Hassocks Parish Council

Agenda

A meeting of the Parish Council is being held on Tuesday 11 June 2024 at 7.30 pm in the Council Chamber, Parish Centre, Adastra Park, Hassocks.

Parish Clerk 5 June 2024

Members of the public are encouraged to come to the meetings and there is an opportunity for them to address the Council relating to the non-confidential items on the published agenda. A period of 15 minutes will be set aside in item 4 Public participation. It may be necessary to consider particular items in confidential session and where this arises, these items will be considered at the end of the agenda.

AGENDA

1. APOLOGIES

1.1 To accept Apologies for absence.

2. DISCLOSURE OF INTERESTS

2.1 To deal with any disclosure by Members of any disclosable pecuniary interests and interests other than pecuniary interests, as defined under Hassocks Parish Council’s Code of Conduct and the Localism Act 2011, in relation to matters on the agenda.

3. MINUTES

3.1. To accept the minutes of the Parish Council meeting 14th May 2024.

3.2 To note the minutes of the Annual Parish meeting held on the 23rd May 2024.

4. PUBLIC PARTICIPATION

Up to fifteen minutes will be available to allow for the public to make representations, answer questions or give evidence in respect of any items of business included in the agenda, in accordance with Standing Orders.

5. TO ACCEPT THE FOLLOWING MINUTES

5.1       Planning Committee – To agree the minutes for 13th May 2024 and to note the minutes for the 3rd June 2024.

5.2       To note the Grounds & Environment Committee minutes for the 30th May 2024

5.3       To note the minutes of the Policy Resources & Communications Committee 28th May 2024

6. FINANCE

6.1       To approve the Financial Report and authorise the list of payments in the sum of £19,910.56 issued between 1 April 2024 and 30th April 2024. (Appendix 1). To view Appendix 1 please click here.

6.2       To consider and approve the Annual Governance and Accountability Return for the year ending 31 March 2024 as follows:

i) To consider and approve the Annual Governance Statement (Section 1) for 2023/24 (Appendix 2). This report sets out how the Council has met its governance responsibilities.

ii) To note the signed Annual Internal Audit Report. (Appendix 3).

iii) To consider and approve the Accounting Statements (Section 2) for 2023/24

(Appendix 4).

7. REPORTS

7.1.      West Sussex County Councillor

7.2.      Mid Sussex District Councillor’s Report

7.3       Police Report

7.4.      Rail Matters

7.5.      Youth Initiatives

7.6.      Reports from Councillors on meetings outside bodies where the Council is represented.

8. CHAIRMAN’S REPORT

8.1       Current matters (oral report)

9. CLERK’S REPORT

9.1       Councillor Vacancy.  Council are invited to note the resignation of Carolyn Barton from Hassocks Parish Council as of the 31st May 2024.

A Notice of Vacancy has been published inviting electors to request a poll, as required by law. If no such request is received within the prescribed time the Council may co-opt a Member (Local Government Act 1972 s87).

9.2       Grants. This is to advise Members that we have received a letter of thanks from the Adastra Bowls Club for the contribution made towards the replacement mower.

9.3       Light Up Hassocks. At its meeting held on 30 May 2024, the Grounds and Environment (G&E) Committee considered a request from Hassocks Community Organisation (HCO) Light up Hassocks Committee for financial support towards the running costs of the Light Up Hassocks event.  The Parish Council agreed to donate £1500 to the event in 2023, and the request was for a similar level of funding for 2024. The detailed report is set out in the agenda papers of the Grounds & Environmental Committee meeting held on the 30 May 2024.

The G&E Committee was supportive of the event and after careful consideration RECOMMENDED the release of £1,500 from General Reserves subject to Full Council approval.

GE24/08.1 It was RESOLVED to RECOMMEND to Full Council the release of £1,500 from General Reserves to be granted to Hassocks Community Organisation – Light Up Hassocks Committee towards the costs of running the event.          

RECOMMENDATION. Members of Council are therefore requested to consider and approve the recommendation from the Grounds and Environment Committee to release £1,500 from General Reserves towards the cost of running the Light Up Hassocks event.

10. URGENT MATTERS AT THE DISCRETION OF THE CHAIRMAN for noting and/or inclusion on a future agenda.

11. DATE OF NEXT MEETING

To note that the date of the next Council meeting is Tuesday 9 July 2024 at 7.30pm.

EXCLUSION OF PUBLIC AND PRESS

In view of the confidential nature of the business about to be transacted Councillors will be referred to the Confidential Agenda. If any members of the public or press are in attendance they will be requested to withdraw from the meeting in the public interest.

FILMING, RECORDING OF COUNCIL MEETINGS AND USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA
During this meeting members of the public may film or record the Committee and officers from the public area only providing it does not disrupt the meeting. The Confidential section of the meeting may not be filmed or recorded. If a member of the public objects to being recorded, the person(s) filming must stop doing so until that member of the public has finished speaking. The use of social media is permitted but members of the public are requested to switch their mobile devices to silent for the duration of the meeting.

