Agenda 11th January 2017

Highwood Parish Council 

66 Victoria Road, Writtle, Chelmsford  CM1 3PA 

5 January 2017

 

To:      MEMBERS OF HIGHWOOD PARISH COUNCIL 

You are hereby summoned to attend a meeting of Highwood Parish Council to be held at 7.30 pm on Wednesday 11 January 2017 in the Village Hall, Loves Green, Highwood, to transact the business shown in the agenda. 

The press and public are welcome to be present. 

Louise R Fuller

Clerk

 

A G E N D A

 

1

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

 

To RECEIVE any apologies for absence.

 

 

2

CONFIRMATION OF MINUTES

 

 

To APPROVE the minutes of the meeting of the parish council held on 9 November 2016 as a correct record.

 

 

3

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

 

3.1

Councillors to DECLARE any disclosable or other pecuniary interest or other interest in any items on the agenda, in accordance with the adopted Code of Conduct.

Pecuniary or other interests should be declared at this time, or at any point in the meeting where they become apparent.

Councillors must inform the Monitoring Officer of Chelmsford City Council, via the Clerk, within 28 days of becoming aware of any change in their pecuniary or other interests.

 

3.2

DISPENSATIONS 

To CONSIDER any requests for dispensation from the provisions of S31(4) of the Localism Act 2011.

 

S31(4) states that a member may not participate in any discussion or vote upon a matter, at the meeting, in which he/she has a disclosable pecuniary interest.

 

Requests for dispensation must be made in writing to the Clerk.

 

 

4

QUESTIONS FROM MEMBERS OF THE PUBLIC

 

To RECEIVE questions from members of the public.

 

In accordance with the agreed procedure public questions will be taken and shall be limited to a maximum of 15 minutes or such other period as may be determined by the Chairman of the meeting.

5

REPORTS

To RECEIVE brief reports on the following matters.

 

Chelmsford City Council

City Cllr N Chambers

 

Essex County Council

Cty Cllr J Aldridge

 

Play park, Edney Common

Cllr D Cameron

 

Village Hall

Cllr C Sargent

 

Public Rights of Way

M Martin

 

 

6

REPORT OF THE CLERK

 

To RECEIVE the report of the clerk.

 

1

Section 106 money

As requested, I asked Chelmsford City Council if it was possible to use the money, currently held under Section 106 agreements for local open space purposes, to pay instead for the construction of a footway between Edney Common and Loves Green.  CCC’s legal team has reviewed the agreements but is not satisfied that the definitions contained within the agreements would fall within the scope of funding a footway.

 

2

Grass cutting contract 2017

Further to the council’s decision at the September meeting to make no changes to the grass cutting contract for 2017, subject to any objections from councillors I intend to re-let the contract to the existing contractor, as it has been satisfactory for the past two years and obtaining a lower price would be unlikely.  The price for 2017 has been held at the same as 2016.

 

 

 

7

 

ECC HIGHWAYS PRACTICE NOTE TO LOCAL FLOODED ROADS 

ECC has introduced a scheme whereby roads, which are subject to localised flooding and where properties suffer from vehicles continuing to drive through the flood and cause a wash into the properties, can be closed temporarily by the parish council.  An email has been circulated to councillors giving full details of the scheme; naturally it is quite detailed as closing roads is a major undertaking.  The A414 is a PR1 route so the scheme could not apply there; Highwood Road, Blackmore Road and Ingatestone Road are PR2 routes so the scheme might be allowed but the locations would be looked at carefully by ECC.  If implemented, it would require significant input from the council in respect of the required notifications, putting out the necessary road signs and bringing them in as soon as the flood has dispersed.

The council is ASKED if there are any locations in Highwood where it thinks the scheme might be beneficial.

 

 

 

8

FINANCE

 

8.1

 

Accounts for payment 

To APPROVE the accounts for payment (list will be available at the meeting).

 

 

8.2

To NOTE the account balances as at 31 December 2016.

 

 

 

9

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

STANDING ORDERS AND FINANCIAL REGULATIONS

In her report on the year 2015/16, the internal auditor identified inconsistencies between the Standing Orders and Financial Regulations and recommended they should be amended.  The problem areas were the level of expenditure that the Clerk can authorise in an emergency and also when formal tenders are required.

Both the Standing Orders and the Financial Regulations are in need of a major overhaul to meet current statutory requirements and best practice.  The clerk has started work on this but it will take a considerable while to complete.  Meanwhile, to act upon the auditor’s report, the following steps are RECOMMENDED.  They remove all references to finance in the Standing Orders and incorporate them instead in the Financial Regulations.  This will prevent inconsistencies arising in the future.

            Changes to Standing Orders

i           Delete Standing Order 39 Expenditure and amend Financial Regulations to incorporate it fully.

ii           Delete Standing Orders 54 & 55 Accounts and Financial Statement and amend Financial Regulations to incorporate this.

ii           Delete Standing Order 56 Estimates as (a) is already incorporated in the Financial Regulations and (b) does not apply in Highwood.

iii          Delete Standing all of Standing Order 73 Standing Order on Contracts and replace it with

            (title) Financial Regulations

            The Council will make regulations for the conduct of its financial affairs including for the making of contracts for the supply of goods or materials or for the execution of works, and such Regulations shall form part of these standing orders.

