Hothfield Parish Council

...in the rustic heart of Kent



 
 MAY 2019 PARISH COUNCIL
MEETING MINUTES

 

MINUTES 186                                                   Page 882
 

DRAFT Minutes of the Annual Parish Council Meeting

held at The Bluebell Centre, Hothfield,

on Wednesday 15 May 2019 at 7.00 pm
 

[DRAFT - to be approved at the next PC Meeting]

 
PRESENT:  

 
Mr I Lloyd (Chair following election), Mrs S Parker, Mrs P Sutcliffe,
Mr G Cox, Mr P Fothergill, Mr R Vernon


PARISH CLERK: Mrs J Batt
BOROUGH COUNCILLOR: --
COUNTY
COUNCILLOR:
--
MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC:
  

There were 3 Members of the Public present.

Prior to the meeting Councillors signed their Declaration of Acceptance of Office and took DPI Forms to complete, and send to ABC with a copy for the Clerk

 

1.    ELECTION OF CHAIRMAN

Mrs Sutcliffe proposed Mr Lloyd for the position of Chairman, seconded by Mrs Parker.  There were no other nominations.   

 

Mr Lloyd agreed to accept the position of Chairman for the coming year.

 

Mr Lloyd signed his Declaration of Acceptance of Office.

 

2.       EMPLOYMENT OF LOCUM CLERK

Councillors unanimously agreed to employ Mrs Judith Batt for 20 hours for the month of May at £12.815 per hour.

 

3.    CO-OPTION OF PARISH COUNCILLORS

Mr Lloyd  proposed Mr Cook for the vacant position of Parish Councillor, seconded by Mr Fothergill
Unanimous

 Mr Lloyd proposed Mrs Merrion for the vacant position of Parish Councillor, seconded by Mrs Sutcliffe.           Unanimous

 

Mr Cook and Mrs Merrion completed their Declaration of Acceptance of Office and took a DPI for to complete and return to ABC by 31 May 2019.

           

4.    APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

An Apology for Absence was received from Borough Councillor, Mrs C Bell.

 

5.       DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

Declarations of Pecuniary Interest

There were no Declarations of Pecuniary Interest.

 

Declarations of Significant Interest

There were no Declarations of Significant Interest.

 

iTo note the granting of any Requests for Dispensations and the decision

No requests received.

 

ii) Updating of Declarations of Interest for the Code of Conduct

Councillors are reminded that they should update their Declarations of Interest with the Monitoring Officer if necessary.

6.   ELECTION OF VICE CHAIRMAN

Mr Lloyd proposed Mr Fothergill for the position of Vice Chairman, seconded by Mrs Parker.  There were no other nominations

 

Mr Fothergill agreed to accept a position of Vice Chairman for the coming year.

7.  ELECTION OF OFFICERS TO COMMITTEES AND OUTSIDE BODIES FOR THE TERM OF THE COUNCIL

Finance and Policy Advisory Group – Mr Lloyd, Mrs Sutcliffe and Mrs Merrion

Village Hall Committee – Mrs Parker

KALC – Mr Lloyd, Mr Fothergill and Mr Cox

Parish Forum – Mr Lloyd and Mr Fothergill

Police Committees – Mrs Parker

Disciplinary and Grievance Committee – Mr Fothergill, Mrs Parker and Mrs Sutcliffe

Appeals Committee – Mr Lloyd, Mrs Merrion and Mr Cook

Councillor to serve on reciprocal Complaints Committee for Little Chart Parish Council if required – Available Councillors

Any other Committees requested by Councillors – None

 

Resolution:  Councillors unanimously agreed to the above appointments

8.   DELEGATION OF RESPONSIBILITIES FOR THE TERM OF THE COUNCIL

Annual Review all Parish Council paperwork – August – Finance & Policy Advisory Group

Six Monthly Review of Fixed Assets – September and March –  Mrs Parker

Six Monthly Risk Assessment/Financial Risk Assessment – September and March –  Mrs Parker         

Internal Parish Council Audit – Mr L Robbins                                                                                                             

Finance – Finance & Policy Committee     

Annual Review of Insurance Arrangements – On receipt of renewal – All Councillors

Weekly MUGA and Youth Shelter Safety Check – Mr Cook

Annual Inspection of MUGA and Youth Shelter – The Play Inspection Company

Councillors responsible for Website and Publicity – Mr Fothergill

Councillors responsible for assisting with Transparency and Data Protection – Mr Lloyd

Councillors responsible for accuracy of Council Policies Finance and Policy Advisory Group

Councillor responsible for Post and Emails – All Councillors

Councillor responsible for Returning Questionnaires – Mrs Sutcliffe and Mr Cook

Councillor responsible for Submitting Report to Kentish Express – Mr Fothergill

Any other responsibilities put forward by Councillors

 

Resolution:  Councillors unanimously agreed to the above appointments

           

9.    PUBLIC INTERVAL

The meeting was opened to the Members of the Public present from 7.23 – 7.35 during which time the Parish Council was advised to allocate some funds towards the refurbishment of the MUGA.

