Minutes of meeting via ZOOM on Wednesday, February 17, 2021
Present: The following Parish Councillors were in attendance: Mr. P. Rice (chairman, PR) Mr. T. Bradford (TB), Mr. A. Butler (AB), Mr. S. Chapman (SC), Mr. R Lovick (RL), Mr. H. May (HM), R. Graves Morris (RGM), Mr. B. Standen (BS), Ms. S. Turner (ST), Councillor. R. Price (Norfolk County Council) and Councillor H. Blaythwayt (North Norfolk District Council)
Guests: Mr. D Bland, Mr K. Lowe, and Mr. A. Varle Ms. Marie Winter
Meeting was called to order by the Chair at 7:32 pm
1. Apologies for Absence:
Ms. J. Harrison
2. Declarations of Interest:
P. Rice declaring interest re Broads Society and as flood warden.
3. Minutes of January Meeting
PR requested a motion to approve the minutes. HM and RGM requested several amendments. HM made motion to approve as amended, second RL and approved.
4. Matters Arising-
PR commented that the letter that was written to Lawn Green of the Police and Crimes Commission by David Balls received no response.A follow up should be done when the new Clerk starts. The Council agreed.Councillor Richard Price announced that not only County Council elections happening in May but also to elect new PCC in May .
RL asked for follow-up on dog and salt bins.PR is waiting for prices and will follow up.
5. Clerk Panel Report
RL reported on behalf of the panel comprising of himself, SC and BS. Two highly qualified candidates applied for the position of Clerk to the Parish Council. Both were interviewed and the panel is recommending the appointment of Ms. Catherine Moore. RL proposed that this appointment be ratified by the Council, seconded by BS. PR who also participated in the interviews asked for discussion. On their being none the motion carried and was passed.The contract is being drawn up so that Ms. Moore can assume the position before the March meeting.SC noted that Ms. Moore was advocating the use of the Cloud for the storing of Council documents. SC made a motion that two flash drives be used so that all documents are backed up, one held by the Clerk and one held by the Chair.Motion seconded by PR and approved.
6. New Website
BS who has created the new website with input from the working group noted that all recommended changes offered during the Zoom presentation on February 3rd had been incorporated.The Parish Council site has been updated and the link to the Village Hall has been hidden pending updates by the VHMCThe Potter Heigham site is ready to go live pending the establishment of the advertising opportunities.BS offered a motion to approve the website and that it should go live in about 10 days to 14 days time.Motion seconded by PR.Discussion ensued about how to announce the website (post on Facebook, and in Gazette) as well as adding information about the Post Office and opening times. The motion passed unanimously.RL acknowledged the work done by Bev.The new clerk will assist BS in the ongoing administration as it is a dynamic site.The working group will approve amendments and additions. RL and ST will solicit ads from local businesses.Motion carried unanimously.
7. Standing Orders
ST noted that she has prepared a first draft of a document created from the NALC model. It is being reviewed by RL and PR. RL suggested a zoom meeting with Ms. Moore to obtain her input.
8. Police Report
BS provided salient points from a report provided by Pete Davidson relevant to Potter Heigham, Hickling and Catfield . PH being made a priority for speeding and parking issues.Tom Gibbs advised that fraud and scam incidents have increased.
PR has received a letter from a community member expressing interest in the vacancy on the Council.There was no call for an election, the closing date for which was February 9th. As such a new Councillor may be co-opted.PR will ask the individual to submit more information in time for the next meeting.
10. Public Time.
PR opened public time at 8:06 pm.
D. Bland thanked PR and BS for assistance with Mill Rd. However, another piece of the road has sunk. PR will report to Highways. BS reported that a case number has been allocated.Councillor Rice asked to be provided case numbers and updates on such issues.
Mrs Winter provided an update on Meadow Court and expressed concern that further building developments would put further strain on the pumping station that is already unable to cope with the amount of water resulting in bad flooding. After significant discussion Councillor Blaythwayt noted that he is working on updating planning policy to catch up with current flooding situations.Councillor Price asked that any planning applications be shared with him.
Mr. Lowe expressed concern that the edges of Mill Road never get repaired.BS offered to take pictures and submit.
Public time closed at 8.21 pm.
12. Parish Council reports
Dog fowling has become a problem on Dove House Lane and the thoroughfare.
Allotments – AB and PR will determine how many are available. The Council agreed that not residents of Potter may rent allotments.
Environment – RL another tire dumped.
Footpaths – BS noted police are monitoring situation where visitors to senior residence on Bridge Road are parking on and blocking pavements.
Highways – HM reported on complaints received about mess from ducks etc on the Staithe making it very slippery. PR will consult with Broads Authority to get it cleaned.
Drainage – flooding at Meadow Court was discussed. Engineer to meet with PR. to explore options.Updates on actions taken re Reynolds Lane and the riverbanks were provided. It is imperative that we get on top of these issues before problems are exacerbated further.RL suggested that someone from the Environment Agency should come and speak to us about their plans.Councillor Blaythwayt noted that unfortunately is hard to get any one agency to assume responsibility.
VHMC – RGM reported that the solar panel installation was well underway and due to be completed by February 22nd.ST and JH are working on finding interest in getting the Hall rented out more.
Upper Thurne Working Group - HM reported a meeting is planned for April.
13. County District and Outside Bodies Report
NNDC – Councillor Blaythwayt. Apologies for delay in bin collection.Schedule will return to normal now bad weather passed.He provided an update on rubbish being collected from bungalows as reported by HM and noted that the Broads are under threat from an invasive plant, Floating Penny wart. Any sightings should be reported, and the plant removed. Information will be posted on Facebook.
NCC – Councillor Price. The update on Covid numbers is that cases have gone up by 55 to 2,855.Positive cases have dropped from 109/100,000 to 52.Scrutiny Committee will not advocate for full increase in taxes to ensure balanced budget. Investing in libraries and to help local councils with flood relief.His personal goal is work with agencies and hold them accountable for getting necessary actions done.
14. Finance Report
SC noted that HM and PR will be signatures on the Bank account.He has gone through all information provided to him by David Balls.All is now filed in cabinets at Village Hall. Thanks was given to AB for securing the new storage. RL is creating a simple expense reporting form. SC agreed that this is important as we are managing public money.
15. Any Other Business
ST – none
HM – requested list of names, address and contact info for all Councillors.The new clerk can provide.
SC – need update on any member not returning to serve on the VHMC. Required for reporting to the Charity Commission.RGM will confirm.
AB -Working on grit bins and has access to more filing cabinets if needed.
TB, BS and RGM – none
RL Thanks to all individuals involved in litter picking.
16. Notice of Next Meeting
March 17th, 2021.
Meeting closed at 9:08 pm