Agenda and minutes

Policy & Finance Committee
Monday, 18th June, 2018 7.30 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, The White House, Hockcliffe Street, Leighton Buzzard, LU7 1HD.

Contact: Committee Officer  01525 631920 & Email: info@leightonlinslade-tc.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

355/PF

APPOINTMENT OF VICE CHAIR

Minutes:

It was proposed and seconded that Councillor S Jones be appointed Vice Chair of the Committee for 2018-2019.  There were no further nominations.

 

RESOLVED to appoint Councillor S Jones Vice Chair of the Policy and Finance Committee for 2018-2019.

356/PF

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

Schedule 12 of the Local Government Act 1972 requires a record be kept of the Members present and that this record form part of the minutes of the meeting. Members who cannot attend a meeting should tender apologies to the Town Clerk.

Minutes:

Apologies for absence had been received from Councillor K Ferguson.

357/PF

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

i)   Under the Localism Act 2011 (sections 26-37 and Schedule 4) and in accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct, Members are required to declare any interests which are not currently entered in the Member’s Register of Interests or if he/she has not notified the Monitoring Officer of it.

 

(ii) Should any Member have a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest in an item on the agenda, the Member may not participate in consideration of that item unless a Dispensation has first been requested (in writing) and granted by the Council (see Dispensation Procedure).

Minutes:

Members were asked to declare any interests, including the nature of those interests, which they had in any of the items under consideration at this meeting.

 

Councillor C Palmer declared a personal interest in the budget monitoring items as a member of the Friends of Leighton-Linslade in Bloom,    Councillor J M Freeman, Councillor F Kharwala, Councillor G Perham as members of the Carnival Committee and Councillor A Dodwell as the town council representative appointed to the Meadow Way Community Association.

358/PF

QUESTIONS FROM THE PUBLIC (3 minutes per person; maximum 15 minutes)

To receive questions and statements from members of the public in respect of any item of business included in the agenda, as provided for in Standing Order No.s 1(f) and 1(h).

Minutes:

There were no questions from members of the public.

359/PF

MINUTES OF PREVIOUS MEETING pdf icon PDF 90 KB

To receive and approve as a correct record the minutes of the Policy & Finance Committee meeting held on 16 April 2018.

Minutes:

The Committee received the minutes of the Policy and Finance Committee meeting held on 16 April 2018 for consideration.

 

Minute reference 341/PF: Councillor A Dodwell confirmed the public meeting with the Police had taken place on Saturday 16 June with approximately 120 people attending.  Councillors and officers agreed that the meeting had been a success and thanked the Town Clerk for facilitating the meeting, as well as all those who attended.

 

RESOLVED that the minutes of the Policy and Finance Committee meeting held on 16 April 2018 be approved as a correct record and were signed accordingly.

360/PF

GOVERNANCE REVIEW

By invitation, Brian Dunleavy (Democratic Services Manager at Central Bedfordshire Council) will provide an update in respect of the Central Bedfordshire Governance Review process.

Minutes:

By invitation, Brian Dunleavy (Democratic Services Manager, Central Bedfordshire Council) attended the meeting to provide an update in respect of the Central Bedfordshire Governance Review process. The current consultation was due to end on 6 July, after which a report would be taken to the General Purposes Committee and Central Bedfordshire Council. Should any boundary changes be proposed, then these would be given consideration by the Boundary Commission. It was anticipated that any changes agreed would be finalised and in effect from the May 2019 elections.

 

Significant discussion took place regarding the process of addressing anomalies in electoral arrangements and the question of parish boundaries, particularly in respect of the anticipated housing development to the east of the town, as set out in the East Leighton Linslade Framework Plan adopted by CBC in 2013.

 

It was agreed that the Town Clerk should write to Central Bedfordshire Council regarding the boundary review process to reiterate the resolutions made by the Town Council in January 2018.

 

RESOLVED:

(i)         to note the report.

(ii)        To delegate authority to the Town Clerk to write to Central Bedfordshire Council regarding the resolutions made by the Town Council in January 2018.

361/PF

SUB COMMITTEES pdf icon PDF 79 KB

(a)    To receive the draft minutes of the Grants & Awards Sub Committee meeting held on 14 May 2018 and to consider any recommendation/s contained therein.

(b)    To consider the Terms of Reference of Sub-Committees

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received the draft minutes of the Grants & Awards Sub-Committee meeting held on 14 May 2018. 

 

RESOLVED to receive the draft minutes of the Grants & Awards Sub-Committee meeting held on 14 May 2018.

 

The Committee received and gave consideration to the Terms of Reference for its Sub-Committees, the only change being the renaming of the Police Liaison Sub-Committee to the Community Safety Sub-Committee.

 

RESOLVED that no changes be made to the Terms of Reference for Sub-Committees of the Policy and Finance Committee at this time.