 

The members of the Council were also asked to find out whether Mather and Smith are adhering to the conditions laid down by ABC in relation to their new development.

     

It was suggested that the question of the Visitor Centre might be investigated again.

 

10.      REVIEW AND ADOPTION OF STANDING ORDERS AND FINANCIAL

           REGULATIONS

           The Finance and Policy Advisory Group will review the Standing Orders and Financial

           Regulations.     

 

11.      REVIEW OF LAND AND ASSETS BELONGING TO THE COUNCIL

The Finance and Policy Advisory Group will review the Fixed Assets belonging to the Council.

 

12.      CONFIRMATION OF INSURANCE ARRANGEMENTS IN RESPECT OT ALL

           INSURABLE RISKS  

           Renewal of Insurance for 2019/2020

           The renewal documentation was sent to all councillors who agreed that it was in order.    

          

             Self-Insurance of Parish Council Assets

             Resolution:  Councillors unanimously agreed to continue to self-insure the Litter Cart.

 

13.      REVIEW OF SUBSCRIPTIONS

Councillors unanimously agreed to continue to subscribe to the following:

Kent Association of Local   Councils      

Wealden Wheels

 

14.      REVIEW OF COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE

Councillors unanimously agreed that the Complaints Procedure was in order.

 

15.      REVIEW OF THE COUNCIL’S POLICIES AND PRACTICES IN RESPECT OF

           ITS OBLIGATIONS UNDER THE FREEDOM OF INFORMATION AND DATA

           PROTECTION LEGISLATION

Councillors unanimously agreed that the policies in place in respect of Freedom of Information Legislation and Data Protection are in order.

 

16.      REVIEW OF THE COUNCIL’S POLICY FOR DEALING WITH THE PRESS/MEDIA

Councillors unanimously agreed that the policy in place is in order

 

17.      REVIEW OF THE COUNCIL’S EMPLOYMENT POLICIES/PROCEDURE

Councillors unanimously agreed that the policy in place is in order.

         

18.      RESOLUTION TO ADOPT THE POWER OF GENERAL COMPETENCE AND

           REVIEW OF THER COUNCIL’S EXPENDITURE INCURRED UNDER THE POWER

           OF GENERAL COMPETENCE

As the Council no longer has a qualified Clerk, Councillors were unable to resolve to adopt the Power of General Competence.

 

No monies were spent under this power during the Financial Year 2018/2019. 

 

At present no expenditure is expected under this power during 2019/2020.  Any expenditure during the forthcoming year will be documented.

 

19.      DETERMINING THE TIME AND PLACE OF ORDINARY MEETINGS UP TO AND

           INCLUDING THE NEXT ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

Meetings will usually be held on the 1st Wednesday of each month at 7.00 pm in the Bluebell Centre, excluding August and December or January.

 

The next APM and APCM will be held on 6 May 2020.

 

Any amendment to this arrangement will be advertised on the noticeboard and website.

 

20.      ACCEPTANCE OF MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETING

Minutes 185 were accepted and it was unanimously agreed that Mr Lloyd should sign them as a true record of the meeting.

  

         Proposed  Mrs Parker              Seconded  Mr Lloyd

 

21.     MATTERS FOR REPORT ARISING FROM PREVIOUS MINUTES

Mr Lloyd will contact Southern Water to try and ascertain the progress being made regarding replacing the sewer pipe.

            

22.    CORRESPONDENCE AND OTHER GENERAL COUNCIL BUSINESS

           Correspondence

 Arbor

 EDF notification that the Direct Debit for the electricity for the MUGA is being reduced to £3.00 per month.

 Clerk and Councils Direct

 HAGS

 

Email Correspondence

Councillors did not bring any emails to the attention of the Council.

  

Arrangements for dealing with Parish Council Post and Emails

The Clerk will inform Mr Lloyd of any significant post as it arrives.

