Billingley Parish Council Code of conduct May 2016
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Billingley Parish Council

Code of conduct

May 2016

 

Introduction

 

Pursuant to section 27 of the Localism Act 2011, Billingley Parish Council (‘the Council’) has adopted this Code of Conduct to promote and maintain high standards of behaviour by its members and co-opted members whenever they conduct the business of the Council, including the business of the office to which they were elected or appointed, or when they claim to act or give the impression of acting as a representative of the Council.

 

This Code of Conduct is based on the principles of selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty, and leadership.

 

Definitions

 

For the purposes of this Code, a ‘co-opted member’ is a person who is not a member of the Council but who is either a member of any committee or sub-committee of the Council, or a member of, and represents the Council on any joint committee or joint sub-committee of the Council, and who is entitled to vote on any question that falls to be decided at any meeting of that committee or sub-committee.

 

For the purposes of this Code, a ‘meeting’ is a meeting of the Council, any of its committees, sub-committees, joint committees or joint sub-committees.

 

For the purposes of this Code, and unless otherwise expressed, a reference to a member of the Council includes a co-opted member of the Council.
Member obligations

 

When a member of the Council acts, claims to act or gives the impression of acting as a representative of the Council, he/she has the following obligations.

 

  1. He/she shall behave in such a way that a reasonable person would regard as respectful.

 

  1. He/she shall not act in a way which a reasonable person would regard as bullying or intimidatory.

 

  1. He/she shall not seek to improperly confer an advantage or disadvantage on any person.

 

  1. He/she shall use the resources of the Council in accordance with its requirements.

 

  1. He/she shall not disclose information which is confidential or where disclosure is prohibited by law.

 

Registration of interests

 

6.             Within 28 days of this Code being adopted by the Council, or the member’s election or the co-opted member’s appointment (where that is later), he/she shall register with the Monitoring Officer the interests which fall within the categories set out in Appendices A and B.

7.             Upon the re-election of a member or the re-appointment of a co-opted member, he/she shall within 28 days re-register with the Monitoring Officer any interests in Appendices A and B.

 

  1. A member shall register with the Monitoring Officer any change to interests or new interests in Appendices A and B within 28 days of becoming aware of it.

 

  1. A member need only declare the existence but not the details of any interest which the Monitoring Officer agrees is a ‘sensitive interest’. A sensitive interest is one which, if disclosed on a public register, could lead the member or a person connected with the member to be subject to violence or intimidation.

 

Declaration of interests at meetings

 

  1. Where a matter arises at a meeting which relates to an interest in Appendix A the member shall not participate in a discussion or vote on the matter. He/she only has to declare what his/her interest is if it is not already entered in the member’s register of interests or if he/she has not notified the Monitoring Officer of it.

 

11.         Where a matter arises at a meeting which relates to an interest in Appendix A which is a sensitive interest, the member shall not participate in a discussion or vote on the matter. If it is a sensitive interest which has not already been disclosed to the Monitoring Officer, the member shall disclose he/she has an interest but not the nature of it.

  1. Where a matter arises at a meeting which relates to an interest in Appendix B, the member shall not vote on the matter. He/she may speak on the matter only if members of the public are also allowed to speak at the meeting.

 

13.         A member only has to declare his/her interest in Appendix B if it is not already entered in his/her register of interests or he/she has not notified the Monitoring Officer of it or if he/she speaks on the matter. If he/she holds an interest in Appendix B which is a sensitive interest not already disclosed to the Monitoring Officer, he/she shall declare the interest but not the nature of the interest.

 

14.         Where a matter arises at a meeting which relates to a financial interest of a friend, relative or close associate (other than an interest of a person in Appendix A), the member shall disclose the nature of the interest and not vote on the matter. He/she may speak on the matter only if members of the public are also allowed to speak at the meeting.  If it is a ‘sensitive interest’ the member shall declare the interest but not the nature of the interest.

 

Dispensations

 

  1. On a written request made to the Council’s proper officer, the Council may grant a member a dispensation to participate in a discussion and vote on a matter at a meeting even if he/she has an interest in Appendices A and B if the Council believes that the number of members otherwise prohibited from taking part in the meeting would impede the transaction of the business; or it is in the interests of the inhabitants in the Council’s area to allow the member to take part or it is otherwise appropriate to grant a dispensation.

 

 

 

 

 

Appendix A

Interests described in the table below.

Subject Description
Employment, office, trade, profession or vocation Any employment, office, trade, profession or vocation carried on for profit or gain by the member or by his/her spouse or civil partner or by the person with whom the member is living as if they were spouses/civil partners.
Sponsorship Any payment or provision of any other financial benefit (other than from the Council) made to the member during the 12 month period ending on the latest date referred to in paragraph 6 above for expenses incurred by him/her in carrying out his/her duties as a member, or towards his/her election expenses. This includes any payment or financial benefit from a trade union within the meaning of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992.
Contracts Any contract made between the member or his/her spouse or civil partner or the person with whom the member is living as if they were spouses/civil partners (or a firm in which such person is a partner, or an incorporated body of which such person is a director* or a body that such person has a beneficial interest in the securities of*) and the Council —
(a) under which goods or services are to be provided or works are to be executed; and
(b) which has not been fully discharged.
Land Any beneficial interest in land held by the member or by his/her spouse or civil partner or by the person with whom the member is living as if they were spouses/civil partner which is within the area of the Council.

‘Land’ excludes an easement, servitude, interest or right in or over land which does not give the member or his/her spouse or civil partner or the person with whom the member is living as if they were spouses/civil partners (alone or jointly with another) a right to occupy or to receive income.

Licences Any licence (alone or jointly with others) held by the member or by his/her spouse or civil partner or by the person with whom the member is living as if they were spouses/civil partners to occupy land in the area of the Council for a month or longer.
Corporate tenancies Any tenancy where (to the member’s knowledge)—
(a) the landlord is the Council; and
(b) the tenant is a body that the member, or his/her spouse or civil partner or the person with whom the member is living as if they were spouses/civil partners is a partner of or a director* of or has a beneficial interest in the securities* of.
Securities Any beneficial interest held by the member or  by his/her spouse or civil partner or by the person with whom the member is living as if they were spouses/civil partners in securities* of a body where—
(a) that body (to the member’s knowledge) has a place of business or land in the area of the Council; and
(b) either—
(i) the total nominal value of the securities* exceeds £25,000 or one hundredth of the total issued share capital of that body; or
(ii) if the share capital of that body is of more than one class, the total nominal value of the shares of any one class in which the member, or his/her spouse or civil partner or the person with whom the member is living as if they were spouses/civil partners has a beneficial interest exceeds one hundredth of the total issued share capital of that class.

*’director’ includes a member of the committee of management of an industrial and provident society.

*’securities’ means shares, debentures, debenture stock, loan stock, bonds, units of a collective investment scheme within the meaning of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 and other securities of any description, other than money deposited with a building society.


Appendix B

An interest which relates to or is likely to affect:

 

  • any body of which the member is in a position of general control or management and to which he/she is appointed or nominated by the Council;

 

  • any body—
    • exercising functions of a public nature;
    • directed to charitable purposes; or
    • one of whose principal purposes includes the influence of public opinion or policy (including any political party or trade union)

of which the member of the Council is a member or in a position of general control or management;

 

  • any gifts or hospitality worth more than an estimated value of £50 which the member has received by virtue of his or her office.

 

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Billingley Parish Council Standing Orders 2016 Rules of debate at meetings
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Billingley Parish Council

Standing Orders 2016

  1. Rules of debate at meetings

 

  • Motions on the agenda shall be considered in the order that they appear unless the order is changed at the discretion of the chairman of the meeting.

 

  • A motion (including an amendment) shall not be progressed unless it has been moved and seconded.

