NORTH HORSHAM PARISH COUNCIL by tyndale

VIEWS: 22 PAGES: 8

									                     MEETING OF NORTH HORSHAM PARISH COUNCIL TO BE HELD ON
                                  THURSDAY 13th MARCH 2008
                           AT 7.30PM, AT ROFFEY MILLENNIUM HALL




1   PUBLIC FORUM
    Members of the public are invited to put questions or draw relevant matters to the Council‟s attention,
    prior to the commencement of business. This is for a period of up to 15 minutes and shall be limited to 3
    minutes per person

2   TO NOTE APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
    No apologies have been received at the time of preparing this report.

3   COUNCIL MINUTES
    To approve and sign the Minutes of the Meeting of North Horsham Parish Council held on Thursday 17th
    January 2008. (Minutes previously circulated). Please advise as soon as possible (i.e. over the weekend or
    during office hours on Monday or Tuesday) either the Council Chairman or the Clerk if there are any
    amendments that need to be raised, preferably with proposed amendments clearly written.

4   CHAIRMAN’S ANNOUNCEMENTS – for information and noting only
    There are no announcements at the time of preparing this report.

5   DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
    5.1 Members are advised to consider the agenda for the meeting and determine in advance if they may
        have personal or personal & prejudicial interests in any agenda item. If a Member decides they do
        have a declarable interest, they are reminded that the interest and the nature of the interest must be
        declared now and again at the outset of the relevant item. Details of the interest must be minuted.
        If a Member with a prejudicial interest wishes to address the meeting, under the newly adopted
        Code of Conduct, this must be done during the „Public Forum‟ – right at the very start of the
        meeting (when the Forum limitations apply).

    5.2     If the interest is „prejudicial‟, Members are reminded that they must take no part in the item at all
            and must leave the room until any discussion and decisions are concluded.

6   QUESTIONS PURSUANT TO STANDING ORDER NO. 24
    6.1 Members are reminded that any question put under this Standing Order should preferably be
        notified in sufficient time before the meeting. This allows time for a considered response to be
        prepared. The question should relate to the business of the council.

    6.2     Members are reminded that under Standing Order No. 27, that a person to whom the question is
            put, may decline to answer. Standing Order no. 26 stipulates that every question shall be put and
            answered without discussion.

7   COMMITTEE MINUTES – To receive and adopt the minutes of the following Committees:
        (a) Planning, Environment & Transport Committee – 31 January (previously sent)and 28
            February 2008 (enclosed)
        (b) Property Committee – 07 February 2008 (previously sent)
        (c) Finance & Administration Committee – 14 February 2008 (previously sent)
        (d) Personnel Committee – 06 March 2008 (to be tabled at the meeting)


    Council Meeting Report – 13.03.2008                                                                             1
8   Receive the NOTES OF THE HOLBROOK COMMUNITY GROUP of 21.01.08 and consider any
    REQUESTS (previously sent)
    8.1   The Notes of the Holbrook Community Group previously circulated have been previously
          circulated.

    8.2     RECOMMENDATION:

                    Members are asked to note the report.

9   Receive the NOTES OF THE COMMUNICATIONS WORKING GROUP of 19.11.07 (previously
    sent and 10.03.08 (to be tabled)
    9.1    The Notes of the Communications Working Group of the 19th November 2007 were omitted from
           the last Council meeting. The Recommendation to Council regarding the introduction of Branding
           Guidelines is covered in detail in the following Agenda Item No 10. The remaining items are for
           noting at this stage.

    9.2     The Notes of the Communications Working Group of the 10th March 2008 will be tabled at the
            meeting.

    9.3     RECOMMENDATION:

                            Members are asked to note the two sets of Notes accordingly.

10 PARISH COUNCIL BRANDING GUIDELINES (Recommendation from the Communications
   Working Group) (Appendix I)
   10.1 Cllr Simon Torn originally suggested the idea of introducing, initially a Branding Policy, for
        Council to adopt. This was briefly reported to Council on the 7th July 2007 and agreed that a full
        report be considered by the Communications Working Group at its 20th August 2007 meeting.

