MINUTES of the Meeting of the Council held on Thursday 18 June 2015 at 8.00pm in the Village Centre, Trinity Road, Hurstpierpoint.
|Stephen Hand – Chairman Rosemary Burns Rodney Jackson Tony Lank John Lowman Judith Marsh||Ceri O’Connell Bob Sampson Julia Shorrocks Matthew Stokes Steve Whitehead|
Cllr Colin Trumble (MSDC Ward Member) (part meeting)
Stephen Hoyles – CLERK TO THE COUNCIL
C15/020. Apologies for absence and declarations of interest: The following apologies for absence were received before the meeting and accepted: Allan Brown, David Evans, John Wilkinson, Cllr Peter Griffiths (WSCC Ward Member). There were no declarations of interest in accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct.
C15/021. CONFIDENTIAL MATTERS: A Member of Council asked proposed that the meeting be closed to the public and the press under the Public Bodies (Admissions to Meetings) Act 1960 in order to discuss the following item:
RESOLVED: To close the meeting to the public and the press under the Public Bodies (Admissions to Meetings) Act 1960.
The meeting was then opened to the public and press, to complete the following item:
Council Vacancy: Further to Council meeting 21 May 2015 (Minute C15/018) and following local advertising, four candidates had applied for consideration for co-option. The Governance + Staff Panel had interviewed the candidates prior to this Council meeting brought a recommendation to Council for appointment. (Ref: Local Government Act 1972 s87(1))
RESOLVED: The Council agrees to co-opt Pam Mitchell as a Member of Council.
C15/022. Minutes of the Annual Meeting of the Council held on 21 May 2015: The Council received and accepted the minutes which were then signed by the Chairman.
C15/023. Matters arising from the Minutes of the Council held on 21 May 2015: The Council considered matters arising from the Minutes which are not covered elsewhere on this agenda.
(1) Minute: C15/005: Committees : Structure, Terms of Reference and Appointments: Planning Committee: The Council agreed that a single Planning committee should handle the relevant business of the Council. However, as had been explained, there was mounting concern that the volume of applications is more than can be managed by a single meeting a month. Members were keen that all Committee members should be able to consider and vote on all applications. It was proposed that the Planning committee meets twice each month (Meeting ‘A’ and Meeting ‘B’) and that applications are considered in strict chronological order. However, Council was concerned about the number of meetings and agreed that a single Planning meeting each month should continue. In discussion, concern was expressed about the introduction of paperless applications and the practicalities involved, and suggestions that the MSDC Planning server could be improved to better allow on-line access. The matter of possible delegation of some decisions to Chairman and VC, and the deployment of retained professional planning advice to assist on the use of planning policies, was discussed.
RESOLVED The Planning Committee continues to meet monthly.
C15/024. Adjournment for questions from the public: There being no members of the public present the Council was not required to consider whether to adjourn the Meeting in accordance with clause 70 of Standing Orders, in order to receive questions.
C15/025. Reports from other authorities: The Council received verbal reports from representatives of other Authorities:
(1) Mid Sussex District Council (MSDC): Cllr Colin Trumble reported: (1) Ward District Councillors had agreed a rota for attending the Parish Council Meeting. (2) Haywards Heath railway station redevelopment was now underway.
(3) The District Council were watching the Government’s moves on devolution of powers, to assess how this might impact on the district. (4) District Plan: memorandums of understanding were being reached with neighbouring authorities, as part of the evidence gathering in support of the Plan. (5) The Council was awaiting the decision from the London Airports Commission. (6) A new head of service for IT at the Council had been appointed. (7) The Council were pleased to have enabled 224 affordable new homes in 2014. (8) It had been noted that the crime rate for the parish area was very low. Questions were raised by Members of the Parish Council about MSDC’s housing number allocations across the District, and about the impact of possible loss of social housing stock resulting from the Government’s extended right-to-buy scheme.
- (2) West Sussex County Council County Local Committee (WSCC/CLC) : Cllr Peter Griffiths was not present at the meeting.
- (3) Mid Sussex Association of Local Councils (MSALC): Rodney Jackson advised that a meeting of WSALC had been held with the Sussex Chief constable. It had been noted that grant aid reductions would be resulting in fewer frontline police officers, but that steps were being taken to improve effectiveness. It was also expected that policing would move towards a response system, rather than a presence.
C15/026. Committee and Working Group minutes: The Committee Chairmen introduced each of the Minutes, which the Council received and where appropriate, considered the RECOMMENDATIONS: :
- (1) Planning Committee (28 May 2015)
- (2) Planning Committee (4 June 2015)
- (3) Strategic Planning Working Group (9 June 2015)
Minute SP15/003. The Working Group Chairman advised that the Council had an opportunity to respond to the judicial review judgement on the Kingsland Laines application (Minutes SP15/004) and that the Council’s Planning Consultant was being asked to prepare a response. It was noted that at Council Meeting 21 May 2015 (Minute C15/005) Allan Brown had been appointed to the Working Group. However, it was agreed to RECOMMEND to Council that John Wilkinson should be appointed in his place.
RESOLVED: That John Wilkinson replaces Allan Brown on the Working Group.