 

  • An amendment is a proposal to remove or add words to a motion. It shall not negate the motion.

 

  • A point of order shall be decided by the chairman of the meeting and his decision shall be final.

 

e        Before an original or substantive motion is put to the vote, the chairman of the meeting shall be satisfied that the motion has been sufficiently debated and that the mover of the motion under debate has exercised or waived his right of reply.

 

  1. Disorderly conduct at meetings

 

  • No person shall obstruct the transaction of business at a meeting or behave offensively or improperly. If this standing order is ignored, the chairman of the meeting shall request such person(s) to moderate or improve their conduct.

 

  • If person(s) disregard the request of the chairman of the meeting to moderate or improve their conduct, any councillor or the chairman of the meeting may move that the person be no longer heard or excluded from the meeting. The motion, if seconded, shall be put to the vote without discussion.

 

  • If a resolution made under standing order 2(b) above is ignored, the chairman of the meeting may take further reasonable steps to restore order or to progress the meeting. This may include temporarily suspending or closing the meeting.

  1. Meetings generally

 

 

  a       Meetings shall not take place in premises which at the time of the meeting are used for the supply of alcohol, unless no other premises are available free of charge or at a reasonable cost.

 

 

 

b       The minimum three clear days for notice of a meeting does not include the day on which notice was issued, the day of the meeting, a Sunday, a day of the Christmas break, a day of the Easter break or of a bank holiday or a day appointed for public thanksgiving or mourning.
 

 

 
 

 

c        Meetings shall be open to the public unless their presence is prejudicial to the public interest by reason of the confidential nature of the business to be transacted or for other special reasons. The public’s exclusion from part or all of a meeting shall be by a resolution which shall give reasons for the public’s exclusion.

 

  d       Members of the public may make representations, answer questions and give evidence at a meeting which they are entitled to attend in respect of the business on the agenda.

 

  e       The period of time designated for public participation at a meeting in accordance with standing order 3(d) above shall not exceed 15 minutes unless directed by the chairman of the meeting.

 

  f         Subject to standing order 3(f) above, a member of the public shall not speak for more than 5 minutes.

 

  g       In accordance with standing order 3(d) above, a question shall not require a response at the meeting nor start a debate on the question. The chairman of the meeting may direct that a written or oral response be given.

 

  h       The chairman of the meeting may at any time permit a person to be seated when speaking.

 

  i         A person who speaks at a meeting shall direct his comments to the chairman of the meeting.

 

  j         Only one person is permitted to speak at a time. If more than one person wants to speak, the chairman of the meeting shall direct the order of speaking.

 

 

 

k        Photographing, recording, broadcasting or transmitting the proceedings of a meeting by any means is permitted under the Openness of Local Government Bodies Regulations 2014.

 

 

 

l         The press shall be provided with reasonable facilities for the taking of their report of all or part of a meeting at which they are entitled to be present.

 

 

 

m      Subject to standing orders which indicate otherwise, anything authorised or required to be done by, to or before the Chairman of the Council may in his absence be done by, to or before the Vice-Chairman of the Council (if any).

 

 

 

n       The Chairman, if present, shall preside at a meeting. If the Chairman is absent from a meeting, the Vice-Chairman, if present, shall preside. If both the Chairman and the Vice-Chairman are absent from a meeting, a councillor as chosen by the councillors present at the meeting shall preside at the meeting.

 

 

 

o       Subject to a meeting being quorate, all questions at a meeting shall be decided by a majority of the councillors or councillors with voting rights present and voting.

           

 

 

p       The chairman of a meeting may give an original vote on any matter put to the vote, and in the case of an equality of votes may exercise his casting vote whether or not he gave an original vote.

 

  q       Unless standing orders provide otherwise, voting on a question shall be by a show of hands. At the request of a councillor, the voting on any question shall be recorded so as to show whether each councillor present and voting gave his vote for or against that question.

 

  r         The minutes of a meeting shall include an accurate record of the following:

i.          the time and place of the meeting;

ii.        the names of councillors present and absent;

iii.       interests that have been declared by councillors and non-councillors with voting rights;

iv.       whether a councillor or non-councillor with voting rights left the meeting when matters that they held interests in were being considered;

v.        if there was a public participation session; and

vi.       the resolutions made.

 

 

 

s        A councillor or a non-councillor with voting rights who has a disclosable pecuniary interest or another interest as set out in the council’s code of conduct in a matter being considered at a meeting is subject to statutory limitations or restrictions under the code on his right to participate and vote on that matter.
   
t         No business may be transacted at a meeting unless at least one-third of the whole number of members of the council are present and in no case shall the quorum of a meeting be less than three.

 

 

 

u       If a meeting is or becomes inquorate no business shall be transacted and the meeting shall be closed. The business on the agenda for the meeting shall be adjourned to another meeting.

 

  v        A meeting shall not exceed a period of 2 hours.

 

w      The retiring Chair will report on the activities of the Council for the preceding year.

 

 

  1. Committees and sub-committees

 

  • Unless the council determines otherwise, a committee may appoint a sub-committee whose terms of reference and members shall be determined by the committee.

 

  • The members of a committee may include non-councillors unless it is a committee which regulates and controls the finances of the council.

 

  • Unless the council determines otherwise, all the members of an advisory committee and a sub-committee of the advisory committee may be non-councillors.

 

  • The council may appoint standing committees or other committees as may be necessary.

 

 

  1. Ordinary council meetings

 

  • In an election year, the annual meeting of the council shall be held on or within 14 days following the day on which the new councillors elected take office.

 

  • In a year which is not an election year, the annual meeting of a council shall be held on such day in May as the council may direct.

 

  • If no other time is fixed, the annual meeting of the council shall take place at 7pm.

 

  • In addition to the annual meeting of the council, at least three other ordinary meetings shall be held in each year on such dates and times as the council directs.

 

  • The first business conducted at the annual meeting of the council shall be the election of the Chairman and Vice-Chairman (if any) of the Council.

 

  • The Chairman of the Council, unless he has resigned or becomes disqualified, shall continue in office and preside at the annual meeting until his successor is elected at the next annual meeting of the council.

 

  • The Vice-Chairman of the Council, if any, unless he resigns or becomes disqualified, shall hold office until immediately after the election of the Chairman of the Council at the next annual meeting of the council.

 

  • In an election year, if the current Chairman of the Council has not been re-elected as a member of the council, he shall preside at the meeting until a successor Chairman of the Council has been elected. The current Chairman of the Council

shall not have an original vote in respect of the election of the new Chairman of the Council but must give a casting vote in the case of an equality of votes.

 

  • In an election year, if the current Chairman of the Council has been re-elected as a member of the council, he shall preside at the meeting until a new Chairman of the Council has been elected. He may exercise an original vote in respect of the election of the new Chairman of the Council and must give a casting vote in the case of an equality of votes.

 

  • Following the election of the Chairman of the Council and Vice-Chairman (if any) of the Council at the annual meeting of the council, the business of the annual meeting shall include:
    1. In an election year, delivery by the Chairman of the Council and councillors of their acceptance of office forms unless the council resolves for this to be done at a later date. In a year which is not an election year, delivery by the Chairman of the Council of his acceptance of office form unless the council resolves for this to be done at a later date;
    2. Confirmation of the accuracy of the minutes of the last meeting of the council;
  • Review and adoption of appropriate standing orders and financial regulations;
  1. Review of inventory of assets including office and equipment;
  2. Confirmation of arrangements for insurance cover in respect of all insured risks;
  3. Review of the council’s and/or staff subscriptions to other bodies.
  • Determining the time and place of ordinary meetings of the full council up to and including the next annual meeting of full council.

