Serving Ewyas Harold, Rowlestone, Dulas and Llancillo
Tuesday 12th January 2021,
Finance Committee meeting: 6.45pm on Zoom
Present: Councillors: Peter Jinman (PJ) (in the chair), Clive Stainton (CS), Sarah Eynon (SE);
Finance sheet had been circulated to all cllrs. Meeting started 6.45pm
1. To accept apologies for absence. None.
2. To receive declarations of interest & written requests for dispensation.
3. Consider minutes of previous meeting
All were happy with the minutes.
Nat West Business Current account: 30.12.20 £ 20,186.29
Nat West Business Reserve account: 30.12.20 £ 78,579.19
4.1. To consider outstanding invoices
CT Groundcare: – December work £ 130.00
Mr & Mrs BE Chance (Rec loo cleaning) £ 450.00
WBC Plant hire (2x scalpings) £ 360.00
Clean My (playground disinfectant) £ 18.35
Dore Valley transport – suggested support
At the amount of £ 1,000.00
Resolution: to pay the above invoices.
Proposed: PJ Seconded: SE
Action: Clerk.to fill in the Cheque request form and forward to CS to write the cheques, PJ to sign
Recommend Payment all in agreement
4.2. To approve regular payments schedule and Direct Debits
Clerks salary and expenses; SSE Electricity for KC and Pavilion, Bins.
Also, confirmation of cheque paid between meetings: £360 to the external auditor PKF Littlejohn LLP.
It was resolved to agree to all of these payments.
Proposed: PJ Seconded: CS All were in agreement.
Each item was looked at as a separate item.
Action: Clerk to action these agreed payments
4.3. Acknowledgment of Receipts:
Monies received: Second covid payment for Pavilion: £1,334.00
Drainage grant money still not received as they say that they held different bank details to those submitted, all hopefully now resolved.
4.4. To review the 2020/21 budget and expenditure to date and consider the precept for 2021/22. The clerk had circulated budget sheets to assist with this discussion.
PJ ran through the figures with the meeting. Consideration was also given to the fact that the memorial hall were applying for a grant to assist towards a proposed £60k revamp of their kitchen.
There was a discussion about reducing the precept by 6% bringing it down to £44,000 in the realisation that many parishoners were experiencing hard times at the moment with Covid 19 and all that this had bought with it. Analysis of the PCs reserves showed that there would be enough there to cover plans that had been raised for projects in the coming year along with the proposed income from the precept at this level.
Motion: to put to the full council a reduction in the Precept of 6%.
Proposed:PJ Seconded: CS
Further discussion raised the point that : in regard to the Kemble Center: The rent that ACCC should be paying should be discussed by the full council. It was decided that the PC should go into session at the end of the meeting to discuss this further.
5. To raise matters for the next agenda: None raised.
6. To note the date of the next scheduled meeting : 9th February 2021
Meeting closed at 7pm
Parish Council meeting: 7.05pm on Zoom.
Meeting started: 7.06
Present: Councillors: Peter Jinman (PJ) (in the chair), Alex Culpin (AC); Malcolm Watkins (MW); Michael Wrigglesworth (MWg); Liz Overstall (LO) Clive Stainton (CS), Sally Probert (SP); Connor Price (CP);
Also: Sophie Glover (Clerk), Carey Godwin (ACCC all left the meeting at 7.35); Angela Thoo; Amanda Huntley; Fiona Witcher ;
1. To accept apologies for absence.
Stephen Clayton Sarah Eynon (SE);
2. To receive declarations of interest & written requests for dispensation.
MWg– is working with the Lengthsman doing the road works, so he is working with the Lengthsman as a private individual including the hiring of him as a labourer and he has many machines that are of great asset to the jobs undertaken.
All cllrs were happy with this position.
3. 1 To consider minutes of the previous meeting – 12.12.20
All were in agreement that the minutes were an accurate record of the meeting. Item 8 there is a typo, prescribing is incorrectly spelt.
Action: Clerk to take the outstanding unsigned minutes to the Chair for him to sign.
3.2 Matters arising: open forum
Matters arising actioned or on the agenda apart from: Kissing gate on Pontrilas Court Farm – still not delivered; letter for businesses – was done before Christmas; Dark Lane Pavements to be cleared – this was done before Christmas; KC keys – PJ to meet with MWg to get the back door opened;
Action: Clerk to chase up the kissing gate for delivery; MWg to meet with PJ at the KC to look at replacing the rear door lock.
3.3 Matters raised between meetings
Correspondence with Temple Bar – and the Dog Inn. PJ had received comments about people being sick outside the pubs. SP asked if this correspondence shouldn’t have gone out to the cllrs before going out to the public. PJ felt that it was a matter that needed dealing with with some urgency, hence him sending out the letters rather arranging face to face meetings to discuss the issue. SP asked for the clerk to circulate the e mail that outlines the good work that the pubs have done over both Covid and flooding.
