Parish Council Audit Requirements

The Parish Council is transparent and open about it’s business representing the community. One component of that is an obligation to make our accounts (as part of the audit process) open to inspection. Any person interested has the right to inspect and make copies of the accounts to be audited and all books, deeds, contracts, bills, vouchers and receipts relating to them.

Inspection period: 4th June – 13th July

Appointments can made with our Responsible Financial Officer by emailing office@hisimp.net

Click here to view the Notice of Public Rights and Publication of Unaudited Annual Governance & Accountability Return for year ending March 2018

 

Finance Consultation

You may have been one of the residents who responded to our recent questionnaire, either on line or by hard copy. We were looking for guidance on provision of services in Histon and Impington as we make decisions on future improvements for all. The Consultation closed 4 September and the Council has produced a document showing the results which will now be going to the Finance, Legal & Administration Committee for detailed discussion.

Please see here for details

Along with all other relevant input and awareness, this will be a key input to our decision making processes when it comes to setting the Parish element of the Council Tax for 2018-19

Thank you to everyone who responded and for the wealth of additional comments made during the process.  If any of those comments need a specific response we will deal with those in due course

 

Histon & Impington Parish Council Finance Consultation – Have Your Say!

Back in December 2015,  Histon & Impington Parish Council asked for your views in a survey on how to spend money collected via Council tax. Data collected from the survey was used to guide the Council with the budgeting process for the coming years.

A lot has changed since then, so your help is needed once again!

Histon & Impington Parish Council is proud of our community and what it has achieved in the past. It has ambitions for future improvements. As requirements evolve, and County and District Councils devolve services to us, we need your guidance to provide the services you desire and deserve.

This questionnaire seeks your views on how to spend YOUR money!

To complete the questionnaire click here – closing date Monday 4th September 2017

Please use a PC/Mac or tablet to complete this, phones may not allow all of the answers to be seen.
To work out your Council Tax band click here

 

November Full Council

Full Council was held on Monday 21st November, with one member of the public attending to address the Council under the item for Public Participation.  For draft minutes look here.   Items of note:

Open Space issue on north east of community raised by resident present

A resident expressed concern over the lack of suitable walking routes in the north east of the community, especially for dog walkers.  Council noted the concerns and promised to factor them into their forward plans for development of open space and discussions with local landowners

Neighbourhood Plan Results

Members of the Group presented the results of the recent survey.  An open meeting to look at these results has subsequently been held in December and the Neighbourhood Plan group plan to report to Council again at the January meeting.  The survey report can be seen here

Mental Health Champion and Older Persons Funding

Council were pleased to be able to agree to continue, and increase, funding for the Older Person’s Co-Ordinator roles.  These roles were delivered with the Parish Council and others working in partnership with HICOM

HICOM came to Council with a new initiative, a H&I Mental Health Champion role.  The Council were delighted to agree to a 2 year arrangement whereby £7,000 p.a. would be provided as funding

For further information on both these initiatives, please contact Neil Davies at neilsdavies12@gmail.com

Minor Highways Initiative News

The Highways Committee came forward with a proposal to apply for Local Highways Improvement Scheme funding, submitting an application for improvements to footpaths in 2017-18.  This was agreed and a submission has been made to the County Council for the necessary funding

Youth Club News

The Monday Youth Club for Juniors had continued to be held up to Christmas, and would return in January.  Unfortunately the Senior Club held at the Histon Football Club had been closed due to poor attendance.  Andrea Cowley, the Parish Council Youth Worker, would be looking at ways to re-launch the club in the New Year

Anyone willing to volunteer to help at the youth clubs would be very welcome to contact Andrea on youth.worker@hisimp.net

The next meeting is Monday 16th January 2017.   All will be welcome.

 

January Full Council

The first Full Council meeting of 2016 was held on Monday 18th January.

A minute silence was held to reflect on the passing of John Dunn, who served on the Histon ward for just over 3 years.