 

  1. Extraordinary meetings of the council and committees and sub-committees

 

  • The Chairman of the Council may convene an extraordinary meeting of the council at any time.

 

  • If the Chairman of the Council does not or refuses to call an extraordinary meeting of the council within seven days of having been requested in writing to do so by two councillors, any two councillors may convene an extraordinary meeting of the council. The public notice giving the time, place and agenda for such a meeting must be signed by the two councillors.

 

 

  1. Handling confidential or sensitive information

 

  • The agenda, papers that support the agenda and the minutes of a meeting shall not disclose or otherwise undermine confidential or sensitive information which for special reasons would not be in the public interest.

 

  • Councillors and staff shall not disclose confidential or sensitive information which for special reasons would not be in the public interest.

 

 

  1. Draft minutes

 

  • If the draft minutes of a preceding meeting have been served on councillors with the agenda to attend the meeting at which they are due to be approved for accuracy, they shall be taken as read.

 

  • There shall be no discussion about the draft minutes of a preceding meeting except in relation to their accuracy.

 

  • The accuracy of draft minutes, including any amendment(s) made to them, shall be confirmed by resolution and shall be signed by the chairman of the meeting and stand as an accurate record of the meeting to which the minutes relate.

 

  • If the chairman of the meeting does not consider the minutes to be an accurate record of the meeting to which they relate, he shall sign the minutes and include a paragraph in the following terms or to the same effect:

“The chairman of this meeting does not believe that the minutes of the meeting of the (   ) held on [date] in respect of (   ) were a correct record but his view was not upheld by the meeting and the minutes are confirmed as an accurate record of the proceedings.”

 

  • Upon a resolution which confirms the accuracy of the minutes of a meeting, the draft minutes or recordings of the meeting for which approved minutes exist shall be destroyed.

 

 

  1. Code of conduct and dispensations

 

  • All councillors and non-councillors with voting rights shall observe the code of conduct adopted by the council.

 

  • Unless he has been granted a dispensation, a councillor or non-councillor with voting rights shall withdraw from a meeting when it is considering a matter in which he has a disclosable pecuniary interest. He may return to the meeting after it has considered the matter in which he had the interest.

 

  • Unless he has been granted a dispensation, a councillor or non-councillor with voting rights shall withdraw from a meeting when it is considering a matter in which he has another interest if so required by the council’s code of conduct. He may return to the meeting after it has considered the matter in which he had the interest.

 

  • Dispensation requests shall be in writing and submitted to the Proper Officer as soon as possible before the meeting, or failing that, at the start of the meeting for which the dispensation is required.

 

  • A decision as to whether to grant a dispensation shall be made by a meeting of the council for which the dispensation is required and that decision is final.

 

  • A dispensation request shall confirm:
    1. the description and the nature of the disclosable pecuniary interest or other interest to which the request for the dispensation relates;
    2. whether the dispensation is required to participate at a meeting in a discussion only or a discussion and a vote;
  • the date of the meeting or the period (not exceeding four years) for which the dispensation is sought; and
  1. an explanation as to why the dispensation is sought.

 

  • A dispensation may be granted in accordance with standing order 10(e) above if having regard to all relevant circumstances the following applies:

 

  1. without the dispensation the number of persons prohibited from participating in the particular business would be so great a proportion of the meeting transacting the business as to impede the transaction of the business or
  2. granting the dispensation is in the interests of persons living in the council’s area or
  • it is otherwise appropriate to grant a dispensation.

 

  1. Code of conduct complaints

 

  • Upon notification by the District or Unitary Council that a councillor or non-councillor with voting rights has breached the council’s code of conduct, the council shall consider what, if any, action to take against him. Such action excludes disqualification or suspension from office.

 

  1. Proper Officer

 

  • The Proper Officer shall be either (i) the clerk or (ii) other staff member(s) nominated by the council to undertake the work of the Proper Officer when the Proper Officer is absent.

 

  • The Proper Officer shall:
    1. At least three clear days before a meeting of the council, a committee and a sub-committee serve on councillors a summons, by email, confirming the time, place and the agenda
    2. give public notice of the time, place and agenda at least three clear days before a meeting of the council
  • convene a meeting of full council for the election of a new Chairman of the Council, occasioned by a casual vacancy in his office;
  1. facilitate inspection of the minute book by local government electors;
  2. receive and retain copies of byelaws made by other local authorities;
  3. retain acceptance of office forms from councillors;
  • retain a copy of every councillor’s register of interests;
  • assist with responding to requests made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and Data Protection Act 1998, in accordance with and subject to the council’s policies and procedures relating to the same;
  1. receive and send general correspondence and notices on behalf of the council except where there is a resolution to the contrary;
  2. manage the organisation, storage of, access to and destruction of information held by the council in paper and electronic form;
  3. arrange or manage the prompt authorisation, approval, and instruction regarding any payments to be made by the council in accordance with the council’s financial regulations;
  • record every planning application notified to the council and the council’s response to the local planning authority in a book for such purpose;
  • refer a planning application received by the council to the Chairman or in his absence the Vice-Chairman of the Council within two working days of receipt to facilitate an extraordinary meeting if the nature of a planning application requires consideration before the next ordinary meeting of the council;

 

  1. Responsible Financial Officer

 

  • The council shall appoint appropriate staff member to undertake the work of the Responsible Financial Officer when the Responsible Financial Officer is absent.

 

  1. Accounts and accounting statements

 

  • “Proper practices” in standing orders refer to the most recent version of Governance and Accountability for Local Councils – a Practitioners’ Guide (England)

 

  • All payments by the council shall be authorised, approved and paid in accordance with the law, proper practices and the council’s financial regulations.

 

  • The Responsible Financial Officer shall supply to each councillor as each council meeting a statement to summarise:
    1. the council’s receipts and payments for each quarter;
    2. the council’s aggregate receipts and payments for the year to date;
  • the balances held at the end of the quarter being reported

 

  • As soon as possible after the financial year end at 31 March, the Responsible Financial Officer shall provide:
    1. each councillor with a statement summarising the council’s receipts and payments for the last quarter and the year to date for information; and
    2. to the full council the accounting statements for the year in the form of Section 1 of the annual return, as required by proper practices, for consideration and approval.

 

  • The year-end accounting statements shall be prepared in accordance with proper practices and applying the form of accounts determined by the council (receipts and payments, or income and expenditure) for a year to 31 March. A completed draft annual return shall be presented to each councillor before the end of the following month of May. The annual return of the council, which is subject to external audit, including the annual governance statement, shall be presented to council for consideration and formal approval before 30 June.

 

 

 

  1. Financial controls and procurement

 

  • The council shall consider and approve financial regulations drawn up by the Responsible Financial Officer

 

  • Financial regulations shall be reviewed regularly and at least annually for fitness of purpose.

 

  • Financial regulations shall confirm that a proposed contract for the supply of goods, materials, services and the execution of works with an estimated value in excess of £1000 shall be procured on the basis of a formal tender as summarised in standing order 18(d) below.

 

  • Subject to additional requirements in the financial regulations of the council, the tender process for contracts for the supply of goods, materials, services or the execution of works shall include, as a minimum, the following steps:
  1. a specification for the goods, materials, services or the execution of works shall be drawn up;
  2. an invitation to tender shall be drawn up to confirm (i) the council’s specification (ii) the time, date and address for the submission of tenders (iii) the date of the council’s written response to the tender and (iv) the prohibition on prospective contractors contacting councillors or staff to encourage or support their tender outside the prescribed process;
  • the invitation to tender shall be advertised in a local newspaper and in any other manner that is appropriate;
  1. tenders are to be submitted in writing in a sealed marked envelope addressed to the Proper Officer;
  2. tenders shall be opened by the Proper Officer in the presence of at least one councillor after the deadline for submission of tenders has passed;
  3. tenders are to be reported to and considered by the appropriate meeting of the council or a committee or sub-committee with delegated responsibility.

