WCPC MINUTES

 

 

WEXHAM COURT PARISH COUNCIL

 

MINUTES of the MEETING of the COUNCIL held on Tuesday, the

11th September, 2012, at the Parish Hall, Norway Drive, Wexham, Slough.

 

PRESENT:

Councillors Sandra Malik (in the Chair),

Robert Aldridge, Harjinder Singh Gahir, Peter Gerstmann,

Vinay Vyas (from 8.30), and Shabana Zeib.

Officers: Dianne Egan (Clerk).

Borough Councillor Paul Sohal.

Six members of the public.

 

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE:

Councillors Patrick Donachy (unwell), Carl Egan (on holiday),

and Keith Nunn (studying).

Tina Kellett (Finance Clerk).

Borough Councillor Haqeeq Dar.

Policing Team and Community Warden Michelle Hewitt.

 

ABSENT:

Councillor Munawar Hussain.

 

 

54.     APPROVAL OF APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

 

RESOLVED: That apologies for absence offered in respect of this meeting be approved.

 

55.     DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST                                   

 

No declarations of interest were recorded.

 

56.     CONSIDERATION OF DISPENSATION APPLICATIONS RELATING TO THE CODE OF CONDUCT

 

No dispensations were required.

 

57.     MINUTES OF THE MEETING HELD ON 10TH JULY 2012

 

The Minutes of the Meeting of 10th July 2012 were approved as a correct record.

 

58.     MINUTES OF THE FINANCE & GENERAL PURPOSE COMMITTEE MEETING HELD ON 2ND AUGUST 2012

 

The Minutes of the F&GP Committee meeting of 2nd August 2012 were approved as a correct record.

 

59.     MINUTES OF THE SPECIAL MEETING HELD ON 5TH SEPTEMBER 2012

 

Approval of the Minutes of the Special Meeting was deferred to Part II to enable discussion of a confidential item therein.

 

60.     POLICE AND COMMUNITY WARDEN LIAISON

 

Members of the Policing Team and Community Warden Team were unable to attend.

 

In relation to the recent vandalism at the Parish Hall, the Clerk reported that the case had been passed to the Youth Justice Unit as the culprit was under 18.  A final warning had been issued to the youth, meaning that he would have a criminal record, but no compensation could be obtained for the damage.

 

Michelle Hewitt had provided the following updates:

 

·       Fly-tipping at the garage sites in The Normans, Mansel Close and Edmunds Way was being dealt with.

·       Several messy gardens in The Frithe and Knolton Way had been served Notices.

·      The camps on the land at Forest Close were being monitored and no signs of drug or alcohol abuse had been identified.  Councillor Gerstmann reported that the Fire Service had been in attendance at this site a few days previously.

·       Failure to empty local dog bins had been reported.

·       Community Wardens Linda Corcoran and Ron Dohil had been moved to other areas and Ali Abdul was now assisting Michelle.

 

61.     FORMAL ADOPTION OF NEW CODE OF CONDUCT

 

The Clerk clarified the requirement to adopt a new Code of Conduct and the content of the new document was agreed.  Councillors Donachy and Egan were thanked for their assistance in deciding the content.  Members were advised to study the Code thoroughly if they had not already done so.

 

RESOLVED: That the new Code of Conduct for Members be formally adopted with immediate effect.

 

62.     INFORMATION REPORTS - MEMBERS & BOROUGH COUNCILLORS

 

Councillor Sohal reported that the garden of the vacant property in Dawes Moor Close had now been cleared but the address of the owner could not yet be identified to contact him about council tax avoidance.

 

The garages at The Frithe had been demolished and access would be provided from Sheehy Way for use by the Sikh Temple.  A new gate would be installed by SBC to allow access by nearby properties in The Frithe.

 

The Ward Councillors had been briefed in relation to the proposed gravel extraction site.  No formal planning application had yet been submitted, and there would be a separate application for the Uxbridge Road access.

 

Councillor Sohal had received a letter from Richard Kulaga in relation to the ongoing CCTV issue.  The Clerk advised that this was now in the hands of the Court and no involvement by third parties was appropriate.

 

The content of an article on the Parish Website was questioned in relation to the clearance of an elderly resident’s garden.  Whilst Councillor Sohal appreciated the help that Councillor Egan and his family had given this lady, he did not feel that the comments in the article relating to SBC were acceptable.  The Clerk advised that the content was correct, but nevertheless offered to remove the questioned comments and let Councillor Sohal know once the page was updated.

 

A discussion took place as to who was responsible for authorising the web content, and whether such items could be damaging to the Parish Council.  The Clerk explained that she was tasked with updating the website, time permitting, and that retired Councillor Davies had previously been her assistant webmaster for the purpose of checking the content.  Councillor Zeib offered to take on this role in future.

 

Councillor Gerstmann reported that he had attended the recent F&GP meeting and the meeting with SBC representatives re local speed issues, and had liaised with a resident in The Frithe regarding a problem caused by the new yellow lines.  The resident was happy that the lines in question had since been removed and asked about future plans for the area.  Parking bays on the green had been proposed, but nothing had been decided as yet.

