Minutes 5th December 2023

Minutes Uploaded on December 21, 2023

DRAFT Minutes of the Meeting of Cornworthy Parish Council held in Cornworthy Village Hall on Tuesday 5th December 2023

Present: Cllr Tuppen (Chair), Cllr Bailey (Vice Chair) Cllr Finn, Cllr Fowler, Cllr Hunt, Cllr Hammond, Cllr John McKay (SHDC), C Campos (Parish Clerk)

Apologies for Absence

Cllr Thompson, Cllr Hawkins (DCC)

87.Declaration of Councillors Interests

Cllr Tuppen and Cllr Hammond asked that the Councillor Register of Interests be updated to reflect changes in their circumstances.

88.Approval of Minutes

The minutes of the meeting of 16th   October were approved.

89. Matters Arising from the Minutes

The discontinuation of copper wired telephone lines in Cornworthy will be discussed at the March CPC meeting. The Christmas tree has been donated and decorations purchased. Both SHDC and DCC sweepers have been through the village. The Clerk will request future visits every 8 weeks and keep a record of all visits. Cllr Tuppen reported that the cost of the May election to CPC will be around £990. The Climate and Ecology Bill wasn’t heard in the House of Commons.

  1. Reports from District and County Councillors

90.1 Cllr John McKay: Cllr McKay reported that the Council Plan will be voted on by SHDC on 15th December. He referenced the very successful Food Symposium with local food producers. He also suggested that CPC investigate the Community Resilience Fund which offers grants for community projects. He offered to share the climate change data he receives from Bristol University with CPC. He mentioned the new waste management arrangements and Cllr Finn noted that the receptacles were not left in a neat manner and that rubbish has been strewn across the lanes. Cllr Bailey noted that a 24-hour window for reporting missed collections and problems was not acceptable. The Clerk will write formally to Cllr McKay about the issues Cornworthy has experienced.

90.2 Cllr Jonathan Hawkins: In his absence he asked the Clerk to raise the issue of the proposed installation of Parking meters in Dartmouth. She explained that the proposal was extensive and there would be a public consultation lasting just a few weeks. Affected residents should make their feelings known. Cllr Tuppen congratulated DCC on their response to issues with the Grit Bins which are now full and replaced where needed. These issues were all reported online, and he wanted to encourage residents to use the DCC and SHDC website, accessed through ours, to report any issues around the parish. He noted CPC’s disappointment that the gritter doesn’t currently come to Cornworthy (and even when it did in the past, only came as far as Priory View) and believes that this presents a serious risk to parishioners so intends to put pressure on DCC to renew the service to the whole village. In the current absence of the gritter the Clerk will write formally to DCC to request that DCC supplies and maintains 5 additional grit bins in the parish. It was agreed that CPC will request a formal explanation as to why it is logistically impossible for the grit lorry to drive through Cornworthy . Cllr Hammond will contact Ashprington Parish Council to consider jointly writing a formal letter to DCC.

  1. Local Issues

91.1 Parishioners Correspondence to Action

            Cllr Hawkins has offered to meet with the resident.

  1. Devon County Council Highways

No upcoming Roadworks have been advised.

  1. Planning

No new applications, decisions or consultations have been advised.

  1. The following CPC Policies were approved and adopted until the next review in April 2024

94.1 CPC Transparency Statement

            94.2 Information available from CPC under the Model Publication Scheme

            94.3 Electoral Commission Guidance for Candidates

            94.4 CPC Member Allowances

            94.5 CPC Accident Reporting Policy

            94.6 CPC Data Breach Policy


95.1 To Update on CPC Finances.

Cllr Tuppen said an up-to-date report detailing payment, receipts and bank reconciliation has been circulated to all Councillors and posted on the CPC website.

95.2 The following payments were approved.

C Campos October Salary £240.00
C Campos November Salary £259.60
C Campos Back Pay April-October 2023 £155.20
Computer Parts for CPC Laptop £69.72
Christmas Tree Decorations £65.71
Community Heartbeat Trust £73.00
Andrew Best P3 work £280.00
  1. 3 To note the pay increase for the Clerk of £1.00 an hour as negotiated by the NUJ

                        This was noted.

