MINUTES OF THE POLICY & RESOURCES COMMITTEE MEETING HELD ON TUESDAY 2nd MAY 2023
PRESENT: Cllr. Fletcher (in the Chair), Cllrs. Bunyan, Gilbert, Hatcher and Kings.
APOLOGIES: Cllr. Pethurst.
Declaration of Interests, Dispensations and Predetermination:
Members are required to declare any interests, dispensations or predetermination on items on this agenda in accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct. Members are reminded that changes to the Register of Interests should be notified to the Clerk.
143/22: Internal finance check:
Cllr. Pethurst had confirmed by email that the internal finance check had been completed and everything was in order.
144/22: Authorisation of payments made after the April meeting:
A list of payments totalling £16,866.81 made after the April meeting, is filed with these minutes.
145/22: Transfers of monies between accounts:
No transfers had been necessary.
146/22: Invoices for Payment:
A list of payments to be made in May had been circulated, a copy of which is filed with these minutes. Cllr. Fletcher proposed the payments be approved as presented, this was seconded by Cllr. Gilbert and agreed.
Policy and Resources £8,590.28
Properties & Burial Grounds £2,098.95
Environmental Management £ 640.76
General Funding £ 800.93
The Clerk advised that a signatory on the Lloyds current account would have to attend the branch to cash the cheque for petty cash, as the branch no longer operates the open credit facility that allowed the clerks to present a signed cheque.
Two members are required to log in to the account and authorise the payments.
147/22: Authorisation to pay regular suppliers/providers out of Committee on instruction from the Responsible Finance Officer and subject to approval from 2 Policy & Resources Committee Members:
It was proposed by Cllr. Fletcher seconded by Cllr. Kings and agreed to process any payments from regular suppliers or providers, out of committee on the approval of two existing members of the Policy & Resources Committee as the current signatories. The Responsible Finance Officer will forward any relevant documentation prior to requesting authorisation.
148/22: King Charles III Coronation:
An invoice had been received from Stationery Express totalling £116.65 to cover the cost of printing the posters and flyers advertising the Cranbrook Coronation Party, being held in the High Street on Sunday 7th May. Organisers of the Sissinghurst Coronation Party had decided to finance their posters and flyers themselves, to avoid any delay.
149/22: Quote for Cyber Insurance:
We had been seeking a quote from our current insurers to include cyber insurance. Due to a previous claim the insurers were insisting we implement certain criteria such as using their software partners ‘Avast’ before they would consider covering us. We had been able to meet the majority of the criteria required, however, to implement all would be reasonably costly. One of the conditions would be to successfully test a full restoration of all files every six months. Uprise Digital had suggested that was time consuming and would cost in the region of £250 each time. The insurance, if all criteria can be met would be in the region of £600-£800 plus IPT.
Cllr. Hatcher offered to look into what is needed and how it could be implemented in more detail. The Clerk would also look to other insurers to see if a more competitive price could be obtained as we are not tied into any long term agreement with our current insurer’s for cyber insurance.
150/22: Utility Aid Complaint – Update:
No update is available, the Energy Ombudsman is still investigating the complaint.
151/22: Council Strategy for making a Complaint:
Cllr. Gilbert has suggested devising a strategy to assist the Clerks when they need to make a complaint. Recently the service provided by some utility companies had fallen short of what we consider to be acceptable, therefore he thought an acceleration process to follow may be useful. The Clerk advised that during her enquires amongst the clerking community, she did not find any other parishes that had a strategy for making a complaint and felt they would be happy to seek support from Members if they needed it, during the process of making any specific complaint.
152/22: Community Centres/Medical Centre:
Cllr. Fletcher reported they were still waiting for a commitment from the GPs on the space they require. Cllr. Bunyan was keen to start the process of selecting an architect, as the plans could be amended at a later stage if the Crane Surgery are not willing to commit. Cllr. Gilbert felt this could present unnecessary risks as we cannot move forward with the project until we know what we are building. Cllr. Kings also felt that if we start the process and then stall because we do not have all the information we need, we would risk losing credibility and may not be able to secure a contract to build.
No issues were raised.
154/22: Grant Applications:
No applications had been received.
155/22: Items for Information:
Cllr. Fletcher has that if anyone had any features or cupcakes for inclusion in the magazine, please contact him directly, as soon as possible.