 

362/PF

COMMITTEE OBJECTIVES AND WORKPLAN pdf icon PDF 80 KB

To receive and note progress with the Committee objectives and work plan for 2018-2019 (attached).

Minutes:

The Committee received a report summarising the key responsibilities of the Committee, as well as the objectives within the Town Council’s Three Year Plan 2015-2018 which fell within the remit of the Committee. 

 

A question was raised regarding Community Safety and how effective the Operation Dodford service level agreement had been in providing extra policing for the town. It was suggested an informal meeting be arranged with Acting Inspector Gurr before the next Community Safety Sub-Committee Meeting on 16 July 2018 so councillors and officers could discuss options.  The outcomes of this meeting could then be considered at the Community Safety Sub-Committee meeting and any recommendations brought to the Policy & Finance Committee meeting on 30 July, 2018.

 

RESOLVED to note the Committee Work Plan and Objectives for 2018-2019.

363/PF

APRIL AND MAY PAYMENTS pdf icon PDF 1007 KB

To receive and note the schedule of payments made in April 2018 (attached) and May 2018 (attached) (approved for payment by the Town Clerk and two bank signatories).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received two sets of schedule of payments which had previously been approved for payment by the Town Clerk and countersigned by two account signatories.         

 

The schedule for April dated  24 April  2018  included BACS payments amounting to £114,572.45 (page numbers 2320, 2324-2334) and cheque payments amounting to £6,404.35 (cheque numbers 17179-17189), including White House petty cash amounting to £71.00, Astral Park £138.46 and TACTIC £40.74.

 

The monthly salaries listing for April 2018 amounting to £97,990.00 gross was received.  A cash book report for April 2018, including details of all direct debit payments, was also received.

 

The schedule for May dated  18 May  2018 included BACS payments amounting to £199,024.33 (page numbers 2336, 2343-2357) and cheque payments amounting to £36,809.19 (cheque numbers 17190, 17191-17230), including White House petty cash amounting to £132.20, Astral Park £162.43 and TACTIC £35.55.

 

The monthly salaries listing for May 2018 amounting to £102,246.71 gross was received.  A cash book report for May 2018, including details of all direct debit payments, was also received.

 

RESOLVED to note the schedules of accounts for April 2018 and May 2018.

 

It was noted that all payments had been made within the budget and that there were no irregularities to be drawn to the attention of the Committee.

364/PF

INTERNAL AUDIT REPORT (Final Update) pdf icon PDF 131 KB

To receive the final internal audit report for 2017-2018 (attached).

Minutes:

The Committee received the final internal audit report for 2017-2018 and noted that no issues had been identified. It was recognised that the Council was continuing to operate a sound, pro-active approach to risk management and corporate governance issues, together with the development and management of effective internal controls and procedural documentation. The Committee expressed thanks to officers for another excellent report.

 

RESOLVED to note the report.

365/PF

TOWN MAYOR'S ACCOUNTS 2017-2018 pdf icon PDF 28 KB

To receive the final accounts for the Mayor’s charity fundraising account for the municipal year 2017-2018 (attached).

 

Minutes:

TOWN MAYOR’S ACCOUNTS 2017-2018

 

The Committee received the full accounts for the Town Mayor’s Charity Fund for the municipal year 2017-2018.  A total of £8,200 had been raised for Councillor S Rahman’s chosen charities of Keech, St John’s Hospice, Aquarius, Autism Bedfordshire and Leighton-Linslade Homeless service.

 

The Committee expressed gratitude and appreciation to Councillor Rahman for his efforts throughout the year in raising funds for these worthy causes.

 

RESOLVED to note the report.

366/PF

MEETING ATTENDANCE pdf icon PDF 163 KB

To receive a summary of meeting attendance for the municipal year 2017-2018 (attached).

Minutes:

The Committee received a summary of Councillor meeting attendance during the municipal year 2018-2019. 

 

RESOLVED to note the report.

367/PF

STATEMENT OF ACCOUNTS 2017-2018 pdf icon PDF 595 KB

To receive and consider recommending to Council approval of the 2017-2018 Annual Return and Statement of Accounts (which are not subject to audit).

Minutes:

The Committee received the Annual Return and Statement of Accounts. The Committee also discussed the establishment of a new earmarked reserve for Professional Fees of £20,000 which would be readily available if and when the need arose. 

 

RESOLVED to note the report.

 

RESOLVED to endorse the creation of a new Earmarked Reserve for Professional Fees in the amount of £20,000, from funds underspent from various central budgets within the financial year 2017-2018.

 

RECOMMENDED to Council to approve the Annual Governance Statement for 2017-2018.

 

RECOMMENDED to Council to approve the Accounting Statements for 2017-2018.

