LYME REGIS TOWN COUNCIL POLICY COMMITTEE MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 17TH JANUARY 2007 Present: Chairman: Cllr O Lovell Councillors: The Mayor Cllr K Whetlor, Mrs B Austin, P Bean, Mrs A Bradbury, Miss L Campbell, N Clarke, K Dibben, Mrs M Ellis, Dr S Hogg, Ms S Holman, D Turner and P Williams. Officers: Mr M Lewis, Town Clerk and Mrs C Bright, Finance Officer. 06/73/P Apologies Apologies for absence were received from Cllrs Mrs L Jenkin and K Meech. 06/74/P Minutes The Minutes of the previous meeting held on 6th December 2006 having previously been circulated were, with the agreement of members, signed by the Chairman as a correct record. 06/75/P Declarations of Interest Cllr O Lovell declared a personal interest in respect of planning matters generally and reserved the right to consider these at meetings of the District Council Cllr K Whetlor as President of the Lyme Regis Twinning Association declared a personal interest in agenda item 6 (a) – Langmoor/Lister Gardens – request from Lyme Regis/St. George‟s Twinning Association to consider a site for commemorative statue of Admiral Sir George Somers that they are to commission. Cllr Mrs B Austin declared a personal interest in respect of agenda item 9 (c) – Affordable housing – vacant properties 17, 18 & 19 Elizabeth Close. 06/76/P Items scheduled for further report as indicated by the minutes of the previous meeting held on 6th December 2006 (a) Min. No 06/62/P item (b) – Park & Ride, Sidmouth Road The Town Clerk circulated figures obtained from the District Council for the period April to October 2006 which indicated a net parking revenue of £20,289 for the Sidmouth Road site. With regard to the potential income for the 2007 season he advised that, with enhanced signage and car parks operating at full capacity with the exception of Holmbush, which would continue to accommodate a contractors compound albeit reduced in size, there was a probability that income levels would be substantially reduced. However the planned stabilisation works to two properties on Marine Parade had prompted the District Council to continue to operate a Park & Ride facility in Sidmouth Road for the forthcoming season for which funding had been approved by DEFRA. Having previously declined the Town Council‟s request to consider the joint operation of a Park & Ride -2- facility in light of the changed circumstances the District Council had subsequently enquired whether the Town Council would be interested in a partnership agreement. Cllr O Lovell, whilst welcoming the continuation of the park and ride scheme, proposed to RECOMMEND to FULL COUNCIL the offer of a partnership arrangement be declined, seconded by Cllr K Dibben. 06/77/P Financial Administration (a) To receive budget comparison of income and expenditure to 31st December 2006 Members had previously been circulated with a detailed income & expenditure budget comparison to 30th December 2006. NOTED. Cllr N Clarke questioned the financial viability of the Community Offices at St Michael‟s Business Centre and requested this be discussed at a future meeting. It was AGREED to defer this item until after the local council election in May. (b) NALC Annual Conference – Mayor‟s report Members had previously been circulated with the Mayor‟s report in which he outlined the importance of being part of the county wide network extending to national representation through the combined membership of DAPTC/NALC. Membership was a means by which the Town Council could channel its views and concerns and gain support from other Town and Parishes with the aim, through NALC, to influence Government thinking. The Chairman referred to the Mayor‟s appointment as Chairman of the NALC Policy Committee and expressed his concern that the Town Council were funding DAPTC/NALC representation at the Annual Conference. Cllr K Dibben advised that the DAPTC had previously discussed whether a particular Town or Parish Council should bear the cost when one of their representatives were elected to the position of Chairman within the Association. At that time it had been decided that the part of the cost should be borne by all members of the Association and it was agreed that DAPTC would cover half the expenses incurred with the remainder funded locally. The Town Clerk advised of the regulations regarding the payment of allowances to local councillors as contained in the Local Government Act 1972 which states “Allowances may be paid to a local councillor for performing an “approved duty” outside the parish, for