Policy, Resources and Communications



To:      All Members of the Policy, Resources and Communications Committee (Kate Bailey,   Frances Gaudencio, Peter Gibbons, Sue Hatton, Ian Weir, David Hammond and Frank Rylance ) with copies to all other Councillors for information

A virtual meeting of the POLICY, RESOURCES and COMMUNICATIONS COMMITTEE will be held on Tuesday 15 September 2020 at 10.30 am in the Parish Centre, Adastra Park, Hassocks.

Members of the public are encouraged to come to the meetings and there is an opportunity for them to address the Committee relating to the non-confidential items on the published agenda.

If you wish to attend, this virtual meeting please email the info@hassocks-pc.gov.uk before 4pm on 14th September to be sent an electronic invitation before 9.45 am on the 15th September.

Ian Cumberworth Parish Clerk   8 September 2020




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.


3.1    To accept Minutes of the Meeting held 28th July 2020 (previously Circulated).



5.1    FINANCIAL ACCOUNTS – Budget – This report sets out the summary budget position as per the RBS accounting system for the first 5 months of the financial year as at 31st August 2020 and is produced for information. (Appendix 1). Please click here to view Appendix 1.

The attached report sets out the following detail:

1          Actual spend/income to date
2          2020/2021 Budget
3          Variance (difference between spend and budget to date)
4          Funds available
5          transfer to/from Ear Marked Reserves (EMR)

To assist members a sample of Income and Expenditure areas have been highlighted where it is likely some of the larger variances will occur in relation to expenditure and income during the current financial year in part due to the impact of the pandemic however this is not an exhaustive list.

  1. IT costs may exceed the current budget by the end of the financial year due to the increase level of support required in responding to the pandemic however if this does occur any shortfall could potentially be met from the small business grant.
  2. Twinning budget is likely to remain unspent as all events have been cancelled for 2020.
  3. Miscellaneous Income: Small business grant: Additional unbudgeted funding received. Council received funding from central government to support the additional costs /loss of revenue as a result of the pandemic.
  4. Burial Ground – Repairs & Renewals is likely to remain underspent for this financial year.
  5. Pavilion Income: Income will be significantly down as the facility remains closed.
  6. Adastra Park Income: Income is down due to usage having to be stopped during the ‘lockdown’ it remains to be seen whether the facilities continue to remain open for the remainder of the year.
  7. Adastra Park Masterplan – (£2,500) this relates to the release of retention from last year’s skate park project.
  8. Tennis Court income – likely to be down as a result of closure of the facility early on in the pandemic and a reduction in fees charged to the club to reflect this.
  9. Bowling green Income – likely to be down as a result of closure of the facility early on in the pandemic and a reduction in fees charged to the club to reflect this.
  10. Talbot Field trees – transfer of funds from General reserves to meet unforeseen costs associated with tree works.
  11. Neighbourhood Plan – unlikely to incur additional costs this financial year
  12. Parking Disc Income – Due to lock down earlier this year and MSDC suspending charging for a period of time its likely revenue will be down.

(It should be noted that some of the shortfall in income could be offset from the Small business grant secured as part of the government pandemic support fund if members chose to do so.)

5.2    COMMUNICATIONS – Verbal update

5.3      BUSINESS PLAN – verbal update.

5.4   SECTION 106 FUNDS: The attached report sets out the summary position regarding the    current funds held by Mid Sussex District Council for the benefit of the parish. A number of funds have been ring fenced for the benefit of improvements within Belmont (London Road Rec) although some funds still remain unallocated. Members are asked to note the contents of the report. (Appendix 2). Please click here to view Appendix 2.

6. Urgent Matters at the discretion of the Chairman for noting and/or inclusion on a future agenda.

7. DATE OF NEXT MEETING 17 November 2020

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 present they will be requested to withdraw from the meeting.

8. STAFFING MATTERS (verbal update)

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.

Please Note
All members of the public are welcome to attend to attend meetings of the Parish Council and its Committees.
Item 4 – a period of 15 minutes will be set aside for the public statements and questions relating to the published non-confidential business of the Meeting.
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.



Minutes of the POLICY, RESOURCES and COMMUNICATIONS COMMITTEE virtual meeting held on Tuesday 15 September 2020 at 10.30 pm

Attendees: Parish Councillors: Frances Gaudencio, Peter Gibbons, Ian Weir and David Hammond.