    10.2    The Working Group considered a detailed report on 20.08.07 with the following outcome:

            “CS011        BRANDING POLICY
            Members received the report and Cllr Torn‟s draft Branding Policy as contained in Appendix 2
            and there was general consensus on the need for consistency in the use and display of the
            corporate logo and name. However, there was a preference for „branding guidelines‟ rather than
            a more formal „policy‟ and that the draft should be simplified to reflect this.

            It was therefore agreed that the Parish Clerk would redraft a simpler version as „guidelines‟ and
            then liaise with Cllr Torn, before reporting back to the next Working Group meeting.”

    10.3    The Working Group, on 19.11.07, now as Branding Guidelines, considered a simpler draft
            document. After some minor amendments were agreed the revised document as detailed in
            Appendix I, dated 13th March 2008, was finalised and is now presented for Council to consider.

    10.4    The Communications Working Group commends the Branding Guidelines to Council and feels
            that there is benefit in the Council introducing these Guidelines in relating to the public face of the
            Council through documents, agendas, reports, minutes, leaflets, poster, signage, advertisements as
            well as oral communication with the public.

    10.5    The staff view is unchanged, in as much as it is considered unnecessary to have formal Branding
            Guidelines. However, staff do accept that there is a need for a consistent public image and that the

    Council Meeting Report – 13.03.2008                                                                           2
           essence of the Guidelines should form part of an employee‟s initial training whenever relevant to
           the postholder‟s work and support the Guidelines within this context.

   10.6    If Council is minded to formally introduce Branding Guidelines, there are a number of existing
           signs, particularly at play areas, notice boards and internal signage within the three Community
           Halls that need to be addressed. This can dealt with either with a „big bang‟ approach – i.e.
           amended as soon as possible – or gradual change as and when maintenance allows updating.

   10.7    RECOMMENDATION:

                    Council is asked to consider whether it wishes to:

                    A)     Formally approve Branding Guidelines as detailed in Appendix I and indicate
                           gradual or immediate updating where necessary, or
                    B)     Use Branding Guidelines only as part of a new employee‟s induction training.

11 Determine APPROVAL OF AMENDED FINANCIAL REGULATIONS (Appendix II)
   11.1 The Finance & Administration Committee undertook a review of the Council‟s Financial
         Regulations at its meeting of 14.02.08 and present a revised set of Financial Regulations for
         adoption by Council (Appendix II).

   11.2    The changes reflect the new requirement to review the effectiveness of its internal audit and tidies
           up a number of other minor points in accordance with best practice.

   11.3    The changes are printed in „bold italic‟ and are found as follows:

           Page 1          Paragraphs 1.5, 1.6 & 1.7     additional regulations

           Page 4          Paragraphs 4.5, 4.6 & 4.7     additional regulations

           Page 5          Paragraph 7.1                 additional words
                           Paragraph 8.3                 additional words
                           Paragraph 9.9                 additional regulation

           Page 6          Paragraph 10.3                minor amendment

           Page 8          Paragraphs 17.1 & 17.2        New Section

   11.4    RECOMMENDATIONS:

                    That Council adopts the new set of Financial Regulations as contained in Appendix II

12 SCHEME OF MEMBERS’ ALLOWANCES: Consider the Report and Recommendations of the
   Independent Remuneration Panel (Appendix III)
   12.1 Three copies of the Report of the Parish Remuneration Policy have been received and are available
         for reading on request. This is the first review since 2003 and the Report contains the following
         Appendices:

           PC1      Biographical details of the Parish Remuneration Panel
           PC2      Documents List
           PC3      Questionnaire used
           PC4      Interviews
           PC5      Analysis of replies to the Questionnaire
           PC6      Parish Data
   Council Meeting Report – 13.03.2008                                                                            3
           PC7     Model Scheme
                   Appendix 1 – Parish Basic Allowance
                   Appendix 2 – Travelling and Subsistence Allowances
           PC8     Local Government Staff Travel and Subsistence Allowances Scheme adopted by Horsham
                   District Council
           PC9     Extract from The Local Authorities (Members‟ Allowances) (England) Regulations
                   2003/1021 – Regulation 26 (Parish Travel and Subsistence Allowances)

   12.2    A draft copy of the Revised Scheme of Members‟ Allowances is detailed as Appendix III, together
           with a copy of the Notice and a draft „decision‟ Notice. Members are reminded that the Model
           Scheme sets down the recommended levels of allowances. They can be adopted at higher or lower
           levels or not at all. However, in order to receive any re-imbursement for travel or subsistence,
           Members must adopt an allowances scheme in one form or another. Without a formally adopted
           scheme no future expenses can be legally paid to Members.