attendances at conferences, courses etc.” The Chairman believed the important word to be “approved” and proposed that the Town Clerk present a draft policy for the sanctioning of expense claims to the next meeting of the Policy Committee. In particular prior approval to be obtained for all such expenses over £100 in value but approval of expenses up to this figure to be delegated to the Chairman of Policy and Town Clerk providing the expenditure was within budget. Seconded by Cllr K Dibben. -3- (c) Council owned Cart Road day huts – consider hire charges to cover early and late season Members had previously been circulated with proposed 2007 fees for beach hut hire for the months of April, May, June and September which were inadvertently omitted from the Review of Charges. The proposed charges had been calculated by applying the 5% increase annually based on the 2004 hire charges. A copy of the proposed charges is attached. Cllr O Lovell proposed to RECOMMEND to FULL COUNCIL the hire charges as circulated be adopted, seconded by Cllr Mrs M Ellis. (d) Amusement Arcade and By the Bay Restaurant – rent reviews As the item was deemed to be of a confidential financial nature involving rents Cllr Mrs A Bradbury proposed the item be taken in committee at the end of the meeting, seconded by Cllr P Bean. The Town Clerk advised that with rent reviews due early summer he had instructed the valuer to assess the current market rent for both properties and advised of the figures accordingly. It was AGREED to instruct the valuer to negotiate based on the figures quoted. 06/78/P Land/Property (a) Langmoor/Lister Gardens – request from Lyme Regis/St. George‟s Twinning Association to consider a site for commemorative statue of Admiral Sir George Somers that they are to commission The Town Clerk advised of a request received from the Lyme Regis/St. George‟s Twinning Association to consider a site within the Gardens for a commemorative statue of Admiral Sir George Somers. Cllr Mrs A Bradbury proposed to RECOMMEND to FULL COUNCIL in principle agreement to the request, seconded by Cllr P Bean. (b) Gardens/seafront – youth project to design and construct a mosaic covered bench, possibly with a fossil theme The Town Clerk summarised correspondence received from the Community Arts teacher, Woodroffe School, in which she sought support for her youth project to design and construct a mosaic covered bench to be sited either in the gardens or on the seafront. Cllr Mrs B Austin proposed to RECOMMEND to FULL COUNCIL in principle agreement subject to identification of an appropriate site, seconded by Cllr P Bean. (c) Lyme Regis Regatta & Carnival Committee – request to hold the annual May Day Fete in Anning Road Playing Field on the afternoon of Sunday 6th May 2007 The Town Clerk advised of a request to hold the annual May Day Fete on Sunday 6th May 2007 in the Anning Road Playing Field. -4- The Chairman proposed to RECOMMEND to FULL COUNCIL permission be granted, seconded by Cllr Mrs B Austin. (d) Lyme Regis Regatta & Carnival Committee – request to hold „Celebration of the Relief of the Siege of Lyme‟ on Saturday 6th June 2007 in Theatre Square The Town Clerk advised of a request to hold „Celebration of the Relief of the Seige of Lyme‟ in Theatre Square on 6th June 2007. The Mayor proposed to RECOMMEND to FULL COUNCIL permission be granted, seconded by Cllr Mrs B Austin. (e) Cart Road day huts - positioning It was agreed that this item be discussed in conjunction with agenda item 12 (b) 06/79/P Tourism/Economic Development No items had been notified for discussion under this heading. 06/80/P Staffing/Organisation (a) Works Manager‟s Report Members had previously been circulated with a copy of the Works Manager‟s Report for the period to 8th January 2007. NOTED. 06/81/P Community Issues (a) Lyme Forward Community Plan Cllr Ms S Holman gave a report on the informal meeting between Town Councillors and the Lyme Forward Steering Group held on 10th January which had been well attended and had prompted some lively discussion. She explained that the content of Lyme Area Community Plan, in second draft, as previously circulated to members had been considered in two parts, a) the vision, aims and objectives which would inform decision- making policy and b) the suggested projects, which will deliver those objectives. She stressed that it was the vision, aims and objectives which the Town Council will be asked to endorse at their 7th March meeting of the Policy Committee. The projects were the rolling programme which would