NORTHAW & CUFFLEY PARISH COUNCIL MINUTES OF THE COUNCIL MEETING, HELD AT 7.30pm ON THURSDAY 20th October 2016 IN CUFFLEY HALL, MEETING ROOM, CUFFLEY
Present Councillor Bob Stubbs (Chairman)
Christine Burrows (Vice Chairman)
Councillor Andrea Allgood
Councillor Mike Clark
Councillor Eric Wilcox
Councillor Peter Dace
Councillor Jane Brook
Councillor Sally Pollitt
Clerk & Proper Officer, Jason Grocock
4 Members of the Public.
1 Member of the Press.
Ward Councillor Bernard Sarson
The Chairman asked if any Member of the public wished to record the Meeting. One person indicated that they wished to record the meeting. The member of the public was made aware of the rules for Recording or Filming Meetings, as agreed by the Council.
Apologies received from Charles Walker MP; County Councillor Mark Mills-Bishop; and Ward Councillors Irene Dene & George Michaelides.
44/16 Declarations of interest:
There were none.
45/16 Minutes of the Council Meeting on 21st July 2016:
Members agreed that the Clerk’s Minutes of the Council Meeting held on 21st July 2016, which had been circulated in advance of the Summons for this Meeting, were a correct record of the Meeting.
46/16 Update by the Local Police:
The Parish PCSO, Ben Arnold, was unable to attend the meeting, but had provided a report on the current Crime Statistics in advance of the Meeting and the Chairman read this out in full.
47/16 Reports of Committees and Working Parties:
Planning Applications Committee:
Councillor Burrows reported in brief on the 18 Planning Applications dealt with since the last Meeting of the full Council on 21st July 2016.
Policy & Resources Committee:
The Chairman reported that there had been no meeting since the last full Council Meeting.
Personnel & Urgency Committee:
There had been no Meetings since the last full Council Meeting.
Neighbourhood Plan Working Group:
There had been no meetings of the Working Group.
Website Working Group:
The Clerk reported on the progress made to date in building the new Website, and provided handouts illustrating the style and content of pages which had been prepared for the new ite. The Clerk outlined the work now required in providing more content for the site and requested contributions from Members.
48/16 Review of Village Day 2016:
Cllr. Pollitt presented a report on the 2016 Village Day. The net cost to the Council for running the event was approximately £800= below the allocated Budget of £5,000=. Cllr. Pollitt and the main organising Committee were thanked for their work in managing the event.
The Council agree to run another Village Day in 2017, and Cllr Pollitt agreed to lead on the management of the event. The Council agreed a provisional budget of £5,000= for this in 2017-18.
49/16 Review of the Capt. William Leefe Robinson Commemoration:
Cllr. Dace presented a report, previously circulated, on the Commemoration, including details of the costs of running the event, which was £115= below the agreed Budget of £5,700=. Cllr. Dace and the Event Committee were thanked for their work in preparing for and presenting the Commemoration Event.
Cllr Dace also proposed that the installation of an information board and the purchase of a display case for items connected with William Leefe Robinson should now be considered, and he would be researching these proposals.
Following consultation with the Clerk, the Council agreed that signed copies of the recently published book written by Ray Rimmel, the Airship VC, could be offered for sale from the Council Office for 3 months at the discounted price of £10=. (RRP £14-99). Commemorative Pencils and Brochures would also be available from the PC Office for 3 months.
50/16 Review of the new system of providing Grants to Voluntary Organisations:
The Chairman and the Clerk commented on the process and outcome of the award of Grants under the new system. The Clerk had circulated before the meeting the final agreed Policy, Rules & Procedures, and also the Minutes of the second meeting of the Grants Panel, which had agreed on 4th August 2016, the award of the grants and any special conditions.
The Council agreed to invite applications from Voluntary Organisations for Grants again in 2017, and that the Clerk should allow for an outline budget of £25,000= in the draft Budget for 2017.
Cllrs Brook, Pollitt, and Wilcox proposed that the rules for awarding grants should be considered further at the next Meeting of the Policy & Resources Committee. This was agreed on the Chairman’s casting vote by 5 votes to 4.
51/16 Outside Committee Reports:
Verbal reports were received from Cllr. Pollitt, (Cuffley Hall); Cllr. Burrows (Kidston Institute); and Cllr. Wilcox, (Northaw Hall). There had been no meetings of the Welwyn Hatfield Association of Local Councils since the last full Meeting of the Parish Council.
Cllr. Pollitt reported that due to the amount of outstanding works required to the Cuffley Hall building, the Executive Committee was estimating a loss of c. £10,000= in the current financial year. The Chairman commented that there was a good possibility of the Hall receiving a significant S106 contribution in the future relating to the KGV North housing development, if this is approved by the Borough Council. The Youth & Community Centre could also obtain a significant contribution, with the total for the two sites being some £100,000=.
In respect of Northaw Hall the Clerk was asked to organise one full Council Meeting at the Hall between May and October 2017.
52/16 The External Audit of Accounts:
The Clerk presented the completed accounts for 2015-16, and the report on the external audit of the Accounts by BDO. The comments by BDO related to technicalities regarding the minutes and advertising the inspection of the accounts.
The accounts are displayed on the Council Office Window, the Council Notice Board, and Website.
The Accounts and Report were accepted by the Council and the suggested actions noted.
53/16 Half Year Budget Monitor Report 2016-17:
The Clerk presented the half year Income and Expenditure Monitor Report, including figures previously circulated. Receipts for the half year were £102,800= above budget, but over £97,000= of this amount related to the early receipt of the second half year Precept. Payments were over £86,000= below budget, as there had been no payments to date in respect of Grants, Major Projects, or the Neighbourhood Plan, and there had been no calls on the Contingency.
The Clerks Report was accepted by the Council.
54/16 The Neighbourhood Plan and the Local Plan:
The Chairman updated Members on the current position regarding the Draft Local Plan, which is currently out for consultation with a deadline for responses of 5-00 p.m. on Monday 24th October 2016; the Clerk will be submitting a detailed response prepared on behalf of the Parish Council by its consultants, AECOM. The Neighbourhood Plan is now being put on hold pending more clarity regarding the Local Plan
55/16 Urgent Business:
There was no urgent business.
56/16 Question Time: There were two questions from the public:
1. Q. Where is the report on outstanding jobs? A. This will be reported first to the next Policy & Resources Committee.
2. Q. Should the Council have a Lengthsman* to check footpaths? A. The Council has a Footpath Warden and a Handyperson for this role.
*A Lengthsman is sometimes now known as a Parish Caretaker. Duties may include, amongst other things: hedge trimming, footpath clearance, verge tidying, litter picking and related things.
57/16 Exclusion of the Press and Public:
The Council passed a resolution in the required form to exclude the Press and Public from the remainder of the Meeting.
58/16 Cuffley Youth Centre – Approval of the Way Forward:
Following the presentation of a brief report by the Chairman, in order to enable regular liaison meetings with the Youth Centre Management Committee to commence, the Council agreed to cease all legal action to terminate the Sub-Lease of land and premises to the Trustees of the Youth Centre.
59/16 Close of Meeting:
In accordance with the published Calendar of Meetings, the next full Meeting of the Council is planned for Thursday 24th November 2016.
As there was no further business, the Chairman thanked everyone for attending and closed the Meeting at approximately 10-10 p.m.
Clerk to the Council: Jason Grocock ABCC (Dip) BSc (Hons) CPFA