Visiting members: Nick Owens

Clerk: Ian Cumberworth

Due to initial technical issues in joining the meeting experienced by Cllr Gaudencio, Cllr Weir acted as the Chair and Cllr Gaudencio joined the meeting at a later point.

PRC20/10   APOLOGIES: Kate Bailey, Sue Hatton and Frank Rylance.                               



The Minutes of the Meeting held on 28th July 2020 as previously circulated were accepted.


There were no members of the public present.


20/14.1         Financial Accounts – Budget position – The Clerk introduced the report summarising the budget position as at the 31st August 2020 and drew member’s attention to a narrative in the report covering some of the affected income and expenditure areas. Members were advised that with the impact of the pandemic and the potential of ongoing restrictions there is likely to be further impact on the Council’s miscellaneous income streams and in particular those related to the park. At this point it is difficult to predict accurately for the remainder of the year as figures may be influenced by any future government interventions.

Earlier in the year the Council applied a discount to both the bowls club and tennis clubs fees to reflect the unavailability of facilities due to the lockdown and the pavilion remains closed therefore income from this source will be significantly affected.

Members were reminded that the Council had recently received a small business grant as part of the governments’ Covid 19 support package that could be used to offset some of the additional costs or loss of revenue as a result of the pandemic.

The Clerk invited questions from the members; members sought clarification on a number of budgets which were responded to by the Clerk. Members were satisfied with the explanations provided and agreed to note the report

20/14.2   Communication the Clerk advised members that an article had recently been published as a double-page spread in Hassocks Life covering a general update on the work of the Parish Council over recent months and an article on the play areas and the Covid guidance associated with them.

Members felt the articles were well presented and portrayed a positive image for the Council.

Members were keen to promote communications through this publication and a discussion ensued around the possibility of some of the Committee chairs drafting future articles for inclusion in the publication to publicise the work of the committees which was welcomed by those members present.

Some thought was given to the type of, matters the Council may wish to produce.

As the Chair of the Planning Committee was present it was suggested he may wish to produce an item on the current national planning consultation and the Councils response. It was noted that Hassocks MP had also recently stood up in parliament against the proposed changes.

Subject to their being sufficient lead in time to meet the copy-date the Chair of Planning undertook to draft a suitable article for inclusion. The Clerk undertook to provide the copy-date information to Cllr Owens.

 20/14.3      Business Plan Cllr Gaudencio introduced this item jointly with Cllr Weir. Members were informed that at the previous PR & C meeting it was agreed that Cllr Gaudencio and Cllr Weir would review the current plan and review the progress on initiatives to date and to assess some of the priorities of the work streams and agree to sign off any that had been completed. The two members had met and agreed a way forward. The intention is to replicate a table produced in the previous business plan setting out a list of actions and indication of the timeframe for their delivery.

This will then enable the Council to produce an up to date position statement of what has been done which can then be incorporated into the Council’s Annual report.

Cllr Weir indicated that this piece of work will be brought back to Policy Resources and Communications Committee at a future date for consideration.

20/14.4     Section 106 Agreements. The Clerk introduced this report and advised members that it set out a summary position of section 106 funds held within the parish which comprised of total monies collected, funds spent, identified project balance remaining and non-identified balance remaining.

Based on the funding statement the following funds have yet to be allocated to specific initiatives:

Formal Sport                                       £42,881.63

Community Buildings                       £  4,872.33

Public Art                                             £10,393.31

Local Community Infrastructure    £13,349.19

The Clerk advised members that further s106 funding will be realised later in the year once the properties being built at the old sorting office in Keymer road have been occupied. Members were advised that funds had to be expended in line with the designated categories in agreement with the s106 agreement terms and could not be transferred between the different categories.

Members raised a range of questions with the Clerk regarding this source of funding which the Clerk responded to and it was acknowledged that the Council will need to continue to seek additional funding streams to support the delivery of the business plan. The clerk undertook to distribute the s106 spreadsheet with the links detailing further detail on the schemes funded/supported by s106 funding.

Members briefly discussed some possible uses of the funds  to support the Councils priorities, some of which will be considered by the Park Working Group, and also the possibilities of accessing additional funding streams

PRC20/15     Urgent Matters.  There were no urgent matters.

PRC20/16      DATE OF NEXT MEETING.  17th November 2020

PRC20/17     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 present they will be requested to withdraw from the meeting.