be reviewed annually, changed and adapted, and will form the appendices to the Plan itself. She asked that any feedback on the draft plan be forwarded to the Vice-Chairman LymeForward direct. She also sought members views on the composition of the Steering Group, which would have approximately 12 members. The Chairman thanked the LymeForward Steering Group for their work involved in producing the Plan. -5- (b) Beach profiling The Town Clerk advised of the response received from WDDC to concerns expressed with regard to public safety in relation to the present shape of the new beach in which it was stated that there was currently no beach management plan but the proposal was to monitor the beach and reprofile in the Spring before the contract ends. Cllr N Clarke requested that the concerns regarding the shape of the new beach be re- iterated in a letter to the Chief Executive, WDDC, and reassurance sought that future re- profiling will take place and querying liability to the public. Members were in agreement. (c) Affordable housing – vacant properties 17, 18 & 19 Elizabeth Close Following enquires by the public regarding the vacant properties Cllr D Turner questioned what action the District Council were to take to resolve the situation? In response Cllr O Lovell believed the problem in part had been that the developer did not engage a social landlord however he understood that one property was in the process of being sold which should bode well for the other two. (d) Traffic Management/Parking Forum – Monday 29th January 2007, 7.30pm Woodmead Halls The Town Clerk advised that the final meeting of the series would take place on Monday 29th January at 7.30pm which aimed to bring together the salient points from the previous meetings for resolution and to consider any last minute issues not previously addressed. NOTED. (e) WDDC Dog Control Orders - proposals The Chairman advised that at a meeting of the District Council‟s Executive Committee held on 16th January the Town Council‟s request for an all year dog ban on the front beach was supported and if approved by WDDC the ban would be implemented with effect from 31st March 2007. The Town Clerk advised that discussions were ongoing with Dorset Police regarding enforcement issues. 06/82/P To be advised of and note licensing applications/transfers No items had been notified for discussion under this heading. 06/83/P List of issues to be brought forward for update or consideration at future meetings Members had previously been circulated with the list of issues to be considered at a future meeting. NOTED. -6- 06/84/P Reports from Sub-Committees and Working Groups (a) Byelaws Working Group – 29th November 2006 Members had previously been circulated with minutes of the Byelaws Working Group held on 29th November 2006. NOTED. (b) Byelaws Working Group – 30th November 2006 Members had previously been circulated with minutes of the Byelaws Working Group held on 30th November 2006. NOTED. The Town Clerk advised that although the meeting was called to respond to the WDDC consultation on byelaws WDDC asked that the agenda be expanded to also consider other current areas of negotiation. The Town Clerk advised there was a potential planning issue with regard to siting the beach huts, in the position adopted last year, as some of the huts were placed outside the area previously occupied by the plinth site. Following discussion Cllr Mrs A Bradbury proposed to RECOMMEND to FULL COUNCIL that a planning application be submitted to site beach huts on the additional area utilised last year, seconded by Cllr Mrs M Ellis. With regard to the discussion relating to the provision of public conveniences Cllr N Clarke voiced his objection to the suggested 20p charge. Following some discussion Cllr Mrs B Austin proposed to RECOMMEND to FULL COUNCIL that there should be discussion regarding a future policy relating to the provision of public conveniences in the the town. Seconded by Cllr P Bean. (c) Environment Working Group – 19th December 2006 Members had previously been circulated with minutes of the Environment Working Group held on 19th December 2006. NOTED. 06/85/P Reports from Organisations and Representatives to Outside Bodies Cllr D Turner reported the formation of a new youth grouping entitled L.Y.M. which signified Lyme Youth Matters. It was believed this group would provide the platform for a Youth Council. No other items were raised for discussion. 06/86/P To be advised of any items the Chairman decides are urgent No items were raised for discussion.