Minutes of a meeting of the FINANCE & GENERAL PURPOSES COMMITTEE held at 7.30pm on Wednesday 31st March 2021 using the Zoom platform
PRESENT Cllr J O’Brien (Chairman), Cllrs M Caton, J Hogg, M Jessup, A Khan, F Richards and G Sell
Mrs Emma Philbrick – Trainee Deputy Clerk
Cllr A Barnes
1 member of the press
521 APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Apologies for absence were received from the Clerk, Ruth Clifford
522 DECLARATION OF INTEREST – None
523 TO RECEIVE THE MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 13TH JANUARY 2021
RESOLVED to accept the minutes of the meeting on 13th January 2021 as a true and accurate account
524 MATTERS ARISING – None
525 CHAIRMAN’S REPORT – Attached
a) OUTAGE REPORT – All repairs currently up to date b) GENERAL
The Chairman reported that he has asked our lighting contractor to quote for the conversion of the remainder of the lights on the Hargrave estate to LED. He has also renewed his request to Network Rail for a site visit to look at Water Lane and the Black Bridge with a view to improving the effectiveness of the lighting.
a) PAYMENTS FOR AUTHORISATION – Approved
b) INTERNAL AUDITOR’S INTERIM REPORT
The Auditor’s report had been circulated to all members prior to the meeting. The Chairman highlighted the table of recommendations and in particular the checking of the bank reconciliations, the payroll and the two-layer authentication for online banking. The Clerk will implement the recommendations in association with the Chair and Vice-Chair of the Committee.
528 BONFIRE NIGHT – Deferred
529 PARISH GRANTS
Cllrs Khan and Sell declared an interest in some of the following organisations and did not take part in the vote.
5 applications were received for the Parish Grants and details had been circulated to members ahead of the meeting. After discussions and having been proposed by Cllr O’Brien and seconded by Cllr Jessup it was:
RESOLVED to award the following to each organisation:
Uttlesford CAB – £1,000
Uttlesford Community Travel – £1,000
Let’s Talk, Stansted! – £900
Stansted Hall & Elsenham Cricket Club – £250
Stansted Cricket Club – £250
This was unanimously agreed
530 REVIEW OF RISK ASSESSMENTS – 2020/21
Cllr O’Brien reported that together with the Clerk he had reviewed the Council Risk Assessment documents and updated them accordingly following the move into the Mountfitchet Exchange. It was agreed that the document should be circulated to all members of the Committee for approval. In future, the Risk Assessments will be circulated to all members prior to approval at the meeting
531 TO CONSIDER APPOINTING A HR CONSULTANT
A proposal from Citation Ltd had been circulated to all members prior to the meeting. After a wide-ranging debate having been proposed by Cllr O’Brien and seconded by Cllr Richards it was:
RESOLVED to accept the quotation from Citation subject to suitable references.
This was unanimously agreed
532 STAFF MATTERS
Cllr Richards advised that Emma Philbrick had commenced her role as Trainee Deputy Clerk and that Laila and Dan were coming to the end of their probation period and their end of probation review meetings would be scheduled when the Clerk returns from sickness.
Cllr Caton advised that Covid was changing the way in which many organisations were working and that the number of meetings being held had greatly increased. These were all being done by zoom and the time given to staff training was no longer effective. Having been proposed by Cllr Caton and seconded by Cllr Richards it was:
RESOLVED to close the office for one afternoon or one day either fortnightly or once a month for staff training as agreed with the Clerk.
This was unanimously agreed
533 DAY CENTRE
Cllr O’Brien reported that the Chair of the Day Centre Management Committee is currently consulting with their employees following the decision by UDC to cease the lunch provision. Cllr O’Brien also reported that the Parish Council is considering how a wider range of community services can be delivered from the Crafton Green Hub.
Cllr O’Brien advised that the Millers were aiming to provide a fete this year and hope the Bank Holiday event will go ahead. They have employed a company to provide the facilities.
The Windmill will be having its six-month inspection this month.
535 YOUTH MATTERS
Cllr Caton advised that they had 2 committed members on the Youth Council and some prospective new members on the horizon. Both Essex Police and UDC are actively trying to recruit new members through their contacts. The two active members have been working with Dan to promote the group through Social Media and may visit the skatepark to chat to some of the users. The Chairman has also been in touch direct with Seann Thompson to see if he can assist with encouraging any of our skating community to join. A meeting is taking place on Tuesday 13th April where various police members are going to be speaking.
The Youth Club are still continuing their outreach work and were hoping to be back in the building once all Risk Assessments have been carried out. They have received a grant from the Youth at Uttlesford to undertake improvements to the garden at the rear of the Youth Centre building.
Meeting closed at 8.53pm
NOTICE OF MEETING You are summoned to attend a meeting of the FINANCE AND GENERAL PURPOSES COMMITTEE to be held on Wednesday 31st March 2021 at 7.30pm using the Zoom platform.
1 To receive apologies for absence
2 To receive Declarations of Interest
3 To receive the minutes of the meeting held on 13th January 2021
4 Matters Arising
5 Chairman’s Report
6 Lighting: a) Outage Report b) General
7 Finance: a) Payments for authorisation – to be circulated to PC members. b) Internal auditor’s interim report
8 Bonfire Night – To consider options for 2021 event
9 Parish Grants – To consider the applications received – Attached for PC members
10 Review of Risk Assessments – 2020/21
11 To consider appointing a HR consultant – see attached for PC members
10 Staff Matters
11 Day Centre
13 Youth Matters – To receive an update from Cllr Caton
Ruth Clifford, Parish Clerk – 25 March 2021