Appendix 2

HASSOCKS PARISH COUNCIL

To: Council

Date: 11 June 2024

Contact for this report: Parish Clerk

Subject: Item 6.2i Annual Governance Statement for year ended 31 March 2024

1. Hassocks Parish Council (HPC) is responsible for ensuring that there is a sound system of internal control, including the preparation of the accounting statements. It must demonstrate that the following accounting statements are in place for the year ended 31 March 2024.

1. We have put in place arrangements for effective financial management during the year, and for the preparation of the accounting statements.

 

HPC has prepared its accounting statements in accordance with the Accounts and Audit Regulations.

At each full Council meeting members consider and approve monthly expenditure:

Under the transparency agenda all expenditure transactions are listed approved and signed by the Chairman.

A monthly current account bank reconciliation is considered and approved by the Chairman at the monthly meeting.

A quarterly bank reconciliation is carried out for each of the three savings accounts and signed by the Chairman at Council Meetings.

2. We maintained an adequate system of internal control, including measures designed to prevent and detect fraud and corruption and reviewed its effectiveness. HPC has made proper arrangements and accepted responsibility for safeguarding the public money and resources in its charge.

 

3. We took all reasonable steps to assure ourselves that there are no matters of actual potential non-compliance with laws, regulations and proper practises that could have a significant financial effect on the ability of this smaller authority to conduct its business or on its finances. HPC has only done what it has the legal power to do so and has complied with the proper practises in doing so.

Standing Orders and Financial Regulations are adhered to and are kept under review.

4. We provided proper opportunity during the year for the exercise of electors’ rights in accordance with the requirements of the Accounts and Audit Regulations. During the year, HPC has given all persons interested the opportunity to inspect and ask questions about the authority’s accounts.

HPC displays relevant documents on the village notice boards and in the Parish Council’s front window. This information is also published on the Councils website.

5. We carried out an assessment of the risks facing this authority and took appropriate steps to manage those risks, including the introduction of internal controls and/or external insurance cover when required. HPC has considered the financial and other risks it faces and has dealt with them properly.

An annual risk assessment is written and reviewed.

6. We maintained throughout the year an adequate effective system of internal audit of the accounting records and control systems. HPC has arranged for a competent person, independent of the financial controls and procedures, to give an objective view on whether internal controls meet the needs of the Council.

An Internal Auditor was appointed and will undertake two visits a year to review accounts and procedures as a minimum.

7. We took appropriate action on all matters raised in reports from internal and external audit. HPC has responded to any matters brought to its attention by internal and external audit.
8. We considered whether any litigation, liabilities or commitments, events or transactions, occurring either during or after the year-end, have a financial impact on this smaller authority and, where appropriate have included them in the accounting statements. HPC disclosed everything it should have about its business activity during the year including events taking place after the year-end if relevant.

There were none

 

9. (For local councils only) Trust funds including charitable.

In our capacity as the sole managing trustee we discharge are accountability responsibilities for the fund(s)/assets, including financial reporting and if required, independent examination or audit.

HPC has met all of its responsibilities where it is a sole managing trustee of a local trust.

 

 

2. OFFICER RECOMMENDATION Members are recommended to approve the Annual Governance Statement for year ended 31 March 2024 which is set out in the following Appendix 2.1. To view Appendix 2.1 please click here.


Appendix 3

HASSOCKS PARISH COUNCIL

To: Council

Date: 11 June 2024

Contact for this report: Parish Clerk

Subject: Item 6.2ii Annual Governance and Accountability Return 2023/24 supporting documentation – Internal Auditor’s report for the year ended 31 March 2024


1. The Internal Auditor’s report was considered at the Full Council meeting held on May 14th 2024. Members are requested to note the signed Annual Internal Audit Report for 2023/24. (Appendix 3.1 as follows). To view Appendix 3.1 please click here.

RECOMMENDATION

2. Members are RECOMMENDED to note the contents of the Annual Internal Auditors Report for 2023/24.


Appendix 4

HASSOCKS PARISH COUNCIL

To:   Council

Date: 11 June 2024

Contact for this report: Parish Clerk

Subject:  Item 6.2 iii Annual Governance and Accountability Return 2023/24 – The Accounting Statements (Section 2)


1. A copy of the Accounting Statements (Section 2) to support the Annual Governance and Accountability Return 2024 are attached and were reviewed as part of the Internal Auditor’s review (Appendix 4.1 as follows). To view Appendix 4.1 please click here.

RECOMMENDATION

2. Members are RECOMMENDED to approve that the Accounting Statements for the year ended 31st March 2024, in this Annual Return, present fairly the financial position of Hassocks Parish Council and its income and expenditure.