 

  • Neither the council, nor a committee or a sub-committee with delegated responsibility for considering tenders, is bound to accept the lowest value tender.

 

  • Where the value of a contract is likely to exceed £138,893 (or other threshold specified by the Office of Government Commerce from time to time) the council must consider whether the Public Contracts Regulations 2006 (SI No. 5, as amended) and the Utilities Contracts Regulations 2006 (SI No. 6, as amended) apply to the contract and, if either of those Regulations apply, the council must comply with EU procurement rules.

 

 

  1. Handling staff matters

 

  • A matter personal to a member of staff that is being considered by a meeting of council is subject to standing order 7 above.

 

  • Any persons responsible for all or part of the management of staff shall treat the written records of all meetings relating to their performance, capabilities, grievance or disciplinary matters as confidential and secure.

 

  • The council shall keep all written records relating to employees secure. All paper records shall be secured and locked and electronic records shall be password protected and encrypted.

 

  1. Requests for information

 

  • Requests for information held by the council shall be handled in accordance with the council’s policy in respect of handling requests under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 and the Data Protection Act 1998.

 

  1. Communicating with District and County or Unitary councillors

 

  • An invitation to attend a meeting of the council shall be sent, together with the agenda, to the ward councillor(s) of the Borough Council.

 

  1. Standing orders generally

 

  • All or part of a standing order, except one that incorporates mandatory statutory requirements, may be suspended by resolution in relation to the consideration of an item on the agenda for a meeting.

 

  • A motion to add to or vary or revoke one or more of the council’s standing orders, except one that incorporates mandatory statutory requirements, shall be proposed by a special motion, the written notice by at least 2 councillors to be given to the Proper Officer.

 

  • The Proper Officer shall provide a copy of the council’s standing orders to a councillor as soon as possible after he has delivered his acceptance of office form.

 

  • The decision of the chairman of a meeting as to the application of standing orders at the meeting shall be final.
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Love Where You Live Tidy Billingley Event
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The next tidy Billingley event is being held on the 11th June.  All volunteers appreciated to help keep our village looking beautiful.  Please meet at the village hall at 9am.  The event will run between 9-11.  Refreshments will be available at the breakfast club running between 10 and 12.  If you have any suggestions for future work please e mail the council at billingleypc@yahoo.com

Please note volunteers are not covered under the Parish Council insurance.

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Billingley Parish Council Minutes 14th March 2016
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Billingley Parish Council

Minutes of the meeting held on the 14th March 2016 at 7pm

in Billingley Village Hall.

Present        In Attendance

Cllr M Fenna (Chair) Clerk (Relief) – Julie Beech

Cllr S Fenna 3 residents

Cllr Thompson

Cllr Beech

Cllr Hancock

Cllr Coates

Cllr Saunders

The Chair opened the meeting at 7pm.

Public Participation

No comments made.

Apologies

Cllr Markham (The Chair asked Cllr Coates to pass on our best wishes for a speedy recovery)

Angela Fawcett

Minutes of the previous meeting

There were no matters of accuracy from the previous minutes which were accepted as a true record.

Matters arising

Local Development – the Billingley Parish Council had recently received updated plans submitted three times previously to BMBC regarding a dwelling on Chapel Lane. There were no changes to the plans. No other plans had been received

Speed Reduction – the Chair had contacted BMBC again regarding speed restrictions through the village and the re-painting of chevrons. These items remained pending. If any resident or interested party wished to contact BMBC directly about potholes they should email roads@barnsley.gov.uk.

The Chair reported that the bid to the YLCA had been submitted for the laptop and scanner but it could be 2 to 3 months before anything was heard.

Hedge cutting, Back Lane – the farmer had cut the hedge along Back Lane and it had been tidied during the Clean for the Queen event.

Cllr Coates’ feedback –

She had checked with Ian Turner (BMBC) who had confirmed it was acceptable for a parish council to have 1 or 2 bank accounts. He raised the point that the signatures should have been amended with new councillors and that if we wished to close the account it should be done correctly.

Stagecoach were happy to include the lowering of pavement at the bus stop in Billingley in their future plans.

She had been unable to find a fund to assist with speakers’ attendance at local groups but thought that Tanya Dickinson may be able to help with this. She holds surgeries in Darfield library from 10-11.30am on Friday 18th March and 15th April. Her contact number – 07976 366252.

Pipes dumped on Flat Lane – she reported that these pipes were removed shortly after the meeting but did not know how. The Chair advised that he had taken them to the local BMBC dump site where he had been told that these were stolen property and should have been reported to the relevant authorities. On this occasion they were accepted by the dump.

Financial Update

5.1 Due to the importance of the financial regulations for Billingley Parish Council, it was agreed that the revised regulation document circulated from YLCA be discussed at a separate meeting in order that this could be studied and cross-checked with the PC’s current document dated 27th June 2012. The Chair would ask the Clerk to circulate these, if available, electronically or Cllr Thompson would copy and pass on to each Councillor. All Councillors unable to attend the meeting would be asked to pass on their comments prior to the meeting. Action: Chair to contact Clerk to circulate current document or Cllr Thompson would make copies for everyone. Please see Item 9 for details of meeting

5.2 The Chair advised that the Billingley Parish Councils financial position was £3,071.41 which included the £700 grant for the village notice board and cheque number 246 for £90 – the payment for room hire. The notice board had now been ordered and would be paid for when in situ. The Love Where You Live grant monies would be spent during April 2016. The savings account still held £1,665.28.

5.3 New audit rules were being introduced for parish councils. The Chair

reported back from his research that Billingley Parish Council were currently following the same principles as Dalton on Tees PC who had written to the Local Councils Advisory Service for guidance. The question and their reply was read out in full. Paul Clayden (Chief Executive, LCAS) answered that their actions were acceptable. As the Chair was unsure if we opted out whether this would preclude us from opting in, in the future Cllr Coates suggested that he ran this past Ian Turner (Governance Officer, BMBC) to ask his advice. The Chair would contact Ian Turner and clarify with the clerk and subject to their agreement he would circulate information to the Councillors requesting an urgent response. The deadline for this item was 30th March 2016. Action: The Chair to contact Ian Turner and Angela Fawcett. Follow up with circulation of information to Councillors for urgent response.

Ward Alliance Grant update

The Ward Alliance had granted £700 for a new village notice board. The order had now been placed. It would be made of oak with safety glass doors fitted with butterfly catches. A condition of the grant is that small area of the board must be retained for Ward Alliance notices.

BVCA Ltd Grant Application from Ward Alliance update

The Chair had attended the Ward Alliance meeting on 21st January 2016 together with Brian Moore of the Ward Alliance, regarding the bid for alterations to the back step of the Village Hall. The meeting was very sympathetic to this application and had met with their approval. The monies would be with BVCA Ltd in the next 6-8 weeks. Action: Cllr Coates would chase up.

Love Where You Live + Clean for the Queen update

Including Councillors and residents, a total of 16 people attended the 5th March Clean for the Queen event. Although the weather had been terrible on the 4th March it remained kind for the event. The Chair passed a huge thank you for all the work carried out by the volunteers.

High Street had been cleared of soil and debris from Beech House to the farm; High Street from the junction of Back Lane towards Pond House had been cleared of soil and debris; litter had been picked throughout the village; hedges on Back Lane had been tidied and the turn around on Back Lane had been cleared up. The Chair and Cllr Fenna had been to BMBC dump several times to remove all the rubbish.

