Minutes of Whitestone Parish Council held at Whitestone Parish Hall at 7:30 pm on Thursday
10th May 2012
Attendance: Chairman – Councillor P Nierop
Councillors Mrs P Fisher, S Heathcote, D Munro,
Mrs B Netherway, A Reed, A Skeet, R Phillips, M Quinn
County Councillor J Brook (for part of the meeting)
Mrs P Vaughan, Clerk to the Council
Mr D Friend, Mr A Greenfield, Mr C Hodges, Mr R Jordan,
Mr P Davidson. Mrs S Greenfield (from 8.30pm).
Apologies: Councillor Mrs M Belt (on holiday), District Councillor P Bromell
The meeting was preceded by the May Draw for the 100 Club in support of the Parish Hall development Fund. The lucky number was 96 and belongs to Ruth Charles.
Councillor Nierop opened the Annual General meeting and stood down as Chairman in order for the election of officers for the year 2012/2013 to take place
33. ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
33.1 Election of Chairman
Councillor Philip Nierop proposed by Cllr Quinn, seconded by Cllr Skeet. There being no other nomination Cllr Nierop was duly elected, signed his declaration of office and called for nominations for the following:-
33.2 Election of Vice Chairman
Councillor Mrs Fisher proposed by Cllr Quinn, seconded by Cllr Munro. All in favour.
33.3 Asset Group Committee
Proposed by Cllr Fisher and seconded by Cllr Skeet that Councillors Heathcote, Netherway, Philips and Quinn be elected en bloc. All in favour.
33.4 Footpath Warden
Councillor Munro proposed by Cllr Reed, seconded by Cllr Phillips. All in favour.
33.5 Church House Foundation Member
Councillor Netherway proposed by Cllr Munro, seconded by Cllr Heathcote. All in favour.
33.6 Crossway Park Officer
Councillor Netherway proposed by Cllr Reed, seconded by Cllr Fisher. All in favour.
33.7 Parish Hall Committee
Proposed by Cllr Munro and seconded by Cllr Phillips that Councillors Belt, Heathcote, Nierop and Quinn be elected en bloc. Cllr Belt having indicated that in her absence she should be willing to stand again if nominated. All in favour.
33.8 Parish Hall Liaison Member
Councillor Munro proposed by Cllr Skeet and seconded by Cllr Quinn. All in favour.
33.9 Responsible Financial Officer
Mrs P Vaughan proposed by Cllr Quinn, seconded by Cllr Munro. All in favour.
33.10 Independent Internal Auditor
Mr Ken Abrahams proposed by Cllr Munro, seconded by Cllr Netherway. All in favour.
The Council then proceeded to the business of the Parish Council Meeting
34. Minutes of the Council meetings held on the 12th April 2012, 26th April 2012 and the Annual Parish Meeting held on 26th April 2012 having been circulated were taken as read and signed as a true copy by the Chairman with the addition to the Annual Parish Meeting Minutes of a report from Sustainable Whitestone which had not been read on the 26th April.
34.1 12/01208/MAJ Installation of 3740 solar panels on timber framing including ancillary cabins for switch gear and transformer and 117m subterranean connection cable on land adjacent to Little Beer Copse, Five Mile Hill.
Councillors discussed the application and plans and there were no objections.
34.2 12/01346/FUL Single storey extension to form sun lounge and kitchen at 1 Centre Cottages.
The Chairman invited Mr Jordan to comment on his application and then the Councillors discussed the application and plans and it was supported with no objections.
Notification of Appeal
35.3 12/0021/REF Informal Hearing for Appeal against refusal of planning permission 11/03176/FUL for the siting of two mobile homes and three touring caravans for residential occupation for a single gypsy family at Springdale Farm, Bondhouse Lane.
34.3 12/00254/FUL Loft conversion to include raised roof height and dormer on side (west) elevation, single storey extensions to side (west) and front and provision of rear terrace at 9 Merrymeet.
36. MATTERS FOR DISCUSSION
36.1 School Houses
Correspondence from the Letting Agents was discussed and various items noted as a result of their inspections. The Clerk to contact the Letting Agents regarding the item concerning chimney sweeping at No 1.
36.2 Quotations for Insurance Cover
Insurance cover will become due for renewal from 1st June and two quotations have been received, namely £1,359.44 and £915.30 with enhanced insurance cover. With regard to the second quote if the Council agree to an inflation adjusted 3 year binding agreement the annual premium can be reduced by a further 5% giving a premium of £869.54. Discussion followed and it was resolved that the option of a long term agreement be accepted. All in favour.
This Company, Came & Co also offer an independent annual playground inspection service but as the Council have only just had this completed it was decided to investigate this when the inspection became necessary next year.
36.3 Asset Group Report
Various items were discussed regarding the Crossway Park and proposals for work on the various items brought to the Council’s attention by the ROSPA Report will be brought to the June meeting by Cllr Netherway. It was brought to the attention of the meeting that the football net has been replaced and the Clerk was instructed to contact ROSPA regarding the suitability of this being left in situ in case it should cause injury. It had been found that there were some items in the tractor shed and Cllr Munro will contact Mr Joll to ascertain if any of this is his property. It was requested that the Clerk should write to Mr Fisher for status of who holds the keys to the garages and also obtain a set of keys.