Out of control dogs. SP, there is a dog in the area that is completely out of control. She has put herself between the dog and children on a number of occasions. FW asked her to send this by email to the police email so that they can address it directly.
Flooding in village. LO said that they had a 4 foot rise in the water levels at the ford to Dulas during the floods. She requested that the environment agency comes out to look at the ford – PJ will add it to the discussion to the work that is currently being done in the village to address flooding problems. SP mentioned that residents had asked her to raise how can the council get the road closed when flooding happens.
Information sharing between cllrs. SP asked that when correspondence does go in for all to see, that it is actually shared.
4 Open forum for public comments
AC: had said that he would try getting info up on Kev’s face book page, he is still trying to get this up and running.
5 To receive brief reports from:
5.1 the Ward Councillor/PC Chair.
PJ has been doing a lot of work on flooding since the last meeting. He is regularly notified by the environment agency if they think that flooding is going to happen in the village. Based on this, it was felt that he, SP and LO could become flood wardens and actually put the warning signs out themselves – it was noted that from a legal perspective they would have to be flood wardens to be allowed to do this.
Council tax is looking at a 4.9% increase.
Pontrilas Station: on Boxing Day PJ and CS formally submitted the application. This has not been circulated to all cllrs, but this will be rectified this week.
PJ thanked CS for his hard work on getting this so far.
The Chair talked about the idea to put a large national park from the North of the County across to Wales and the Black Mountains.
5.2 from PCSO – none received.
5.3 from footpath officer – None offered this month due to Covid restrictions.
6.1 To consider comments on applications to be determined by Herefordshire Council:
203950: St Michaels Hall, Ewyas Harold: Ewyas Harold; proposed installation of a 12.5 meter pole and various cabinets in association.
AC confirmed that the pole was going to help residents get mobile reception inside their homes.
CS: this is the base to provide a basic level of service for 3G, slow internet etc.
PJ; noted that the planners are not particularly keen on the size or location of the pole. Close to the historic church etc.
SP;asked where the alternative site might be? CP agreed with this sentiment.
Clerk to submit comment: PC supports the application; they want the connectivity although this might not be the right site.
204347: Mayan House, Pudding Lane, Pontrilas. Garden room.
Cllrs felt that the application looked fine.
Comment: PC supports the application.
204487; Land East of Callowside, Ewyas Harold Amendments to conditions:
No comment from the Parish Council, PJ will respond as Ward Cllr.
6.2 To note the applications determined by Herefordshire Council:
None to discuss
7 Recreation ground/pavilion:
MW: a tree was blown over in the storms, this has now been cleared. The Pavilion Windows have now been fixed. The toilets and play area are still being disinfected and cleaned.
Tree man noted that there were other trees that were a danger along the river bank, but these are predominately on the far bank of the river.
Action; PJ to talk with that land owner to ask him to look at it.
8 Lengthsman – to receive an update and consider vital work required around the parish.
MWg explained that they have been working along Mill Lane over the last weeks. These have been extensive works and even more debris has been washed down with the last deluge and this needs to be cleared. The lengthsman has done approx 127 hours of works, with MWg clocking 119 hours to the value of about £8,708 – and this job has not been completed yet, there are more hours and stone to be added to the bill.
The work that they had done up from the Memorial Hall stood up well to the recent rain, moving water off the road where it had previously flooded.
He summed up that the work that they are doing is trying to play ‘catch up’ with work that has not been done for over 30 years.
LO thanked MWg and DR for their hard work. She said that we needed to budget to look after our roads much better in the coming years.
Action: Clerk to apply for the drainage grant when the invoice has been submitted.
9 Kemble Centre
CS told the meeting that there had been a KC working group meeting last night, notes from that meeting had been circulated and ACCC had added their comments to this. PJ has been to start the process of getting a valuation for renting the building. CS asked the PC to consider what rent we wanted to get in, he proposed that the PC went into closed session at the end of the meeting to discuss this further. SP seconded. 2 cllrs were against this idea, the others agreed, so the proposal was carried.
MWg asked if any one had been inside the building since the heavy rains to see if there had been any water egress. CS has been into the building and all was dry.
Clerk has approached the PWLB to verify that we can sublet the lease – we are awaiting their response.
Action: Clerk to ask HALC how we proceed with talking about our own planning application.
10 Community Resilience Plan
CP had been looking at this, a template plan had been circulated to all cllrs prior to the meeting. He asked if a CRP working group could be set up. PJ said this shouldn’t just be Cllrs, it should be members of the community as well. Rev Mark was suggested as an ideal member.
CS volunteered to join the sub committee, feeling that this was really about communities. PJ suggested thinking of doing this on a Neighbourhood basis.
All cllrs were asked to think of who, out in the community, might also be keen to join the working group.