- (4) Finance + General Purposes Committee (11 June 2015)
Minute F15/008.7 Annual Accounts: The Committee had considered the Annual Accounts. The Accounts will be submitted with the Annual Return to the External Auditor. A RECOMMENDATION was brought to Council to approve and adopt the Accounts 2014/15. (Ref: Annual Accounts 2014/15 – 12 May 2015 )
RESOLVED: The Annual Accounts 2014/15 are received and adopted and submitted with the Annual Return for 31 March 2015.
- (5) Parkland Working Group (16 June 2015)
Minute PK15/003. Land north of Highfield Drive – Landscape and Ecological Management Plan: The Working Group considered the BRIEFING NOTE regarding the proposed Plan, the transfer of land, and the works contracts, and brought a recommendation to Council for its approval. It was agreed that Finance + General Purposes Committee is tasked with monitoring the contract process. (Ref: BRIEFING NOTE Parkland LEMP – 9 June 2015 ) RESOLVED:
- (1) The LEMP for the Parkland at Highfield Drive, Hurstpierpoint (COS1) is approved and the developer Rydon Homes is advised accordingly.
- (2) That the offer of freehold transfer of land (COS1) is accepted, in accordance with the s106 Agreement, and that the Council’s retained solicitor is instructed to act for the Council in the transfer.
- (3) That contracts are prepared and tenders invited for the Preparatory Works and the Ongoing Maintenance for COS1.
C15/027. Annual Return 2015: The Council was asked to receive and approve the Annual Return 2014/15, including Section 1: Statement of Accounts and Section 2: Annual Governance Statement and its associated comments, and to authorise the Chairman and Clerk (as RFO) to sign. (Ref: Annual Return 2014/15 ) RESOLVED: the Council approves the Annual Return 2014/15
C15/028. High Street Improvements Scheme: Members were asked to note the current progress and to approve the arrangements for implementing the Scheme.
Background: Council approved the final Scheme (Minute C675 – 11 December 2014) following extensive feasibility studies, analysis of options, and a public exhibition and responses in November 2012. Some adjustments were made following comments by the public and traders, including deleting the proposal to move the Village Garden bus stop, and changing the loading bay arrangements. A three-stage independent safety audit assessment was carried out by highway engineers from the County Council, the Parish’s own consultants, and a third independent advisor.
Construction process: A comprehensive project meeting was held with the appointed contractor and WSCC Engineers on 10 June 2015, at which the processes of managing the construction in August 2015 were discussed. It is intended that the road will be closed to through traffic from Sunday 2 August through to Friday 28 August 2015, but with a contingency to extend to 6 September 2015. Throughout this time residents will have car and foot access to their properties at all times, and traders will have delivery access to their premises. The contractor will be directly liaising with shopkeepers regarding the delivery arrangements to minimise trading disruption. Construction work will run from 7.30am to 5.00pm each day except Sundays. Formal diversions will be in place and approved by the statutory bodies. Neither College Lane nor Cuckfield Road will be on the formal diversion routes, but it is acknowledged that local drivers will use these routes. Contractor’s compound: The contractor requires a secure area of about 15m x 15m for storage of materials and welfare facilities. It had been proposed to use a portion of the Trinity Road carpark, but the Parish Office has proposed that the north-east corner of the South Avenue Recreation Ground would be more appropriate, and arrangements are being made. The Contractor would restore the site at the end of the period. The Council is asked to approve this arrangement.
Publicity arrangements: The Council considered the arrangements involving a leaflet, banner and information point and their associated costs. (Ref: BRIEFING NOTE – High Street Improvements Scheme – publicising the scheme – 17 June
In discussion the Council noted that there had been no representation present at this meeting in opposition to the Scheme. Discussion took place on the work that had been undertaken to test the technical validity and options for the Scheme, and noted the need to ensure proper levels of parking enforcement once the Scheme was completed. A vote took place on the recommendations, with 10 for and 1 abstention.
RESOLVED: The Council
- (1) notes the current progress and approves the implementation of the High Street Improvements and Safety Scheme, and
- (2) agrees to the use of a section of South Avenue Recreation Ground for the contractor’s compound, and
- (3) approves the publicity arrangements for the construction phase of the High Street Improvements Scheme.
C15/029. Parish Plan – Community Life 2016-21: The Council was asked to agree that the existing Parish Plan
(Community Life 2011-16) is comprehensively reviewed, to cover the 5-year period from the end of the current Council Year. The suggested process and timetable is detailed in the BRIEFING NOTE. (Ref: BRIEFING NOTE – Parish Plan – Community Life 2016-21 timetable – 10 June 2015)
RESOLVED: A new Parish Plan (period 2016-21) is commissioned and Community Affairs Committee is tasked with its preparation.
C15/030 Council Meetings Programme 2015/16: Following the decisions regarding committee Structure and
Terms of Reference made by Council at its meeting 21 May 2015, the Calendar for the Year 2015/16 had been revised. (Ref: Meeting Programme 2015/16 rev 10 June 2105)
C15/031. Information items, correspondence received and requests:
(1) NALC Direction of Travel: (Letter 10 April 2015)
There being no other business the Chairman closed the Meeting at 9.50 pm. Chairman