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Maldon Town Council

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Maldon Town HallMaldon Town Hall

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Town Hall, Market Hill,
Maldon, Essex,  CM9 4RL.

MINUTES OF THE TOWN COUNCIL MEETING
HELD ON MONDAY 7th JULY, 2003 AT 7.30 P.M.
IN THE CONFERENCE ROOM, TOWN HALL.
Amendments.

PRESENT: Town Mayor: Cllr. K. Smith
Councillors: M. Bentley, Mrs. M. Curtis, Mrs. V. Foster, Mrs. M. Game,
R. Moss, Mrs. S. Riesebeck, S. Savage,
T. Shrimpton, J. Swallow, and W. Prior.
In Attendance: District Councillor Mrs. B. Keighley, the Town Clerk, Administrative Assistant, a member of the press and 6 members of the public.
 24. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

Apologies for absence were received from Cllr. Roberts and Mr. Matthams, a candidate for co-option, who were both away on holiday.
25. CO-OPTION

Further to minute 9 of the Annual Town Council meeting held on 12th May, 2003 members received a report detailing the co-option procedure to fill vacancies in Maldon East Ward (1) and Maldon South Ward (2).

Members were requested to consider the following:

(i) that a resolution be passed to exclude the press and public to permit discussion/interview of the candidates;

(ii) whether the vote to select the co-opted members should be by a show of hands or by signed ballot.

Discussion ensued and when put to the vote it was agreed that the meeting should remain open to the press and public during any discussion or interviews with the prospective candidates for co-option and the vote be by signed ballot.

Cllr. Savage expressed the view that, as only two of the candidates had complied with the stipulated number of words on the application form, the other applications were invalid. Other members expressed the view that all the applications, as submitted, should be considered.

Lengthy discussion ensued and as a result of two of the applicants leaving the meeting it was felt that all the applicants should be invited to re-submit their application forms, with the personal brief limited to 50 words, and accordingly that further consideration of the matter be deferred until the Town Council meeting to be held on 11th August, 2003.

When put to the vote it was

RESOLVED: that all candidates for co-option to fill the vacancies in the East Ward (1) and South Ward (2) be invited to re-submit their application forms for consideration at the Town Council meeting to be held on 11th August, 2003.
amended minute 49, 11th August, 2003
 26. MINUTES OF THE ANNUAL TOWN COUNCIL MEETING HELD ON 12TH MAY, 2003

Members received and considered the minutes of the Annual Town Council meeting held on 12th May, 2003.

Minute 23 - Questions from the Press and Public

It was noted that, although grammatically correct, there should not be a full stop at the end of the website address as this could be seen to be included as part of the address.

RESOLVED: that (a) Minute 23 be amended by removing the full stop from the end of the website address;

(b) in all other respects the minutes of the Annual Town Council meeting held on 12th May, 2003 be approved and signed as a true record.
 27.

 27.1
MAYOR'S ANNOUNCEMENTS

List of Functions

Members received and considered a list of functions attended by the Mayor and Deputy Mayor since the Town Council meeting held on 12th May, 2003.

The Mayor informed members that, whilst the Children from Chernobyl had visited the town, Madison Heights had generously allowed them to use the Jungle Run and had also provided lunch for the children and their helpers. He also displayed a shield which had been presented to the Town Council from the Chernobyl region.

In response to a question, the Mayor stated that Boogie with the Movies (3) was a most enjoyable show which he had attended, which had been performed and produced by a group of talented young people from the Maldon Youth Focus Group.

RESOLVED: that the information be noted.
 27.2 Plume School

Members were informed that notification had been received from Sarah Dignasse, Headteacher, Plume School which stated that the school had received Performance Arts Specialist Status.

It was suggested that a letter should be forwarded to the Plume School congratulating them on their success in receiving Performance Arts Specialist Status. In response to a question, the Town Clerk stated that the promised Town Council funding in the sum of £1,200 would be forwarded to the Plume School as soon as it was requested by the school.

RESOLVED: that a letter be forward to the Plume School congratulating them on their success in receiving Performance Arts Specialist Status.
 28.

 28.1
MINUTES OF COMMITTEE MEETINGS

Members received and considered the minutes of the following meetings:

Minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 19th May, 2003

Minute 14 - Local Transport Plan (LTP): Third Annual Progress Report (APR) Consultation Document

In answer to a question, the Town Clerk reported that a reply was still awaited from Essex County Council, Transportation and Operational Services regarding the Maldon Town Centre improvement works which are proposed to be undertaken at a cost of £955,000.