This meeting has particular note as one of the main items was setting the Precept for 2016-17. Click here to read the paper presented to Council. The recommendation put forward and approved was:

  1. That the Council Tax rate should be increased by 2%, giving a precept of £304,134. Noting that this gives a Band D rate of £93.02, an increase of £1.84 (3½p per week for a Band D household, and similarly being £1.22 a year/ 2½p per week for Band A; and £3.68 a year/7p per week for Band H)

For more information or if you have any questions email Denis Payne the Chair of Finance, Legal and Administration Committee denis.payne@hisimp.net

Other items of note include:

  • The agreement to fund the request for up to £26,260 from Recreation Committee to install cricket safety netting on the Recreation Ground.
  • Parish Elections for Histon & Impington. Receipt of Nominations need to be with South Cambridgeshire District Council by 4.00pm on Thursday 7th April 2016. Any resulting elections will be held on Thursday 5th May 2016

The next meeting is Monday 15th February 2016. All meeting are open to public

 

Parish Council Budget Consultation

In its current round of budget consultations the County Council has asked a number of questions, one of which is whether Parish Councils should do more to offset the reductions in County budgets.

Particularly in the light of this, the Parish Council would like to get the views from Council Tax payers in Histon and Impington on its spending.

The work of the Parish Council is largely funded by Council Tax – that’s money paid by each household and collected by South Cambridgeshire District Council. Some money comes in from fees for use of the Recreation Ground and Pavilion, from the civic Cemetery, and from interest on deposits – but by far the largest amount comes in from Council Tax.

For this year (2015/2016) the Parish component of Council Tax is £91.18 a year for a Band D property. The top band (Band H) properties would have to pay twice that (£182.36) and the bottom band (Band A) two thirds of that (£60.79). In all cases some households are eligible for discounts on the tax payable.

The Parish Council is particularly interested in your views on its work and spend in the following areas:

  • Youth
  • Older people
  • Highways
  • Environment
  • Recreation

If you are interested in the fine detail of the spend, and the spend in other areas, it’s available on the Council’s website. The report to Council on the Precept for 2015-2016 is also available.

What do we do now? And what does it cost?

What does the Parish Council do now? What does it cost? Band D annual cost per household
Youth

Employ a part time, term time only, Youth Worker and support staff for Youth Club sessions or organising appropriate activities for Junior and Senior ages (age 12 to 19)

Encourage liaison between IVC and the Youth Worker

Carry out outreach work in the community

 £8.70
Older people Part fund a part time Older People’s Co-Ordinator to:

  • signpost residents to appropriate advice centres or Council departments
  • Organise and deliver appropriate activities for older residents – e.g. After Stroke Club; Singing Group; Chair Based Activities
  • Co-ordinate trips to shops etc

Part fund a part time Mobile Warden to:

  • Visit elderly people on their list daily to check well-being and carry out simple tasks (there is a small charge to the resident for this service)
 £1.54
Highways Part fund (usually 10%) agreed and needed Minor Highways Improvements e.g. crossings, dropped kerbs, layout changes £3.12
Environment A wide range of issues are overseen including:

  • Grass cutting
  • Maintenance of the Burial Ground, set against income from fees
  • Allotment provision
  • Maintenance and improvements to open spaces e.g. The Green, Homefield Park, Manor Field
  • Maintenance of War Memorial and surrounds

Maintenance and planting schemes for trees in various locations, including The Copse and Coppice

£14.33
Recreation
  • Fund/employ groundstaff and admin staff to manage the Recreation Ground, New Road. Subsidise sports provision for a variety of sports clubs, set against income from fees.
  • Provide and support wide range of activities in Community Room at Recreation Ground
  • Provide and maintain play equipment e.g. The Green, South Road

Investigate new opportunities for recreation and leisure provision in a growing population

£36.76

 

Each year the Parish Council thoroughly scrutinises the plans for each area of the Council’s work, and, as an ambitious council looking to make a real difference for Histon and Impington, there is always more that we might do. And we could decide to do less in some areas so as to focus resources elsewhere.

