Town Council Meeting 16 May 2018 – Minutes

PONTELAND TOWN COUNCIL

MINUTES OF THE ANNUAL MEETING OF THE COUNCIL HELD IN THE TOWN COUNCIL OFFICES, PONTELAND ON 16 MAY 2018

Present: Councillor A Varley (in the Chair)

Councillors S Ahmed, Mrs C Caisley, L Darwin, R Dodd, Mrs C Greenwell, A Hall, Mrs S Johnson, A Shanley and Mrs K Woodrow.

1. ELECTION OF MAYOR

Nominations for the position of Mayor for 2018-19 were invited.

RESOLVED – That Councillor A Varley be elected Mayor for 2018-19.

Councillor Varley took the chair and thanked his fellow colleagues for their support.

2. ELECTION OF DEPUTY MAYOR

Nominations for the position of Deputy Mayor for 2018-19 were invited.
RESOLVED – That Councillor Mrs C Greenwell be elected Deputy Mayor for 2018-19.
Councillor Mrs Greenwell also thanked her colleagues for their support.

3. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Apologies for absence were received from Councillors T Edwards-Clay and Mrs K Overbury.

4. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
Councillor Mrs Greenwell declared an interest in Minute 23.

5. MINUTES OF THE COUNCIL MEETING HELD 11 APRIL 2018

The Minutes of the Council Meeting held on 11 April 2018 were confirmed
and signed by the Mayor.

RESOLVED – The minutes be approved

6. MATTERS ARISING
(i) Minute 195(i) – Grant to Holy Saviour Church, Milbourne
The Clerk reported that a letter of thanks had been received from the Holy Saviour Church in respect of the grant awarded at the April meeting.

7. APOINTMENT OF ACCOUNTS COMMITTEE

To approve the appointment of the Mayor, Deputy Mayor and 9 Town Councillors to the Accounts Committee for the purpose of authorising all payments made by the Council’s Deposit Account.

RESOLVED – Approve the appointment of the Mayor, Deputy Mayor, Councillors, Mrs C Caisley, L Darwin, R Dodd, T Edwards-Clay, A Hall, Mrs S Johnson, Mrs K Overbury, A Shanley and Mrs K Woodrow. A new mandate would not be required.

8. APPOINTMENT OF REPRESENTATIVES ON LOCAL ORGANISATIONS
A list of the current appointees to local organisations had been circulated.
The Clerk reported that Councillor Edwards-Clay had indicated that he was unable to attend meetings of the Fairtrade Working Party and had asked if anyone could replace him on this organisation.
Councillor Mrs Greenwell agreed to attend any meetings and Councillor Shanley would deputise if necessary.

RESOLVED – The list of appointments be approved subject to the amendment outlined above, and circulated to Councillors.

9. TOWN COUNCIL COMMITTEES/WORKING PARTIES

A list of the current appointees to Town Council Committees and Working Parties had been circulated.

RESOLVED – The list of appointments be approved and circulated to Councillors.

10. PLANNING

(i) Planning Committee
Minutes of meetings held on 3 and 17 April 2018 were circulated for information.

(ii) Report on recent planning decisions
The Chairman of the Planning Committee reported that Councillor Mrs Woodrow had attended a Planning meeting at County Hall held on 14th May to speak against two applications relating to Medburn. Both had been approved by NCC.

11. DATES OF TOWN COUNCIL MEETINGS AND CALENDAR OF MEETINGS FOR 2018-19

A list of proposed dates for Town Council Meetings for the forthcoming year had been circulated. Councillors were asked to retain this information and note the various dates.

RESOLVED – The dates be approved.

12. PROJECTS REPORT

The projects report had been circulated for the information of Councillors.

RESOLVED – The report be accepted.

13. GENERAL DATA PROTECTION REGULATIONS (GDPR)
An update report relating to the General Data Protection Regulations had been circulated.
The Clerk reported that she was pleased with the progress that had been made since the last meeting by Town Council staff.
Some of the policies were on the website and consent forms had been sent out to many individuals. Some new policies had been circulated for approval.
Training sessions had been attended by all staff and some Councillors.
The ‘data cleansing’ exercise was still in progress; however, a great deal of non-essential data had already been disposed of by a security shredding service.
The Clerk reported that an amendment was currently going through Parliament suggesting that parish and town councils should not be required to appoint a Data Protection Officer (DPO) in view of the amount and detail of data they held. Further information was awaited as to the progress of this amendment.
A copy of an action plan that had been included in the National Association of Local Councils (NALC) toolkit had been completed and circulated to the Council for their information.
The Council expressed their appreciation to the staff for their hard work in relation to compliance with GDPR.

RESOLVED –
(i) The report be noted.
(ii) The additional policies that had been circulated be agreed and published on the PTC website.
(iii) Note that a further report on progress would be submitted to the June meeting if necessary.

14. COMMEMORATION OF END OF WORLD WAR 1
A report had been circulated to Councillors regarding progress to date in relation to the Council’s plans in respect of the above.
A meeting had been held with the Vicar of St Mary’s Church on 4 April to discuss the various ideas for the commemoration. A copy of the notes of that meeting were circulated for information.
Councillor Mrs Overbury and the Clerk had met again in April to discuss various actions that were required and items to be referred to the Council.
A draft letter had been produced for circulation to the three Primary schools and the one Middle School before the half term holiday. This related to their involvement in a poster competition, production of a banner and mentioning a special service that would be held for pupils on Friday 9th November. The schools were also being thanked for their involvement in planting out planters for display in the village area and Broadway and for assisting with the wildflower planting in both areas.
The Clerk had informed Councillors of the offer of a commemorative bench and Councillors agreed that the Clerk could decide on the location.
Poppies for lampposts were being ordered.
A suggestion had been made regarding the purchase of a Perspex ‘there but not there’ silhouette for each of the churches at a total cost of £210.

