BRIGHTLINGSEA TOWN COUNCIL                                                    D R A F T    M I N U T E S
FINANCE COMMITTEE

Minutes of the Meeting held at the Parish Hall, Victoria Place, Brightlingsea
on Thursday 27th September 2012 at 7.30 pm

Present:
Councillors
I Block (Chairman)
J Chapman (Vice Chairman)
D Dixon, A Goggin, J Russell,
G Steady and K Yallop

Also in Attendance:
Tracey Pulford- Town Clerk/RFO
Councillor V Chapman (from 8.53 pm onwards)
    
F.015. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE: None received.

F.016. CONFIRMATION OF THE MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON THE 28TH JUNE 2012 RECEIVED BY COUNCIL ON THE 19TH JULY 2012:.

The Minutes were accepted as a true record of the meeting.

F.017. DECLARATION OF DISCLOSABLE PECUNIARY INTERESTS:

Members were reminded of the requirement to disclose any interest in relation to items on the agenda, when these are discussed. 

F.018. 2011/2012 ANNUAL RETURN – COMPLETION OF THE ANNUAL AUDIT:
 
The Chairman briefed Members that the External Auditor had signed off the External Auditors Certificate and Opinion on the 2012 Annual Return.   He stated that this meant that in their opinion the information in the annual return is in accordance with proper practices and no matters have come to their attention giving cause for concern, and that relevant legislation and regulatory requirements have been met.  The closure of the 2011./2012 Accounts has also been advertised on the Council notice board.

F.019. UPDATE ON NEW BANK ACCOUNTS:

The Chairman briefed members that the following new bank accounts have now been set up:
• A Barclays Bond for £50,000, which matures on the 26th April 2013 and has a 1.70% Gross Interest rate.
• Barclays Base Rate Reward Account – totalling £90,194, which includes £51,194 capital reserve and £39,000 repairs and renewals (Jetty), all as per the end of year accounts for 2011/2012.  The base rate reward has an interest rate of 0.5%, with no limits of funds that are put in, but any month money is withdrawn – you do not earn interest on that month.
 
F.020. 2012/2013 BUDGET UPDATE:

All members had a copy of the revised budgets pages 2, 3, 4, 5 and 7, for the period 1st April – 31st August 2012.  The Chairman stated that he had queries regarding the Improvements budget, and a discussion took place on this.

F.021. DEBTORS:

The Chairman briefed members that there are two outstanding invoices, one for £186.0 for a beach hut site rent, the other is the £500.00 donation towards the Jubilee Fireworks.  Both have been chased.  He also mentioned the £800.00 outstanding amount from Energise 2011. 

After discussion it was agreed to make this a Part B agenda item for the next council and finance meeting.  Agreed.

Recommendation: Make Energise a Part B Agenda item for both the next council and finance meeting.

F.022. BRIGHTLINGSEA RUGBY CLUB:

Councillor Goggin declared an interest in this item as he is the President of the Rugby Club.

The Chairman briefed members that at the August Council Meeting the Rugby Club gave a Presentation and asked to train at Lower Park Recreation Ground.  After discussion it was agreed that the Rugby Club could train on the Lower Park Recreation Ground at a fee of £9.30 per session (inc VAT) (as per the fees and charges), and discussions would take place with them about their storage container and the possibility of it being moved to another location on the ground.

Councillor Steady stated that he thought the Council were going about this in  the wrong way, when we are part way through the process of going through the leases – who pays what and when etc.  He stated that we should wait before agreeing this.

Recommendation: The Rugby Club can train on the Lower Park Recreation Ground at a fee of £9.30 per session (inc VAT) (as per the fees and charges), and discussions would take place with them about their storage container and the possibility of it being moved
to another location on the ground.
 
