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Hurstpierpoint & Sayers Common
Parish Council

Full Council

February 6, 2020

Minutes of the meeting of the council held on Thursday 23rd January 2020 at 8.00 pm in the Village Centre, Trinity Road, Hurstpierpoint  

Members present 

Stephen Hand (Chairman)  Michael Avery (from 8.10 pm)  Allan Brown  Peter Griffiths  Rodney Jackson (also MSDC Ward Cllr)  Seth Jee  Tony Lank Malcolm Llewellyn  John Lowman  Claire Majsai  Duncan Ranger  Bob Sampson  Julia Shorrocks   

Also present:  Joy Dennis (WSCC Councillor)  Colin Trumble (MSDC Councillor) 

Alison Bennett (MSDC Councillor)   

      Andy Beams (Clerk to the Council) 

    1 member of the public 

C19/082 Apologies for absence and declarations of interest: The following apologies for absence were received before the meeting and accepted: Cllr Martin Machan, Cllr Michael Avery for late arrival. The following declarations of interest were declared: None 

C19/083 Minutes of the meeting of the council held on 19th December 2019: To receive and accept the minutes.   

  RESOLVED:  The minutes of the meeting of the council held on 19th December 2019 are adopted.  

C19/084 Adjournment for questions from the public: The council shall consider whether to adjourn the meeting in accordance with clause 70 of Standing Orders, in order to receive questions from members of the public in attendance. There were no questions from the member of the public. 

C19/085 Reports from other authorities: To receive verbal reports from representatives of other authorities:  C19/085.1 West Sussex County Council County (WSCC)    Cllr Dennis’s report included:  

  • • She is attending a Burgess Hill Sustainability meeting next week, which will include discussions about the cycle routes in and around Hurstpierpoint 
  • • Further meetings have been held regarding the A2300 and the 40mph TRO opposite the Sportsman pub has been agreed (date to be confirmed) 
  • • Arrangements are being made to discourage the use of Jobs Lane with changes being made to its junction with Bishopstone Lane 
  • • 90-95% of the topsoil being removed during the works will be reused on site 
  • • The location of the site offices and materials space has changed due to being unable to reach an agreement with the landowner of the original proposed location 
  • • The budget went before the Scrutiny Committee yesterday. Operation Watershed funding will still be available for the next two financial years. 
  • • She will be attending the Kingsland Laines meeting on Tuesday 

In response to questions from councillors, Cllr Dennis acknowledged that a program of works for road improvements was needed, with funding to come from the capital budget. 

Cllr Dennis acknowledged the need to keep a close watch on the removal of spoil from the A2300 works site, to ensure it is removed and deposited in an appropriate way. 

C19/085.2 Mid Sussex District Council (MSDC) Cllr Bennett’s report included: 

  • • Draft budget had been prepared to be reviewed by Full Council. Revenue increases include adding £5 to the green waste collection, and reviewing  planning pre-application fees to align to those charged by other District Councils 
  • • Northern Arc – the first informal quarterly drop-in session is being held at The Triangle on Tuesday 28 January between 12 and 2 

Cllr Trumble’s report included: 

  • • Confirmed budget and parking strategy have yet to be approved by Council 
  • • The parking strategy will be looking at the three towns and four main villages, but needs consideration of issues wider than just the car parks 
  • • He will be attending the Kingsland Laines meeting on Tuesday 
  • • As part of the Chairman’s charity, a Royal Marsden walk is being held on 29 March commencing at the bowls club 
  • • He continues to chase the enforcement team for action on the unfinished house near the church 
  • • Contact details for the new enforcement officer for the local area were provided  

Cllr Jackson’s MSDAC and WSALC report included: 

  • • MSDAC  – next due to meet mid-February, with the conference postponed to the Autumn 
  • • WSALC – new PCSO’s are being distributed around the county with one per division. Additional PC’s are also being recruited, but take longer to train 
  • • Becky Shaw has been appointed Chief Executive of WSCC 
  • • Updates were received on the military covenant arrangements 
  • • SSALC are conducting a review of staffing and their training providers 
  • • St Catherine’s Hospice has established new premises at Pease Pottage 

In response to questions from councillors, Cllr Trumble confirmed there had been no movement on the boundary review. He also acknowledged the suggestion that action needs to be taken to improve the perception of the enforcement team, perhaps by publishing details of success stories. 

Cllrs Dennis, Bennett and Trumble left the meeting at 8.44pm. 

C19/086 Committee and Working Group minutes: The committee chairmen will introduce each minutes, which the council is asked to receive and where appropriate, consider the recommendations:  

C19/086.1 Finance & Governance Committee (9 January 2020) 

  • Parish Action Plan: Resolution F19/076 … Committees to take responsibility for their allocated actions and review and update as appropriate at each committee meeting. 

  (Ref: Parish Action Plan 2016 -21 Rev 9 Jan 2020) 

Cllr Hand reminded the councilors of the agreed commitment for each committee, and that Council should also periodically review the plan. 

Cllr Llewellyn emphasised the need for each committee to review their actions as part of their normal committee business at every meeting, and to further rationalise their actions where appropriate.  

C19/086.2 Planning & Environment Committee (19 December 2019 and 16 January 2020) 

Kingsland Laines Street Names: The committee agreed several suggestions to be submitted and request 

Council approval for these. (Ref: Kingsland Laines Street Names Suggestions, Postal Site Layout Kingsland Laines ATTACHED) 

  RECOMMENDATION: The Council AGREE the suggestions of the committee.  

