20 Nov 18

Minutes of a Meeting of Broomfield Parish Council
held on Tuesday 20th November 2018, 7.30 pm, Broomfield Village Hall

Present: Cllr Duncan Henderson (Chairman), Cllr Rebecca MacDonagh, Cllr Paul Trolley, Cllr Richard Coate, District Cllr Anne Fraser, County Cllr Bill Revans, Peter Hall (Clerk), 9 members of the public.

1) Apologies for absence:
District Councillor Alan Bradford.

2) Declaration of members’ interests:
Cllr Coate declared an interest in planning application 10/18/00014.

3) Public comments on agenda items:
A parishioner asked for clarification of the item in the previous minutes regarding the vacancy for a Parish Councillor and requested that they were amended to make it clear that the Council had decided not to co-opt two previous candidates. This was agreed.

4) Approval of Minutes:
The minutes from the meeting on 19th June had been previously circulated and would be approved at the next meeting following the inclusion of the amendment referred to in item 3 above.

5) Matters arising from the Minutes:
• Cllr MacDonagh explained that she had agreed to co-ordinate the bookings for a community health check event in Broomfield and it would be advertised once a date had been agreed with the provider.
• Cllr MacDonagh will discuss with Cllr Trolley where to plant the daffodil bulbs that Sedgemoor DC had provided free of charge.

6) Planning applications since last meeting:
The following was noted:
– 10/18/00014 – Erection of an agricultural livestock building and yard area and the formation of a new access at Owls Hill Farm – BPC had re-iterated the previous support for the scheme, noting that it was an improvement on the previous one due to the change of location away from the ridgeline and additional landscaping. Under consideration by SDC.

7) 2019/20 Budget and precept proposal:
The Clerk tabled the financial outlook for 2018/19 and a proposal for 2019/20. It was expected that in 2018/19 expenditure would only be £100 less than income and that £7300 would be carried forward, including £1777 which must be spent on ‘infrastructure’ and £4500 earmarked for capital projects to be identified. The precept would be set at £2950 to match the PC income for the current year. Somerset CC will no longer provide winter road salt free of charge and if Broomfield PC were to take over this expenditure it would require a very significant increase in the precept. Following a lengthy discussion on the effectiveness of the existing arrangements it was agreed that the council would not buy salt for the forthcoming winter. However Cllr Trolley agreed to investigate the possibility of buying salt spreading equipment for the Parish. It was further agreed to re-visit the issue next summer prior to preparation of the following year’s budget. In the meantime County Cllr Revans was asked to reflect the PC’s displeasure at this change, given that Broomfield covers a large upland area with an elderly population. The budget and precept for 2019/20 were agreed on this basis and the details will be published on the parish website.

8) Broomfield Common management:
Cllr Trolley gave an update on a meeting with Sedgemoor DC, where it was confirmed that the district council is able to give approval for a management scheme for the Commons. Cllr Trolley also stated that a 5 year implementation plan would need to be produced to be eligible for funding from the AONB Landscape Development Fund and it would therefore be essential to produce a plan with advice from the AONB, whose priority is preservation of the environment.

At this point the Chairman left the meeting with apologies and Cllr MacDonagh (as Vice Chair) took over chairing the meeting.

District Cllr Fraser said she expected Sedgemoor to identify someone to oversee the production of a scheme in the next week or so. She believed it was important that the Parish Council took a leading role and owned the document. Cllr Trolley then reiterated the next three steps
– He has arranged to look over the Common at the end of the week with Bill Jenman from the AONB Service
– He will then produce a draft document in a framework likely to be approved by the AONB
– The document will be made public and volunteers from the community would be recruited to help finalise the scheme, obtain approval and then assist with the practical implementation.

9) Highways update:
Cllr Trolley reported that some patching of potholes had been carried out and more was anticipated. Following some discussion it was agreed that parishioners need to keep reporting highway defects via the online system (link on website) and landowners should be requested to check their boundaries and clear any fallen branches.

10) Broadband Update:
The Clerk reported that the Gigaclear fibre rollout plan had been withdrawn and they were now in default of their contract. A new plan was being considered by Connecting Devon & Somerset but had yet been made public. A parishioner handed the committee a contact at BT who would be willing to talk about their Community Partnership Scheme (which would require community funding, especially from business). The Vice Chair agreed to follow up with the Chairman.

11) Social Events:
The Vice Chair reported that there had been a small surplus from the Harvest Supper and the Chairman was planning a further Thai night towards the end of January. This would be communicated in the January Link Up.
12) Urgent Matters to Report:
– The Clerk reported that he had received an email from the Spaxton Village Hall committee stating that they had been successful with the grant applications for outdoor gym equipment and thanking the council for their contribution of RLT2 funds. They hope to complete the project by the spring.
– A request from Somerset CC had been received to review right of way path categories and vegetation clearance schedules. This would be dealt with by Cllr Trolley.
– Link Up is now online and can be found by following a link on the parish website.
– The Clerk reported that he would be attending training on 7th March in preparation for the May elections.

13) Public Forum:
Ms. Aras updated the committee on the latest Somerset Local Access Forum meeting and there followed some discussion on the possibility of the AONB being incorporated into Exmoor National Park. The Vice Chair would speak to the Chairman regarding the possibility of the Council responding to the review.

There was also a discussion on whether social events could be a fund raising mechanism for an Apple Press for the parish.

14) Items for next meeting:
As per actions above.

15) Date of Next Meetings:
Tuesday 26th February 2019.
Tuesday 16th April 2019.
Further 2019 dates will be finalised once the election timetable is clear.

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