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Minutes of the Staffing, Finance & General Purposes Committee held in the Council Chamber, Town Hall, Bideford on Thursday 29 November 2018 at 6.30 pm

PRESENT:

North Ward:

Councillor P S Christie
Councillor D Bushby (Town Mayor)
Councillor D McGeough
Councillor P J Pester

South Ward:

Councillor D G Brenton
Councillor S G Inch (Chairman)
Councillor R Wootton

East Ward:

Councillor M Langmead

IN ATTENDANCE: Mrs H J Blackburn (Town Clerk)

060.     APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

Councillor D Howell (South (Outer) Ward – Personal)

061.     DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST AND ANY REQUESTS FOR DISPENSATION ON ITEMS ON THE AGENDA

There were no declarations of interest.

062.     PUBLIC PARTICIPATION SESSION OF 15 MINUTES DURATION

No Members of the public were present at the meeting.

063.     MINUTES

a.      Proposed by Councillor Langmead, seconded by Councillor Pester and resolved that the minutes of the meeting held on 11 October 2018 are approved and signed as a correct record.

(Vote – For: 7, Against: 0, Abstentions:1)

b.     Proposed by Councillor Bushby, seconded by Councillor Pester and resolved that the minutes of the meeting held on 18 October 2018 are approved and signed as a correct record.

(Vote – For: 7, Against: 0, Abstentions: 1)

064.    CHAIRMAN’S ITEMS

There were no items to report.

065.    ACCOUNTS

a.      Members received the list of payments.

Proposed by Councillor Pester, seconded by Councillor M Langmead, and

RESOLVED: That the draft list of payments is approved.

(Vote – For: 8, Against: 0)

b.     Members received the Internal Finance Inspector’s Report for the period 1 July – 30 September 2018.

Proposed by Councillor Inch, seconded by Councillor Brenton, and

RESOLVED: That the Internal Finance Inspector’s Report for the period 1 July – 30 September 2018 is accepted.

Councillor Pester was thanked for his work as Internal Finance Inspector.

(Vote – For: 8, Against: 0)

066.     BUDGET SETTING

Members discussed the deferral of the annual budget setting process to the SFGP meeting on 10 January 2019, to bring this in line with receipt of information on the Council Tax Support grant from Torridge District Council, which is not expected until 10 December 2018.

Proposed by Councillor Brenton, seconded by Councillor Langmead and

RESOLVED: That the recommendation for the budget for 2019/2020 is deferred to the SFGP Meeting on 10 January 2019.

(Vote For: 8, Against: 0)

067.     GRANT APPLICATION

a.     The Town Clerk advised that there had been a late application from the Bideford, Littleham and Westward Ho! Cricket Club which had got lost in the post and asked Members whether they wished to consider it.

Proposed by Councillor Bushby, seconded by Councillor McGeough and

RESOLVED: That the late application is accepted.

(Vote: For: 8, Against: 0)

b.     Members considered the grant application of contribution from the Bideford, Littleham and Westward Ho! Cricket Club.

Proposed by Councillor Bushby, seconded by Councillor McGeough and

RECOMMENDED: That a grant of £2,260 is awarded to the Bideford, Littleham and Westward Ho! Cricket Club.

(Vote – For: 8, Against: 0)

068.      MANOR COURT PRESENTMENTS

Presentment Number 4. The trees in Prospect Place and Manor Car Park, opposite the Quay, need to be included in with the Christmas lights. We request this Council make the necessary arrangements in time for this year’s Christmas Lights Switch On.

The Town Clerk advised that permission had now been received from Devon County Council to put the lights in the trees. The Highways Officer had stipulated a number of conditions for the Electrical Contractor to comply with. In addition any tree maintenance required to enable any part of the light installation and usage to be carried out is to be at the cost of the Town Council with prior written permission from Devon County Council Highways.

Proposed by Councillor S Inch, seconded by Councillor Bushby and

RESOLVED: That any tree works connected with the lighting will be undertaken BY Bideford Town Council.

(Vote – For: 8, Against: 0)

Councillor Brenton suggested that lights could be put in the trees outside the Pannier Market. He advised he would raise this suggestion at Market Management.

Presentment Number: 3 – A Changing Places facility in Bideford for those who are disabled, or wheelchair bound This enables families with a member who is incontinent to be changed with dignity in a dry housing with the necessary equipment and facilities. Currently in Bideford the options are to either not go out for the day in the Town or change the person on the floor. We request this Council writes to Torridge District Council and Atlantic Village requesting future plans for such a facility.

The Town Clerk advised that no further communication has been forthcoming from either Atlantic Village or Torridge District Council.

 Presentment Number: 5 – That the Council investigates installing Recycling bins for Plastic on the quay for cyclists, runners, visitors to deposit their empty bottles etc. and that this council investigates the possibility of installing hygienic water fountains in Victoria Park and on Bideford Quay with Plastic recycling bins nearby to show support for the campaign to stop using plastics.

