MINUTES OF THE PARISH COUNCIL POLICY & RESOURCES COMMITTEE MEETING HELD AT 4-00 p.m. ON TUESDAY 10th JANUARY 2017, AT THE COUNCIL OFFICES, MAYNARD PLACE CUFFLEY
Present Councillor Bob Stubbs (Chairman); Councillors Christine Burrows (Vice Chairman); Councillors Sally Pollitt; Peter Dace, and Mike Clark.
In attendance: Councillors Jane Brook and Andrea Allgood. Jason Grocock (Clerk & Proper Officer).
One Member of the Public.
The Chairman asked if the Member of the public present wished to record the Meeting, and he did. Rules have been agreed by the Council regarding the Recording or Filming Meetings. The Committee agreed that items should not be taken in the order to the Agenda, but that items where a decision is required should be taken first. The Clerk was asked to follow this practice for future Agendas for the Committee.
PR/250/16 Apologies: There were none.
PR/251/16 Declarations of interest: There were none.
PR/252/16 Minutes of the last meeting:
The Minutes of the meeting of the Policy & Resources Committee held on 22nd November 2016 as prepared by the Clerk, had been circulated in advance, and were agreed as a correct record of that meeting.
PR/253/16 Revenue Monitor 216-17 & Budget 2017-18:
The Clerk commented on the budget monitor report for the year to 31st December 2016, previously circulated, which continued to show significant savings for the year to date. The Chairman commented on the cost of consultants relating to the Local Plan. The report was accepted. The Clerk then presented a report on the proposed budget for 2017-18, which again had been previously circulated. After questions, the report was accepted and the proposed budget and precept was recommended to the full Council for approval.
PR/254/16 Parish Council CCTV System:
The Committee considered a report circulated by the Clerk in advance of the Meeting, and agreed option “C” in the report for the replacement of CCTV Equipment, but with the addition of the ability to replace failing cameras covering Station Road. The Clerk commented that as one failing camera on Station Road had been repaired, there was only one camera to be replaced, and a replacement could be used to give better coverage. The Clerk was asked to prepare a specification and share with Cllr. Burrows, who could also recommend contractors, and then invite quotations for the work. In terms of replacements of future cameras which may fail, the Clerk was asked to report to the Committee for approval any such replacements of changes.
PR/255/16 Review of Grants Policy:
The Committee agreed the Grants Policy which had been circulated before the meeting. The Chairman explained the background, how the revised Grants Policy was produced, and how the proposed voting system would work in practice. The proposed revisions to the Grants Policy were agreed.
PR/255/16 Maynard Place – Parking and Yellow Lines:
The Committee agreed that the Clerk should write to the Parking Services Manager at Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council to describe the various issues, numerous complaints received, and concerns of the Council regarding the parking problems in Maynard Place, and to perhaps seek a meeting to discuss possible solutions. The letter to be copied to the 3 Ward Councillors for Northaw & Cuffley.
PR/256/16 Collection of Green Waste:
A paper prepared by Cllr. Allgood had been circulated by the Clerk before the Meeting. Following discussion, the Committee agreed that a letter should be sent to the Leader of Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council seeking answers to the queries raised.
PR/257/16 Local Plan:
The Chairman provided a brief update on the current position. Submission was expected to now be around Easter. In considering the Metropolis/Magenta Planning Application there was an indication that the Borough may change the Local Plan. There was some very useful information in the Officers Report on the application which has been passed on to our Lawyer who will be acting for the Parish Council.
PR/258/16 Water Tanks under Northaw Green:
The Chairman briefed the Committee on the background and current issues & concerns. The Green is Common Land, and so not the responsivity of the Parish Council. The Chairman suggested that the best possible action the Parish Council could take was to put signs on the Green warning people no to drive vehicles onto the Green. The Clerk was asked to look at suitable signs and bring the matter back to the Committee, and also write a simple letter to Affinity Water to state that our conclusion is that the Tanks are the responsibility of the Water Company.
PR/259/16 KGV Play Equipment and use of S106 money:
The Chairman proposed that the Council should produce a long term plan for the future needs regarding the Play Equipment, but we need to be clearer about the future of the adjoining Land Improvement Development.
PR/260/16 Outstanding Projects and Works:
The Clerk presented the report previously circulated. Regarding the Community Party, the Committee agreed that they would consider if a revamp was required for the next year. One contact has been found who may be able to build a new Best Kept Village Sign. The Committee agreed that the Clerk should investigate the sourcing of metal wings for the WLR Memorial in the original style of the wings which were stolen.
PR/261/16 Update on Maynard Place:
The Chairman provided a detailed update on the position regarding the illegal occupation of Parish Council Land (Car Parking Space) by the Developer’s Contractors. The Parish Council are progressing an injunction to stop the illegal occupation and use of Council Land.
PR/262/16 Council New Website:
The Clerk provided an update on the progress of the new Website, which went live just before Christmas, although there were a few areas to be completed. Feedback from everyone had been very good, with the odd exception. Dedicated Council E-mails for all Councillors have been provided and will go live very soon. It is important to be aware that the content of the new Council E-mails are part of the Councils official records and as such can be the subject of FOI requests.
PR/263/16 Eligibility for Chairmanship:
The Clerk circulated the proposed wording for a Policy regarding Chairmanship which had been produced after taking advice from HAPTC. A Chairman who is also a Borough Councillor, County Councillor, or Chair of the Residents Association would be expected to resign from these position within 3 months of becoming Chairman of the Parish Council, and failure to resign would result in the Council removing them from all Committees on the Council which they are Members of. The Committee agreed to recommend the Policy to the Full Council.
PR/264/16 Questions from the Public:
There were no questions, but just points or observations made by the Member of the Public regarding Co-Op Lorries parking in Maynard Place whilst the driver takes a break, and the Borough charging for collecting Green Waste.
PR/265/16 Exclusion of the Press & Public:
Following the normal resolution, the Member of the Public left the Meeting.
PR/266/16 Contract re Maynard Place Car Park Ticket Machine:
Cllr. Dace spoke to this item and made a proposal for an additional contract for the collection of cash. The Committee agreed to make no change, but did request a risk assessment and a review of current procedures to be brought back to the Committee.
PR/267/16 Recommendations of the P&U Committee – Staff Salaries and Pensions:
The Chairman reported the decisions of the P&U Committee regarding all Staff Salaries. The result of the pay review for the Groundsman would be backdated to 1st December 2016, the date of completing the probationary period of employment. All other staff pay changes would be effective from 1st April 2017. The next pay review for all staff would be effective from 1st April 2018. The Chairman also reported on the agreement of the P&U Committee regarding the backdating of Employer Pension Contributions for those staff, and the relevant periods, when they were not provided with a Pension. An Employer contribution at the current percentage of the current basic salary rates would be made for those periods, less any backdating already granted.
PR/268/16 Items accepted by the Clerk as Urgent:
Cllr. Clark reported that the Council I-Pad was now going to be unlocked by Apple.
PR/269/16 Close of Meeting:
As there was no other business, the Committee Meeting Closed at 6-30 p.m.