RESOLVED: that the minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 19th May, 2003 be approved.
 28.2 Minutes of the Finance and General Purposes Committee meeting held on 20th May, 2003 Members noted that amendments to these minutes were made at the Finance and General Purposes Committee meeting held on 23rd June, 2003.

Minute 5.1.b. - Receipts and Expenditure

In response to a question, the Town Clerk advised that, due to the size of the Town Council and the number of cheques issued the previous auditors had advised that it was only necessary for cheques exceeding £500 to be listed for members' information.

Minute 6 - Digital Camera

In response to a question, the Town Clerk advised that the recommended digital camera had been superseded by another model and a report regarding this matter would be submitted to the next Finance and General Purposes Committee meeting.

RESOLVED: that the minutes of the Finance and General Purposes Committee meeting held on 20th May, 2003 be approved.
 28.3 Minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 2nd June, 2003

RESOLVED: that the minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 2nd June, 2003 be approved.
 28.4 Minutes of the Environment Committee meeting held on 9th June, 2003

Note 6.b. - Maldon in Bloom Working Party Meeting - 4th June, 2003

In response to a question, the Town Clerk confirmed that the Essex County Council, Transportation and Operational Services Department had been contacted regarding the damaged kerb in Downs Road.

RESOLVED: that the minutes of the Environment Committee meeting held on 9th June, 2003 be approved.
 28.5 Minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 16th June, 2003

RESOLVED: that the minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 16th June, 2003 be approved.
 28.6 Minutes of the Finance and General Purposes Committee meeting held on 23rd June, 2003

RESOLVED: that the minutes of the Finance and General Purposes Committee meeting held on 23rd June, 2003 be approved.
 28.7 Minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 30th June, 2003

RESOLVED: that the minutes of the Planning Committee meeting held on 30th June, 2003 be approved.
 29. MALDON YOUTH COUNCIL

Members received and considered the Notes of the Maldon Youth Council meeting held on 3rd June, 2003.

RESOLVED: that the Notes of the Maldon Youth Council meeting held on 3rd June, 2003 be approved.
 30. APPOINTMENT OF MEMBERS TO SERVE UPON COMMITTEES

The view was expressed that it would be beneficial for the following matters to be deferred to allow co-opted members to be considered for the vacancies.
 30.1 Planning Committee

Further to minute 14.2 of the Annual Town Council meeting held on 12th May, 2003 members considered the appointment of a member to serve on the Planning Committee for the remainder of the municipal year.

RESOLVED: that the matter be deferred until the Town Council meeting to be held on 11th August, 2003.
 30.2 Environment Committee

Further to minute 14.3 of the Annual Town Council meeting held on 12th May, 2003 members considered the appointment of a member to serve on the Environment Committee for the remainder of the municipal year.

RESOLVED: that the matter be deferred until the Town Council meeting to be held on 11th August, 2003.
 31.

 31.1
APPOINTMENT OF MEMBERS TO SERVE ON WORKING PARTIES

Maldon in Bloom

Further to minute 15.1 of the Annual Town Council meeting held on 12th May, 2003 members considered the appointment of a member to serve on the Maldon in Bloom Working Party.

RESOLVED: that the matter be deferred until the Town Council meeting to be held on 11th August, 2003.
 31.2 Web Site

Further to minute 15.5 of the Annual Town Council meeting held on 12th May, 2003 members considered the appointment of a member to serve on the Web Site Working Party.

RESOLVED: that the matter be deferred until the Town Council meeting to be held on 11th August, 2003.
 32. APPOINTMENT OF COUNCILLORS TO REPRESENT THE TOWN COUNCIL AT MEETINGS OF:
 32.1 Maeldune Trust

Further to minute 16.12 of the Annual Town Council meeting held on 12th May, 2003 members considered the appointment of a member to represent the Town Council at meetings of the Maeldune Trust.

RESOLVED: that the matter be deferred until the Town Council meeting to be held on 11th August, 2003.
 32.2 Maldon District Community Safety Partnership Steering Group

Members considered the appointment of a member to represent the Town Council at meetings of the Community Safety Partnership Steering Group.

