Harwich Town Council

The Guildhall,
Church Street,
Harwich. CO12 3DS

t: 01255 507211
e: info@harwichtowncouncil.co.uk
Hours: 9.30am – 1pm Monday, Wednesday & Friday

Full Council Minutes 8th May 2013

MINUTES of the Meeting of the HARWICH TOWN COUNCIL
held at
The 1912 Centre, Cow Lane, Harwich
on Wednesday 8th May 2013 at 7.10pm

Present: Councillors Brown, Calver, Day, King, McLeod, Fowler, Flavell, Morrison, Powell, J Henderson, I Henderson, Thompson and Todd
In the Chair: Councillor J Thurlow
Clerk: Mrs Michelle Townsend
Also present: 6 members of the public and 1 member of the press
Prayers were said by Rev Peter Mann
187/12 APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
None
188/12 DECLARATIONS OF MEMBERS’ INTERESTS
None
189/12 PUBLIC QUESTIONS
Betty Holbrook asked if it was now the time to reduce the number of HTC Councillors following the recent resignations. Cllr Calver advised that it is not in the hands of this Council as the size of a Council is determined by the Boundary Commission. Should a request be made, the decision making process would take time and not help HTC with the current situation.Hugh Tisdale inquired whether each ward should recommend a reduction to 3 Councillors from 4. Councillor McLeod felt that each ward needed fair representation and to achieve this, the numbers of Councillors are set in accordance with the population in that area. It was felt that a reduction of Councillors for the Town would result in issues not being addressed.
190/12 MAYORS ANNOUNCEMENTS
The Mayor gave an account of some of the engagements attended since the last meeting, which included the Mayoress’ Charity Presentation where her 3 chosen charities were each given £1010, Hook of Holland Accordion Orchestra Festival at St Nicholas Churchand an invitation to board the Fred Olsen Black Watch.The Deputy Mayor informed members that he had the honour of inspecting the scouts at the St Georges Day Parade.Members thanked and congratulated the Mayoress for her hard work and funds raised for her 3 chosen charities.
191/12 MINUTES OF THE LAST MEETING
RESOLVED That the minutes of the meeting of the Town Council held on 27th March 2013 (previously circulated) be approved by the Chairman and signed as a true record. Prop – McLeod 2nd Thompson
FURTHER RESOLVED: that the minutes of the meeting of the Annual Parish Meeting held on 16th April 2013 (previously circulated) be received
192/12 MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES
None
193/12 PRESENTATION OF THE TOWN PLAQUE TO THE FAMILY OF THE LATE COUNCILLOR LES DOUBLEHarwich Town Council awards a Town plaque to Councillors who have served at least one full term on the Council and who have left the Council honourably.

Although tinged with sadness, Cllr J Thurlow was honoured to present the late Councillor Les Double’s family with a plaque in recognition of his service to the Council. Cllr Double had a remarkable record of service to the Council and the local community with 22 years representing West Ward. He was heavily involved with improving services and facilities within Harwich and helping to secure its future.