95.4    To Discuss and Approve changes to the CPC Insurance Schedule

The Clerk confirmed that the Insurance Schedule and CPC Asset Register now match but the level of cover for certain items may need to be adjusted. Cllr Finn offered to get an updated quote for the rebuild cost of the wall. Cllr Tuppen proposed that the contents of the Clerk’s office, the noticeboards, the defibs, the wall, the DAA lighting mast, the metal signposts and the marquee should remain fully insured with all other assets valued at £1. A decision will be made before the renewal date in June,

95.5    To remove the Projector and Voice Amplifier from the CPC Asset Register

The Projector has been donated to the Village Hall and removed from the Asset Register. The Voice Amplifier has no use to CPC and will be sold or given away and removed from the Asset Register.

95.6    To Discuss and Approve the CPC budget and set the precept for 2024/25

The Chair noted that last year CPC reserves were reduced from £24192 to £13,722 due to some exceptional expenditure including two defibrillators, new signposts and the Jubilee Stone. The Council agreed that the minimum reserves the Council should hold is around £12,000 and this is projected to be the position at the end of this financial year. Total budgeted costs for 2024/25 are projected to be £11, 650. The Chair explained that whilst some grants might be forthcoming, the precept needs to be increased to cover costs for the forthcoming year. The proposed increase means that the cost to a Band A taxpayer will increase from £26.45 to £34.51 an increase of 0.15p per week. The cost to a Band D taxpayer will increase from £39.82 to £51.77 an increase of 0.23p a week. Band H will increase from £79.64 to £103.53 an increase of 0.46p a week. Cllr Hammond noted that following the retirement of a volunteer lengthsman CPC will have to pay a contractor to fulfil these duties moving forward. Also, that CPC wishes to be able to support community groups and projects in the Parish.

A detailed forecast for the year to 31st March 2024 and a budget for the year to 31st March 2025 is available for inspection on the CPC website but the major fixed costs for 2024/25 are as follows:

  • Administration of CPC, including the Parish Clerk’s salary and expenses – £5000
  • Annual cost of maintaining defibrillators and the VETS scheme          – £1000
  • Village maintenance (lengthsman duties-new), footpaths, capital items – £3000

The Council unanimously voted to approve the 2024/25 budget.

  1. To Update on the status of the Devon Air Ambulance Lighting Mast

            This will be moved to a future agenda to enable a representative of the DAA to speak to CPC.

  1. To Update on the internal interim review of Internal Audit requirement

The Chair noted that CPC had a very poor Internal Audit in June 2023, but that Cllr Bailey and the Clerk had worked hard to address the issues identified in the report. The new website has also helped to ensure that CPC is now fully compliant and it is expected that next year’s internal audit report will reflect this improvement.

  1. Reports

98 .1   Clerk and RFO – The Clerk circulated her reports prior to the meeting There were no questions, but it was noted that the existing contract for the Clerk was incomplete and had not been formally approved by the previous administration. The Clerk and the Chair were working towards a new contract which it is hoped will be issued in January.

98.2    Tree Warden – The work on the oak tree will take place once all the leaves have dropped.

98.3    Defibrillators and VETS Report – Cllr Fowler reported that new pads have been ordered. CPC is investigating the option of finding an external organisation to take over the maintenance of the Defibs.

98.4    Village Hall – Cllr Finn said further work on the hall had been completed including four new fire doors. That means that phase one of the works have been completed and receipt of the ACRE grant of £10,000 will mean work can start on Phase Two. The Christmas Fayre raised over £1,000 and more events are planned into 2024. She thanked CPC for the projector which will save the Committee having to buy one. Cllr Finn has stepped down from the Village Hall Committee as a full trustee but will continue as the CPC representative on the committee.

98.5    P3 Paths- Cllr Finn said that the planned works were all completed and an invoice for that work received. She has asked if the map case repairs could be covered by the P3 grant monies. She will be resurveying to identify more work that needs to be done as funds are available for this.

98.6    Parish Volunteers- Cllr Thompson’s report was read out and it was noted that the Christmas Fayre organisers, cake makers, tree decorators, tea makers and washer uppers have all done a great job. He also thanked the film night and disco organisers as well as the Councillors who went out and swept up leaves around the village which were in danger of blocking drains.

100 Club Draw
December   86 55 22
Christmas    8 33 110

The next Parish Council Meeting is:
Monday 22nd January 2023 at 7.30 pm in the Village Hall