Following the successfully attended meeting (9

th January 2016) to discuss the Love Where You Live event it was agreed that follow up dates for further clean up sessions needed to be agreed. The first event would be held on Wednesday 20th April 2016 10am-12noon. Cllr Coates suggested inviting the Tidy Team. Action: Cllr Coates to invite Tidy Team

It was suggested that a schedule of clean ups for the remainder of 2016 alternating between Saturdays and weekdays should be agreed.

Risk Assessment and Standing Orders

The current versions of Billingley Parish Councils standing orders and risk assessments had been circulated to all councillors (Chair to check circulation to Cllr Hancock). It was agreed to hold a working party on Wednesday 30th March 2016 to review, discuss and amend the documents as appropriate The Chair asked everyone to read these documents and email or pass their comments on to him as soon as possible. Action: All Councillors to read documents and contact the Chair with comments

Parish Council Working Parties (sub-committees)

It was agreed to hold working parties as necessary to discuss lengthy or detailed items pertaining to standing orders, risk assessments and new financial regulations. Also to ensure the ability for Councillors to create committees / sub- committees / working parties under revised standing orders.

Timelines to be agreed

Items 5, 9, 10 and 11 had been discussed earlier in the meeting.

Item 14 – YLCA Planning Appeal Decisions notice. The lack of an appeal mechanism had caused difficulties for a long time. YLCA had created a petition to reverse this which would give third parties (Local Councils) more opportunities to appeal. 10,000 signatures were required on this petition and Councillors and residents were invited to sign. The deadline for signatures was 19th April 2016 and the petition could be accessed at: https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/110489.

Further time sensitive issues need to be identified and recorded as appropriate in minutes and standing orders.

Fracking Meeting report 7th March 2016

The Chair reported that 25-30 residents had attended the fracking meeting held in the Village Hall on 7th March. The presentation was given by Anne Forsaith, Terry Cook and George Arthur (local anti-fracking group). Residents had found it very informative. The group had offered to return to show an anti-fracking film but

it was agreed that the presentation was sufficient at this time. The one hour film could be viewed on YouTube.

Peter Allison (Wilsden Parish Council) would be invited to a meeting to be held on Friday 15th April 2016 in the Village Hall to present on fracking. Action: The Chair would confirm this date with Mr Allison.

Cllr Hancock declared that she would step back from any future PC decisions because she is totally against fracking.

PC dedicated email address

The Chair informed the meeting that the dedicated email address Billingleypc@yahoo.com was functioning.

Communications

The YLCA petition had been discussed under item 11.

Ward Alliance had offered local groups a grant up to £500 to be used to hold a fete or community activity. It was suggested that BVCA Ltd utilise these monies to hold an event in Billingley. As the current committee was very small it was further suggested that a grant could be used to help arrange a summer barbeque plus entertainment. Mr Stenton (Chair of BVCA Ltd) would discuss this at their committee meeting (Tuesday 15th March) and feedback. The Parish Council would be willing to assist.

15. AOB’s on the agenda

According to YLCA and NALC guidelines, AOBs should not be on any parish council agenda. Items would be noted for discussion at the following meeting.

The items submitted tonight were:

Timelines and responsibilities (Cllr Beech)

Sensitive issues (Cllr Coates)

Date and time of next meeting

The next meeting – the Annual General Meeting would be held on Monday 9th May 2016 at 7pm.

Future dates had been agreed as follows:

Monday 11th July 2016

Monday 12

th September 2016

Monday 14th November 2016

Monday 9th January 2017

Monday 13th March 2017

Monday 8th May 2017 Annual General Meeting

All meetings would commence at 7pm and be held in the Village Hall.

The Chair closed the meeting closed at 8.15pm and thanked all for their attendance and contribution.

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Love Where You Live clean up campaign
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A huge thank you to all the residents that took part on the last Love Where You Live clean-up day.

The next event will take place on the 11th June between 9-11.

Please meet at the village hall,  which will be open for refreshments between 10.30 and 12 (as per the usual breakfast club).

We would love to see you there, all help appreciated to keep our beautiful village looking its best.  We would also welcome any suggestions for work to be done.

Please note as volunteers you are not covered under any Parish Council Insurance.

Thank you on behalf of Billingley Parish Council

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Billingley Parish Council Minutes 18th January 2016
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Billingley Parish Council

Minutes of the meeting held on the 18.01.16 at 7pm

in Billingley Village Hall.

Present                                       In Attendance

Cllr M Fenna (Chair)                               Clerk – A Fawcett

Cllr S Fenna                                           5 residents

Cllr Thompson

Cllr Beech                          Anne Forsaith for part of the meeting on Fracking

Cllr Hancock

Cllr Coates

  1. Public participation

No comments made

  1. Apologies

Cllr Saunders

Cllr Markham

  1. Minutes of the previous meeting

There were no matters of accuracy from the previous minutes which were accepted as true record.

  1. Matters arising

No further update as yet regarding the speed restrictions.

The Clerk reported that the bid has been submitted for the laptop and scanner but we had not received any response as yet.

The Clerk confirmed a letter of objection to the proposed development Site ref AC27 Land South of the Dearne Valley Parkway Goldthorpe, has been submitted.

  1. Finances

5.1 The parish precept was discussed.  Consideration was given to raising the precept.  After considering regular spending commitments and likely future spending this year, in addition to the current finances, it was agreed that we could leave the precept the same as last year.  This was passed unanimously by the council.  Action: The Clerk will inform Barnsley Council.

5.2 Consideration was given as to the benefit or disadvantages of having a separate savings and current account. In order to keep the savings account active we do have to pay something into it on an annual basis. This is a very small sum, however it was noted that the interest we earn is also small. A member of the public in attendance, and previous Chair, explained that the savings account had previously been established in order to save funds for a village hall.  This is obviously not now a consideration but it may be useful if we wish to save for something in the future.  Action: Councillor Coates agreed to check if it was necessary for a parish council to have a savings as well as a current account and that we would discuss the matter further at the next meeting.

5.3 The Clerk provided a summary of regular spending. This includes £90 for room hire approx. £115 -20 to the YLCA (there will be an increase in fees this year) and Insurance approx. £385 -400 (again there will be a slight increase, despite the fixed rate, due to a raise in the Insurance Tax Premium. The Poppy Wreath donation of approx  £30-35, plus the donation in lieu of the Clerks salary which in previous years has been £150 -175.

5.4. The Clerk informed the meeting of recent invoices submitted, these being one for £30 in lieu of donation to the Royal British Legion for the poppy wreath.  One for £56 made payable to the Billingley Village Community Association in payment for the refreshments provided at the Love where you Live event.  The cheque numbers for these were 000245 and 000244 respectively.  The current account balance is £2547.41 as of 16.12.15 this includes the £800.00 payment made by Darfield Ward Alliance to spend on equipment to help keep public areas in the village tidy.  There is £1665.28 in the savings account.

  1. Fracking

6.1 Anne Forsaith attended from the Dearne Valley Anti Fracking Group.  She explained that since the Licence for fracking was approved for North Nottinghamshire, several other groups have sprung up across South Yorkshire and themselves and the Green party are working to increase awareness of the issue and the consequences of Fracking.

6.2 She explained that fracking is injecting water, sand and chemicals deep underground to fracture the rock (shale) to release gas or oil.  At the moment a license has been granted to Cuadrilla to allow them to explore the possibility / feasibility of fracking in the area.  Anne stated that fracking has taken place for many years in the US and Australia but that this was undertaken in areas with very low population density.  She and Cllr Thompson highlighted the following concerns: the impact on the environment and pollution, concerns regarding the water supply and other health concerns, concerns regarding earthquakes (there were 2 minor earthquakes following the exploration at Blackpool) and the increase in traffic particularly HGV’s.  She also highlighted that the jobs that are often cited as being of benefit to an area, do not materialise as the few jobs created are normally specialist roles that local people do not have the skills to undertake.  It was noted that the work that has gone on to regenerate the area since the closure of the mines would be adversely effected by fracking.  As pointed out by a member of the public, they would also be drilling into an area that has already been extensively mined and many shafts are still propped up and it is unknown what the impact of drilling would be.

