BISHOP’S FROME & FROMES HILL PARISH COUNCIL
Minutes of the Annual Meeting of the Parish Council held at 7.30pm on Tuesday 16th May 2017 at Bishops Frome Village Centre
Present: Cllr Nash, Cllr Pudge, Cllr Partridge, Cllr Guise, Cllr Parker, Cllr Ms Sincock and Local Cllr Mrs Morgan.
Mr Brooman, the Council’s Treasurer was also present
17/1 Election of Chairman
Cllr Pudge nominated Cllr Nash to become Chairman and this was seconded by Cllr Partridge. Cllr Nash accepted the nomination and signed the Declaration of Acceptance of office of Chairman form.
17/2 Election of Vice Chairman
Cllr Pudge nominated Cllr Partridge to become Vice Chairman and this was seconded by Cllr Nash. Cllr Partridge accepted the nomination.
17/3 To receive apologies for absence
Apologies had been received from Cllr Mrs Roberts and Cllr Hydes.
Cllr Marshall was not present.
17/4 To receive declarations of interest and written requests for dispensation
There were no declarations of interest or requests for dispensation.
17/5 Remind Councillors to update their Notice of Registrable Interests
The Clerk reminded councillors to update their Notice of Registrable Interests if necessary.
17/6 Public Participation
There were no members of the public present.
17/7 Appointment of members to committees, working groups and outside bodies
7.1 Sports Committee – Cllr Pudge proposed that the existing committee members remain in place and this was seconded by Cllr Guise. The existing members were happy to remain in place. (Cllr Partridge, Cllr Nash, Cllr Parker and Cllr Hydes)
7.2 Bishops Frome Village Hall Committee – Cllr Guise proposed that Cllr Mrs Roberts continue to represent the Parish Council on the Village Hall Committee and this was seconded by Cllr Pudge.
7.3 Fromes Hill Field Committee – Cllr (Ms) Sincock proposed that the existing committee members remain in place and this was seconded by Cllr Nash. (Cllr Pudge, Cllr Partridge and Cllr Parker)
7.4 East Herefordshire Area Committee – No councillors present wished to stand.
17/8 Review of other appointments: Footpaths officer, Internal Auditor
Cllr Guise proposed that Cllr Ms Sincock continue as Footpaths Officer and this was seconded by Cllr Pudge. Cllr Ms Sincock accepted the nomination.
Mr Brooman, the Treasurer recommended that Christopher Pinches be appointed to continue as Internal Auditor. All councillors present agreed and asked Mr Brooman to send him a letter of appointment.
17/9 Annual Governance Statement 2016/2017 and Assertion 8 significant events report
Mr Brooman read the Assertions from the Annual Governance Statement from page 2 of the Annual Return to the councillors and they agreed that a sound system of internal control including preparation of the accounting statement, existed.
Mr Brooman provided councillors with details of the information required for the intermediate review of Assertion 8. The information shown under further comments was discussed and agreed by the councillors. This Assertion has been regularly discussed on an informal basis and therefore not always recorded in the minutes. In future, to formalise this, a different assertion will be included on future monthly meeting agendas and this has been included in the Financial Regulations.
17/10 Adoption of Un-Audited Accounts 2016/2017
Mr Brooman issued all councillors with a copy of the income and expenditure account for the year ending 31st March 2017, together with the balance sheet. Councillors reviewed the accounts and agreed that they should be accepted.
Mr Brooman advised that the accounting statement on the annual return needed amending. He had not included the council contribution of £8427.00 in “all other payments”. This amendment was approved and initialled by the Chairman and Mr Brooman.
17/11 Internal Audit Report
Mr Brooman issued copies of the Internal Audit Report to councillors and explained its contents. There were no real areas of concern but the report picked up that the Council’s tractor & mower are not covered on the Council’s insurance policy. Both are covered on a separate policy. Also the Auditor, Mr Pinches reported that he had not seen a copy of the Clerk’s contract of employment or salary details. The Clerk is the only employee and she does have a contract of employment. The Clerk’s salary was last reviewed in July 2015, but was capped for 5 years.
Best practice recommends that the Internal Auditor should carry out an interim review of the Council’s accounts. Mr Pinches advised the Treasurer that this was not necessary as the accounts were in very good order.
17/12 Review of Insurance policies
The Council’s insurance policy was reviewed in September 2016 when the additional play equipment was installed in the Play Area at Bishops Frome, and will be reviewed again in September 2017 prior to October renewal.
17/13 Review of subscriptions
The subscription for Herefordshire Association of Local councils (HALC) was paid in March 2017.
17/14 To review latest revisions of:
14.1 Standing Orders – the Clerk confirmed that she had reviewed the Council’s Standing Orders and there were no amendments necessary.
14.2 Financial Regulations – the Clerk and RFO advised councillors that they had reviewed the Financial Regulations. There are two points requiring update regarding the assertions and cheque signing procedures.
Financial Regulations points 1.4 and 5.3 will be amended as follows:
1.4 Prior to approving the Annual Governance Statement, the council must review the effectiveness of its system of internal control. Government Assertions will be reviewed throughout the year and this will be recorded in the minutes.