RESOLVED: that the matter be deferred until the Town Council meeting to be held on 11th August, 2003.
 32.3 Rural Community Council of Essex - AGM

Members considered appointing a member to attend the Rural Community Council of Essex AGM to be held on 14th July, 2003 at Layer Marney Tower commencing at 7.30 p.m. and noted that this was the same evening as a Planning Committee meeting.

RESOLVED: that the Town Council would not be represented at the Rural Community Council of Essex AGM to be held on 14th July, 2003.
 33.

33.1
MEMBERS' ATTENDANCE AT MEETINGS

Maldon Chamber of Trade and Commerce - 2nd June, 2003

Members received a verbal report from Cllr. Prior on his attendance at the above meeting.

Cllr. Prior reported that the following matters were discussed at the meeting:

Signage for the Park and Ride bus service organised by Tesco Stores

Car parks in conjunction with the Town Centre Manager and the Town Centre Strategy Group,

The provision of a camp site,
Tourism signage,
Christmas Illuminations
Maldon In Bloom.

RESOLVED: that the report of Cllr. Prior be noted.
 33.2 Maldon Chamber of Trade and Commerce Meeting to Discuss the European Year of the Disabled 2003 and the Discrimination Act 2004 - 3rd June, 2003

Members received a verbal report from Cllr. Moss regarding his attendance at the above meeting.

Cllr Moss reported that there had been two speakers in attendance, a librarian and a barrister. The main issue was that buildings which were open to the public had to conform to the new legislation in respect of disabled access unless, due to architectural difficulties, it would be impossible for lifts or ramps to be installed.

RESOLVED: that the report of Cllr. Moss be noted.
 33.3 Maldon District Heritage & Museums Forum - 9th June, 2003

Members received a copy of the Minutes of the Maldon District Heritage and Museums Forum meeting held on 9th June, 2003 and Cllr. Savage reported verbally on his attendance at the meeting.

Cllr. Savage indicated that future meetings of the Forum would be re-scheduled so as not to coincide with Town Council Planning Committee meetings.

RESOLVED: that the Minutes of the Maldon District Heritage and Museums Forum meeting and the report of Cllr. Savage be noted.
 33.4 Maldon District Council Community Plan 2010 Task Group

Members received a verbal report from Cllr. Prior regarding his attendance at the following Task Group meetings at which each specific group discussed policies which would be carried forward into the community.

a. Transport and Access - 11th June, 2003

Cllr Prior reported that the meeting discussed the provision of transport in the District but it was felt that additional representatives from the railway companies needed to be in attendance.

b. Health, Social Care and Housing - 16th June, 2003

Cllr. Prior explained that this was an initial meeting of the group and the following items were discussed:

Improvements to care and health facilities
Primary Care Trust
One Stop Shop

c. Environment and Planning - 16th June, 2003

Cllr. Prior was unable to attend this meeting but the Town Clerk who was in attendance reported that approximately twenty five people had attended and issues including the River Blackwater and the Rural and Urban environment were discussed. Common problems which were identified included transport, parking and waste management.

d. Education, Training and Employment - 30th June, 2003

Cllr. Prior reported that this was an initial meeting where policy structure and extending the representation were the principle issues discussed.

RESOLVED: that the reports of Cllr. Prior and the Town Clerk be noted.
 34. YEAR END ACCOUNTS 2002 / 2003

Further to minute 13.3 of the Finance and General Purposes Committee meeting held on 23rd June, 2003 it was

RESOLVED: that the Mayor and Responsible Financial Officer sign the year end accounts for the 2002 / 2003 financial year.
 35.

 35.1
STANDARDS BOARD

Complaint Regarding Breach of the Code of Conduct

Further to minute 42 of the Town Council meeting held on 24th June, 2002 members noted that the Standards Board for England had concluded their investigations and in this respect they received a copy of the Case Summary which stated that the Ethical Standards Officer found no evidence of any failure to comply with the Code of Conduct under Sections 59(4)(a) and (b) of the Local Government Act 2000. In view of the last paragraph of the summary making reference to the fact that members of the Town Council seemed to have a general lack of understanding regarding individual obligations under the Code of Conduct, especially with regard to the declaration of personal and prejudicial interests, booklets from the Standards Board for England were circulated to all members of the Council and prior to the commencement of the meeting members had viewed a video advising on the Code of Conduct.

It was suggested that the agenda item was misleading by not identifying the issues separately and that it would have been beneficial to members of the public if the items had been more clearly classified.

RESOLVED: that the information be noted.

