HASSOCKS PARISH COUNCIL
To: All Members of the Policy Resources & Communications Committee (Ian Weir, Kate Bailey, Sue Hatton, Carolyn Barton and Kristian Berggreen) with copies to all other Councillors for information.
A meeting of the POLICY RESOURCES & COMMUNICATIONS COMMITTEE will be held on TUESDAY 1st March 2022 at 7.30pm in the Parish Centre, Adastra Park, Hassocks.
Parish Clerk 23 February 2021
1. TO ACCEPT APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
2. TO ACCEPT DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
3. ELECTION OF CHAIR AND VICE CHAIR
4. MINUTES to accept the Minutes of the Policy Resources & Communications Committee held on 30 November 2021. (Previously Circulated).
5. PUBLIC PARTICIPATION
6. DRAFT SAFEGUARDING POLICY
The proposed draft Safeguarding Policy is set out in Appendix 1 (below) and members are requested to consider the attached policy for adoption,
Member’s views are sought.
7. COMMUNICATIONS (verbal update)
8. Budget Position
The purpose of this report is to update the Committee on the budget position for 2021/2022
Financial Accounts Budget – 1 February 2022 provides a detailed position as per the RBS finance system and is produced for information in Appendix 2 (please click here to view Appendix 2).
The attached report sets out the following detail:
- Annual spend /income to date
- 2021/22 budget
- Variance (difference between spend and budget to date – Expenditure and Income)
- Balance of budget
- % spent to date
The pandemic has impacted the business activities of the Council over the last year not only in respect of expenditure but also some income streams of the Council. However despite these challenging circumstances the Council has managed to deliver a number of projects in this current financial year.
The detailed budget variances are set out in Appendix 2 which summarises the current position against each of the respective budget descriptors.
Appendix 3 (see below) details some of the expected larger variances projected for the year end which members are requested to note. To assist members a narrative to explain the main rationale for the variance has been incorporated into the table.
These projections have taken into consideration anticipated committed expenditure up until the end of the financial year, although the Council has yet to be invoiced.
Members are requested to note the report.
9. Welcome Back Fund – High Street – The government have provided grant funding for specific initiatives to support the recovery of the high street post pandemic. Strict criteria is applied and funding is allocated to district councils to administer on their behalf. Within the scheme restrictions are placed on what and how the funds can be used.
A number of parish councils have been in discussion with the district council as to how the funds which were accessible could be utilised. All funds are required to be expended by the end of the financial year. From the available work streams where funding could be utilised and expended within the timeframe five parish councils will undergo a review of their high street(s) with a view to developing a number of Action Plans to assist village’s recovery from the impacts of covid. MSDC have let the contract to the Retail Group consultancy who specialise in this area of work which will be undertaken in February/March 2022.
It is anticipated this will involve engagement/surveys with high street users/traders and stakeholders which will result in the generation of report setting out short/medium and long term actions that could be considered for implementation to assist in the recovery of the High street.
Members are asked to note the above actions.
10. URGENT MATTERS at the discretion of the Chairman for noting and/or inclusion on a future agenda.
11. DATE OF NEXT MEETING. 5 April 2022
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.
12. Staffing matters (Appendix 4).
All members of the public are welcome to attend meetings of the Parish Council and its Committees.
Item 5 – 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.
If you wish to attend this virtual meeting please email email@example.com before 09.00 hrs on the day of the meeting to be sent an electronic invitation by 14.00 noon on that same day.
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.
DRAFT – HASSOCKS PARISH COUNCIL SAFEGUARDING POLICY
1.1. Hassocks Parish Council expect that all who use our services and facilities are treated with respect and kept safe from harm. We are committed to taking all reasonable precautions to safeguard the welfare of children, young people and vulnerable persons when they are engaged in activity associated with the Parish Council and /or whilst using our premises and facilities.
2.1. The Council will endeavour to safeguard children and vulnerable persons, in that:
- The welfare of the child and vulnerable adult is paramount
- All children and vulnerable adults have the right to protection from abuse
- All suspicions and allegations of abuse will be taken seriously and responded to swiftly and appropriately
- All staff, volunteers and elected members of the council have a responsibility to report concerns to the appropriate officer (Parish Clerk)
- All staff, volunteers and elected members of the council are not to deal with situations of abuse or to decide if abuse has occurred
3. Duty of care
3.1. Disclosure and Baring Service (DBS) checks will be carried out on relevant staff in accordance with the eligibility criteria in the Rehabilitations of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975.
3.2. Hassocks Parish Council has a duty of care to protect others from harm; this includes a range of processes including risk assessment and health & safety practices.
3.3. Allegations or suspicions of inappropriate behaviour by a member of staff or Councillor must be referred immediately to the Clerk who will refer the matter to Social Services at County Council for investigation. The Clerk will log concerns and record action taken; this information will be stored confidentially.
3.4. Hirers of Parish Council facilities must ensure that any activities for children, young people and other vulnerable adults are only provided by a fit and proper person. When requested, you must provide us with a copy of your Safeguarding Policy and evidence that appropriate Disclosure and Barring service (DBS) checks have been undertaken.
Contact numbers for reporting concerns
- West Sussex Safeguarding Children Partnership: 01403 229900
- For emergencies which require same day response: 07711 769657
About vulnerable adults
- Adult Social Care: 01243 642121
- For emergencies which require a same day response: 033 022 27007
In case of an emergency please ring 999
You must refer; you must not investigate
PROJECTED KEY VARIANCES IN BUDGET 2021/22
|Staff – all staff
|Council retained vacancy on establishment therefore budget not fully utilised
|Due to the curtailment of training courses and the move over to virtual training at significantly reduced costs budget was underspent.
|Communications & Publications
|Burial Ground – Repairs & Renewals
|Improvement scheme deferred 22/23
|Parish Centre Garage Building Maintenance Contracts
|Works required to be deferred in addition reduced usage of the building
|Grounds & Machinery
|Pavilion – Building Maintenance Contract
|Due to closure some contracts were suspended
|Grounds Maintenance contracts
|Reduction in frequency of works due to Covid restrictions
|R & R
|Increased in level of R & R required within the park
|Tennis Courts – R & R
|External funding currently being sought to refurbish facility