Full Council Meeting Minutes
Wednesday 5 January 2022 at 7.00pm at St Andrews Community Centre, Saxilby.
Cllrs Hillman (chair for the meeting), Harper, Ives, Mann, Saunders, I Willox and J Willox.
Cllrs Ashton Derry, Cotton, Crump and Spurr.
Elaine Atkin, Parish Clerk
Debbie Johnson, Assistant Clerk
Three of the memorial field trustees were in attendance.
The following comments were made:
- On the last external audit submission, why did council tick N/A when answering the question about being a sole managing trustee.
- Financial Regulation 3.b states that “the council shall consider annual budget proposals in relation to the council’s three-year forecast of revenue and capital receipts and payments including recommendations for the use of reserves and sources of funding and update the forecast accordingly”. Can the council confirm what level of reserves it will have at year-end; what level of reserves it will carry forward to 2022-23; why it has factored in £8,000 to go into reserves in 2022-23; why the £3,000 in the 2022-23 budget allocated for democratic elections won’t come out of reserves, as this is what reserves are for.
- This question was asked in July and no response was received – have councillors been made aware what level of reserves the council has now and what the expected level of reserves will be at year-end. This is a requirement of the Council’s Financial Regulations. The questioner stated that council will have more in reserves than predicted (and subsequently issued a document showing their view of council finances).
Cllr Hillman promised a written response to these three comments.
- Is council aware that a net has been put up on the new goalpost on Westcroft green and if it was residents, can the council make those residents aware of their responsibilities regarding health and safety? The Clerk confirmed that the net had been put up by residents.
- Is there any likelihood of moving back to online meetings? The Clerk confirmed that, despite pressure from NALC and SLCC, Government currently has no plans to re-instate the legislation which permits remote council meetings.
- Have councillors seen the trustees’ guidance which was issued to the clerk? The clerk confirmed that the trustees’ letter and their solicitor’s letter had been shared with all councillors the previous day.
- When does council plan to have their legal advice regarding the matters raised by the trustees? The Clerk confirmed that this is not yet known as timescales will obviously have been impacted by the recent Christmas holiday period. The trustee confirmed that they will be writing to the Charity Commission, flagging the issue as a serious event, and will continue to communicate with all those involved with the memorial field.
Full Council Meeting
001/22 To receive apologies and accept valid reasons for absence, these having been submitted to the Clerk prior to the meeting
Apologies and a valid reason for absence had been received from Cllrs Ashton Derry, Cotton, Crump and Spurr and these were accepted.
002/22 To receive declarations of interest in accordance with the Localism Act 2011
There were none.
003/22 To approve the notes of the Full Council meeting held on 1 December 2021, and the Chairman to sign them as the agreed minutes
These were proposed by Cllr Ives and resolved.
004/22 To consider co-option application(s)
No applications had been received.
005/22 To note the meeting Action Log
The action log was noted, with several actions now completed and to be updated.
006/22 To approve expenditure above specified limits, as per Financial Regulations
This was proposed by Cllr Mann and resolved.
007/22 To approve the 2022-23 budget and the 2022-23 final precept submission to WLDC
Cllr Ives proposed, and it was resolved (with one against) to accept the 2022-23 budget with the proviso no changes would be required following discussion of agenda item 22 (minute 380/21) in closed session.
Cllr Ives proposed, and it was resolved (with one against) to approve the final precept request to WLDC (with the proviso as above) for £233,230, which equates to a 4% increase for Band D equivalent properties.
As required, the meeting chairman, two councillors and the Clerk signed the precept request form.
Due to the size of the precept, explanatory reasons for the increase will have to be provided, for inclusion in the council tax booklet.
008/22 To consider the MUGA VAT report and agree the VAT status of the MUGA project (deferred from December)
It was resolved to defer this item due to the complexity of the report and pending resolution of the trustees’ issues.
009/22 To consider formalising the Communications Group
010/22 To review the Complaints Procedure
011/22 To review the draft Open Spaces Policy
012/22 To review a list of new signage required around the village (parish council land), and agree budget
Potential draft wording for the signage had been supplied and some suggestions for tweaks were made. The final wording (and level of information provided) would be dependent on the intended location for each one.
It was proposed by Cllr Harper, and resolved that signage was required for St Botolph’s Gate green space (rear); Mill Lane sports field; and MacPhail green space (Daubeney Estate), with signage for Westcroft green and Memorial Field to be deferred pending new play equipment and resolution of trustees’ issue respectively. No signage was required for St Botolph’s Gate green space and Ashfield Grange green space.
Cllr Hillman proposed, and it was resolved to obtain relevant costs first and possibly explore the option of business sponsorship of the signage.
013/22 To agree where to allocate 50% of the clothing bank income (this was previously allocated to the wheeled park)
Cllr I Willox proposed, and it was resolved to allocate 50% of the clothing bank income to the Westcroft project.
To note updates on:
014/22 Meetings held in December
The Clerk was asked to remind all councillors about declaring meetings.
015/22 Latest crime reports
016/22 Saxilby and District MUGA
Cllr J Willox noted a potential discrepancy regarding figures quoted by Sport England in relation to space required for a cricket pitch, in their response to the MUGA planning application, and figures quoted by the English Cricket Board (ECB). Cllr J Willox to supply the ECB information, to be passed on to the architect dealing with the planning submission.
The update was noted.
017/22 Bridge Street Working Group
Cllr Hillman highlighted the requirement for officer time to progress the Bridge Street Toilets refurbishment project.
Cllr J Willox highlighted the need to stress the tie in of the Waterfront Festival with the Queen’s platinum jubilee, as this may encourage further sponsorship.
The update was noted.
018/22 Communications lead
Cllr J Willox was congratulated on obtaining his English Cricket Board (ECB) Foundation 1 Coaching course.
Cllr J Willox will obtain quote(s) for a ball strike assessment and bring back to Full Council.
The update was noted.
020/22 Bar outsourcing and agree actions
Progress of the outsourcing tender is now paused, pending resolution of the issues raised by the memorial field trustees.
The update was noted.
The members of the public left the meeting (8.23pm).
021/22 CLOSED SESSION – Council to resolve to go into closed session in accordance with the Public Bodies (Admissions to Meetings) Act 1960 for the following items on the grounds that publicity would be prejudicial to the public interest by reason of the confidential nature of the business to be transacted.
It was proposed by Cllr J Willox and resolved to go into closed session.
022/22 To review new mower quotes and options
Thanks were passed to the Grounds Manager for obtaining the quotes.
Cllr I Willox proposed, and it was resolved (with one abstention) to go with the option from Ireland’s Farm Machinery Ltd, including a 5-year service plan and finance over 5 years. This decision has no impact on the 2022-23 budget agreed under agenda item 7 (minute 365/21).
023/22 To ratify a job evaluation recommendation
It was proposed by Cllr Harper, and resolved, to ratify the decision to commission Local Council Consultancy, and for this to be funded from Grounds and Admin salaries budgets as appropriate.
024/22 To suspend Financial Regulation 11aii (due to the specialist nature of the service) and ratify a quote to seek independent advice regarding the Memorial Field charity/legal status
Cllr Ives proposed, and it was resolved to suspend Financial Regulation 11aiii due to the specialist nature of the service.
Cllr Ives proposed, and it was resolved to ratify the decision to seek specialist advice from Wellers Hedley.
Cllr Hillman proposed, and it was resolved that this is funded from general reserves.
The meeting closed at 9:32pm.
Please be advised that these are notes of the meeting taken by the Assistant/Clerk and cannot in any way be regarded as the official minutes of Council proceedings until they are approved and signed at the next meeting.