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Hurstpierpoint & Sayers Common
Parish Council

Finance & General Purposes Committee

August 8, 2016

MINUTES of the Meeting of the Finance + General Purposes Committee held at 8.20pm on Thursday 11 

August 2016 in the Village Centre, Trinity Road, Hurstpierpoint.  

Committee Members Present 

Stephen Hand  (Chairman)  Allan Brown   Amanda Geel  Julia Shorrocks Rodney Jackson   John Lowman  Martin Machan    

Also Present:   

Stephen Hoyles  CLERK TO THE COUNCIL 

Charlotte Kempson – Assistant CLerk 

F16/018. Apologies for Absence and Declarations of Interest:  The following apologies were received prior to the meeting and accepted:   Judith Marsh.    The following personal declarations of interest were noted:  Martin Machan and Stephen Hand in respect of item   F16/024.7  Buildings: (2)  Bowls Club;    Martin Machan  in respect of item  F16/024.5  Recreation Grounds:  (1)  South Avenue Recreation Ground;  and John Lowman  in respct of item F16/024.7  Buildings: (3)  Tennis Club.   

F16/019.  Minutes of the meetings of Finance + General Purposes Committee of 7 July 2016 :  The Minutes were received and adopted and signed by the Chairman.   

F16/020.  Matters arising from Minutes of the Finance + General Purposes Committee of 7 July 2016: There were no matters not otherwise covered on this agenda.   

F16/021.  Adjournment for questions from the public:  There being no public present the Committee was not required to consider whether to adjourn the Meeting in accordance with Clause 1(d) of Standing Orders. 

F16/022.  FINANCIAL MATTERS:  

F16/022.1  Payments and receipts:  The Committee was asked to RESOLVE to approve payment of accounts totalling £19,757.23 for month 5  (August 2016) and the total receipts of £2,083.00  for Month  4 (July 2016).   (Ref: 

Schedule 1 and 2). 

RESOLVED:  the Committee approves the schedule of payments of £19,757.23  for August 2016.  

F16/022.2  Financial monitoring:  The Committee noted the Accounts Records  for Month 4 (July 2016), in accordance with the Financial Regulations of the Council, as follows:  (1)  Bank reconciliation and Trial Balance (PRESENTED at the MEETING) 

F16/022.3.  Deposits and Investment:  The Committee noted that the Council was holding the following funds on the dates shown:   

Ref Statement Date Amount 
Bank Ref Comment 
   
   
27/07/2016 
99,778.71 Unity Bank  ‘20365408 Current 
30/06/2016 
10,335.86 CCLA ‘0663140001PC Deposit 
29/07/2016 
579.75 Cooperative ‘65190913 00 Current 
06/07/2015 
52,140.42 Nationwide ‘90001826 Deposit 
   TOTAL 
  £162,843.74    

It was noted that the payment of rent of £600.00 from WSCC to the Council had been received into the Cooperative Bank, and a cheque cleared for £20.25 for Member expenses, despite the account having been closed.  The Cooperative Bank have been advised of their error and a request has been made to transfer the balance to the Council’s Unity Bank account.   

F16/023.  PROJECTS:  

F16/023.1  Action List 2015/16:  The Committee is asked to note the Action List for the Council Year 2015/16.  A question was raised about progress on provision of affordable housing by the Parish Council  The Committee was advised that there were three possible routes:  use of Council–owned land to develop new homes for rent; use of Council-owned land to develop  new homes in conjunction with a housing association (and therefore subject to the allocations policies of the association) or, in conjunction with a housing association,  to identify a new site under ‘rural exception’ planning rules, (but again the new homes would be subject to the allocations policies of the association).  It was agreed that a possible step would be to arrange a ‘affordable home workshop’ in conjunction with the local housing authority (MSDC) to help better understand the options.  However, it was also agreed that it would be prudent to see the emerging District Plan  adopted before any action was taken.  It was further agreed that the High Street post-scheme report (due from WSCC) would be added to the Action List. (Ref:  ACTION LIST 2015/16 rev14 3 August 2016) 

F16/023.2  South Avenue Play Area:  The Committee noted that the works were completed on 29 July 2016 and a 

RoSPA inspection took place on the same day  with 100% pass.  It was then agreed to immediately open to the public and the initial responses have been very positive.  An official opening was planned for 10.00am  Tuesday 16 August 2016 attended by the contractor, Chairman of Council and Chairman of the Play Area Working Group, and the press will be invited.  The Committee was advised that there had been overflowing rubbish from the only bin, exacerbated by seagulls spreading the waste around.  A temporary dustbin with lid had been installed, but a permanent solution was being arranged with MSDC.   The Committee expressed its thanks to Assistant Clerk Paul Mayne for his diligent work in bringing the project to a conclusion.  