   12.3    The Regulations only apply to elected Councillors and not those appointed via the co-option route.
           Thus two Members are currently excluded by law from claiming the basic allowance.

   12.4    The Council first adopted a Scheme of Members‟ Allowances in 2003. The Basic Allowance was
           set at £250 pa and travelling at 35p per mile for journeys outside of the parish, but just 11.7p for
           travelling related to training. The mileage allowance was deliberately set lower than those
           recommended to simplify claims and ensure no income tax payable on any excess over 40p per
           mile.

   12.5    The current Panel recommendations uplift the £250 to £430 pa in line with the current level of
           allowances paid to Horsham District Councillors. This retains the original 9.4% link recommended
           in 2003. The remaining change is that the distinction between travelling for training courses and
           other travelling has been dropped in favour of the higher allowance.

   12.6    If Members feel that as individuals they do not wish to adopt the recommended £430 pa Parish
           Basic Allowance, but wish to adopt a higher level of, say £500 pa, this is permissible provided due
           regard has been taken of the Panel‟s recommendations. Members have the choice to either receive
           the adopted basic allowance (payable quarterly in arrears) or to individually opt out. This „opt out‟
           would need to be confirmed annually. Payment of the Parish Basic Allowance is required to be
           processed through the payroll to ensure proper tax/National Insurance is deducted/paid.

   12.7    Members are reminded that the implications of any variation or deletion of sections of the Model
           Scheme need to be fully understood. For example exclusion of reimbursement of subsistence
           would debar any claim for hotel/meal costs of attending, say, a NALC Conference overnight in
           Harrogate. Similarly, consideration needs to be given to the level of mileage allowance, as any
           amount per mile over 40p would attract tax. Therefore Members may wish to agree to the same
           simple single engine capacity at, say, 40p per mile (see Appendix 3 to the Draft Scheme).

   12.8    RECOMMENDATION:

                   Council is asked to adopt the draft revised Scheme of Members‟ Allowances as contained
                   in Appendix III.

13 COUNTY LOCAL COMMITTEE: Re TRAFFIC ISSUES
   13.1 A copy of the letter from West Sussex County Councillor Brad Watson, Chairman of the County
        Local Committee (CLC) for North Horsham, regarding traffic issues was circulated to all Members
        last week. Members are reminded to bring the letter to the Council meeting.


   Council Meeting Report – 13.03.2008                                                                            4
   13.2    The invitation was extended to let the North Horsham CLC know of any traffic concerns
           including, for example, parking restrictions, weight limits, width limits or one-way orders. The
           following issues have been received from Cllr David Searle:

           (i)        Employees of Littlehaven School park their vehicles in Hawksbourne Road opposite
                      bungalows that a number of elderly and disabled people live. These residents are often
                      collected by ambulances and other community car services which have to park some
                      distance away. Many people find it impossible to walk far and this is very stressful for
                      them. Vehicles also park both side of the road which makes it difficult for emergency
                      vehicles to pass along the road. Could a parking bay be marked out for "ambulances only"
                      and used as a passing bay when not being used?

           (ii)       Parking next to drop kerbs or on the footpath makes it extremely difficult for a disabled
                      person using an electric scooter. I know of a person who lives in Siskin Close who
                      abandoned his trip to the Coltsfoots Drive shops because he was unable to find an
                      unobstructed route. I would suggest that road surfaces adjacent to drop kerbs be
                      hatched yellow and drivers that park their vehicles on the footpaths are prosecuted and
                      made to pay for the damage they cause to grass verges. Alternatively perhaps we should
                      give up and mark and reinforce the areas where vehicles are allowed to park on footpaths
                      or verges, but do not obstruct the free access. Parking on footpaths is also a problem for
                      mothers with buggies. I am sure there is an accident waiting to happen.

