Meeting Minutes 2016-11-09
Minutes of the Meeting of the Parish Council held on 9 November 2016 7.30 pm in Sticklepath Village Hall.
Cllr Moore (Chair), Cllr Loader, Cllr Murrell, Cllr Bell, Cllr Matthews, Cllr Cruse
Lois Rowlands (Clerk)
Members of the public – Mr Darken, Mr and Mrs Towle (Sticklepath Stores), Mr Cruse, Mr Gilbert, Mr and Mrs McMahon
439/2 Approval of the minutes held on 5 October and 12 October 2016
The minutes were approved and signed as a correct record.
439/3 Declaration of Interests
Cllr Cruse explained that she has an interest with planning issues relating to Dartmoor National Park. The planning issue relates to a member of her family and is not in the parish.
439/4 Representations from parish organisations – Sticklepath Stores
Mr and Mrs Towle gave details of how the business has been faring since they took it over 15 months ago. The Parish Council feel it is an essential asset to the village and will encourage increased use of the shop as much as they can. Councillors gave some suggestions around increased marketing of the shop – Tripadvisor, Moorlander, various online apps, signage before arriving at the shop. A full copy of the report can be found here:
The Store has collected donations from customers placing posters in their window and from sale of the Moorland newspaper. A second donation of £50 was made to the Parish Council, who will agree next meeting which community project it would be directed towards.
439/5 Actions from last meeting
1. Village Gateway Sign – c/f to January 2017 to review funding options.
Planting of Ladywell area/community garden – Cllr Matthews proposed that the planting plan set out in her pre-meeting report is proceeded with and plants purchased from the donated funds of £231 being held by the Council for the development of the Ladywell area. Seconded by Cllr Cruse. Noted also to speak to National Trust regarding former Fireshow site which will no longer be used by the Fireshow. Sticklepath 2025 – Public Toilets – Cllr Cruse had put forward 2 possible solutions in her pre-meeting report. The Community Toilet Scheme – Cllr Cruse had spoken to the 2 most favourable sites neither of which are interested. The two remaining sites are not open frequently enough to warrant the scheme. Village hall toilets – there would be a considerable cost to alter the access to the toilet area, potential child safeguarding issues when Jack and Jill’s are using the hall, additional maintenance and cleaning costs. Cllr Bell had looked at South Tawton’s accounts and their toilet block costs £4,000 a year to run. Cllr Cruse asked how much a portable toilet(s) would cost. Cllr Cruse will speak to National Trust regarding the siting of a toilet in their grounds as the Trust also struggle with adequate toilet facilities for their visitors. c/f to February 2017
2. Playing field pavilion – c/f to January 2017 for update on progress and funding.
Conditional planning permission given for change of use at Tawburn House, Sticklepath and at Bridge House, Sticklepath – noted.
Application 0512/15 and 0585/16 – Revised scheme to include replacement roofing, raising stone wall and amended extension footprint at former Methodist Chapel (now Wesley House), Sticklepath – no objections.
a. Balances and budgetary figures were tabled.
b. The following payments were approved:
Mrs L Rowlands Salary 1 month (Nov) £146.90
DevonOak Ltd Pavilion £296.64
Cllr Murrell Travel Expenses to DALC £ 38.70
WDBC Seating at Oak Tree Park £ 1.00
DALC Attendance at AGM/Conference £ 20.00
CommunityHeartbeat Trust Defib phone £408.00
E Kingdom Grassing cutting, playing field £300.00
C Guscott Edging kerbs and sub-base,pavilion £381.60
439/8 Matters arising
8.1 – DALC annual conference attended by Cllr Murrell – as a result of the pre-meeting report prepared by Cllr Murrell, the Chair had proposed that the Parish Council writes to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Govt – Sajid Javid, to express concerns about proposals to cap precepts. The Chair reported that as the deadline for response was 31 October 2016, he had written to the Secretary of State accordingly, and had shared this by email before the meeting.
It was noted by the Council that discussions took place at the Conference regarding devolution and concerns that parish councils would be expected to take on more responsibilities. The situation will continue to be monitored.
