Councillor Myles welcome the scientific base for the new Authority, the Committee agreed to note the contents of the Report.

7. BRECHIN RECYCLING CENTRE

With reference to Article 10 of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 11 January 2000, Philip Hudson, Property Services Department, gave a presentation on the proposed layout of the new Brechin Recycling Centre.

Councillors Mowatt and Myles, local members, referred to the benefits to local residents. Councillor Ellis advised that he had recently visited recycling sites and was very impressed by the standards of housekeeping and customer care and asked the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection to congratulate the staff involved. Thereafter, the Committee welcomed the provision of a new recycling centre at Brechin and urged local residents throughout Angus to use recycling sites

8. RURAL REFUSE COLLECTION ­ MONDAY PUBLIC HOLIDAYS

With reference to Article 10 of the minute of meeting of this Committee of 9 November 1999, there was submitted Report No 194/00 (9k) by the Director of Environmental and Consumer Protection recommending an improvement to rural refuse collection services on Monday public holidays. The Report indicated that under the current arrangements, rural areas affected by Monday public holidays did not have refuse collected within the holiday week, although in recent years an agreement with refuse collection staff had reduced the number of Monday holidays to only two. In practical and financial terms, it was now realistic to provide a service on Monday holidays to rural areas affected.

Having heard various members welcome the enhancement of the service to rural areas, the Committee agreed:-

  1. to discontinue the five year rotation of rural refuse collection on a Monday; and
  2. to provide a refuse collection to rural areas on a Monday public holiday.
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