Agenda and minutes
Venue: St Lawrence's Church Hall, Lawrence Street, York
Contact: Claire Taylor Community Involvement Officer
6.30pm - 7pm - Drop in surgery
An opportunity to meet and talk to:
· Your local ward councillors
· Claire Taylor, CYC Community Involvement officer
· Partners and community groups working in the ward
Residents had an opportunity to speak informally to Councillors’ D’Agorne and Taylor, Claire Taylor, partners and community groups working in the ward.
7.00pm - 8.30pm Formal Meeting - Welcome and Introductions
The Committee was introduced and the schedule for the meeting was outlined. This is a non-political formal committee where councillors form the core of the committee, but discussion is open.
Neighbourhood working and ward budgets
Hear more about the 2015/16 ward budget of £42,371 and how it can be used to meet local needs
The council has established a new finance model for the allocation of funds in each ward, with devolved power allowing for more detailed community involvement in the budgets and spending in their local area. The plan aims to empower local residents and tailor budgets to the needs of local residents. The new model encourages communities to create residents associations formed in streets etc.
There will be four meetings of the committee across the year:
· One formal meeting towards the start of the financial year where budgets will be outlined. (Although it is now late in the financial year, this meeting is that first formal meeting).
· The other three meetings can be in other formats, depending on the needs of the community and what the meeting is aiming to achieve.
Councillors Andy D’Agorne and Dave Taylor then outlined the different budgets that the ward will be working with:
General ward budget - £7,075 (annual)
· This budget may be spent in two ways: through grants which will be allocated via application forms outlining the benefit the spending and through the commissioning of private companies.
“Pride in York” budget - £9,434 (annual) .
· The budget aims to get local people involved and reduce the ward’s reliance on council services.
· Alongside the annual budget, there will be a one-off “Pride in York” fund - £15,249 which is a one-off allocation based on the current grounds maintenance spending. This money may be spent on providing grants to partners and investment in projects which will facilitate community groups taking on more work.
· Cllr Taylor described how this funding may be spent, with the example of a floral display on a roundabout where the ward may decide to ask a company to sponsor the floral display or invest in a more long-term solution with tubs and planters.
Community care fund - £3,538 (annual)
· This money is designated for the prevention or delay of people requiring access to formal care packages.
Highways programme - £11,792 (annual)
· CYC will conduct their annual city-wide assessment of highways and outline the priority levels of their funding – Cllr Taylor noted that this is expected to be received in November.
· This £11,792 funding will be available to the ward to complete work which is not to be carried out by the council programme. This can cover a range of highways infrastructure including; surfacing of roads and footpaths, street lighting etc.
· It is noted that CYC will still be responsible for the maintenance of major roads in the city, but will cut back on some other. The ward highway programme funding is there to fill the gaps left by the council.
Questions from residents:
One resident noted that we are well into this financial year and asks whether the one-off “Pride in York” funding will need to be spent before April.
· The councillors are aware of this issue, noting that there have been changes in the council due to elections this year. The new council has established this change in process which has ... view the full minutes text for item 3.
Planning Panel update and selections
An update on planning panel activity over the last year and re-selection of the panel
Mike Wills told the meeting that since the Fishergate planning panel was reformed 18 months ago, the panel has grown and meetings now took place every 6 weeks.
The most controversial planning application in recent years has been the former petrol station on Fulford Road and there are plans for the planning panel members to speak at a committee hearing on Thursday 15th October on behalf of Fishergate.
· It was noted that officers have recommended refusal for this plan and the planning panel members will raise safety, traffic and environmental concerns.
· It was noted that a site visit is set to take place on Wednesday 14th October at 11 am and locals were invited to attend and express concerns.
Questions from residents to Mike Wills
One resident was concerned that more trees are being cut down in the area and Mike Wills noted that trees in conservation areas need permission to be removed or trimmed but those not in conservation areas can be altered without permission. Mike Wills suggested that most applications concerning trees are along the riverside at Fulford Road or in the Barracks.
One resident raised issue with a particular planning application that received objection from residents and the planning panel. Mike Wills agreed with the residents concerns and notes that the panel saw the plan as inappropriate but their objections were over ruled and although he was sympathetic, no more could be done.
The current planning panel was confirmed to continue and there is scope for new members to join. People should contact Mike Wills for more information on this.
· Cllr Taylor added a note of thanks for the hard work that the panel has done.
Have your say
Your opportunity to raise issues of local interest or concern
One resident raised issues with a strip of cobbles and a pot hole outside of their home. This hole at the end of Cemetery Road causes problems for cyclists who have to go around it and pedestrians who get soaked with water when it rains. There has been work done to patch the road further up, but the hole and cobbles have remained. Cllr Taylor recognised the safety concerns and will look into this issue further.
There is a forest of “To Let” signs along Heslington Road, some which have stayed all year round. There is suggestion of investigating by-laws can prohibit this.
· The councillors recognised this issue but have to work within national regulation. It was noted that other wards are also looking into this and in some places in the country, by-laws have been used. The panel agreed to look into this.
· Cllr Taylor also noted that letting agents previously signed up to a code of conduct agreeing to take signs down, although it appears that this has become lax. There is potential to ask companies to resign this agreement.
Any Other Business
People were invited to attend a tour of the St. Joseph’s Convent site on 29th November.
Fishergate ward is now on Twitter and people can follow @FishergateWard.
There were also apologies that some newspapers were delivered to the wrong address, meaning people didn’t have the dates for the Fishergate ward meeting.
The next meeting date is not yet fixed although it is expected to take place early in the New Year.