Kings Ripton Parish Council Meeting
A meeting of Kings Ripton Parish Council was held at Kings Ripton Village Hall, School lane, Kings Ripton, PE28 2NL on Wednesday 27 November at 7pm.
CO-OPTING OF NEW PARISH COUNCILLOR
Miss Rebecca Rayner signed the Acceptance of Office, witnessed by the Clerk before the meeting was opened.
Present: Councillors Mick Toates (Chairman), Brian Petre, Ros Townsend (Vice Chairman), Philip Rayner, Rebecca Rayner, District Councillor Robin Howe, Speedwatch coordinator Dave McCandless and several members of the public.
County Councillor Michael Tew
2. DECLARATION OF INTEREST
Councillors P & R Rayner declared an interest in the Farm Paths Mowing – Agenda item 9 and Noise Pollution – Agenda item 12
3. PUBLIC PARTICIPATION
The Chairman suspended main business to allow the public to speak.
Mr Collett as representative of the PCC asked if there was a way of storing the mower and about a gallon of petrol used to cut the grass in the churchyard. There was a shed at the back of the village hall which could be used if agreed by the village hall committee. Chairman asked if this could be brought up at the next village hall committee meeting, Councillor Petre would action. He would also ask for a statement of accounts to be presented at the AGM.
The Chairman resumed main business.
Copies of the minutes held on 01Oct 13 (M5) had been circulated following their informal approval by the Chairman. It was proposed, seconded and RESOLVED to approve the minutes as a correct record and were duly signed by the Chairman.
5. REPORTS FROM DISTRICT AND COUNTY COUNCILLORS
REPORT FROM DISTRICT COUNCILLOR
Councillor Howe reported that HDC have to find another £3.6M in savings. HDC manpower bill is the largest expenditure so will be looked at closely. But, if staff are lost then that means a reduction or loss of services. Services will be ranked in order of criticality. Looking at leisure services/refuse/grass cutting/gritting and many more. This will need to be put to the public. There are now huge work plans to look at efficiencies and cutting costs. Possibilities are contracting out some services and selling surveillance systems to commercial companies.
Chairman thanked Councillor Howe for the information.
No report from County councillor.
6. TREE CUTTING
Councillor Petre had contacted Dodson Bros who agreed to take on and will provide a quote. Councillor Petre to chase.
7. TREE PLANTING OFFER FROM HDC
Council did not participate.
8. SGP 2014
Councillor Howe provided the following information:
Meeting held with representatives of parish councils, SGP, head of licencing and head of environmental services.
Sound management traces for Wood Walton, Abbots Ripton and Kings Ripton were presented.
Number of exceedances were at the margin of the time spectrum.
Kings Ripton were close or below permitted levels.
There were 9 complaints.
SGP & HDC thought this was a success.
This would not stop the new application but controls would beset, they would have control meeting and review sound management procedures.
18000 people attended this year.
SGP were aware they could lose the licence if things did not improve.
Progress had been made and this was a positive trend.
Chairman thanked Councillor Howe for the update.
9. FARM PATHS MOWING
Reply from the council had been received and is attached to the minutes. (see below)
10. SPEEDWATCH AND SPEED REDUCTION
Dave McCandless stated that the criteria for Speedwatch signs was one check per month. This had been met but more volunteers were required. He would provide leaflets.
It was agreed unanimously to approve the purchase of the 2 Speedwatch signs. It was also agreed to send all correspondence to Councillor Tew for him to arrange inviting Peter Taylor from the Highways department to the next meeting. It was also agreed to invite Dominique Fairhurst to the meeting as she had done a traffic survey.
11. PARISH PLAN
The village survey has been distributed and will be collected. Statistics will be done. Investigations of individual areas will be done during Jan 14-Apr 14.
It was unanimously agreed to pay expenses of £43-67 to E Ricks.
12. NOISE POLUTION
An email had been received about noise (humming) from Glebe Farm. Councillor P Rayner said the noise had been identified as a noisy fan and that had now been fixed. Complainant could speak to him direct if the noise continued.
13. VILLAGE SIGN
It was agreed to carry over to the next meeting after the village survey.
14. TELEPHONE KIOSK
Councillors noted the correspondence received reference prices for repairs, paint etc.
15. HARTFORD ROUNDABOUT
Reply had been received but was not particularly clear. It was agreed to forward this to Councillor Tew for him to follow up with the council.
16. FINANCIAL REPORT
It was AGREED and APPROVED to set the Precept for 2014/15 at £4000 (same as last year).
Councillors AGREED the finance report for October 13 and a copy was duly signed by the Chairman.
Payment of the following cheques was AGREED and APPROVED:
Cheque 000446 – £248.07 Clerks Salary and expenses
Cheque 000447 – £36 Silicon Bay Ltd (website training)
Cheque 000448 – £17 The Poppy Appeal
Cheque 000449 – £150 Graham Webb (grass cutting)
17. CORRESPONDENCE & COMMUNICATIONS
To note matters brought to Members attention through emails:
E-Cops, Phone Scams
Our Place! Programme
HDC town and parish alert
Social Care News
Noted with thanks.
18. DATE OF NEXT MEETING
Date of next meeting was confirmed as Tue 14 Jan 14 at 7pm in the village hall, School Lane, Kings Ripton
CLOSE OF MEETING
Grass Cutting for Public Rights of Way.
Dear Miss Roberts,
Thank you for your letter dated 17th October concerning grass cutting on public rights of way.
Please may I first assure the Parish Council that there has been no change to the level of cutting for paths. Whilst I would agree that 2 cuts is a minimal cut, this is the level of cutting that the County Council has undertaken for many years. When we have been able to identify additional funds, we have done a third cut but the 2 cuts is the standard our contractors have been working to and hopefully will continue to be able to work to.
What is changing is how we procure that grass cutting. Grass cutting for all highways, including rights of way is being brought together under one Team. As a result of that internal reorganisation of our services, we have brought to an end our Farmers Grass Cutting Contracts. However, it might be that under the new arrangements, farmers are invited to quote for the cutting, this has yet to be decided.
You express concern about the lack of consultation, I assume in relation to the changes ton the Farmers Contracts, these being the only thing that has changed. We have an annual meeting with representatives from the farming community and there was discussion at the last meeting about the budget pressures the County Council is facing and potential impacts on farmers. I am currently waiting for confirmation of a further meeting with the CLA to discuss these issues in the light of further budget pressures.
You also expressed concern about the costs and benefits of these changes. As there has as yet been no decision on how grass cutting will be procured for next year it is too early to comment but the Parish Council’s views and further discussions will all be very helpful in forming a view on what is both affordable and desirable within the resources we have.
I am pleased that recent arrangements have kept the paths clear and useable and I hope that where farmers and Parish Councils have undertaken additional cutting, they will still be able to do so.
I hope this addresses the Parish Council’s immediate concerns, please do let me have any further suggestions on how we can continue to manage the paths together for the benefit of everyone,
CC Ben Hathway (Network Manager – Cyclic Maintenance), Emma Murden ( Local Highways Manager)