Cllr Lank explained the reasons for the recommendations, and why the use of people’s names was not appropriate in this instance. 

Cllr Jee confirmed that the suggestion of bird names reflected ideas from residents of Sayers Common, and were relevant to birds which have been seen in the village. 

  RESOLVED: The Council AGREES the suggestions of the committee. 

Tree replacement Policy: The committee propose that the Council should adopt a policy whereby any tree which is removed is replaced with a sapling and maintained at the owner’s expense for a period of five years.   RECOMMENDATION: The Council AGREE to agree the proposed policy.   

Cllr Lank introduced the reasons for the policy being proposed, and the principle of protecting existing trees and encouraging replacement was accepted by councillors, although there were concerns as to how this might be enforceable outside the conservation area. However, it was felt that the Council should take the lead in this area, and further work was needed on developing an adoptable policy. 

 RESOLVED: The Council referred the policy back to the Planning and Environment Committee for further consideration.  

C19/087 Emergency Plan review: The Emergency Plan was last reviewed in 2016 and contained information in need of updating. The document outlines that the Emergency Co-ordinators are the Committee Chairmen and Vice Chairmen (if chairmen are unavailable) and should be reviewed and agreed by full council as this affects all committees. (Ref: Briefing Note Emergency Plan 17 Dec 2019, Emergency Plan Revised 17 Dec 2019 ATTACHED)  

RECOMMENDATION: The Council AGREE to adopt the Emergency Plan with agreed amendments.   

Cllr Majsai explained the background to the updated plan, and emphasised the responsibilities of the committee Chairmen. 

Cllr Llewellyn expressed concern at information missing from the plan, such as an up to date contact list.  

RESOLVED: The Council AGREES to refer the Emergency Plan back to the Community Engagement Committee for further consideration.    

C19/088 MSDC Partnership Agreement: An agreement was entered into in 2007 for the Parish Council to undertake works on MSDC land, and receive remuneration in return. This work was subcontracted to Burgess 

Hill Town Council, who have now withdrawn from the agreement. (Ref: Briefing Note MSDC Partnership Agreement 16 Jan 2020 ATTACHED) 

RECOMMENDATION: The Council AGREE to withdraw from the Partnership Agreement to carry out inspection, maintenance and reactive works on MSDC land within the Parish. 

 RESOLVED: The Council AGREES to withdraw from the Partnership Agreement to carry out inspection, maintenance and reactive works on MSDC land within the Parish. 

C19/089 Reserves: To support the Council’s decision regarding the setting of the budget and precept for 2020/21, a detailed analysis of the reserves position has been carried out, focusing in particular on the earmarked reserves position in relation to s.106 monies for Hurst Meadows. (Ref: Briefing note Analysis of reserves position 17 January 2020 ATTACHED)  

RECOMMENDATION: The Council AGREE the recommended actions.  

RESOLVED: The Council AGREES the recommended actions and that the reserves be regularly reviewed at Finance & Governance Committee meetings. 

C19/090 Budget and precept: At the 19 December Council meeting it was agreed for the Finance and Governance committee to continue its budget planning on the basis of justification of need, rather than a fixed upper limit on any increase. At the Committee meeting on 9 January, the budget proposal was revised, and assessed each line individually for any changes. As a result, a further £11,100 was removed from the budget along with half of the staffing provision for the Finance Assistant role (approximately £6,700). The revised budget is presented to Council for approval. (Ref: Briefing note Review of Charges (v3) 19 December 2019, Briefing note Budget Principles (v2) 11 December 2019, Briefing note Budget 2020-21 Working Draft (v4) ATTACHED)  

RECOMMENDATION: The Council AGREE the revised expenditure budget of £386,968, income budget of £134,947 and precept requirement of £252,021. 

Cllr Llewellyn reminded councillors of the background to the briefing notes, and the revisions made by the committee in each version of the working draft budget.  

Cllr Hand emphasised that the Reeds Lane Play Area and Community Highways Scheme projects are still going ahead, but will be funded from appropriate s.106 funds rather than directly from the Council’s revenue budget. 

RESOLVED: The Council AGREES the revised expenditure budget of £386,968, income budget of £134,947 and precept requirement of £252,021. 

C19/091 Information items, correspondence received and requests: Council is asked to note: No items for information. 

C19/092 Confidential matters: 

The Council is asked to resolve that in view of the confidential nature of the following item, the press and public be excluded under section 1(2) of the Public Bodies (Admission to Meetings) Act 1960. 

The Chairman confirmed that the new Clerk had successfully negotiated a reduced notice period with her current employers and will now start on 19 February 2020. 

Cllr Lowman informed councillors of an issue with a listed wall in the conservation area. It is being supported by wooden struts, which may be of a temporary nature although this is unclear. As it represents a potential health and safety risk adjacent to a public right of way, the Clerk was asked to inform Mid Sussex District Council of the situation. 

Cllr Lowman updated councillors on progress regarding access rights. A solicitor had been instructed and is in the process for drawing up an agreement, based on the negotiated terms. This will be presented to Council for approval in due course. 

There being no other business, the Chairman closed the meeting at 9.44 pm.  

Chairman 

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