The Clerk was instructed to now contact Whitton and Laing to ask them to carry out the 10 year Asset Maintenance Plan as agreed in March.
36.4 Revised Standing Orders
A draft copy had been distributed to Councillors but after some discussion it was resolved that this item be placed on the June agenda as some Councillors wished to have more time to make comparisons with the existing Standing Orders.
36.5 County Councillor Brook gave a short report regarding road works being completed and mentioned that he did still have some locality budget project money available for grants. He informed the meeting that he is to become Chairman of the County Council and may not be able to attend Parish Council meetings as often as in the past. Cllr Nierop congratulated him on his appointment.
37. MATTERS RAISED BY THE CHAIRMAN
Cllr Nierop felt that it might be helpful to have a list of preferred supplier tradesmen whom could be called on to carry out any work required and he will place this on a future Council agenda.
38.1 The accounts/balance sheet for the year ended 31st March 2012 having been circulated at the April meeting these were proposed and seconded for approval by the Council. All in favour.
38.2 The Annual Audit was presented to the meeting for authorisation and it was resolved that this was approved for presentation to the Audit Commission and the Return was duly signed by the Chairman. The Clerk reported that Mr Abrahams will be visiting her on 17th May to conduct the Internal Audit following which the Return will be sent to the Audit Commission.
Authorisation for continuation of Grants
It was proposed and seconded that the following Grants be continued. All in favour.
38.3 Whitestone Parish Hall Management Committee - £125 per month
38.4 Parochial Church Council (for the Church Magazine for inclusion of Council Minutes) - £165
38.5 Whitestone Gardening Club for tending the Community Garden adjoining Crossway Park - £125.
38.6 Precept Payment (Half year) - £3,5000
38.7 Parish Paths Partnership Grant - £170
The following accounts were proposed and seconded for payment. All in favour.
38.8 Clerk’s expenses - £59.49 (no VAT)
38.9 Hire of Parish Hall meeting room for Parish Plan Meetings - £15 (no VAT)
38.10 Graham Dicker for two extra grass cuts - £130 (no VAT)
39.1 A letter of complaint from Mr Joll’s son which was sent to Cllr Nierop was distributed to Councillors together with the response which Cllr Nierop had sent. A further letter from Mr Joll received prior to the meeting was read to the meeting. Cllr Quinn felt that some of the animosity had occurred because Council minutes had been placed in the public domain before having been signed off and he also felt that it should be stated that it was a resolution passed by the Council in November which had led to the action regarding the grass cutting and it was not the sole responsibility of the Chairman.
39.2 Parish Hall Management Committee have reconsidered their decision to allow the two photographs of members of the Parish Council to be placed somewhere in the Billiard Room when decoration has been completed and the photographs were returned to them.
39.3 The Clerk received a response from Mr Pester regarding the skip outside Marylands. Mr Pester is unable to drive at the present time or for the next 3 or 4 weeks and wishes to be in attendance when the skip is removed so hopefully after that time he will be arranging removal of the skip. He stated that the reason the skip was so full was because persons other than himself had filled it with their rubbish and he is annoyed because it is covering earth which he had wanted to make use of to infill his rear garden.
39.4 Electrical installation work certificate of compliance has been received in respect of electrical installation at 1 School Houses and this will be forwarded to the Letting Agents.
39.5 Notification had been received from May Gurney of a proposed road closure outside Croft Cottage on Nadderbottom Road, Nadderwater from 25th to 27th July 2012 in order to complete SWW Utility works.
• Cllr Netherway reported that only four applicants had applied to the Church House Trust for grants and she will be contacting the Whitestone Website in the hope that the public could be made more aware of this funding.
• Potholes were reported at Heath Cross, by “Greenacres” on the Heath Cross to Crediton Road and at Hackworthy, Nadderwater.
• It was reported that there seems to be some “activity” at Swan Lake.
• It was suggested that perhaps the Council could apply to Cllr Brook for funding for a new board to house the Public Paths map which is on the side of the Parish Hall.
• Cllr Munro said that following the Annual Parish meeting, as a result of comments regarding the waterlogged Footpath 7 he had made further investigations and found that the water seemed to be coming from the Teign Housing property and the Clerk was instructed to write regarding this.
Mrs Greenfield gave an update on the Parish Plan Steering Group who met on 17th April. After the usual administrative matters, minutes etc., the group considered:-
• funding streams
• distributions and collection of questionnaires
• timeline for the project
• publicity and future events.
Each of these items will be led by a member of the Steering Group. Mary Belt was invited to join the group and she has, subsequent to the meeting, agreed to come and join the Group. The next meeting will be held on 15th May.
Mr Jordan thanked the Council for their consideration of his planning application.
Mr Greenfield commented on remarks which had been made during the Council’s discussion on Standing Orders and said that he personally felt that to limit a Chairman to only two years in office was a mistake as it would seem from recent experience that long term knowledge was advantageous.
Mr Hodges commented that he believed the mower referred to in the March minutes had been sold.
The meeting closed at 9.45pm