 

The Government’s new planning approval guidelines were discussed.  It was noted that this was a temporary policy for a period of three years to get the economy moving.  The Clerk pointed out that the Localism Act gave local Councils greater powers to promote developments, but did nothing to help us prevent development in order to protect the character of our neighbourhood.

 

Councillor Gahir reported the following:

·       He had approached the Knolton Way shopkeepers regarding the possibility of a replacement CCTV system for The Cherries and shops.  The barber shop had indicated that he would be willing to house a new system.

·       He attended a meeting with a resident in The Frithe who had their car windows broken and would speak to the Policing Team about this.

·       Some work had been taking place at the derelict property at 192 Knolton Way, and they had also promised to work on the gardens.

·       He had visited the allotment site several times.

·       He noted that half of a building at the Wexham Nursery site had been demolished and this was causing a hazard to nearby residents in Benjamin Lane.  This would be followed up and Councillor Sohal would speak to SBC’s asset management department.

 

Councillor Aldridge reported that the closed launderette in Knolton Way may become a butchers.  He had noted that bollards had been installed at the entrance to Welden, but it was not known why this had taken place.

 

Councillor Malik advised that verge protection grids had been installed in Oatlands Drive and the Grass Verge/Traffic Working Group members may like to take a look at this with Dornels in mind.

 

Councillor Vyas had provided a written report to all Members in relation to verge protection measures and the proposed new play area.

 

The Chairman and Clerk had attended the Bowls Club Charity Event to present the trophy, but it was noted that no other Members attended.  They had also been carrying out clearance work on some vacant allotment plots so that new tenants could be signed up.  Some complaints had been received about allotment bonfires and the Clerk had written to Environmental Health for advice.

 

63.     FINANCIAL REPORT

 

On behalf of the Finance Clerk, the Clerk submitted the Financial Statements for the 1st to 30th June and 1st to 31st July and invited questions from Members.  Mazars had confirmed that the annual audit had been completed to their satisfaction, which was good news in light of the fact that the Parish Council had been chosen for an in-depth auditing process this year.

 

RESOLVED: That the Finance Statements for June and July 2012 be approved, and authority be given for twenty-five cheques to be signed.     

 

64.     REPORT OF THE CLERK AND PLANNING MATTERS

 

No planning issues had been raised this month, apart from the change of Government policy discussed above.  The Clerk asked Councillor Sohal whether he had been able to secure any Section 106 funds for the Parish in respect of the new development at the Wexham House site.  He advised that WCPC should contact the developers direct, although the Clerk reminded him that he offered to deal with this on our behalf back in June 2011.

 

The Clerk reported that a church group had enquired about regular use of the Parish Hall for two hours on Sundays.  This was discussed but it was decided that it would not be possible to offer the group a favourable rate for such a brief hire period.

 

65.     CONSIDERATION OF REPLACEMENT OF WORN TENNIS COURTS NETS/FIXINGS

 

The caretaker had reported that the tennis nets were now worn and tatty.  The contractors had advised that the cost of replacement nets/fixings totalled £336+VAT for the three.

 

RESOLVED: That the sum of £336+VAT be approved for replacement tennis court nets/fixings.

 

66.     CONSIDERATION OF COSTS RELATING TO PROPOSED NEW PLAY FACILITY

 

This item was deferred pending receipt of all associated quotes.

 

67.     CO-OPTION OF NEW MEMBER – CANDIDATE’S ADDRESS

 

The candidate, Councillor Paul Sohal, was invited to address the Council and he also handed out copies of a CV document that he had prepared.  Discussion and voting in relation to this item would take place in Part II and the candidate would be notified of the Council’s decision by the Clerk.

 

68.     PUBLIC QUESTION TIME

 

Retired Councillor Dave Davies reported that he was still receiving phone calls and had dealt with a problem in The Cherries relating to a large bonfire.  The fire was extinguished and the problem resolved.

 

Verge protection measures were discussed and Mr Davies commented that SBC tended to pass on the responsibility for this to the Parish because we have a Parish Council.  Councillor Sohal clarified how funding is allocated for such projects.  It was stressed that SBC need to enforce the bylaws in relation to parking on verges.  It was noted that Martin Mallia would be consulting us in relation to the options following the closure of the illegal hospital car park.

 

Part I of the Meeting closed and it was Resolved that, in view of the nature of the business about to be transacted, it was advisable in the public interest that the Press and Public be temporarily excluded, and they were instructed to withdraw.

 

 

PART II

 

69.     CO-OPTION OF NEW MEMBER – CONSIDERATION OF CANDIDATE AND VOTING PROCEDURE

 

The Members voted unanimously for Councillor Paul Sohal to be co-opted.  His Declaration of Acceptance of Office would be signed at the start of the October meeting.

 

RESOLVED: That Councillor Paul Sohal be co-opted to serve on the Parish Council.

 

70.     MANAGEMENT OF CONFIDENTIAL DOCUMENTATION

 

This was a confidential item to discuss a data management issue raised by a member of staff.

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