WEXHAM COURT PARISH COUNCIL
APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE:
Councillors Robert Aldridge (on holiday), Bryan Corps (convalescing),
and Dalip Rajput (on holiday).
Keith Nunn, Youth Representative (working).
A regular member of the public had also offered his apologies.
No other Membersí apologies were received.
45. DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
No Member had an interest to declare.
46. SIGNING OF DECLARATION OF ACCEPTANCE OF OFFICE BY NEW MEMBER
The Chairman advised that an email had been received from the Councilís chosen co‑option candidate, Linda Ball, declining the position. Mrs Ball had apologised and explained that this was due to a change in her work commitments for the forthcoming year.
The Clerk had therefore been instructed to contact Electoral Services to obtain their advice regarding the proper procedure in the event of a candidateís withdrawal. It was confirmed that, given the circumstances, the candidate with the next highest number of votes should be co‑opted. The Chairman therefore declared Carl Egan to be the new Parish Council Member and invited him to come forward and sign his Declaration of Acceptance of Office.
Councillor Donachy questioned the validity of this course of action stating that it was a stupid idea. The Chairman reiterated that the appropriate advice had been sought from Slough Borough Councilís Electoral Services Officer prior to this meeting and that the Parish Council was complying with that advice. Councillor MacIsaac also confirmed that he knew this to be the proper procedure in his experience as a Borough and Parish Councillor.
Mr Egan duly signed his Declaration of Acceptance of Office and was welcomed to Wexham Court Parish Council.
47. PROPOSAL FOR USE OF THE PARISH HALL BY SLOUGH COMPUTER AND GADGET FAIRS
The Clerk had been approached by a prospective regular hirer requiring use of the Parish Hall every Sunday from 11am-4pm. The hirer had attended a meeting with the Clerk and Chairman and had subsequently put forward a written proposal to pay the sum of £1,000 per month, which approximately equated to the Parish Rate of hire.
A discussion took place in relation to considering the rate offered; the merits of receiving a regular income; the conditions of hire that would be imposed; and the general suitability of the hirer.
The proposal was approved unanimously on the condition that a review would take place in six months, at which evidence of the income from the functions would be required. The Clerk would prepare a letter to the hirer advising him of the Councilís decision, together with conditions and expectations.
48. PROPOSAL FOR USE OF THE PARISH HALL BY A MONTESSORI SCHOOL
The Clerk had been approached by another prospective regular hirer requiring use of the Parish Hall every weekday from 9am-3.30pm. The hirer had attended a meeting with the Clerk and Chairman and had subsequently put forward a written proposal stating that the sum of £12K per year had been budgeted for rental of new premises.
A discussion followed at some length and Councillor Donachy calculated that the sum of £12K for the given hours and days equated to much less than the minimum Concessionary Rate. Whilst it was noted that the school would not incur any caretaking costs, and had offered to take care of their own cleaning requirements between school sessions, it was considered unwise to grant a rate of hire that would fall so short of the normal minimum.
Councillor Egan commented that his partner worked for a nursery school and he was aware that the amounts charged to parents for child care were substantial. He therefore felt that the amount budgeted by the school in their proposal may be open to negotiation.
It was unanimously agreed that the Clerk should write to the hirer offering the minimum Concessionary Rate, with an option to review the rate of hire in six months upon evidence of the income from the school being made available. The Clerk indicated that this substantial increase to the budgeted rental sum may deter the hirer from progressing with the school arrangements, thus resulting in the Council losing a prospective regular hirer and a steady income. The Clerk was therefore given approval to negotiate a figure of not less than £15K per annum if necessary, still subject to a six month review and evidence of income.
The meeting closed at 8.20pm
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