           Issue raised by local resident:

           (iii)      Parking by the shops in Crawley Road opposite Manor Fields. The bus turns into Crawley
                      Road from Manor Fields and there are often vans owned by the sandwich shop on both
                      sides of the road. Together with shoppers at the newsagents this causes traffic congestion at
                      peak times on a stretch of road that is supposedly „traffic calmed‟. There needs to be some
                      form of time restricted parking in this area.

   13.3    RECOMMENDATION

                              Members are invited to add further traffic concerns to be forwarded to the North
                              Horsham CLC to consider.

14 Consider the PROCESS FOR DETERMINING BYELAWS (Appendix IV)
   14.1 This item appears at the request of Cllr Peter Burgess as a result of the Report on the new Local
         Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007 and the change regarding the creation of
         byelaws passing from the Secretary of State to the local District Council.

   14.2    Several years ago this Council wished to have byelaws governing the Council‟s open spaces,
           including play areas. This was in an attempt to control misuse of open spaces and children‟s play
           areas and discourage anti social behaviour. More than one set of draft proposed byelaws were
           submitted to the Secretary of State for approval but on each occasion they were referred back as
           there was either a lack of evidence regarding local consultation or too many (some unworkable –
           even illegal) changes to the model byelaws. Ultimately, the pursuit of byelaws ceased as the advice
           from the District Council was that there were many other more effective controls available.

   14.3    Anti social behaviour and forms of effective control were elaborated on at the 2005 Annual Parish
           Meeting of Electors by the then Chief Executive of Horsham District Council, Martin Pearson. An
           extract from the minutes of the meeting is copied below for information.

                   “The County Council is the statutory authority for youth provision and it is felt there should be
                   a clearer Youth Development Policy. The Crime Reduction Partnership is about working
   Council Meeting Report – 13.03.2008                                                                             5
               together and should not leave parents out of their forums. The CRP is not into „zero tolerance‟
               but about working together to provide a better way. The use of Dispersal Orders and Anti
               Social Behaviour Orders (ASBO‟s) cannot be ignored. Mr Pearson emphasised that Horsham
               is one of the safest areas to live and this is an issue that should not be taken out of proportion.

               There was some discussion on the value of byelaws in controlling anti social behaviour, But
               Martin Pearson advised the audience not to get “…hung up on byelaws… Byelaws are now
               viewed as a heavy handed way of dealing with anti social behaviour.”

               PCSO Jeff Grant explained how Acceptable Behaviour Contracts (ABC) worked. A Stop Form
               is considered before an ABC is issued. The ABC involves a meeting with parents and is signed
               by them and the youngster. An ABC is subject to a six-month review. A breach of an ABC can
               lead to an ASBO.

               Mrs Deane, of Amberley Road, expressed that she was encouraged by what has been said.”

   14.4    The National Association of Local Councils (NALC) has recently updated Legal Topic Note 14:
           Byelaws, which supports the views expressed by Mr Pearson in 2005 and a copy of the Legal
           Topic Note is enclosed as Appendix IV for information. Whilst the Topic Note refers to the new
           Local Government Act 2007 on Byelaws it states in para 26 that “Part 6 of the new Act is not yet
           in force at the time of writing (November 2007). Part 6 is set to provide amendments to the Local
           Government Act 1972 in respect of the procedure for making byelaws…”

   14.5    Paras 12 and 13 of the Legal Topic Note, provide useful information on the Enforcement of
           Byelaws. It is implied that byelaws without adequate enforcement measures are not very effective.
           Enforcement needs to include full consideration of the human enforcement costs, staff court
           attendance and legal proceedings costs (solicitor).

   14.6    Para 22 is about the Desirability of Byelaws and states: “In effect, therefore, a byelaw should be a
           remedy of last resort.”

   14.7    Mike Rumble, Horsham District Council Crime Reduction Co-ordinator, recently addressed a
           meeting of Horsham District Clerks and the role of the new Street Scene Wardens. It was
           confirmed that the Wardens could only act as a “professional witness” rather than enforce byelaws
           on behalf of a parish council.