6.3 Action being taken locally by the anti-fracking group will include being involved in a nationwide day of action on 30th of Jan (the national day being the 31st Jan).  They are intending running a stall somewhere locally (as yet unconfirmed).  On the 4th March at Montgomery Hall Wath-Upon-Dearne there will be an event held and a further event based around the Boat Club at Manvers Lake on 15th May – details to be confirmed.  It was suggested that in order to promote these, Anne send details to the Clerk who can display them on the village notice board.  Additionally they will be publicised in the Chronicle.  Anne stated she was in the process of pulling together a formal presentation she could deliver to groups and would be happy to do this at a future open meeting for the village.  Action: Cllrs / Clerk to organise a date.  It was proposed to mail drop residents and check preferred times and dates.    The Chair asked whether the presentation would consider both sides of the argument and Anne stated that it would but obviously they would not be supporting fracking.  Anne and Cllr Thompson both provided leaflets for people to read.

  1. Ward Alliance Grant application.

 The Council has been successful in obtaining a grant to purchase equipment to help with the clearing and maintenance of communal village areas.  £800 has been approved and is now in the bank account.   Thanks go to the Ward Alliance for granting these monies.

  1. BVCA Ltd Grant Application.

It was noted that the Chair has supported  Billingley Village Community Association in submitting a grant application to Darfield Ward Alliance.  The grant is to lower the door into the village hall, near the store room, as this poses a safety risk.

  1. Love where You Live Event 9/1/16.

The Chair was pleased to report that we had had a good response to the Love Where You Live event held in the village hall on the 9th January.  Many residents attended and made suggestions as to how the village could be improved.  These will all be considered and discussed by the Cllrs.  It should be noted, however, that some are beyond the Cllrs remit so we may not be able to deliver on them all.  Action: A summary will be published on the village intranet site and notice board.  Additionally 17 residents volunteered to help on the tidy up / work days.  This is a really good response so thanks to all those who attended, volunteered and made comments.  The Chair also wished to thank Robert and Judy Stenton, Ray Toulson and Angela Fawcett for their support on the day.

  1. Event at Stagecoach Busses 15th Jan 16

The Chair, Cllr S Fenna and two residents (Brian and Barbara Moore) attended a launch event of a new fleet of busses (14) for the area.  These will have on-board Wi-Fi and were reported to be very nice and comfortable.  Mrs Moore took the opportunity to ask the organisers about free travel for senior citizens before 9.30 and was told that those with bus passes who were travelling to hospital appointments would be allowed to travel free if they produced their appointment letter.  Additionally although there was no law regarding this, their drivers would endeavour to give priority to wheelchair users over pushchairs and prams.  A member of the public also stated it would be good if we could have a bus shelter for the stop on the A635.  Action: Cllr Coates stated she would make enquiries.  The service through Billingley will be provided by T&M travel on behalf of stagecoach.

  1. Nativity and Christmas Tree

The Chair thanked those who had helped to touch up / paint the nativity scene and put up the decorations.  These were Brian Moore and Vic Fielding in conjunction with the Chair and Cllr S Fenna.  It is planned to fully repaint the Nativity figures when the better weather comes.  Thanks also to Barry senior for allowing us to use his electricity supply.  Cllr Coates stated that if we needed more paints or lights we could apply for these through the Darfield Ward Alliance fund.

  1. Dedicated e mail address

The dedicated e mail address is now set up and in use and is Billingleypc@yahoo.com Please use this as a means of contacting the Parish Council for any issues, concerns and suggestions or speak directly to a member of the council or Clerk.

  1. Communications

The clerk distributed the following communications:

Clerks and Councillors Direct

A letter from the YLCA informing of a 4.9% increase in the annual fee

The letter requesting the annual precept is set.

The letter from the YLCA informing councils of the changes to the audit process re-the new transparency requirements.

YLCA South Yorkshire branch meeting invitation to be held on 6.2.16 at the Lyric theatre Dinnigton.

The Chair also stated he had received an e mail from a resident concerned regarding speeding through the village and supportive of any action the PC can take to try and introduce traffic calming measures. Additionally offering her support.   The resident had hoped to attend the meeting but had been unable to make it.  The Chair will contact to discuss further.

  1. A.O.B

Lynn Bembridge has asked if we know of a fund for helping support speakers attendance at groups.  She has heard there is something in Doncaster and wonders if Barnsley has an equivalent.  Action: Cllr Coates will enquire.

A resident has reported blocked grates on West Kirk Lane – Action: this has been reported to Highways.   Additionally a hedge is protruding onto the highway in High Street opposite the new entrance to Back Lane and Beech House.  This has also been reported and Highways who will look at it and if it is on BMBC property and if there is a fence at the back of it they will remove it.

A member of the public present stated pipes had been dumped on Flat Lane.  Action: Cllr Coates will ask the Tidy Team to clear them.

The hedge from the village hall to the trough on Back Lane requires cutting.  Action: this has been reported to the Farmer who states he will cut it back.

The Clerk will not be available to minute the meeting on the 14/3 but Julie Beech has agreed to take the minutes.

The meeting closed at 8.05pm

  1. Date and Time of the next meeting

The next meeting will be held on – 14th March

The AGM will be held on 9th May (AGM)

Post meeting note

A date has been set for the first Love where You Live – clean up / maintenance day.  This is being held on Saturday 5th March to coincide with a national event ‘Clean for the Queen’ for her 90th birthday celebrations.  Please come and join us.  A mail drop will be done nearer the time with details.

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Love Where You Live – Billingley
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BILLINGLEY LOVE WHERE YOU LIVE 

Following the Love Where You Live meeting held in the Village Hall on Saturday 9TH January 2016, your feedback has been collated into the following summary of actions. Billingley Parish Council is now working to prioritise, agree what is possible within our remit and allocate resources to resources to improvements through volunteer and outside agency support. We hope to respond to you shortly and outline our steps forward.

Anyone who hasn’t volunteered for future activities in the village already but wishes to do so, please contact your Parish Councillor or email Billingleypc@yahoo.com.

Summary of actions

Back Lane

Hedges, farm entrance; road width; tidy/pave trough area; turn round near farm; road surface; poor drainage/clear soakaway

High Street

Hedge opposite Beech House; tree at Beech House; Village Hall sign

Flat Lane

Encroachment of laurel hedge; top of Flat Lane verge maintenance

Outside village

Pavements from village; litter picking to all approaches. Laybys on A635 litter bins.

Infrastructure – amenities

Footpath sign; notice board; 2000 plinth; benches; seek assistance from farmers for clearing; flag dog waste and notice board areas; village map; community planters; replace worn out benches; community orchard/allotments/gardens

General

Dog fouling; speeding/rat run/speed restrictions; bulb planting

Encourage villager participation and ownership

Scarecrow week; fund raisers; litter picking; flower competition; consult with villagers to take ownership of their own area/trees and ask them to keep clear and tidy; tree planting per village child.

 

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Minutes of the meeting held on the 23.11.15 at Billingley Village Hall
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Billingley Parish Council

Minutes of the meeting held on the 23.11.15 at 7pm

in Billingley Village Hall.

Present                                             In Attendance

 

Cllr M Fenna (Chair)                                    Clerk – A Fawcett

Cllr S Fenna                                                 5 residents

Cllr Thompson

Cllr Beech

 

 

  1. Public participation

 

No comments made

 

 

  1. Apologies

 

Cllr Hancock

Cllr Saunders

Cllr Markham

Cllr Coates

 

 

  1. Minutes of the previous meeting

 

There were no matters of accuracy from the previous minutes which were accepted as true record.