14. COMMEMORATION OF END OF WORLD WAR 1
(Continued)
Investigations about the possibility of holding a light projection show on the evening of 11th November had been carried out and it was found that costs
started at around £2000. Councillors were keen on this idea and the Clerk was asked to see if grant monies could be found for this purpose.
RESOLVED –
(i) The Council agree to the level of prizes being offered to the schools for the poster competition as set out in the report.
(ii) The Council agree to purchase five silhouettes from the ‘there but not there’ for each of the churches at a total cost of £210.
(iii) The Council agree to meet the cost of any refreshments offered by St Mary’s church on the evening of 11th November.
(iv) The Clerk be asked to examine the availability of grants to assist with the cost of providing a light projection show on the evening of 11th November.

15. HR ADVICE AND SUPPORT
A report by the Clerk in relation to the above had been circulated.
The report related to an offer received from Northumberland County Council to provide HR advice and support to parish and town councils who had previously received assistance from the North East Regional Employers Organisation (NEREO) for a subscription cost of £295 per annum.
NCC were offering a one-off fee for access to an HR advice line which would be available from 8.30 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. Monday to Friday throughout the year, excluding public holidays.
This fee included a number of other services such as the provision of an up to date suite of employment policies and documents taking in account employment and case law.
There were also a wide range of other services on offer at a cost and these were included in the documents circulated to Councillor.

RESOLVED – The Council agree to enter into a service level agreement (SLA) for HR advice and support with Northumberland County Council at an initial cost of £295 per annum.

16. YOUTH SERVICE
The Clerk circulated a report in relation to the grant to the Youth Service at NCC.
The Council were reminded of their previous decision taken in February 2018 where the Council agreed to ask the Youth service to provide outreach work on a month by month basis to analyse its success before making a commitment to further sessions.
The Clerk had met with one of the officers from the Youth Service who had indicated that they could not provide the service on this basis as they needed to recruit suitable personnel. This would be difficult on a month by month basis.
Some Councillors had reservations about outreach work but were prepared to agree to the majority decision to try this course of action for an initial period of three months. The Clerk was asked to ensure that monthly update reports

16. YOUTH SERVICE (Continued)
were provided and it was agreed that the work should start later in the year around September/October time.

RESOLVED – The Council agree to proceed with outreach work as outlined in the report for an initial period of three months at an approximate cost of £2422 including travel. The Clerk would ensure that monthly update reports would be provided to the Council.

17. HIGHWAYS WORKING PARTY

Minutes of a meeting of the Highways Working Party held on 13 April 2018 had been circulated.
RESOLVED – The minutes be approved and the following recommendations be approved:
(i) New Street lighting
It was agreed that all future requests for additional columns would be passed directly to NCC.
(ii) Raised bus stops – Cheviot View
On the advice of the NCC officer who attended the Highways Working Party it was agreed to install a further two raised bus stops on Cheviot View

18. ENVIRONMENT WORKING PARTY

Minutes of a meeting of the Environment Working Party held on 16 April
2018 had been circulated for consideration. There were no
recommendations.
.
RESOLVED – The minutes be approved:

19. NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY COUNCIL REPORT

Councillor Dodd reported on a potential delay to the car park at the back of Merton Way shops due to a planning issue that had arisen.

20. MAYOR’S REPORT

(i) Mayor’s Diary

The Mayor submitted details of his diary engagements for April & May and for future commitments in June.
He reminded Councillors of the Bowls match on Friday 8th June which he hoped Councillors could attend with partners.
A request for assistance at Party in the Park and Music in the Park would be sent out to Councillors very soon.

21. REPORTS BY TOWN COUNCIL REPRESENTATIVES ON LOCAL ORGANISATIONS

(i) Ponteland Community Partnership Minutes
Copies of the minutes of a meeting of the above held on 21 March 2018 had been circulated.

22. ACCOUNTS/ BANK RECONCILIATION/ BUDGET REPORT/YEAR END BUDGET REVISIONS

The Accounts Committee approved payments totalling £32,090.62. A copy of the monthly budget report was also circulated, as well as the Bank reconciliation for April 2018.
A report relating to year end budget revisions had also been circulated.
The report suggested a transfer of £48,732.46 to reserves.
Members were advised that this amount was held in a separate reserves account to be invested either in short (monthly) or longer term (less than one year) fixed term bonds.
Councillors were reminded that it was generally recommended to have a minimum of 6 months operating expenses held in general reserves, this was currently set at £151,000. The amount that will be held in General Reserves following this transfer was £169,974.57. The Clerk reported that the figure of £151,000 may require some adjustment and she would report back to the Council at a future meeting

RESOLVED – The reports and the end of year transfers as set out be approved.

DATE OF NEXT MEETING – WEDNESDAY 13 JUNE 2018 AT 6.45 P.M. AT THE TOWN COUNCIL OFFICES