14 May 20 Minutes of ASM

Chairman: Mrs Rosalind Hart
Clerk: Mrs Lorraine Grocott, BEM, B A (Hons): Local Policy
23 West Meade, Milland, Liphook, Hampshire
GU30 7NB, Tel: 01428 741393
Email: postmaster@milland-wsx-pc.gov.uk
Website: http://www.bepton.org

BEPTON PARISH COUNCIL held via Zoom on 14 May 2020
PRESENT: Mrs R Hart (Chairman), Dr J Wilkinson (Vice Chairman), Mrs L Sadler, Mrs C Bower, Mr J Beaumont, Mr J Beckett, Mr D Hollowood
Cllr Dr Kate O’Kelly, County Councillor (part)
The Chairman welcomed Mr Duncan Hollowood as a councillor. He had signed his Declaration of Acceptance of Office, his consent to receive his Agendas electronically and completed his Register of Interests which had been filed with the District Council.
805. a) Election of Chairman for 2020-21:
Mrs Rosalind Hart was elected Chairman for 2020-21.
Proposed by Mr Beckett and seconded by Mrs Bower
Chairman’s Declaration of Acceptance of Office: To be signed by Mrs Hart
b) Election of Vice-Chairman: Mr John Beckett was elected Vice Chairman.
Proposed by Mrs Hart and seconded by Mr Beaumont

806. Apologies: Cllr J Fowler (District Councillor)
807. Declaration of Interests on Agenda items: There were none.

808. Confirmation of dates and times of meetings of the Council for ensuing year: –
2020 – 9 July, 10 September, 26 November
2021 – 28 January, 25 March, 27 May (ASM/APA 2021)

809. Minutes of the Meeting – 26 March 2020 were agreed to be signed.

810. Matters arising
1. Parish Plan –To be taken forward to July meeting.
2. Neighbourhood Watch – A new website has been launched http://www.ourwatch.org.uk making it easier to access information on crime prevention and ways of connecting with the community. Mr Hollowood was asked to find out more information about the site and to become the Council’s coordinator.
3. Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) -Severals Road and Bepton Road
An online request was submitted to WSCC in March 2020 for a TRO to reduce the speed limits from 40mph to 30mph from Frogmore to Meadow View on Bepton Road, and Severals Road. After consultation with WSCC as the Highways Authority in May, a compromised plan was proposed which is to have 30mph limit from the existing Former Brickworks & Council Depot site entrance up to the Country Inn and then a potential 40mph buffer zone along Severals Road from the pub to Meadow View. This would mean it would meet the frontage policy. Speed data strips would be placed along the road. The deadline for all community TROs for 2020/21 program is July 2020 for consideration in the November 2020 CLC meeting. The TRO process is a long and lengthy legal process with no guarantee that any application will ultimately be successful. Our County Councillor supports this application for a speed limit change. Following discussion, the Council agreed with this proposal.
Bepton Parish Council, Minutes of the Annual Statutory Meeting, 14 May 2020

4. Spring Newsletter – CDC Supporting our Communities leaflets will be sent out with the Newsletter. Currently Kerry Type who print the Newsletter are closed but Mrs Bower will print them on her computer. Thanks were expressed to Mrs Bower.

811. County Councillor’s report – emailed by Cllr Dr Kate O’Kelly
Her detailed report is attached to these Minutes. In brief: –
• Covid-19 recorded cases in West Sussex – 1230 updated to 6th May.
• Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) – Business being asked if they can supply.
• SDNPA – Linking to businesses – Map – A tool which helps community groups and local business link together.
• Community Initiative Funding (CIF) has been extended to support groups carrying out Coronavirus-related community work.
• Emergency fuel vouchers – Financial support is available from CAB in Sussex to help vulnerable households facing a financial crisis to meet their energy costs. Emergency fuel vouchers are available. Email: david.edwards@westsussex.gov.uk Tel: 033 022 25826
• Household Waste Recycling Sites – reopened in West Sussex and Hampshire. West Sussex sites accepting Garden and Black bag waste only.
• Virtual Meeting at WSCC – Regular WSCC meeting are being held virtually. Audio-cast is available by visiting westsussex.public-i.trv/core/portal/home.