11.1. Balance as in the Finance Committee minutes
11.2. To authorise payments to be made: As in the finance minutes.
Proposed:PJ Seconded: CS
Action: Clerk to make the payments
11.3. To authorise regular payments: As in the finance minutes.
Proposed to make these payments: all in agreement.
Action: Clerk to make these payments.
11.4. Monies received: 2nd Covid grant for the Pavilion is now showing on our bank statement. The payment from the Drainage Grant on its way but had been delayed whilst they checked our bank details.
11.5 Grant requests for consideration. DVCT had applied for support – as discussed at the November finance committee meeting. CS declared an interest so he took no part in this discussion. PJ had previously outlined that the organisation needed to fill in a formal grant form, which they had done. It was resolved to pay £1,000 proposed by PJ and seconded: LO. All were in favour.
Memorial Hall: applied for a grant to assist with the replacement of their kitchen – a key step for them to be able to rent out the venue in the future. They had submitted their grant application forms prior to the meeting.
Questions raised: How much do they actually need to make this project work? Have they got at least 3 quotes for the work? What other funding sources are you looking at? Is there a more standard level of kitchen….
PJ proposed that we reject the application at £20,000 but clerk to tell them that we are minded to give them support, but explain that we need to discuss at what level. It was suggest that they were invited to attend the PC meeting next month – giving a 10 minute presentation.
11.6 Precept setting for 2021-22 discussion
– CS explained that the PC were carrying approximately £100,000 he suggested that we have very clear ideas about capital projects that we had in mind to spend this money. Following a detailed discussion, PJ suggested a reduction of 6% in the precept to bring it down to £44,000. It was checked and confirmed that we still had reserves to allow the PC to continue doing the lengthsman work and repairs to the rec.
Proposed: CS Seconded: MW then with 1 abstaining, the others were in favour of this.
Action: to apply for the precept as above.
12 Roads including: Road safety improvements:
SP had noted the distance between lamp posts in the village, and asked ‘can we have repeater signs’. All distances vary, from 60 to 80 meters.
Actions: Cut out lolly pop lady signs – clerk to cost them and find out where to get them from.
Clerk to order the SID and chase up BB to keep this moving.
Clerk to report to BB: A465 50 mph sign has been knocked down.
Bollard in middle of A465 at Rowlstone end no longer lights up.
13 Assisting dog owners with their responsibilities
2 Bins are still with SP, the Kemble Centre bin has been located and the one at the memorial hall as well.
Action: Locating the Dark Lane bin and the school bin need to be chased up
Clerk to look at a safety sheet for emptying the bins – check if HC already have one of these.
14 Railway station update: Mentioned earlier.
15 Informing parishoners of the work of the PC inc social media:
AC: had highlighted from todays meeting: flooding, liasing with HC. Dog mess. Thanks to the lengthsman, Community resilience plan. He will draft some thing to circulate tomorrow for others ideas.
Action: AC to send draft to all
16 To raise matters for the next agenda : no discussion:
17 To note the date of the next scheduled meeting : 9th February 2021.
Meeting closed at 21.10
PC went into session to discuss KC rent.
Key points from the discussion
• Lease to be 12 years with option for a further 12 years
• 4 years from signing to first rent review and thereafter every 4 years
• First year rent free [so then 3 years to first rent review] • £10 per week rent
• The EHGPC understand that business rates are at present not chargeable under current regulatory exemptions. [if this position changes then they would become responsible for any such charges.] Clearly if there was a change it is likely that they would come back to us for some consideration on this.
• Maintaining the curtilage will be the tenants responsibility ie garden care, grass cutting etc. Parish Council will maintain the car park area.
• All service charges will be a tenant cost ie water, electricity, sewage, rubbish disposal etc
• All decoration externally and the addition of or alteration of any external structure will need landlord approval.
• All health and safety remains the responsibility of the tenant [to be confirmed by the solicitors] • Access as agreed for Parish council to inspect and repair. The tenant did not want responsibility for the river bank so the EHGPC will need to have access to this at all times and possibly without notice?
• Building insurance. Is that the tenant cost or ours? If it is ours then it is a cost which was not taken into consideration when working through the costs and rent levels. Often the insurance is either at the cost of the landlord or it can be found by the tenant but it has to be approved by the landlord and is then payable or repayable by the tenant. We would still have to have insurance for the car park area ie public liability. Clearly the liability for insurance [including public liability] of the buildings is separate from the contents and public liability of the activities carried on in it. Should the cost of insurance come out of the £10k grant from the parish council? If so is that this year only?
• The next step is the planning application. The tenant is applying for this and it is all their responsibility. The final application will come to the parish council for its consideration. It is assumed that the £10k can be used for this application etc. and we do not control any of this ie they have access to this money and they spend it as required for planning/building etc but there is no more money in the parish council budget for the coming year specifically for the Kemble development.
Seconded: MW All were in favour.
Draft lease is going to be circulated to all shortly. Meeting closed at 21.24
Signed:_________________________________ Date: ________________