194/12 PUBLICATION OF DOCUMENTS ON HTC WEBSITE
Members reviewed the recommendation received from the Internal Auditor in addition to information obtained from other Town Councils. Members had concerns with publishing draft minutes prior to approval in the event that incorrect information was documented.
RESOLVED: With the exception of the annual meetings, Mayor Making and the Annual Parish Meeting, minutes are only to be published once they have been approved.
FURTHER RESOLVED: HTC to follow advice given by the Internal Auditor.   Monthly financial information will not to be published on the website, however each year the official audited accounts would be published on the website.
195/12 HIRE OF THE GUILDHALL
Members considered the requests from HIYA and the Crime Prevention Panel for free use of the Guildhall.
RESOLVED: Granted for a further year.
196/12 STANDARDISATION OF BUSINESS CARDS AND E-MAIL ADDRESSES
Members considered the benefits and increased security measures for setting up generic e-mail accounts and reviewed quotations received for carrying out the work and printing of generic business cards.
RESOLVED: To instruct Micrologic to set up generic e-mail accounts for all Councillors.
FURTHER RESOLVED: Draft business cards to be designed for approval at the next Full Council meeting.
197/12 COMMITTEE RESTRUCTURING
RESOLVED: Environment & Highways Committee to be renamed Environment & Community Committee with effect from the new Municipal year.
198/12 STANDING ORDERS
RESOLVED: To adopt Standing Orders approved at the meeting of HTC on 27th March 2013, to take effect in the next municipal year.
199/12 GRANT REQUEST – HARWICH IN BLOOM
Cllr Calver declared an interest in relation to his position on the Executive Committee for the Harwich Society.
Cllr Flavell requested, that where possible, could HTC ask the Harwich Society to ensure that the planting is bee and insect friendly. This request was not adopted by the Council.RESOLVED: to grant £1200 S137 funding.
200/12 SUBSCRIPTION FEES
RESOLVED: To approve annual subscriptions payable during the present financial year.
201/12 PROPOSED ALTERATIONS TO THE A120
Members reviewed and noted the correspondence received from Bernard Jenkin MP and the Highways Agency.
202/12 BEHAVIOUR EDUCATION SUPPORT TEAM (BEST) IN HARWICH – FUTURE FUNDING
Cllr I Henderson informed members that he, and Cllr Calver had met with the BEST team. They discussed the concerns raised by the team and the families who have benefited from their support. The current funding arrangements give no indication that that it will continue further than August. The BEST team support 8 schools in Harwich and receive referrals directly from the school, local agencies and parents. 641 cases have been opened since the project began and has proven that this is a vital service to the local community.
RESOLVED:Clerk to write to Bernard Jenkin MP, David Hill and the new leader of the County Council to ask for assurances that the service will continue to be funded. Copies to be sent to TDC Portfolio Holder for Education and Skills, Cllr S Mayzes
203/12 NOTIFICATIONS OF RESIGNATIONS
Councillor Thurlow formally notified members of the resignations of Cllrs C Callender and R Callender.
RESOLVED: Once HTC is up to its full complement of Councillors, an informal meeting is to be called to discuss any implications that may result regarding committee places and representation on outside bodies. Any committee places that were earmarked for the two vacancies are to remain vacant until the informal meeting has taken place.
204/12 CONFIRMATION FROM EXTERNAL AUDITORS OF FORMAL OBJECTION FROM MR D RUTSON
Noted
205/12 PARISH TRANSPORT MEETINGRESOLVED: To appoint Cllr C Powell as HTC representative for Parish Transport Meetings.
206/12 400TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE SAILING OF THE MAYFLOWER 1620
Cllr Calver made reference to nation press coverage regarding Harwich’s links to the sailing of the Mayflower. A recommendation was made to establish a working party to look at how Harwich can celebrate the 400th anniversary of the sailing of the Mayflower and the link that Harwich has.   Members commended the work of the Mayflower Project and their intention to build a vessel to sail across the Atlantic.
RESOLVED: An all Council working party to be established.
207/12 FLOOD SIREN WORKING PARTYCllr Day confirmed that a meeting was scheduled with the TDC emergency planner to discuss protocol and procedures. A further meeting is intended with Trinity House to discuss licenses and permission. Once all the information is gathered, including planning permission, the entire project can then be reviewed by the Council and a decision made on whether to proceed.
208/12 SIGNAGE – HILL SCHOOL SITE
Following the changes to access to the Hill School site, signage for Manor Lane was discussed.
RESOLVED: Clerk to organise permanent signage to be displayed on the gate. Wording to remain the same as the current temporary signs on yellow background. Approved expenditure up to £140 plus VAT
209/12 MINUTES OF LAST ALLOTMENTS MEETING
RESOLVED: that the minutes of the meeting of the Allotments Committee held on 12th April 2013 (previously circulated) be received.
210/12 ACCOUNTSPayments and receipts, current balances, financial activity against budgets and earmarked funds were noted.
RESOLVED: to authorise payments as listed in Appendix A
Accounts for the year end March 31st 2013 were reviewed by members along with guidance notes produced by the Clerk which provided details of outstanding payments, the costs of the by-elections which took place in March and any variances in income and expenditure. Thanks were given to the Clerk and Councillor Day for their hard work efforts.
FURTHER RESOLVED: To approve accounts for year ending March 2013 and completion of the Annual Return
211/12 BRIEF REPORT BY MEMBERSCllr Flavell confirmed his attendance at the last meeting of Harwich Festival of the Arts. He notified members that the budget this year was in excess of £50k with many free events. The free programme is now available.

Cllr Flavell also attended the meeting of Harwich Conservation Panel. Although they were not quorate they had informal discussions.

Members congratulated the work done by the Harwich Society and local residents for their efforts in securing the Harwich Green as a registered village green.

Members gave a vote of thanks to the Mayor and the staff of Harwich Town Council for their work throughout the year.

212/12 CORRESPONDENCE RECEIVED IN THE POST
Correspondence from Douglas Carswell MP– Action on potholes – noted
213/12 DATE OF NEXT MEETING
The next meeting of Harwich Town Council will be held on Wednesday 26th June 2013 at The 1912 Centre, Cow Lane, Harwich, at 7.00pm, or at the rise of the Town Planning Committee, whichever is the later.

The Chairman closed the meeting at 8.28pm