 

  1. Matters arising

 

There were no matters arising that were not covered on the agenda.

 

  1. Finances

 

5.1. The Clerk provided an update

The current balance, as of 14/10/15, is £1,810.86.  This includes cheque 000240 that has been cashed.

 

5.2 The audit has been signed off but with a query – quality point raised regarding whether the de-fib was an asset or not.  It has now been declared as an asset.  A poster has been displayed inviting interested parties to the view accounts should they wish to.

 

 

  1. Barnsley Local development Plan (Additional Consultation).

 

6.1. Joe Jenkinson attended from the planning and development department of Barnsley Metropolitan Council. He explained that the additional consultation was due to some of the initial areas put forward not being suitable, consequently other areas needed to be allocated or existing areas extended, as in the case of the area of land adjacent to the A 635.

 

6.2 A discussion took place regarding the concerns of the Councillors and local residents in relation to this.  In summary the concerns raised were:-

 

The proposed plan could mean a corridor of development stretching from Goldthorpe to Cathilll roundabout, creating an urban sprawl and having a devastating impact on the local landscape and nature.  Air-pollution, light pollution, and noise pollution would all increase significantly.  Additionally the pressures this would place on the A 635 raises serious concerns. Councillors stated that it is already very difficult to pull out onto the A 635,from Billingley, and this would be made worse by the extra traffic and HGV’s that would use the road if the development went ahead. The point was also raised that this land backs onto the RSPB nature reserve which attracts visitors to the area and improves the landscape and environment in addition to attracting various species of birds and animals.  Development of this kind would impact on the nature corridor that currently exists and have a negative impact on nature and on the reserve. It was pointed out that there were several empty buildings/units that are not getting used in the area already. Whilst Councillors recognise the need to create jobs, these empty units could be utilised first and existing areas like Park Springs would be better sites, given that they have been created specifically for this purpose and have road networks that would better be able to manage the increase in traffic. Mr Jenkinson explained that if the development went ahead, the infrastructure would need to be improved in order to support the additional usage. For example they may need to install traffic lights at the junction to Billingley to allow cars to exit. He also stressed the need for the Council (BMBC) to identify these areas in Barnsley in order to fulfil a commitment to attracting business and creating Jobs. He stressed however that a compelling argument would still need to be made, in the future, to actually develop the land. He stated that people can object in writing or online and should list the reasons for their objection. Objections need to be registered prior to 11 December at 5 PM.

 

6.3 Whilst Mr Jenkinson was at the meeting, the Chair took the opportunity to ask about proposed fracking in the area.  Mr Jenkinson responded that a company had obtained a license for the area, giving them exclusive rights, but they had not lodged an application to do anything.  They may or not do this at a future date.  The Cllrs expressed concerns relating to the environment and safety if this were to proceed and asked if the council would support them in how to raise objections with MP’s etc. Mr Jenkins replied that if an application is submitted, at this stage the council is likely to open a consultation process up and would provide details re how to object.

 

 

  1. Role of the Clerk

 

The Clerk has met with the Chair and has agreed to stay on in the position if the rest of the Cllrs are happy with this.  As no objections were raised, the Clerk will continue in post.

 

  1. Update of meeting 12th October 2015 with regard to Park Spring Community Benefits Fund

 

Cllr Fenna reported that he had attended the meeting along with Cllr Thompson but as a Parish Council we were ineligible to apply for any monies but the Village association would be.  Consequently he had spoken to the Chair of the committee re this and passed details on. Grants of up to £10,000 is available to spend on improvements to the village hall that would benefit the village, however the applications have to meet strict criteria before being approved.

 

  1. Update of meeting on 9th October 2015 with Tanya Dickinson re Ward Alliance Grant application. Also Ward Alliance Meeting re same 12th November 2015

 

The Council has been successful in obtaining a grant to purchase equipment to help with the clearing and maintenance of communal village areas.  £800 has been approved.  Thanks go to the Ward Alliance for granting these monies.  The money should be available early in the New Year.

 

  1. Update of discussion with Tanya Dickinson with regard to setting a date with the Tidy Team/South Area Team for future clean up to incorporate Love where You Live slogan.

 

It was proposed that we hold a meeting early in the New Year and invite residents to attend and discuss what they would like to see happen in terms of keeping the village maintained and looking nice and how they might be able to help under the ‘Love where You Live’ banner.  In addition the Tidy Team has agreed to join forces with us on 2 or 3 occasions during the year.  We could perhaps organise a regular day, every month or two months, where residents came together to help.  It was suggested the initial meeting to discuss this is held on the 9th January to coincide with the breakfast club, as many residents will already be in attendance.  This was agreed and will be promoted nearer the time.

 

 

  1. Update of Back Lane and Flat Lane seeding and clearing

 

The Councillors have been clearing, cutting and reseeding the verge areas on Back Lane and Flat Lane.  In total £60 has been spent but the Chair only wishes to claim £20 for the grass seed used to reseed Flat Lane.  The Cllrs agreed to this and the cheque was provided.

 

 

  1. Speed reduction update from Steve Croft Barnsley MBC

 

Cllr Fenna has been speaking to the council re this and they have agreed to set up a device to monitor speed in 2016 with a view as to whether traffic calming measures are needed.

 

 

  1. Application for Lap top computer and scanner via small council fund

 

The Clerk explained that there are grants available to purchase lap tops and scanners through the transparency fund.  The reason for this is that next year it will become mandatory for small councils, like our own, to publish their accounts / audit on line.  The grant for equipment is to enable this to happen.  As the PC do not have their own computer, it was agreed to apply.  Up to £350 can be spent on a lap top and £100 on a scanner.  Cllr’s Beech and Fenna would look for a suitable model.

 

 

  1. Dedicated E mail address

 

The Chair explained that we really should have a dedicated e mail address for the council that all the Cllrs can access.  As such Cllr Beech agreed to check to see if a .gov account was suitable, at a cost of £40?  Or to consider an ordinary email account such as Hotmail which may be better suited.

 

 

  1. Communications

 

The Clerks newsletter had been received, the YLCA newsletter and an invitation to the PC to attend the Mayors Carol service.  Additionally there had been a communication from Wentworth Estates to say they had requested the Farmers in the area to ensure the debris is cleared up after hedge cutting as there have been complaintsfrom residents.

 

The Chair wished it to be known that all the Farms in Billingley and surrounding areas do a valuable job not only providing meat, grains, milk and other foods but keeping the environment attractive to look at and enjoy.  We all appreciate the many difficulties that farmers face and endure over the changing seasons and we thank them for what they do for the area.

It would be great for the residents of Billingley to have the trimmings from the hedge cutting cleared up immediately.  This would eliminate the chorus of complaints the PC receives and would also eliminate the dangerous conditions on the highways and eliminate the punctures, thorns in dog’s feet and in walkers/pedestrians shoes.  It is an issue that crops up every year, we all wish to live in harmony and this is an issue that we hope the Farms can deal with without anyone having to make a complaint in future years.  On behalf of the residents we thank you.

 

  1. A.O.B

 

The Chair suggested Fracking should be discussed in more detail at the next meeting.  The Clerk reminded the Cllrs that the precept would need setting in January.  The Council has paid for paints at a cost of £43.45 in order to re paint the Nativity scene.  Mr Moore has agreed to do this.  Mr Hendley has been asked to provide a quote for replacing the village notice board.  A grant has been provided to cover the cost of this.  It was agreed that Oak would be longer lasting and that it should have a glass front with a butterfly clip so all can access.  Finally, the Chair wishes to thank Mr Finney for the service he performed on Remembrance Sunday.

