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Present: Cllrs A Gockmann (Chairman), S Clarke, M Cloake, Dr S Ley and A Seaford.
In Attendance: Cllr M Prowse (NDC), Cllr Mrs A Davis (DCC), Parish Clerk.
1. Items from the public
No apologies for absence had been received.
3. Approval of Minutes of meeting held 3 March 2020
The Minutes of the last meeting were agreed and signed as a true record.
4. Matters Arising from the Minutes
1. District Councillor
The following report had been received from Cllr Prowse:
Services – many of the NDC staff are still working remotely and it’s pleasing that in most areas output has stayed pretty stable and even increased in some. The planners have mostly worked from home and kept apace with timetables. During the whole crisis all councillors have commented on the amazing performance of the waste and recycling team who have performed exceptionally, I would like to highlight that!
Grants – over 95% of the ‘elligible’ small business have now received their (mandatory) grants with the small number being chased as the balance has to be returned to central government. The discretionary grants are being dealt with by the economic development team and they are targeting business that have not received direct help – especially in the tourism sector.
Post Covid Economy – all the local authorities in Devon have been working together on a Recovery Plan to help get business and the local economy going again. In the work carried out to prepare the plan some pretty grim stats were highlighted, the prospects of pretty high unemployment this autumn (particularly amongst the young) with 6 out of the potential worst hit wards in Devon being here in the North Devon District area. Picking up the other priorities such as tackling climate change locally will be at the core of our recovery work.
Finances – the NDC finances have obviously suffered badly - particularly the loss of income. The actual shortfall was in the region of £2.5m, a huge chunk of a £13m annual budget. We have received some grant help of around 900k with the promise of help later in the year – watch this space as some of pretty cynical on this! We are also bidding for extra government help to deliver the new Watersports Centre in Ilfracombe and cash to help revitalise Barnstaple Town Centre.
Barnstaple Fair – just heard that the Fair has been cancelled this year.
2. County Councillor
Cllr Mrs Davis reported that the final business case had been submitted for the North Devon Link Road. Preparation work would be carried out under traffic light control. It was hoped to avoid closures.
The situation regarding Coronavirus was changing quickly. Despite current restrictions it was important that new parents were able to claim child benefit.
71859 Extension to dwelling (amended layout to approved application No 66787) Cherry Trees Goodleigh
There were no objections raised to the application.
70959 Outline application for demolition of school buildings and erection of 14 dwellings (open market) together with associated works including flood defence works (appearance and landscaping reserved for future consideration) Former Chelfham Mill School Chelfham.
There were no objections raised to the application, although concern was raised over the closeness of the dwellings to the viaduct.
It was noted that the wall opposite The Old Shop had been knocked over. This had been reported.
8. Matters from the Chairman
The Chairman reported that he was preparing a list of differences between different platforms for holding remote meeting. These would be discussed at the next meeting.
It was agreed that due to Coronavirus, and the uncertainty in what the situation would be by the end of the year, not to hold the Christmas Lunch.
1. Completion of Audit Return for 2019/20
Section 1 of the Annual Governance Statement was agreed, completed, and signed by the Chairman and Clerk, together with the Certificate of Exemption.
2. Approval of Accounts 2019/20
The balance sheet for financial year 2019/2020 had been circulated to councillors.
This was agreed as a true record of the council’s financial affairs, and section 2 of the AGAR signed by the Chairman and Clerk.
3. Request for Grant – Goodleigh Village Hall
A request for a grant had been received from Goodleigh Village Hall. It was noted that, due to North Devon Council withdrawing the Parish Grant, This had not been included in the budget for this year.
Cllr Gockmann to explain the situation to the Hall Committee.
DALC subscription £107.26 Cheque No. 873
Playsafety – inspection £ 82.20 Cheque No. 874
Goodleigh Village Hall £ 25.00 Cheque No. 875
ND Homes – rent for play area £ 7.50 Cheque No. 876
Clerk’s Salary (2 mths) £167.32 Cheque No. 877
ND Homes – licence £ 23.98 Cheque No. 878
Clerk’s Salary (3mths) £245.46 Cheque No. 879
The seven accounts were approved for payment.
Adoption of Policies; Neighbourhood Plan; Churchyard Grant; Choice of platform for forthcoming meetings.
11. Date of next meeting: Tuesday 1 September 2020 at 6.30pm
There being no further business, the Chairman closed the meeting.