812. District Councillors report – emailed by Cllr Judy Fowler
• CDC – immensely proud to be mentioned by Downing Street as the highest performing Local Authority distributor of business rate grants. £36m to 3000 businesses.
• CDC staff have been working evenings and weekends throughout the Covid-19 crisis. Many have changed jobs to fill sickness vacancies.
• Midhurst amenity / recycling site is now open.
• Public toilets, parks and gardens are open.
• Chichester Information Shop provides support for 13-25-year olds needing confidential emotional support. Website chi-infoshop.org.uk

813. Chairman’s announcements
a) Remote meetings, new Regulations – On 24 March 2020, a new clause relating to council meetings was added to the Coronavirus Bill and became law at the beginning of April. This allows meetings to be held remotely using video or telephone conferencing. As a result, Bepton’s Annual Statutory Meeting (ASM), which is a statutory meeting, went ahead as a ‘virtual meeting’. The Annual Parish Assembly meeting is not a statutory meeting and is postponed to a time when it will be safe to do so.
b) Local Covid-19 support. There are 5-6 Bepton Angels who have had a couple of requests.
c) Village gates – these have been delivered and will be installed when restrictions are lifted.
d) Future situation of Parish Clerk – For the time being Mrs Grocott will remain in post.
The Council will continue to advertise the post.
e) New PCSO – Angelika Morge has been appointed for this area.
For emergencies always contact 999 for emergencies or 101 for non-emergencies.
f) Website – The current website was discussed and found to be lacking in certain areas. It was felt that there is a need to make it more acceptable and friendly to the users. Councillors were asked to submit their thoughts and ideas to Mr Beaumont by the end of May.

Bepton Parish Council, Minutes of the Annual Statutory Meeting, 14 May 2020

815. Finance – Mrs Grocott, RFO

These payments were approved by the Council
b) Chichester District Council have paid the first half of the precept for 2020-21 £3,150.
c) Internal audit report on accounts 2019-2020 – Mr Buckler found everything to be in order, having checked, for example, the minutes for the year: VAT, insurance, bank transactions, fixed assets, receipts, and payments. The Internal Audit has been carried out in accordance with the smaller authority’s needs and planned coverage.
d) Approval of the Annual Governance Statement for year ended 31 March 2020 –
The Internal Audit has been carried out in accordance with the Council’s needs and planned coverage and has been examined by Mr Richard Buckler the internal auditor. He has signed the Internal Audit report. The members acknowledged their responsibility for the accounts and approved the Accounting Statements. The notice of appointment of date for exercise of elector’s rights will be placed on the notice boards. The Right to Inspect will commence on 2nd June and end on 14 July 2020.
e) Summary and Opinion – One of the functions of the Internal Audit is to give assurance to members of the Council that the financial systems are operating correctly and be relied upon. Regarding the examination, and having regard to the items reported, no matter has come to the Auditor’s attention that gives him reasonable cause to believe in any material respect that the regulatory requirements have not been complied with. The accounting accurately records the Council’s financial position.
f) Certificate of Exemption – The Council wishes to certify itself as exempt from submitting an Annual Governance and Accountability Return to the external auditor because during the financial year 2019/20, the higher of the authority’s gross income for the year and gross annual expenditure for the year did not exceed £25,000.
g) The Annual Internal Audit Report, Annual Governance Statement, Annual Accounting Statement, an analysis of variances and the bank reconciliation plus the information exercise of public rights have been completed and a copy of this certificate will be published on the Council’s website http://www.bepton.org before 1 July 2020.
h) Appointment of internal auditor – Mr Richard Buckler was reappointed.
i) Nat West Card Reader and card – Mr Beaumont will contact Nat West.
j) Bepton Green and other local mowing and maintenance – Proposed that the Green be cutting every 2 weeks for 6 months depending on growth rate = 12 cuts x £47 = £564. Precept budget 2020/21 for mowing = £555.
Bepton Parish Council, Minutes of the Annual Statutory Meeting, 14 May 2020
816. Planning Applications – Mr John Beckett
SDNP – Planning Response to Applications: –
SDNP/19/03606/PRE – Metis Homes request pre-planning to develop the Council Depot and Former Brickworks in Bepton Road. Development proposed would erect 72 dwellings with associated access, parking, and landscaping. Online docs updated 30 April 2020. Application in progress.
Note: Metis Homes are seeking community feedback on their proposals for the site and will be conducting a ‘virtual public consultation’ between 15 May and 29 May 2020 via their project website: http://www.thebrickworks.consultationonline.co.uk
SDNP/20/00794/PRE – Cowdray Estate request pre-application advice for the construction of a new agricultural access track at Rectory Farm Dairy Church Lane Bepton West Sussex GU29 0HY. Application in progress.
Note: JAB and RH had a meeting in February with Jonathan Russell, CEO of Cowdray Estate. The Parish Council’s view is that any reduction in agricultural vehicle movements on Bepton’s roads are welcome although this proposal only has potential to reduce movements at the southern end of Bepton Road and will not make any difference to the number of agricultural vehicles through the rest of Bepton.
SDNP/20/01134/HOUS -Mrs Silva Huss requests permission for extension and conversion of roof space into habitable accommodation to include dormer windows with other associated ground floor alterations at Marwood Severals Road Bepton GU29 0LR. Application in progress
MINERALS PLAN, SOFT SAND REVIEW – Draft Soft Sand Review Plan has been published on WSCC website. Severals East and West are not included in the plan. The public consultation has now closed, and the plan has been submitted to government to be tested for soundness and legal and procedural compliance. The public examination hearings are expected to take place July/August. If considered sound the soft sand review would be adopted in December 2020 and incorporated into the Joint Minerals Local Plan.
THE COUNTRY INN – Bepton Parish Council have applied to CDC to have a TPO applied to the Beech tree situated in the garden of The Country Inn. Awaiting feedback
HALF TIMBERS – A resident of Bepton has written to SDNP Planning raising concerns over the condition of Half Timbers, a Grade II listed property in Bepton which has been empty for over a year. Awaiting feedback.
817. Environment/Amenities
a) Broadband – In April, a request was received from a resident from the southern end of the village about the slow broadband reception especially in these times of home working as well as home schooling.
The Council looked at this problem in 2017. They were given a quote of £50K from BT. There was a possibility of a reduced quote from Better Broadband for £1400 per household. However, most of the houses were rented from the Cowdray Estate so this would not be feasible. The telephone line to connect with this area of Bepton would come from Cocking not from Midhurst. It was agreed that Mr Hollowood would liaise with Cllr O’Kelly to bring the Council up to date at the next meeting of the Government and County Council’s situation.
b) Spring Clean in March – Thanks were expressed to Mrs Sadler for her efforts which have made a difference. The Several Green is looking better. In due course the area from the Country Inn to the telephone box will be mown and the verges near Frogmore to improve visibility
Bepton Parish Council, Minutes of the Annual Statutory Meeting, 14 May 2020
818. Highways and Byways
a) Notices on Public Footpath at Church Farm – This has now been resolved. A problem occurred because signs had been erected that could have deterred walkers from using the Right of Way. The signage was misleading and following discussions with the County Council Rights of Way Officer, a temporary footpath sign has been added. The RoW Officer will send new Public Footpath plaques to the owner of Church Farm to replace the temporary signs. Thanks were expressed to the owner of Church Farm for his quick response to remedy the situation.
b) Sussex Pathwatch is being joined to Countrywatch. Countrywatch have invested in a member’s only system facilitated via an app – D.I.S.C. which allows for alerts and bulletins to go straight to the team without the need to phone in.
c) Highways Transport and Planning have been restructured. Chris Stark is the Area Highway Manager, Mike Dare, Assistant Highways Manager and Bob Torrance has become the Traffic Engineer for the whole area. The most efficient way to contact Highways or report new highway issues is via either the online reporting tools (Report a problem with a road or pavement or raise a highway’s related enquiry) or by calling the Customer Service Centre 01243 642105. This enables the enquiry to be formally logged and tracked.
819. Date of next meeting – Thursday 9 July via Zoom.