 

Emails

All emails are forwarded to all councillors who will monitor them and bring any of particular importance to Hothfield to the attention of Councillors at the next meeting.

           

Councillors should inform the Clerk if they wish a particular email to be included on an agenda for discussion.

 

Mr Lloyd will inform the Clerk of any emails he feels Hothfield should unsubscribe from.

 

Chairman’s Update

The Chairman had nothing to report that was not covered on the agenda. 

 

MUGA and Youth Shelter

Mr Cook noted that the large hole inside the shelter needs attention. If possible could it be filled in with the proper material, as he thinks that this could be a health and safety issue.

 

Website

We are still waiting for the website to be migrated to KCC.

 

Risk Assessment

A Risk Assessment will be carried out in June.

 

Storage of Parish Council Documents

Councillors are satisfied that the minutes and all other documents are secure in the filing cabinet in the Bluebell Centre.

 

Retention and Storage of Post and Emails

Post that is not specific to Hothfield will not be kept unless it is considered to be important, or the Clerk is particularly asked to keep it.  Old post will be recycled.

 

Emails

Sensitive emails should be printed off by the Clerk.  Councillors should inform the Clerk if they wish a particular email to be printed.  Emails to be kept indefinitely.

 

IT Security

Councillors should all bear the following in mind when using their home/work computer for Parish Council business.

 

All councillors should provide the Parish Council with a secure email address and ensure that virus software is current.

 

Councillors should be aware that all correspondence and emails are confidential until they are tabled at a Parish Council meeting.  If anyone else is privy to the information contained in emails received by you on a home/work computer, please ensure that they are aware of this fact.

 

Councillors should all ensure that their computers are encrypted and should not use mobile phones to receive Parish Council information.

 

The Freedom of Information Act now extends to emails that would previously have been considered to be private, if they relate to Council business.

 

Compliance with Transparency Code

All information required under the Transparency Code is published on the website.

 

Compliance with Data Protection Legislation

This matter continues to be progressed.

 

Storage of Computer Records

All information is backed up on The Cloud.  Councillors are satisfied that the cloud is in Europe.

 

Social Media Policy

Councillors unanimously agreed that the policy in place is in order.

 

Terms of Reference for Finance and Policy Committee

These will be reviewed.

 

Container on MUGA

Mrs Sutcliffe reported that she has sourced a locked bin at a cost of £149.00 + £30 delivery.  

 

Councillors unanimously agreed that Mrs Sutcliffe should place the order and arrange for delivery.

 

Update on employment of Parish Clerk

Mrs Sutcliffe and Mr Vernon interviewed 5 candidates and Councillors agreed on the successful candidate who will be offered the position.  The candidate’s references will be followed up.

 

Speed Signs

Defer to next meeting.

 

23.    FINANCE AND GENERAL COUNCIL BUSINESS

           Internal Auditors Report

Not yet received.

 

             Review of the Effectiveness of the Internal Auditor

Councillors unanimously agreed that they were satisfied with the effectiveness of the Internal Auditor, Mr Lionel Robbins and agreed to employ him again next year.

 

Resolution to Certify Hothfield Parish Council as exempt from a Limited Assurance Review under Section 8 of the Local Audit (smaller authorities) Regulations 2015

 The requirements are as follows

  • Total gross income and total gross expenditure below £25k and
  • no public interest report/statutory recommendation/advisory notice/judicial review/application to court re unlawful item of account issued by external auditor in the prior year and
  •  been in existence since before 1/4/14

 

         Resolution:  Councillors unanimously agreed that Hothfield Parish Council met

                                the criteria laid down above and it was therefore agreed that

                                the Chairman and Clerk should sign the Certificate of Exemption.

 

            Proposed  Mr Lloyd                                              Seconded Mr Fothergill

 

Review of Statement of Internal Control

Councillors were satisfied that the Statement of Internal Control, was in order and Mr Lloyd and the Clerk signed the document. 

 

Consideration of the Findings of the Review by Members of the Meeting as a Whole

Councillors considered the findings of the review and agreed they were satisfactory.

 

Approval of the Annual Governance Statement by Resolution – Sec 1

Councillors completed the Annual Governance Statement.

 

Resolution:  Councillors unanimously approved the Annual Governance Statement.

 

Proposed: Mr Lloyd            Seconded:  Mrs Parker

 

Signature and Dating by the person presiding at the meeting and The Clerk – Sec 1

Mr Lloyd and the Clerk signed and dated the Annual Governance Statement.