F16/023.3  Streetlight Replacement Scheme:  The Committee noted that the application to  Public Works Loan 

Board (PWLB) for £165,000, repayable over 20 years, has been approved.   The contract to SSE has been issued and the mobilising work was underway.  On site installation is expected to start Octob er 2016.  (Ref:  PWLB  ltr  DCLG  20 July 2016) 

F16/023.4  Public seats:  One replacement seat had been installed in South Avenue Recreation Ground and a second seat had been received and was due to be installed near the Pitt Road toilets.  The current year budget provides for four further seats and locations have been previously identified as:  Weald Close (replacement), Iden Hurst/Cuckfield Road junction (new);  South Ave Recreation Ground (replacement),  St Georges Lane/Hassocks Road (replacement).   

F16/024.  OPERATIONS:  (exception reports only) 

F16/024.1  Street lighting:   The Committee was advised that, pending the replacement programme, no repairs will be undertaken on existing lights unless they represent a danger.  The replacement contractor SSE have agreed to carry out repairs as requested, on a daywork basis.   

F16/024.2  Toilets:   Nothing to report.  

F16/024.3  Trees:  Nothing to report 

F16/024.4  Cemetery:   Nothing to report. 

F16/024.5  Recreation Grounds:   

  1. (1) South Avenue Recreation Ground:  A request had been received from a member of the public to hold a childrens birthday event on 10 September 2016 for their child, involving about 40 people.  The applicants had confirmed that they would comply with the Council’s requirements for a Small Event and permission had been granted and no charge made.  (Ref:  Email: Melissa Lowin-Roberts  28 July 2016; HP+SCPC email 3 August 2016;    NOTE:  Groups using Parish Council  Recreation Grounds  31 May 2013)   
  1. (2) Reeds Lane Recreation Ground – play equipment:  Further to the previous decision of the Committee 

(Minute F16/017.5  Meeting 7 July 2016) to agree to expenditure of £1,621.50 + VAT on repairs, it was subsequently discovered by the routine maintenance checks that other parts of the equipment contain rotting timbers and should be removed.  The equipment had been sealed off to prevent use.  The previous order for repairs was stopped and it was now recommended that all the timber equipment be removed and investigations started for the provision of suitable new play equipment.  The current timber play equipment had not been well-used and did not meet the current needs of children.  (This can be noted in contrast to the success of the new play equipment at South Avenue Recreation Ground.)  There is also a satisfactory play area at Berrylands, operated by MSDC and closer to the majority of housing in Sayers Common.  

At this stage there is no budget provision for new equipment, and consideration would be given to costs and funding.   RESOLVED:  The Reeds Lane Recreation Ground timber play equipment is removed and investigations are started into suitable replacements.   

F16/024.6  Dog waste bins.  Nothing to report. 

F16/024.7  Buildings:    

(1)  Chantry Stables (Hurst Community Charity shop):  The new lease had been completed effective 1 April 

2014 for 5 years.  Part of the agreement required the Council to undertake some minor repairs to the building and a quotation was being sought for this work.   

  1. (2) Bowls Club:  The new lease was signed 14 August 2014 and effective  1 April 2013.  As a result of an application for funds by the Club to MSDC, attention has been brought to the Parish Council that the procedure for signing might not have been correct.  Council approved the lease  (Minute C498.2  Meeting 12 September 2013) but a specific resolution authorising two councillors to sign was not subsequently made.  Advice is being sought from MSDC about a retrospective resolution.   
  2. (3) Tennis Club:  A requirement of the current lease (26 November 2001, supplemented 28 October 2004) was for a rent review to be undertaken, effective 1 November 2016  (Clause 3 – lease 26 November 2001).  An independent valuation had been undertaken by the District Valuer (DVS) and a report received.  The recommendation of the Report (para 4.3) is that a rent of £1,800 pa is  applied from 1 November 2016 and it was proposed that the Club is advised of this increase.  (Ref: Tennis Club, Hurstpierpoint – Market Valuation Report  –  20 June 2016  –  DVS) 

RESOLVED:  The Tennis Club leas rent review report is noted and the Club is advised that a rent of £1,800 is applied from 1 November 2016.   

F16/024.8  Allotments:   Nothing to report.   

F16/024.9  Public enquiries: The Committee was advised that the Parish Office maintains a  Customer log  of all public enquiries and which is available for inspection by Members.   

There being no other business the Chairman closed the meeting at   8.55  pm    Chairman  

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