The Transparency Code for Smaller Councils – 2018 update

The Transparency Code for smaller Councils was introduced by central government in 2015 to ensure that all Councils with an annual turnover of up to £25,000 make public a raft of information about their financial dealings and governance.  Claxton Parish Council published its third return in April 2017.  This is the fourth and comes shortly after the close of financial year 2017-18.

The Parish Council is required to publish:

  1. all items of expenditure above £100;
  2. end of year accounts,
  3. annual governance statement,
  4. internal audit report,
  5. list of councillor or member responsibilities,
  6. details of public land and building assets, and
  7. minutes, agendas and meeting papers of formal meetings.

Claxton’s contribution to the Code for the financial year 2017-18 is as follows

All items of expenditure above £100
All individual items of expenditure, both above and below £100, are listed in the bi-monthly minutes of the Council, which can be viewed elsewhere in this website. In practice there are few in excess of £100, and these are set out below.  All VAT is recovered as a matter of course in the following financial year.  All but h. below are recurring items of expenditure.

a.  The Clerk’s net salary (£1,172.38 in 2017-18), paid every two months in May, July, September, November, January and March.
b.  The Clerk’s income tax, totalling £780.80 for the year, paid once a quarter in May, September, November and March, to coincide with Council meetings.
c.  The grounds’ maintenance contracts with Norse to cut the grass at the Village Hall and the Warren (£426.35 and £402.46 respectively), paid 50% in May and 50% in November each year.
d.  The Council’s public liability insurance premium (£112) paid in May each year.
e.  The cost of running a satellite broadband hub in the Village Hall, which came to £299.40 in 2017-18, and will continue at least until we know how the introduction of fibre-optic broadband will impact the village.
f.  An Annual Grant of £300 made to Claxton Parochial Church Council as a contribution to churchyard maintenance costs.
g.  The cost (£120) of emptying the dog bin at the Village Hall, and
h.  acquisition of a laptop and printer for the new Parish Clerk totalling £587.93, for which a grant of £515.83 was received from the Transparency Fund.

End of year accounts
The unaudited figures were published on the website on 31 March 2018.  Click here to view them.  The accounts were examined by our appointed auditor, Jacquie Clarke of Adepta Ltd, Kirby Bedon, following which they were approved by the Parish Council at its meeting on 16 May.  The Accounting Statements for 2017-18 are shown below.

Bank Reconciliation
Below is the Bank Reconciliation for 2017-18 prepared by the Clerk.Bank Reconciliation 2017-18

Annual governance statement
This is the statement prepared by the Internal Auditor which was signed by the Chair and Clerk at the Annual Meeting of the Parish Council on 16 May 2018.  It is shown below.

Internal audit report
The Annual Internal Audit Report for 2017-18 is shown below.p04

List of councillor or member responsibilities
There have been no changes to the responsibilities of individual Councillors.  All Parish Councillors’ details appear on the website.  Claxton Parish Council does not have any Sub-Committees answering to the full Council.  All Parish Councillors are also automatically Trustees on the Claxton Parish Pit Charity (the Pits Trust).

Details of public land and building assets
The Council does not own any buildings.  It does however own the land on which the Village Hall stands, together with the Village Green at the Warren.  The land at the Village Hall site is some 0.67 acres (0.27 hectares, 2,700 m²) and the land at the Warren measures some 0.40 acres (0.16 hectares, 1,600 m²).

The date when these two sites were acquired is unknown, as is the current value. Both are now used exclusively for community purposes.

Minutes, agendas and meeting papers of formal meetings
All minutes and all draft agendas for future meetings are regularly posted on the website and the Parish Council notice board, and minutes dating back to 2011 can also be found on this website.  Agendas are removed from the website and notice board once the meetings have taken place, but copies of Agendas from November 2015 are available electronically free of charge from the Clerk.  The Clerk holds the current official Minutes Book, previous copies of which have been sent to the County Archives in Norwich, and can be viewed there if required.


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