F.023. RISK ASSESSMENT:

The Chairman briefed members that as agreed at the finance meeting on the 29th March 2012, the Clerk and the Chair of the Finance Committee have gone through the risk assessment/report for 2011/2012 and can confirm that many of the items highlighted have been actioned, and the  remainder are being dealt with at the moment.  In addition to this there was a problem with the boating lake, where our insurers said we were liable as there was no log of inspections for this area..  Councillor J Chapman said that following her meeting with the Grounds Staff they are now doing checks at lease once a week and these check lists are being filed in the office.  The check lists covered the Playgrounds, Western Promenade, Bayard Recreation Ground, Hurst Green, Victoria Place, Lower Park Recreation Ground and the Lozenge.

A discussion took place on the football/rugby teams and who was responsible for checking the pitches before matches/training starts. 

F.024. MEMBERS ALOWANCES FOR 2012/2013:

The Chairman briefed members that during 2011/2012 it was agreed that the members allowances remain at the last years level being £300.00 for Councillors and £500.00 for the Mayor.  He also stated that the officer pay award for 2012/2013 was 0%, and that TDC Members are not receiving any increase this year.

After discussion it was agreed that the members allowances for 2012/2013 would remain the same as 2011/2012. 

The Town Clerk was instructed to look into the legality of paying Childcare and/or Carers allowance.

Recommendation: Members allowances for 2012/2013 would remain the same as 2011/2012. 

F.025. GRANTS:

The Chairman briefed members that the Grants budget for 2012/2013 was £2,500.00.  At meeting on 28th June a total of £2,225.00 was allocated.  This leaves £275.00 to be spent. 

Two grants had conditions:-
Colne Smack Preservation Society – £500.00 subject to a works programme being provided – they have acknowledged this, and stated that this programme will follow.

Indoor Bowls Club – £300.00 provided more information is provided – they have confirmed that they are an internal organisation of the Community Centre and the participants pay £1 per session to play bowls.  The bowls club has an open membership whereby  anyone can play and they meet on a Wednesday afternoon and Friday evening.

Councillor J Chapman then proposed that the Indoor Bowls Club receive their grant.  Agreed.

The Chairman also said that a request for funding has also been received from Artist Olivia Goddard and Designer-maker Vikki Walsh.  It was agreed to send them  an application form and guidance notes to complete before any decision can be made. 

Recommendation: The Indoor Bowls Club receive their grant and an application form and guidance notes are sent to Olivia Godard and Vikki Walsh to complete.

F.026. MAYORS BALL:

The Mayor, Councillor Yallop, briefed members that she would like to hold a Mayors Ball during her mayoral year, with it being self-funding and all money raised to go to the Mary Barron Ward.  She therefore asked if the income/expenditure could go through the Councils accounts system.  The proposed date is 27th April 2013.  Agreed.

F.027. SPECIAL EXPENSES 2013/2014:

All members had a copy of the Special Expenses form from Tendring District Council.  After discussion it was agreed that this would be made an agenda item for the next meeting.

Councillor V Chapman here joined the meeting.

Recommendation: Special Expenses is  made an agenda item for the next meeting.

F.028. SIGNS:

Councillor Goggin briefed members that at the Waterside meeting it was highlighted that there are no signs indicating where the High Street is, and vice versa.  After discussion it was agreed that the Town Plan Committee would look at this and bring their findings/comments back to the next meeting. Agreed.

Recommendation: Town Plan Committee would look at the signs around the town and bring their findings/comments back to the next meeting.

F.029. CAPITAL EXPENDITURE AND LEASES:

Councillor Steady briefed members that at Tendring District Council they internal borrow, i.e. borrow from them self and pay it back.  He stated that the Council should look at how they raise funds to do improvements on capital expenditure. 

Councillor Russell stated that the money received from  leases and rents is revenue, and the Council is not allowed to spend revenue on capital projects.

A discussion then took place.

F.030. DATE OF NEXT MEETINGS:

The following dates were agreed for the next finance meetings:

Wednesday 24th October at 7.30 pm, Thursday 8th November at 7.30 pm and Thursday 29th November at 7.30 pm, if the Chair of the Planning Committee agrees to hold the planning meeting at 7pm. 

F.031. CLOSE OF MEETING:

There being no further business, the meeting closed at 9.10 pm.