Here’s some of the impacts that increases or decreases in spending in these areas could have.

Spending Increase or Decrease Probable impact on Parish Council work
Youth Increase Need to find premises for ongoing PC work; support for uniformed groups; fill in gaps in County provision
Decrease Support limited to a small number of regular sessions (eg yoga) and specific projects (eg graffiti, film)
Older people Increase More time for older person’s co-ordinator (and/or assistant); more support for village warden scheme; more events/groups; fill in gaps in County provision
Decrease Fewer groups; less time to aid people find help and resources
Highways Increase 20mph scheme; road layout changes; fill in gaps in County provision
Decrease Very limited schemes, if any
Environment Increase Filling in gaps in County/District provision (verges, litter picking etc)
Decrease Reduced litter picking/collection; reduced grass cutting; Xmas lighting cut; maintenance cut to safety levels; burial ground less tidy/less well maintained; fees increased
Recreation Increase More local resources for H&I sports teams and casual leisure
Decrease Higher charges for pitch and room hire; play equipment not upgraded/replaced when broken; reduction in pitch maintenance

 

Note that, as with all Councils and many employers, we are under financial pressure next year because of pension and National Insurance changes. An increase in budget will be necessary just to stay where we are.

Is that all clear? Then please go to the survey and let us have your views!

Many thanks

 

County Council budget consultation

In the same way that the football season seems to start earlier every year the County Council appears to begin its budget process ever earlier as well.

It’s just announced its budget consultation. Remember the budget will be set in February and run from April 2015. It has said:

QUOTE

Cambridgeshire County Council is currently reviewing its annual business plan which includes looking at the authority’s priorities and setting our (sic) budget for the year 2015/16. Please be advised that the CCC Budget Planning consultation has just started.

We want your views:

Before any final decisions are taken by councillors and stakeholders we would like to gauge local opinion. Therefore, we would be grateful if you could take the time to view the proposals and complete the questionnaire – which you can access here:

http://www.cambridgeshire.gov.uk/budgetconsultation

If you have any questions, please do get in touch. It would be greatly appreciated if you could promote this consultation out to members of your household, your friends and your colleagues to complete this survey as well.

UNQUOTE

It’s going to be a tough budget year again as reductions in the government grant and limitations on increases in council tax will mean that services will have to be cut or, as a minimum, done differently.

 

New precept for 2014/15

At its meeting this month the Parish Council set a precept for 2014/15 which is 7.3% higher than the one for 2013/14. This will result in a total precept for a Band D property for the year of £87.67, an average increase of just under £6 across the two villages.

The Parish Council has an ambitious program for 2014/15 with a budget of £462,126. This is a big increase over 2013/14 and includes funding for the possible acquisition and development of Bypass Farm.

No decision has been made yet to proceed with the Bypass Farm plans. This will be decided at a Parish Council meeting later in the year and will be advertised.

The Parish Council’s program will be financed with £58,085 income,  £117,350 being taken from specific reserves and the remainder from precept.

It had been expected that South Cambs District Council would provide a grant to the Parish Council for ‘Council Tax support’. South Cambs has received the money from Central Government which has asked that it be passed onto parish councils. However South Cambs has chosen not to do this although it did pass on this grant in 2013/14. This leaves Histon & Impington Parish Council out of pocket to the tune of £19,288. The increase in the precept is to replace this grant. No more and no less.

Click here for the details of the 2014/15 budget and precept setting or view the slide show below. Click here for the paper that went to the Council.

If you have any questions and/or comments about the budget and the resulting precept please email David Jenkins or Denis Payne. Alternatively David will be at the Parish Office on Friday, 24 Jan 14, between 1030 and 1200. You can drop in and talk to him then. Alternatively please call the Parish Office (01223 235906) and make an appointment