Hothfield Parish Council

...in the rustic heart of Kent


FEBRUARY 2007 MEETING MINUTES

Minutes of the Ordinary Parish Council Meeting

held at The Village Hall, Hothfield,

on Monday 12 February 2007 at 7.00 pm

PRESENT: Mrs S Whittington (Chair), Mr J Collins, Mr P Holloway, Mr L Hughes, Mr L Krause and Mr A Rawlins

Mr C Stanley (Webmaster)

PARISH CLERK: Mrs J Batt

BOROUGH COUNCILLOR: Mr N Wallace

COMMUNITY WARDEN: Lynn Marshall

MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC: There were 3 Members of the Public present

1. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Apologies for Absence were received from Mr P Howard (prior commitment), Mr P Patten (holiday) and Mr R Pitt.

2. DECLARATIONS OF INTERST
There were no Declarations of Interest

Updating of Declarations of Interest for the Code of Conduct
The Clerk reminded Councillors that they should update their Declarations of Interest with the Monitoring Officer if necessary.

3. PUBLIC INTERVAL
It was unanimously agreed to move the Public Interval to this point on the agenda. The meeting was opened to Members of the Public from 7.05 to 7.40 for questions and comment.

4. FREEDOM OF INFORMATION/WEB SITE
As Mr Stanley was present at the meeting, it was agreed to move this item forward.
The Web Site has been live since early July 2006 and is maintained and updated on a regular basis by Mr Stanley. We need to ensure that we update the details of the Village Clubs and Societies regularly and Mr Krause offered to do this each week as he sends the details to the Kentish Express. Mr Stanley asked Councillors to consider a public launch of the site.

We have a link from the KCC Website and following on from the Public Interval a discussion took place as to other links that could be added. This will be discussed at a future meeting once we have ascertained exactly which links can be added.

5. CRIME AND DISORDER
This item was also brought forward. PC Smith sent the crime figures for December and January to the Clerk and they were read out. Although we are still experiencing serious problems in the village, approximately 1/3 of reported crime related to the petrol station.

The names of the young people in the village who are responsible for causing trouble are well known but residents are still not reporting incidents or giving names to the police and as a consequence the police are unable to take any action.

Ashford Borough Council is rewriting its tenancy agreement and has included clear guidelines as to the course of action that will be taken if a tenant causes trouble, but the members of the Housing Department also need tangible evidence before they can take any action.

A discussion took place and the various suggestions were put forward to try and combat the problems and help with gathering evidence.

Councillor Wallace reported that the Housing Department at ABC is making funds available during the coming year to help pay for improvements in Hothfield. This money will be spent according to the needs of Council Tenants. Lynn Marshall and Mr Wallace have meetings arranged over the course of the next month with the CSU and the Housing Department to discuss the problems in Hothfield and the ways in which the money available can best be  spent and they noted the ideas put forward by the Parish Council. Mr Wallace will report back to the Parish Council.

6. ACCEPTANCE OF MINUTES
The account balance should read £8687.40 of which £1500 is earmarked for the Village Appraisal

Minutes 51 of the Extraordinary Planning Committee held on 20 December and Minutes 52 of the last meeting were accepted and it was unanimously agreed that Mrs Whittington should sign them.
51 Proposed Mr Krause Seconded Mr Collins
52 Proposed Mr Krause Seconded Mr Hughes

7. MATTERS ARISING
There were no Matters Arising that are not on the agenda.

8. TRAFFIC CALMING
Nothing to report.

9. VILLAGE APPRAISAL
Nothing to report

10. CORRESPONDENCE, ACCOUNTS AND OTHER COUNCIL BUSINESS
Correspondence
ABC Housing and Council Tax Benefit – Fraud Prevention and Detection
Southern Water
AwCRK Invitation to attend the Community Halls Conference and Fire Safety Briefing – PP
KCC re Local Board 05.02.07
KCC re Proposed Highway Enhancements
Audit Commission
AwCRK Rural Community Opinion Survey 2007
The Marsh Academy
Ashford Borough Council Report of the Parish Forum
AwCRK Invitation to Join
Kent Highways – Additional Understanding Leaflets
Smarden Good Neighbour Scheme
Kent Schools Organisation Committee
KCC Councillor King re Highway Safety Improvements
KAPC Parish News etc
NALC Review of the Quality Town and Parish Council Scheme
Enjoy England


Accounts to be paid

PAYEE DETAILS NET VAT GROSS
Mr C Stanley Webmaster Services £154.00   £154.00


Proposed Mr Krause Seconded Mr Collins

Resolution: Councillors unanimously agreed to pay the above accounts.

Bank Balance
The account balance stands at £8533.40. £1500 of this is earmarked for the Village Appraisal.

11. MUGA
Park Leisure contacted Mr Whittington regarding the specification for the MUGA and she asked them to contact Mr Boorman.

12. RISK ASSESSMENT
Glass has been found in the bark chippings at the play area. The chippings will have to be removed and replaced. The Clerk advised Councillors that the play area should be closed until this has been done. The vandalism will be reported to the police and Mr Hughes agreed to arrange to tape the area off as soon as possible.

13. PLANNING
No applications have been received this month.

14. VILLAGE RESPONSIBILITIES
Tidying Village/Litter Control
Mrs Whittington reported that she had walked round the village with Mrs Marshall, Mr Holloway and Mr Fry from ABC and looked at the condition of the roads and the litter problem. Mr Fry agreed to arrange for various areas to be cleaned and cleared.

The fly tipping along Coach Drive is now considered a health issue. The land is privately owned and Mr Fry said he would speak to the relevant people to see what can be done.

Mr Hughes suggested that the Parish Council look into the possibility of hiring a skip every few weeks to allow villagers the opportunity to dispose of items that they would otherwise fly tip. He said he knew of a village locally that does this and he would try to find out how successful the scheme is.

The item will be included on next month’s agenda.

15. ANY OTHER BUSINESS

PLEASE NOTE: THE APRIL MEETING WILL BE HELD ON 2 APRIL AT THE VILLAGE HALL

There being no further business the meeting closed at 9.35 pm.




Signed …………………………………………………………. Dated …….............................
Mrs S Whittington, Chairman


Last Update  13.03.2007
 2007 Hothfield Parish Council