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 3rd December 2014

MINUTES of the Meeting of the HARWICH TOWN COUNCIL
held at
The 1912 Centre, Cow Lane, Harwich
on Wednesday 3rd December 2014 at 7.00pm

Present: Councillors Brown, Calver, Fowler, I Henderson,
J Henderson, King, McLeod, Morrison, Nicholson, C Powell,
F Powell, Thompson and Thurlow
In the Chair: Councillor Day
Clerk: Mrs Lucy Ballard
Also present: 2 members of the public and 1 member of the press
111/14 APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Cllrs Flavell and Todd
112/14 DECLARATIONS OF MEMBERS’ INTERESTS
None
113/14 PUBLIC QUESTIONS
Betty Holbrook thanked Council and Acting Inspector Russ Cole for the great efforts taken to have the street lights kept on overnight on both Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve.
114/14 MAYOR’S ANNOUNCEMENTS
The Clerk, on behalf of the Mayor, gave an account of some of his engagements since the last meeting, which included a meet and greet with Swedish Students at the Guildhall on 5th November, attending the Cambridge University Royal Navy Unit 20th Anniversary dinner, Remembrance wreath laying and civic service, “Tunes from the Trenches” for the Choral Society at St Nicholas Church, Christmas lights switch on, opening of Home Bargains, “Zumbathon” in aid of Battens Disease and a Community Carol Service at St Nicholas Church.  The Deputy Mayor attended the Annual Sausage Festival on 8th November.
115/14 MINUTES OF THE LAST MEETING
RESOLVED: That the Minutes of the meeting of the Town Council held on 22nd October 2014 (previously circulated) be approved by the Chairman and signed as a true record with a correction to min93/14, replacing ‘£10-£15 per person’to ‘£10-£50 per person’.
FURTHER RESOLVED: That the Minutes and Confidential Minutes of the Extraordinary meeting of the Town Council held on 12th November 2014 (previously circulated) be approved by the Chairman and signed as a true record.
116/14 MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES

  • Min 88/14 – Members reviewed a response from First Essex re: Harwich bus subsidies.  Cllr C Powell referred to a recent Cabinet meeting at Essex County Council (ECC) where it was decided to approve a review of the strategy of bus services and put this out to public consultation, and appealed to the public to respond to the consultation.  Cllr I Henderson further confirmed that there is currently no bus passenger strategy in place so they would now like to receive views of the public.  He did confirm that whilst First Essex report not to receive any subsidies, they do benefit from the Bus Service Operators Grant and Cllr Powell confirmed that they also receive a fuel subsidy rebate and they get a lot from ECC for this.
  • Min 88/14 – Members reviewed a response from Cllr Mick Page re: Town Centre Car Park.  Cllr J Henderson raised concern over the refusal to approve a 3-month trial which would allow Tendring parking permit holders to park in the Milton Road car park free of charge between 9.30am-11am on Fridays when the market occupies part of the High Street.  She clarified that no other town in Tendring has an on-street market; Walton is in a car park and Manningtree is on a hard-standing area.
    RESOLVED: To write again to Cllr Page to reconsider a trial period of 3 months.
  • Min 88/14 – Members reviewed a response from Colin Crawford in relation to the Harwich Chamber of Trade & Commerce and was noted pending discussion under Brief Reports.
  • Min 89/14 – Members noted a response from Cllr Nick Turner re: Dog Fouling and agreed to reconsider this item at a future meeting.
  • Min 89/14 – The Clerk read aloud a letter from Cllr Kevin Bentley in relation to the West End Recycling Centre and this was noted by members.  Concern was raised that whilst there are no current plans to close the facility, these plans may be revisited in the future.
117/14 MATTERS ARISING FROM MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETINGS

  • Min 73/14 – Members reviewed responses from Bernard Jenkin MP and Richard Howitt MEP in relation to the impending regulations on Sulphur Emissions.  Cllr I Henderson recognised the EDM has now been submitted and hopes this will now help.  He also read an extract from Richard Howitt’s letter and said this was good news that there would be some subsidies for smaller fishing vessels.  Members noted these replies.
118/14 HARWICH FESTIVAL OF THE ARTS
The Chairman appealed to members for a new representative to sit on the Harwich Festival of the Arts Committee since Cllr Flavell was unable to continue in this role.
RESOLVED: To elect Cllr C Powell to replace Cllr Flavell as HTC representative on the Harwich Festival of the Arts.
119/14 HARWICHTOWN COUNCIL MEETINGS
Members considered whether to refrain from holding any Council meetings during the month of August from 2015 and considered how this would work.  The Clerk confirmed that HTC is not obliged to hold Planning meetings and submission of comments can be delegated to elected members and the Clerk but would need to amend the Standing Orders to facilitate this.  Cllr Calver feels it’s wrong not to hold the Planning meeting and retain this is normal, proposed that when the meetings are scheduled can due consideration be given to this.
RESOLVED: To review the timing of meetings when the draft schedule is submitted to members by the Clerk in Spring 2015.
120/14 CHILD POVERTY IN HARWICH
Cllr Calver said any statutory responsibility for these issues that lie with local government would be either at district or county level.
RESOLVED: Defer consideration to the next meeting as Cllr Flavell was unable to attend the meeting so Council did not know the points he was seeking to raise.
121/14 HARWICH MAYFLOWER PROJECT
Members considered a request from the Mayflower Project to select a representative to sit on their committee.
RESOLVED:To elect the Mayor of HTC
122/14 MINUTES OF THE LAST ALLOTMENTS COMMITTEE MEETING
RESOLVED: that the Minutes and Confidential Minutes of the meeting of the Allotments Committee held on 29th October 2014 (previously circulated) be received.
123/14 MINUTES OF THE LAST ENVIRONMENT & COMMUNITY COMMITTEE MEETING
RESOLVED: that the Minutes of the meeting of the Environment & Community Committee held on 18rth November 2014 (previously circulated) be received.
124/14 ACCOUNTS
Payments and receipts, current balances, financial activity against budgets and earmarked funds were noted.
Cllr I Henderson asked for clarification on the earmarked amounts for the Town Centre Christmas lights and this was confirmed by the Clerk.  She also confirmed that the first invoice had been received and there had been no report of any additional costs for which the earmarked funds had been allocated.  Cllr Calver proposed to thank the Clerk for the hard work put in to facilitating consideration of this item and the measures taken to ensure the Council acted legally and within the terms of the Financial Regulations, in a timely manner.
RESOLVED: to authorise payments as presented.
125/14 BRIEF REPORTS BY MEMBERS.
Cllr King attended the Harwich and District Community Association AGM and reported they had made a lot of headway over the last year and their new constitution is in place and accepted by the Charities Commission and they will soon be able to renegotiate their lease with TDC.  She also noted the committee have decided to contact the Council to seek a new representative as the current rep has not been attending.  But she and Cllr Thurlow clarified that this is the TDC representative and not the HTC representative.  They mentioned the assistance by HTC for the refurbishment.

  • Cllr McLeod referred to the response by Colin Crawford regarding the Harwich Chamber of Trade and Commerce.  He feels as the funds were generated by the traders it’s up to them to make the decision as to where the remaining monies are distributed.  He further confirmed that he couldn’t attend the TDALC meeting this evening since it clashed with this Full Council meeting.
  • Cllr J Henderson attended a Teen Talk committee meeting and reported they’ve employed two more staff and the refurbishment is progressing.  She also attended the awards evening and reiterated that it’s great the amount of hard work they do in the town and the number of young members of the community who are helped by this service.
  • Cllr Brown reported attending the Petrochem/Carless Environmental Liaison Group meeting and reported they’ve had a slight down drop due to the weather and the plant hasn’t been fully utilised.  They are a Top Tier COMAH site and carried out their 3 yearly emergency plan exercise in August.  Counter terrorism also confirmed the site as secure following a recent visit.  Formula 1 business has dropped also due to hybrid fuels and a drop in oil prices was welcomed.   Still looking into using some of their site for solar electricity generation and confirmed they would be interest as ‘3rd party’ for condesates arising from any development of ‘shale gas’.
  • Cllr Thurlow reported Age UK attendance numbers are high and they are busy, and the Harwich and District pensioners are also doing well and looking forward to the seasonal festivities.  He also mentioned that the Royal British Legion are beginning to reform and reported that the poppy appeal was very successful having raised about £11k.
126/14 CORRESPONDENCE RECEIVED IN THE POST OR RAISED BY MEMBERS
Members noted a letter of thanks for a grant from the Harwich Fireworks on the Quay Committee.
127/14 DATE OF NEXT MEETING
The next meeting of Harwich Town Council will be held on 14th January 2015 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 8.03pm.