            (For information: the part about contracts etc has to be mentioned specifically in Standing Orders as there is a statutory requirement to have a standing order governing such matters.)

            Amend Financial Regulations to incorporate SO 73.

            Changes to Financial Regulations

            A copy of the draft revised Financial Regulations is attached with amendments shown in red.  The paragraphs have now been numbered for ease of reference.  The full text of the amendments, when agreed, will be reproduced in the minutes.

 

Standing Order 81 says “A resolution permanently to add, vary, or revoke a Standing Order shall when proposed and seconded, stand adjourned without discussion to the next ordinary meeting of the Council.”  By extension, this would also apply to changes to the Financial Regulations as they form part of the Standing Orders.  In accordance with this, a resolution to make the changes suggested above would stand adjourned to the March meeting of the Council.

 

 

10

HIGHWAY MATTERS REPORTED BY COUNCILLORS AND CLERK

1          Speeding Traffic (standing item)

 

 

11

 

COMMUNICATIONS AND CORRESPONDENCE

To RECEIVE such communications and correspondence as the Clerk may place before the Council.

1          Leaflet from Vicky Ford, MEP for the East of England

 

 

12

DISTRIBUTION BAG

None.

 

 

13

 

DOCUMENTS ON DEPOSIT

To RECEIVE notice of the following documents received by or deposited with the Clerk.

None.

 

 

14

PLANNING APPLICATIONS 

 

a)

To NOTE the parish council’s comments made on planning applications between meetings.

 

 

App. no.

16/02008/EB

 

 

Location

Electricity Transformer, Pools Lane

 

 

Proposal

Additional pole support to the existing pole structure to form a lame-leg pole

 

 

Comment

No objection

 

 

 

 

 

 

App. no.

16/02027/FUL

 

 

Location

Land adjacent the Green Man, Highwood Road

 

 

Proposal

Proposed change of use of land to provide eight Travelling Showman’s yard (winter quarters) family pitches

 

 

Comment

The council objects to this application.  The site is outside the Defined Settlement Boundary, and would be inappropriate development in the green belt.  It would have a negative effect on the rural character of the area and on the amenity of adjacent properties, and would have an unacceptable visual impact on the countryside.

The SADPD does not make any further provision for new gypsy and traveller sites.  CCC has 91 pitches approved or allocated in the NCAAP, which complies fully with the targets for the period up to 2016 and provided the City with a five-year supply from 2011.  No further need for additional sites has been identified by CCC.

The application form says “no” to the question “Is your proposal within 20m of a watercourse?”, but there is a watercourse of some description clearly shown on the map; it is not far from the road, and flows into or out of the pond at the Green Man.

The supporting letter from the Showman’s Guild refers to John Cogger but the application is made by Bob Cooper.  It also refers to the premises being developed as full time, permanent places of residence, which is at odds with the application form which says that the plans are for winter quarters.

No site notice informing of the application has been seen at the site despite several visits.

 

 

 

 

 

 

App. no.

16/02090/FUL

 

 

Location

Woodlands, Ingatestone Road

 

 

Proposal

Demolition of existing bungalow and construction of a replacement chalet-type dwelling

 

 

Comment

No objection

 

 

 

 

 

b)

To CONSIDER the following planning application. 

 

 

App. no.

16/02107/FUL

 

 

Location

Land at Oak Tree Farm, Ingatestone Road

 

 

Proposal

Proposed two-storey dwelling

 

 

The Planning Department has agreed to an extension of the deadline for comment to enable this application to be considered at the Council meeting.

 

 

 

 

 

c)

To CONSIDER any other planning applications received since the agenda was prepared. 

 

 

 

 

 

d)

DECISIONS BY CHELMSFORD CITY COUNCIL

To NOTE the following planning decisions by Chelmsford City Council.

 

 

 

GRANTED

 

 

 

App. no.

16/01670/FUL

 

 

Location

The Green Man, Highwood Road, Edney Common

 

 

Proposal

Change of use from a public house (use class A4) to a residential dwelling (use class C3). No internal or external alterations

 

 

 

 

 

 

NO OBJECTION

 

 

App. no.

16/02008/EB

 

 

Location

Electricity Transformer, Pools Lane

 

 

Proposal

Additional pole support to the existing pole structure to form a lame-leg pole

 

 

 

 

 

f)

 

PLANNING CORRESPONDENCE 

i           To NOTE any planning correspondence received and respond to             consultations as appropriate.

            None.

 

 

g)

OTHER PLANNING MATTERS

None.

 

 

 

 

15

OTHER URGENT BUSINESS – for information only

To NOTE any matter of an urgent nature which a Member or the Clerk may wish to draw to the attention of the Council, and/or request to be included on the agenda for the next meeting of the Council.

 

Note: no decisions may be taken during this item as the required statutory notice of the business will not have been given.

 

 

16

DATE OF NEXT MEETING

7.30 p.m. Wednesday 8 March 2017

 

 

17

EXCLUSION OF PRESS AND PUBLIC 

To RESOLVE to exclude the press and public from the following item under the Public Bodies (Admission to Meetings) Act 1960 as it contains confidential information relating to a property matter.

 

 

18


PROPERTY MATTER 

Report has been emailed to parish councillors.  Please note the information therein must be kept confidential and is for the information of parish councillors only.