Chairman: __________________________Date: __________________________

These Minutes are unconfirmed until signed by the Chairman

The accounts are prepared using Governance and Accountability for Smaller Authorities in England March 2018. My thanks to Richard Buckler who is the Council’s internal auditor. Moor are the External Auditors. The accountability and audit framework are ‘risk-based’ and the Council is required to assess and to set how it manages its risks. The Council has prepared a Risk Management document, which includes our physical and financial risk and is reviewed on an annual basis.

The accounts will be available for exercising elector’s rights from Tuesday 2nd June 2020 and ending on Tuesday 14th July 2020.

PRECEPT FOR 2019-20 – £4975 – tax base 151.8 – £32.77 per dwelling

Miscellaneous expenses – £3548
Defibrillator – £2300 (net)
Mowing – £ 660
Village gates – £ 588 (net)

Administration – £1182

Room hire £158.35; Data Protection £35; IT £151; Misc photocopying £227; Cllr information £17; internal audit £75; Uncontested election £160; Wilkins payroll £85; three issues of Newsletter £192.

Grants/Donations £1600 / Subscriptions £171/ Insurance £257 – Total £2028

Ringfenced funds: £2064
Clerks Gratuity – £1146
CIL Receipts – £513
Defibrillator – £405

Balance b/f 1.4.19 – £11601 – Receipts £6691 – Payments £9945 – Year End Balance c/f £8348 less
Ringfenced funds £2064 = Available funds £6284

Overview of the year –
The Council has continued to maintain the mowing of Several Green and the local area. The Council has invested in councillor training with Sussex Association of Local Councils. Training sessions include Being a Councillor, Chairmanship, planning and finance and general which will help councillors to understand and develop their role for the community. The Council purchased and installed a Defibrillator unit on Bepton Road with a grant of £2760 from the Community Heartbeat fund.
The Council received a Community Infrastructure Levy grant of £760 which has been used to contribute to the cost of the village gates £705. The Council submitted a VAT reclaim for £682. The Council continues to support surrounding community organisations with donations to enable mutual local benefit. The most significant is the donation of £975 to Bepton Church.

The Precept for 2020-2021= £6299 – tax base 149.7 – £42.07 per dwelling

Lorraine Grocott, Clerk to the Council, RFO, May 2019