5.3 All payments made by the RFO shall be made by cheque after the payment of invoices have been authorised by the council. Each cheque to be signed by two members of the council who will also initial the counterfoil and invoice.
All councillors present agreed and the Clerk confirmed that she would send an amended copy of the Financial Regulations to all councillors.
Consider adoption of:-
14.3 Grants Policy – the Clerk presented the draft grants policy for consideration, this had been issued to councillors for consideration prior to the meeting. There were a couple of things councillors wanted amending and the Clerk agreed to redraft and present for adoption at the next meeting.
Draft Minutes of the Ordinary Parish Council Meeting held on 16th May 2017
2017/56 To adopt the minutes of the previous meeting
A copy of the draft minutes had been circulated to all councillors prior to the meeting. They were accepted as a true record and signed by Cllr Nash (Chair).
2017/57 Neighbourhood Plan
Cllr Pudge presented Reg16 to the council for approval. Copies of the document had been sent to councillors prior to the meeting for consideration.
Cllr Guise raised a question regarding Bishops Frome Play Area as in the plan it states that it is need of upgrading, when in fact the facilities were upgraded in September 2016. Cllr Pudge explained that the document was started so long ago there may be a few points which need updating at the next stage.
Cllr Pudge proposed that the council put the Reg16 document to Herefordshire Council for approval. This was seconded by Cllr Guise and agreed by all councillors present.
Again councillors wanted to thank Cllr Pudge for all the work he has put in to the Neighbourhood Plan.
Consider payment of:-
58.1 P Eaton – Litter Picking – £115.20
58.2 R V Brooman – Treasurer’s expenses – £16.64
58.3 R F Brooman – Clerk’s expenses – £88.59
58.4 C Pinches – Internal Audit – £100.00
Councillors agreed that all outstanding invoices should be paid.
Under minute ref 2017/49.1 councillors had asked the clerk to research the book, Arnold-Baker Local Council Administration, as the current council copy was now out of date. She reported that Edition 10 had been published in June 2016, edition 9, the copy we hold was published in June 2013. The new edition can be purchased through HALC for £92.00. It could be ordered from the publisher LexisNexis for £98.00. The main changes relate to the move to electronic systems for delivery of agendas, minutes, other papers, and for the payment of bills and the Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014 which provide for new accounts and audit rules for local councils in England. Cllrs agreed that the Clerk should arrange to purchase the latest edition.
59.1 P171270/F Caravan known as Lady Lute at The Furlongs, Fromes Hill, Herefordshire HR8 1HW
Retention of a temporary agricultural workers dwelling
Cllr Nash, Chairman, was looking in to this application as there were a few queries to investigate, particularly with regard to the ownership/letting agreements of the land. It was agreed that we should apply for the date for comments to be extended to enable The Parish Council time to consult planning department and parishioners.
2017/60 Fromes Hill Report
Cllr Pudge reported that the Morgan family have now agreed to who should be the beneficiaries of any possible uplift in the land value. Agreement has been reached for a surveyor to be appointed to assess for uplift and the beneficiaries have agreed that payment of any uplift can be deferred for a nominal interest rate.
2017/61 Bishops Frome Report
61.1 Drainage – still ongoing – deferred to next meeting
61.2 Village Gateway- still ongoing – deferred to next meeting
61.3 Village Centre Tarmacking – The Clerk reported that the Village Centre had provided a further quote for consideration and also a copy of the Village Centre accounts for inspection. Cllr Mrs Roberts had requested prior to the meeting that, the council be asked to defer a decision until the next meeting as a further quote was awaited. Cllrs considered the quotes received and other expenditure expected shortly such as an invoice from the Fromes Hill Field solicitors and the likely cost of repairs to the car park at the Sports pavilion and agreed that a decision should be deferred until the exact cost of the works were known.
61.4 Bus Shelter repairs – Cllr Pudge confirmed that the repairs had been completed at no cost to the council.
61.5 Noticeboards – The Clerk advised councillors that the noticeboard outside Bishops Frome Village Centre had become difficult to get pins in to and it had started to let the wet in. She agreed to look in to the cost of a new board. In the meantime notices can still be displayed on the noticeboard outside the Green Dragon Public House.
The Clerk reported that she had been in touch with Balfour Beatty regarding the cutting of the amenity grass as Bishops Frome did not appear on the grass cutting rota on Herefordshire Council website, and they confirmed that our first cut is due 22/05/2017.
2017/62 Sports Committee Report
62.1 Arrange meeting of Sports Committee- a meeting was agreed for 7.30pm on Monday 22nd May 2017 at the Sports Pavilion.
62.2 Pavilion carpark – Cllr Partridge advised councillors that large holes were appearing in the carpark. He has requested a quotation for repairs. The Sports Committee will discuss this further at their meeting on 22nd May.
2017/63 Footpaths Officer Report
Nothing to report.
2017/64 To note the information sheet and date of next meeting
The Clerk drew attention to the items on the information sheet and confirmed the next meeting will be held at St Matthew’s Church, Fromes Hill on Tuesday 13th June at 7.30pm.
There being no other business the meeting concluded at 21.00.