Minutes of Parish Council Annual Meeting, 18 May 2016

In attendance: Mrs Pat Clare (Chair, presiding), Mrs Mary Button, Mr David Hamblin, Mr Jason Cantrill and Mr Richard White (Councillors) and Mr Mike Balmer (Clerk). Also attending: 3 Parishioners and (briefly) County Councillor Barry Stone.

16.33 Approved absences – none.

16.34 Election of chairperson
Richard White proposed that Pat Clare should stand again as Chairman, and there being no other nominations, this was seconded by David Hamblin. Pat Clare was thus re-elected as Chairman and completed her Declaration of Office, witnessed by the Proper Officer (the Clerk). Richard White also proposed that David Hamblin should be Vice-Chairman,  seconded by Mary Button. The Proper Officer will witness his completion of the Declaration of Office the next day.

16.35 Appointment of Representatives – the following were agreed
XXXXXXXX Village Hall liaison – Mary Button
XXXXXXXX Church/churchyard – Paul Carter
XXXXXXXX Allotments – Pat Clare
XXXXXXXX Footpaths and Green – Julia Kaye and Helen Balmer
XXXXXXXX Notice board – Clerk
XXXXXXXX Parish Plan and Pits Trust – All Councillors
XXXXXXXX Website – Clerk
XXXXXXXX Finance and Internal Audit – Adepta (Jacquie Clarke)

16.36 Declarations of Interest
There were none.

16.37 Minutes of the meeting held on 16 March 2016
The minutes of the above meeting, which had been circulated beforehand and placed on the notice board and website, were approved and signed.

16.38 Parishioners’ Questions
There were none.

16.39 Review of Standing Orders
The Clerk had omitted to send the draft revisions to Councillors in advance and this will now be considered in July.

16.40 Requests for financial or other assistance
The Council approved a request from Claxton PCC for a grant towards churchyard maintenance (from the previous financial year), and a proposal from the litter-picking group to acquire a small amount of equipment up to a net budget of £60. Given the village’s support for the East Anglian Air Ambulance the Council did not feel able to respond positively to Magpas. As proceeds from the Race Night on 11 June were to be shared 50-50 with EACH the Council asked the Clerk to write to EACH explaining this, and offering publicity and other such support.

16.41 Projector and screen for Parish Council and Village Hall
The Council supported the proposal that a projector and screen should be acquired with the costs shared equally between the Council and Village Hall (together with a £200 grant from the District Councillor). In reality this meant a financial outlay for each body of less than £275. The Clerk was authorised to proceed, in liaison with the Village Hall Committee.

16.42 Proposal by Rockland St Mary PC to acquire and jointly share a Speed Awareness Monitor
There was general support for this proposal though details were sketchy. It was unclear whether Parish Partnership funds would be available to fund half the £2,800 cost, and even a quarter share (£700) was beyond the Council’s ability to fund. The Clerk was instructed to contact the RSM Clerk and check the likely cost to Claxton PC before any firm decision was made. There was also the issue of VAT which was reclaimable, and should be shared proportionally between the contributing Parish Councils.

16.43 Signage at the top of Home Piece
Mary Button explained that the “20MPH Private Road” sign on the verge at Staines Barns was no longer in the right place, given that ownership of the land no longer rested with Claxton Manor and that Slade Lane was an “all vehicle” road. Ideally it should be moved further towards the village where Home Piece actually began. After discussion it was accepted that this was not an issue for the Parish Council but they had no objection to the Manor being offered this sign, to be relocated at the top (western end) of Home Piece.

16.44 Audit Commission Annual Return
The Clerk tabled the Accounts and Statement which had been prepared by the internal auditor. The Accounts were adopted and the Annual Governance Statement agreed, and both Clerk and Chair signed off the Accounts under Sections 1 and 2. The Internal Auditor had completed Section 4 and the External Auditors, Mazars, would complete Section 3. This would be despatched the following day.

16.45 Air Display at the Fair on the Yare 2016
The Civil Aviation now required such displays to have the acknowledgement of the local Parish Council, and this was given.

16.46 Finance
A detailed financial statement had been made available to Councillors and parishioners alike, and Councillors had seen the complete list of proposed payments well in advance, so there were no surprises.

a) The bank balance at 18 May is £5,206.64. The latest Financial Report had been circulated separately in advance.
b) Receipts – First half of 2016-17 Precept, Council Tax grant, Claxton Mill soak away licence and refund of 2015-16 VAT – £2,415.61 in total.
c) Grants – none.
d) PaymentsPayment Schedule May 2016

On a proposal from Pat Clare, seconded by David Hamblin, the schedule was approved for payment, and cheques signed.

16.47 Report from Clerk
The Clerk reported that he had chased SNC about the £20 award for participating in the South Norfolk Litter Pick, which was now expected in May. He had also prepared the 2015-16 accounts, passed them to the internal auditor and received them back. He had published Year-End figures and updated the Transparency Code entry on the website, was finalising the drafting of a Spring-Summer Newsletter (to issue imminently), and had publicised the EU Referendum notice.

16.48 Correspondence
The Clerk tabled a short list of correspondence which had been circulated to Councillors or received prior to the meeting. Items included:

• Police and Crime Commissioner Weekly Round-ups (nothing yet from the new PCC)
• NDR updates
• Norfolk ALC Weekly updates and Training Programme for 2016
• Community Action Norfolk April Newsletter
• Clerks and Councils Direct April and May 2016
• Various requests for financial support (eg EACH)
• SNC correspondence about a paperless planning system

16.49 Items for next Agenda
Review of Standing Orders

Change of date of next meeting – will now be on Wednesday 20 July 2016 at 7.30pm.

Dates of remaining meetings in 2016
Wednesday 14 September – Regular Parish Council Meeting
Wednesday 16 November – Regular Parish Council Meeting

The meeting closed at 2055.

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