368/PF

INVESTMENTS pdf icon PDF 106 KB

To receive a report (to follow) and to consider the recommendation/s contained therein.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received and considered a report and a brief verbal overview in respect of investments and also considered the operational arrangements regarding day to day banking to maximise return on monies invested.

 

RESOLVED to reinvest the existing Santander 12 Month Time Deposit, that is maturing on 11 July 2018 to the value of £1,055,970 into a Nationwide Business One Year Fixed, currently offering 0.90% Gross AER.

 

RESOLVED:

 

(a)       To transfer the annual precept (which is paid in two instalments, first   in April 2018 and second in September 2018) from the NatWest Business Reserve Account to the existing Nationwide Instant Access Account currently paying 0.50%.

(b)       To endorse that funds continue to be drawn down from the Nationwide Instant Access Saver Account to the NatWest Business Reserve account to fund the Monthly expenditure, as and when required throughout the year.

(c)       That the arrangements above be reviewed upon receipt of the first tranche of the precept for 2019/20.

369/PF

REVISED COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT STRATEGY pdf icon PDF 94 KB

To receive a report regarding the draft revised Community Engagement Strategy and to consider the recommendation/s contained therein.

Minutes:

The Committee received an update regarding the draft revised Community Engagement Strategy and considered extending the period of consultation to August 2018 to ensure adequate time had been allowed for comment and the revised document would be fit for purpose.

 

RESOLVED to approve the proposed minor amendments to the draft revised Strategy and the extension of the consultation period until end of August 2018.

 

370/PF

DATA PROTECTION pdf icon PDF 97 KB

To receive a report in respect of data protection and to consider the recommendation/s contained therein.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received and considered an update regarding data protection following the introduction of the 2018 Data Protection Act including the General Data Protection Regulation. It was noted that significant work had been undertaken and that this would continue. The Committee was asked to consider a number of new and revised policies and noted that further policies were anticipated to be brought to the next meeting.

 

RECOMMENDED to Council approval of the following policies:

 

(a)       Information & Data Protection Policy

(b)       ICT Security Policy

(c)       Information Security Incident Policy

(d)       Removable Media Policy

(e)       Town Council Privacy Notice

(f)        Subject Access Requests procedure

371/PF

HONORARY BURGESS PROCEDURE pdf icon PDF 96 KB

To receive a report regarding the annual Honorary Burgess procedure and to consider the recommendation/s contained therein.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee received and considered a report regarding a change in procedure to meet data protection requirements.  A question was raised regarding point 8 on Appendix A and it was agreed to reword this point.

 

RESOLVED to approve the proposed revised Honorary Burgess procedure, Honorary Burgess Nomination form and Honorary Burgess Nominee Authorisation form, to ensure compliance with new date protection legislation effective from May 2018.

372/PF

CALENDAR OF MEETINGS 2018-2019

To consider recommending to Council a change of meeting date for the Planning and Transport Committee, from 1 May 2019 to 24 April 2019.

 

Minutes:

The Committee received a verbal update regarding a change to the date of the Planning and Transport Committee from 1 May 2019 to 24 April 2019, in view of the elections to take place on 2 May 2019.

 

RECOMMENDED to Council a change of meeting date for Planning and Transport committee from 1 May 2019 to 24 April 2019.

373/PF

TREE MANAGEMENT POLICY pdf icon PDF 219 KB

To consider the recommendation made by the Grounds & Environmental Services Committee on 4 June 2018: to consider recommending to Council re-endorsement of the Tree Management Policy, for the period 2018-2021.

Minutes:

The Committee considered a recommendation made by the Grounds & Environmental Services Committee on 4 June 2018 to consider re-endorsement of the Tree Management Policy, for the period 2018-2021.

 

RECOMMENDED to Council to re-endorse the Tree Management Policy for the period 2018-2021.

374/PF

EXCLUSION OF THE PUBLIC

The Committee may consider it appropriate to consider the following resolution should they consider that any discussion would be prejudicial to the public interests: that, under the Public Bodies (Admissions to Meetings) Act 1960, the public be excluded on the grounds of the confidential nature of the business about to be transacted which involves the likely disclosure of exempt information. The public and press to withdraw from the meeting during consideration of detailed discussion regarding Town Council accommodation.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that, under the Public Bodies (Admissions to Meetings) Act 1960, the public be excluded on the grounds of the confidential nature of the business about to be transacted which involves the likely disclosure of exempt information.  The public and press to withdraw from the meeting during consideration of detailed discussion regarding: (a) Town Council premises.

375/PF

TOWN COUNCIL ACCOMMODATION

Minutes:

The Committee received a report to seek member endorsement to enter into a 20 year lease agreement to safeguard future town council accommodation needs.

 

RECOMMENDED to Council that the terms for the new lease be endorsed thereby safeguarding future town council accommodation needs for 20 years or less.