A water fountain has been purchased, but on inspection it is felt that it would be better to install it in a more protected environment. Councillor Brenton will raise the possibility of it being installed at the Pannier Market with the Market Management Committee, and The Town Clerk will investigate the possibility of a push button tap for outside 1 Queen Street.

Councillor Langmead advised that he had been investigation further recycling opportunities with Torridge District Council Officers.

Proposed by Councillor Christie, seconded by Councillor Bushby and

RESOLVED: That the possibility of the water fountain being installed at the Pannier Market is explored by the Market Management Committee and that the possibility of a push button tap for outside 1 Queen Street is investigated by the Town Clerk.

(Vote – For: 8, Against: 0)

069.     PURCHASE OF PHOTOCOPIER

Members considered the quotations provided for a photocopier for the office.

Proposed by Councillor Bushby, seconded by Councillor S Inch and

RECOMMENDED: That the Town Clerk investigates whether Torridge District Council have a suitable photocopier the Town Council could have following their reorganisation. If they do not have a suitable photocopier, then the Town Clerk is authorised to purchase the Sharp photocopier from Clarity.

(Vote – For: 8, Against: 0)

070.     ANNUAL BOUNDARY SURVEY FORD HOUSE WOODLAND

Members gave consideration to the quotations for the annual boundary survey at Ford House Woodland.

Proposed by Councillor Inch, seconded by Councillor Brenton and

RESOLVED: That the quotation provided by Glendale is accepted. The Town Clerk will confirm whether Bideford Town Council has responsibility for maintaining the tree at the Port Memorial, and if this is the case Glendale will be asked to include this within the quotation.

(Vote For: 8, Against: 0)

071.     DISABILITY AND WHEELCHAIR FRIENDLY SWINGS

Members gave consideration to further information and quotations on disability and wheelchair friendly swings following Councillor McGeough’s Notice of Motion. The Town Clerk advised that Torridge District Council had suggested that in order to protect this equipment from vandalism, it would need to be fenced with a self closing gate, signage erected, and possibly CCTV. Members queried whether CCTV could be installed next to a play area. Members also advised that there would be a cost to maintain such equipment. Both companies who had provided quotations had recommended that the area is used under supervised use only, and that the wheelchair ramps should be kept in a separate location, otherwise they are vulnerable to theft.

Councillor Brenton offered to check with DALC members on their experience of providing disability and wheelchair friendly swings in public parks and what measures were required. The Town Clerk was asked to clarify with the Bridge Trust what contribution they would be prepared to make.

072.     NOTICE OF MOTION – COUNCILLOR D BRENTON

“To provide a grant of £1,500 to The Pollyfield Centre in order to sponsor the Commemorative Battles Over – A Nation Commemorates Event, which was held at Pollyfield on 11 November 2018.”

Proposed by Councillor Brenton, seconded by Councillor Bushby and

RECOMMENDED: That Bideford Town Council contributes up to £1,500 for receipted expenditure.

(Vote For: 8, Against: 0)

Councillor S Inch was congratulated for the successful organisation of the beacon lighting event.

073.     MAINTENANCE OPERATIVES

Members received an update on the tasks undertaken by the Maintenance Operatives and noted the report. They remarked that following the employment of a Supervisor, there seemed to be an increase in the tasks completed.

Councillor McGeough asked for an update on the request by a parishioner to cut a pathway to make a shortcut at Londonderry. Members were not sure who owned the land in question, although it was suggested it may be Torridge District Council. Councillor Christie advised that not all neighbours were in favour of this course of action and Councillor Bushby advised that if the Town Council made a new path, which then became slippery, The Town Council could be held responsible. The Town Clerk was asked to establish with the Land Registry Office who owns the area of land.

Councillor Langmead asked if the Maintenance Team Could prioritise the key routes in and out of town for weeding and maintenance. He advised that Clovelly Road and Meddon Street were weedy. Councillor Bushby reminded Members that the Team are currently short by one person, and this is inevitably having an effect. They are always busy and occupied, and to keep the town fully maintained, the team would need to be larger.

074.     PART II CLOSED SESSION

Proposed by Councillor Langmead, seconded by Councillor Inch and

RESOLVED: That in view of the confidential nature of the business about to be discussed, the meeting moves into part II.

(Vote For: 8, Against: 0)

075.     STAFFING MATTERS

There is a confidential minute associated with this item.

076. Proposed by Councillor Langmead, seconded by Councillor Pester and

RESOLVED: That the Meeting returns to Standing Orders.

(Vote – For: 8, Against: 0)

The business of the meeting having been completed, the Chairman thanked the members for their attendance and the meeting concluded at 7.26 pm.

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