 

 

The meeting closed at 8.05pm

 

 

  1. Date and Time of the next meeting

 

 

The next meeting will be held on 18/01/16 at 7pm.  Billingley Village Hall.

 

Dates for future meetings – 14th March, 9th May (AGM)

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Billingley Parish Council meeting minutes 14th September 2015
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Billingley Parish Council

Minutes of the meeting held on the 14.9.15 at 7pm

in Billingley Village Hall.

Present                                       In Attendance

 

Cllr M Fenna (Chair)                               Clerk – A Fawcett

Cllr S Fenna                                           3 residents

Cllr Hancock

Cllr Thompson

Cllr Beech

Cllr Saunders

Cllr Markham

Cllr Coates

 

  1. Public participation

 

No comments made

 

  1. New Councillors

 

The Chair welcomed the two new Cllrs, Dave Beech and Carmen Hancock. Having put themselves forward they have been interviewed by the existing Cllrs and have been co-opted onto the council.  They in turn have accepted. The Clerk issued them with declarations of interest forms and acceptance forms to read and sign.

 

  1. Apologies

 

No apologies had been received

 

 

  1. Minutes of the previous meeting

 

There were no matters of accuracy from the previous minutes which were accepted as true record.

 

  1. Matters arising

 

5.1 The Clerk has taken action on all the issues requested at the previous meeting and has purchased the thank you gift for Mr Watters in return for completing the audit.

 

5.2 The additional money not spent on the defibrillator is to be returned to the alliance the Clerk will action this.

 

 

  1. Finances

 

6.1.The Clerk provided an update on regular spending for the council and reported that this doesn’t vary much from year to year.  She also reported that she contacted Zürich insurance and received a much cheaper quote £385.95 as opposed to £528 saving around £170.  This has now been put in place as agreed.

 

6.2. The current balance stands at £1874.86

 

Post meeting note the audit has been signed off but with a query – quality point  raised regarding whether the de-fib was an asset or not.  It has now been declared as one.

 

 

 

  1. Meeting with representatives of BMBC (including Highways)

 

7.1 The Chair reported that the Councillors had met with Ian Turner from BMBC, Rachel Kingsley Head of highways, Sean Davis from highways and Katie Kaulkes – area manager for South East.  He reported that this had been a frank and open meeting and that subsequent to this Rachel Kingsley and Katie Kaulkes had agreed to attend a further meeting with parish councillors.  This meeting took place on 11th August.

 

7.2 At the meeting on 11th August, Rachel reported that she was unable to confirm if the road had ever been wider than it is now and in any case felt it may be impossible to widen it any further due to the proximity of the hedge. Cllr Saunders commented that when she had met with a representative of the highways department previously, they had agreed to check historical maps to determine what the road width should be and check this against the current status. This has not been done.  Cllr Beech asked if we could access the maps our selves to check this out.  A discussion took place regarding this, the conclusion of which was that there was little point pursuing this any further.  The Chair advocating that it is unlikely to make any difference due to Rachel making it clear that there will be no plans to widen the road in any case due to the proximity of the hedge and financial constraints.

 

7.3 Regarding the original costing and scope of planned work, Rachel feels there was a miscommunication about what could be achieved with the budget and that the department has completed the work as they were required.  It was noted that costs are greater due to constraints imposed by BMBC regulations regarding contracts and purchasing costs when going through the council rather than if the work had been undertaken by someone outside BMBC.  She did say however that in the future they would try and be more transparent regarding decision-making / process etc. She also informed the Cllrs that there continues to be significant funding pressures on the council and therefore areas will be encouraged to do what they can in their communities using volunteers with support / training being offered by the council where needed.  A general note was made that in the future when reporting issues we should keep an e-mail trail. A lot of conversations relating to this issue had been made over the phone or in person.

 

7.4 Regarding speed restrictions the chair spoke to Rachel Kingsley to request measures were taken. In addition the clerk had also contacted the council and South Yorkshire police regarding this issue.  The police reported back that as it was not an A road and no one had been killed, there would be no action taken. However the council have said they will look to install a device to record speeds subject to there being a suitable place to site this.

 

 

  1. Meeting with the Tidy Team 19/8

 

8.1 On 19th August the Cllrs met with the Tidy Team and a representative from the South area.  They have asked for help in clearing vegetation and footpaths.  As the council were scheduled to come out shortly to clear the footpaths (and have done so since) two areas were identified to be tackled -the top of Flat Lane from where the first access gate to the field on the left hand side is and back to the corner of High Street and parts of Back Lane.  The Tidy Team returned on 2nd September and in conjunction with the Cllrs and residents Joe and Anita Rose and Julie Beech, have cleared the area.   Joe Rose (resident) has also cut the grass along Flat Lane so thanks to Joe and all those who have helped.  A member of public in attendance commented that whilst the footpath had been cleared, the bottom of Chapel Lane is a mess and needed some attention.  The Chair said he would take a look.

 

8.2 Following a discussion with Tanya Dickinson from the Tidy Team it is been suggested that we have a Love Where You Live event and invite members of the village to attend.  The idea would be to plan forthcoming events to help keep the village tidy.  Cllr Markham also advised that we could approach the alliance regarding obtaining equipment such as lawnmowers to undertake the work; we would just need volunteers in lieu of match funding.  Tanya Dickinson would also be able to support us in completing applications.  It was agreed to ask the Tidy Team for possible dates to hold the meeting and then promote them.

 

 

 

 

  1. Membership of the YLCA

 

Ian Turner has advised that we re-join the YLCA.  The Chair put this to the vote and it was unanimously agreed that we should have membership for advice and support as required.  The Clerk will provide a cheque for the £64 that it will cost to join for the remaining period of this year.

 

 

  1. Updates from Cllr Coates

 

10.1 Cllr Coates reported that the company that was to provide the noticeboards has now gone bust so they will be looking for a new provider

 

10.2 She reported that free training was available in things like first aid, IT and food hygiene, if residents were interested.  The Clerk suggested putting something on the notice board.  Details will be provided.

 

10.3 She reported that activities for the children had been held in the summer holiday.

 

10.4 She has made enquiries about faster broadband being available in the area

 

10.5 Additionally she said that 4 to £500 could be made available to hold a summer gala event if the village was interested in holding one.

 

 

  1. Parish Clerk

 

The Chair stated that Clerk had agreed to stay in post until the end of the year.  The Chair suggested advertising in the Chronicle and amongst the council and via the notice board.   Post meeting note – the Clerk has agreed to carry on in her role if the Cllrs would like her to.

 

  1. Communications

 

The Clerk distributed a Councils Direct newsletter.

 

 

  1.   A.O.B

 

13.1 Cllr Thompson raised the issue of dog fouling reporting that she had received a further complaint from a resident.  It was noted that we have previously wrote out to all residents.  Cllr Beech pointed out that a lot of non  residents walked through the village with dogs.  Cllr Saunders advised that we could obtain a template for spraying on the pavement to warn people not to do it.  It was agreed to look into this.

 

13.2  Remembrance Day and Christmas

 

The Chair will be on holiday on the date but  will speak to Derek Finney and the previous Chair regarding arrangements.  It was noted that the wreath is usually purchased from the British Legion and Cllr Hancock said she could get this if required, providing other arrangements hadn’t been made.  The Chair asked about arrangements for Christmas and the Clerk stated that prior to him retiring the previous Chair had wished to purchase paints to re paint the nativity.  The meeting agreed to approach him re this and fund this if he was still willing to do so.

 

 

 

  1. Date and Time of the next meeting

 

 

The next meeting will be held on 23/11/15 at 7pm.  Billingley Village Hall.

 

Dates for future meetings – 18th of January, 14th March, 9th May (AGM)

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