 

Consideration of the Accounting Statements by Members of the Meeting as a Whole

Councillors considered the Accounting Statements and agreed they were accurate.

 

Approval of the Accounting Statement by Resolution – Sec 2

Councillors considered the accounting statement.

 

Resolution:  Councillors unanimously approved the Accounting Statement.

 

Proposed: Mr Lloyd                  Seconded:  Mr Fothergill

 

Signature and Dating by the person presiding at the meeting – Sec 2

Mr Lloyd signed and dated the Accounting Statement, previously signed and dated by the Clerk

 

Sections 1, 2 and the Internal Auditors Report will be published on the notice board and website.

 

Review of Direct Debits

Resolution:  Councillors agreed to continue to pay the electricity bill for the MUGA by Direct Debit.

 

          Accounts to be Paid

PAYEE

CHQ

NO

DETAILS

NET

£

VAT

£

GROSS

£

Mrs J Batt

 

Salary

General Admin

Expenses

Less on account April

 438.74

   34.76

   15.00

-200.00

 

 

 

   288.50

Mr K Marden

 

Salary

Less on account April

 203.58

-100.00

 

 

 103.58

Came & Co

 

Insurance Premium 2019/2020

778.69

 

778.69

 

Resolution:  Councillors unanimously agreed to pay the above accounts and noted the Direct Debit Payment to EDF for the electricity for the MUGA, taken on the 1st of each month for £3.00.      

 

Bank Balance

Hothfield Parish Council - Bank Reconciliation as at last Bank Statement

            Balance per Cash Book                          Balance at Bank

Opening Balance

32765.19

 

PC Reserve A/C

36151.30

Add Receipts in Year

  5464.11

 

Plus, u/c Receipts

        0.00

 

38229.30

 

 

36151.30

Less Payments in Year

  2669.64

 

Less u/c Cheques

    691.64

 

35559.66

 

 

35459.66

Less Earmarked Funds

  7838.11

 

PC Current A/C

    100.00

 

27721.55

 

 

35559.66

 

 

 

Less Earmarked Funds

  7838.11

 

 

 

 

27721.55

 

            Hothfield Youth Account - Bank Reconciliation – as at last Bank Statement

Opening Balance

  2401.90

 

Business Current a/c

1369.86

Add Receipts in Year

        0.18

 

Plus, u/c Receipts

      0.00

 

  2402.08

 

 

1369.86

Less Payments in Year

        0.00

 

Less u/c Cheques

      0.00

 

  2402.08

 

 

1369.86

 

 

 

Direct Reserve a/c

1032.22

 

 

 

 

 2402.08

 

              Review of Salaries

             Resolution:  Councillors unanimously agreed to increase the Litter Picker’s Salary to

             £8.21 with effect from 1 April 2018.  Total for year £1280.76.  Councillors agreed to

             pay him for one hour extra as he was not informed that the meeting on 1 May had been

             cancelled due to the election.

 

             Proposed  Mrs Lloyd             Seconded Mrs Parker

      

24.      BOROUGH COUNCILLORS REPORT                                                                                          

Mrs Bell was unable to attend the meeting.

 

25.      PLANNING

No applications received.

 

Storage of Planning Applications

Councillors confirmed that the Clerk can dispose of all Planning applications, once they have been discussed at a meeting, as they are available on the website.

 

26.      VILLAGE ACTIVITIES

Village Fete

The Village Fete has been renamed the Village Fun Day and postponed to 5 April 2020 in line with other Village activities.

 

27.      FORUM FOR EXCHANGE OF INFORMATION BETWEEN COUNCILLORS

Mr Lloyd reported that Mr Simkin has provided an initial cost estimate of £18,500 for the Proposed pedestrian crossing island and associated foot-way works on the A20 Maidstone Road near Chapel Road.

            

Councillors confirmed that they had read the PCSO’s report

 

Councillors were reminded to return their DPI and expenses form to ABC.

 

Suggestions for projects to spend the Solar Park money on to be included on the next agenda.

 

KCC has forwarded a map showing where the 50mph speed limit is going to be implemented.

                                                                                                                                                                             

The Clerk will forward a letter to Mr Lloyd, authorising the bank to include him as a signatory on the Parish Council’s accounts immediately, for him to take to Mrs Sutcliffe and Mr Cook for signature.

            

There being no further business the meeting closed at 8.48 pm.

 

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Published: 01.06.2019
 2019 Hothfield Parish Council