   14.8    The District Council has yet to examine how it would approve applications for byelaws submitted
           by parish councils. This information will be circulated to Members when it is available. In the
           meantime, it is suggested Members consider the current need for byelaws as well as the related
           costs of enforcement through the magistrates‟ court in human resource terms as well as financial
           implications.

   14.9    RECOMMENDATION:

                   Members are asked to note the report pending further details from the District Council on
                   their new „approval‟ role.

15 ANNUAL PARISH MEETING OF ELECTORS: Monday 28th April 2008
   15.1 The purpose of this report is to inform Members of the format for the Annual Parish Meeting of
        Electors to be held on Monday 28th April 2008 in the Bramber Room at Roffey Millennium Hall,
        7.00pm for 7.30pm. Members are reminded that this meeting is a statutory requirement under the
        Local Government Act 1972, s9 (1) but is not a parish council meeting. It is for the registered
        electors of the parish, when elected councillors and residents have equal status. The legislation
        prescribes that, if present, the Chairman of the Parish Council shall preside. Charles Arnold Baker
   Council Meeting Report – 13.03.2008                                                                            6
           in the „Local Council Administration‟ publication says: “Though the parish meeting may discuss
           parish affairs its resolutions differ in their legal consequence. In a few cases a resolution is legally
           binding. In all other a resolution is persuasive only; the Parish Council may legally disregard it and
           leave the electors to their remedy at the next election.”

   15.2    Regarding the format of the meeting, it has been suggested that representatives from two or three
           local organisations that receive grant funding from the Council, be invited to speak about the
           services they provide. In the past year new managers have been appointed to both Horsham
           District Age Concern (Nigel Tinkler) and Horsham & District Citizens Advice Bureau (Claire
           Armstrong). It may also be a day of celebration as it is hoped that the result of the Council‟s
           application for Quality Status may be known (??? Presentation evening possibilities???).

   15.3    The Agenda will also include the Parish Council Annual Report. A press release is being prepared.

   15.4    RECOMMENDATION:

                   Members are asked to agree the invitation to organisations that receive grant funding from
                   the Council, to speak about the services they provide and note the remainder of the report.

16 PROGRESS REPORT ON QUALITY STATUS
   16.1 Due to staff absences the completed application for Quality Status has been delayed. It is
        anticipated that the application will be submitted by the date of this Council meeting.

   16.2    RECOMMENDATION:

                   Members are asked to note the report.

17 PARISH PLAN UPDATE
   17.1 Chris Borg from the National Association of Local Councils (NALC) is due to visit the Parish
        Council on Friday 7th March in order to put together an article for the NALC website on the North
        Horsham Parish Plan as an example of „best practice‟ by a larger local council. Chris is meeting
        with Cllr Ray Turner, Beverley Turner (Parish Plan Facilitator) and the Parish Clerk. Many sites in
        North Horsham are due to be visited followed by discussion on the Parish Plan, closing with an in-
        house sandwich lunch before Chris returns to London. An oral update will be given at the meeting.

   17.2    The two Parish Plan questionnaires are in the process of being analysed for onward consideration
           by the Steering Group. This too has been delayed due to staff absences.

   17.3    A more detailed update on all the topics/issues in the Parish Plan will be available at the next
           Council meeting.

   17.4    RECOMMENDATION:

                   Members are asked to note the report.

18 To Approve ACCOUNTS FOR PAYMENT (Appendix V)
   18.1 The schedule of accounts for payment will be tabled at the meeting as Appendix V.

   18.2    RECOMMENDATION:

                   Council is asked to authorise the schedule of accounts for payment as contained in
                   Appendix V.


   Council Meeting Report – 13.03.2008                                                                            7
19 REPORTS FROM REPRESENTATIVES ON OUTSIDE ORGANIASTIONS
   19.1 One of the Council‟s representatives will give an oral report on the following outside organisation
        meetings:

           (a)     Horsham in Bloom – 05.02.08

20 DATE OF NEXT COUNCIL MEETING – Thursday 15th May 2008 at 7.30pm (Annual Council)




   Council Meeting Report – 13.03.2008                                                                        8

								
To top