8.2 – Workload management
a. The Chair proposed that the Clerk’s appraisal was ratified and that she had satisfactorily completed her probationary period. Seconded by Cllr Matthews. Agreed by all
b. Proposal by Chair to increase Clerk’s hours to 4 a week which is the minimum specified by NALC. Additional £80 for this financial year and £192 for next year which will be considered when setting budget and precept. Seconded by Cllr Matthews. Agreed by all
c. The Chair and Vice-Chair, after meeting with the Clerk, had felt that specific Councillor roles needed to be more clearly defined in order to streamline Council business. Cllr Murrell raised the issue of being a non-driver and having to use public transport to attend links meetings, some of which are very inaccessible by public transport which involves using a taxi – therefore increasing her own or the Council’s expenses.
She questioned duplication of some meetings – i.e where they are run by different organisations but seem to cover the same topics. Cllr Moore agreed that he will attend Eastern Links to see if any overlap with Okehampton Town and Parish meeting.
Planning applications – The Council had had to hold a number of extra-ordinary meetings to deal with applications sooner than the next scheduled meeting due to limited time scale in which we have to respond. Chair and Clerk will raise the issue with Dartmoor National Park.
Cllr Tansley had fed back about prioritising work – eg high, medium, low. Also the grouping of responsibilities – he will meet with Cllr Moore/Cllr Matthews to discuss further.
Cllr Moore proposed the work allocation is adopted until the end of the financial year. Seconded by Cllr Cruse. Agreed by all
8.3 – Dartmoor National Park – local plan consultation
Cllr Loader had attended the consultation meeting at Parke yesterday. The National Park have said that the deadline is not 16 December 2016. They would like responses by end of January 2017 at the latest.
Dartmoor National Park is in the process of redrafting its local plan and is consulting with local councils as part of this process. The Parish Council are keen to be involved in this as it is a way to influence the National Park in areas which are relevant and which matter to this Parish. The various topics under consultation were divided between the Councillors for them to consider, report to other Councillors and propose a response to the National Park. Three topics are considered this month:
Housing – Cllr Cruse – Had circulated initial report and had feedback from Councillors. She had incorporated the comments into her response. Cllr Murrell stated that the Parish Council needed to take the comments in Sticklepath 2025 consultation into consideration and mention this in the response. Cllr Cruse will add these comments and a view on starter homes to the response.
Environment, Minerals and Waste – Cllr Tansley – c/f December
Communities and Services – Cllrs Bell and Murrell – c/f December
8.4 – Bus stop
Clerk had set out insurance situation in her pre-meeting report. Proposal to increase “street furniture” element of insurance cover which would result in an additional premium of £28.38 for the rest of the year. Proposed by Cllr Moore and seconded by Cllr Bell. Agreed Action: CLERK
Repairs to bus shelter – Cllr Murrell confirmed that the bus stop is not in urgent need of repair and so this will be monitored in 6 months.
8.5 – Donation request – Royal British Legion wreath for Remembrance Day – proposal by Cllr Cruse to pay £25. Seconded by Cllr Matthews. Agreed
8.6 – Pensions Regulator – Clerk confirmed she and Chair had complied with all obligations arising from the Automatic Enrolment regulations. Noted.
8.7 – Leat Clearance Day – 22 January 2017 – noted
8.8 – Village work day – 19 February 2017 – noted. Work to be carried out on Sticklepath Moor with Dartmoor Ranger Ian Brooker. Councillors to suggest any small areas for tidying around the village which may be carried out by residents unable to access the moor.
8.9 – Meeting dates for 2017 – to accept dates suggested by Clerk in her pre-meeting report. Action: CLERK
439/9 – Chair’s actions
Chair had dealt with complaints from the public about a vehicle parked in the lane going to South Zeal. It had been investigated by the police and no further action was to be taken. No further involvement required by the Council.
He has received positive comments about the new StOCs bench on Billy Green.
New parishioner’s welcome letter is nearing completion.
439/10 – Correspondence received
Correspondence set out in the Agenda was noted. Only amendment was in relation to DNPA Forum – Peter Flick is a member of the Dartmoor Access Forum which is a different forum to which the Council had been invited. Chair asked for ideas as to how to encourage a resident to attend the Forum, feeding back to the Council as appropriate.
Date of next meeting: 7 December 2016 at 7.30pm
Meeting finished at 21.30