Webmasters Note
 35.2 New Ethical Framework Regulations

Members received a copy of a letter from the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister regarding the new Ethical Framework Regulations which set out the process to be followed when an allegation of misconduct by a councillor has been referred to the local monitoring officer following an investigation by an Ethical Standards Officer of the Standards Board for England. It was noted that a copy of the Regulations was available for inspection in the office.

RESOLVED: that the information from the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister regarding the new Ethical Framework Regulations be noted.
 36. REMEMBRANCE SUNDAY

Further to minute 20 of the Annual Council meeting held on 12th May, 2003 members received and considered a report regarding the organisation of a Parade and Civic Service to commemorate Remembrance Sunday. It was noted that the Royal British Legion were no longer able to provide the manpower to operate street closures and deal with the administrative side of Remembrance Sunday.

Members considered whether they wished the service to take the same format as in previous years (ie a street closure and parade) or for a civil service to take place.

It was suggested that the Town Council should co-ordinate a Working Party at which the Royal British Legion and representatives of the Army Cadets, Air Cadets, Police and Church should be invited to attend; organisations such as the Carnival Committee and Chamber of Trade and Commerce could also be invited as they may be able to assist with possible street closures.

In response to a request from the Mayor, Cllrs. Bentley, Moss, Prior and Shrimpton offered to serve on the Remembrance Sunday Working Party.

Cllrs. Mrs Riesebeck suggested that the Scouts and Guides should also be approached and invited to attend meetings of the Working Party.

Cllr. Moss informed members that he had been approached by a representative of Heybridge Parish Council who had stated that they were also keen to continue with the traditions of the Remembrance Day Parade where it had been held in Maldon for two years and Heybridge the subsequent year. Members agreed that where possible, Remembrance Sunday should continue in the same format as the past and it was suggested that, representatives of the Heybridge Parish Council should be invited to attend the Remembrance Sunday Working Party meeting.

RESOLVED: that Cllrs. Bentley, Moss, Prior and Shrimpton serve on the Remembrance Sunday Working Party and representatives of the Royal British Legion, Heybridge Parish Council, Maldon Chamber of Trade and Commerce, the Maldon Carnival Association, Army Cadets, Air Cadets, Police, Church and other youth groups be invited to attend.
 37. CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS

Further to minute 14 of the Finance and General Purposes Committee meeting held on 23rd June, 2003 members viewed a sample Christmas garland supplied by Festive Illuminated Lighting Limited for the 2003 Christmas illuminations.

In response to a view expressed by a member regarding the use of 25 watt, gas filled bulbs for external garlands the Town Clerk stated that she would discuss this matter with the contractor.

RESOLVED: that Festive Illuminated Lighting Limited be notified that the Town Council

(a) accepts the quotation in the sum of £2,500 plus VAT to install new cables, 16 amp sockets, timers and trips in waterproof boxes throughout the town;

(b) agrees to renew the contract in the sum of £15,000 over the three year period 2003 - 2005, subject to conditions outlined in the Christmas Lights Working Party notes of the meeting held on 10th June, 2003.
 38. THE QUALITY PARISH COUNCIL SCHEME

Members received and considered leaflets from the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs regarding "Quality Status" for Town and Parish Councils.

In response to a suggestion that a Working Party should be formed to consider the application process, the Town Clerk advised that the process involves completing an application form comprising of a number of tick boxes and in her view it was not necessary for a Working Party to be formed.

Discussion ensued and it was

RESOLVED: that the Town Council applies to become a "Quality" Council and the application form be completed.

(This will not be able to be undertaken until the Town Clerk receives her Certificate of Higher Education in Local Government Policy from the University of Gloucestershire later in the year).
 39. PROTOCOL AT MEETINGS

At the request of Cllr. Shrimpton members considered the following proposals:

a. All Members Should Wear Their Robes Of Office At Meeting Of The Full Town Council.

Discussion ensued and it was felt that the wearing of robes should remain as stated in Standing Orders and when put to the vote it was

RESOLVED: that the Mayor and Deputy Mayor robe for full meetings of the Town Council with the Mace Bearer in attendance and that the wearing of robes at Council meetings by members be optional.

b. Each Council Meeting Should Commence With A Prayer By The Mayor's Chaplain Or A Minister Of The Christian Faith.

The view was expressed that this would be against the Code of Conduct which states that, "a member must promote equality by not discriminating unlawfully against any person".

When put to the vote it was

RESOLVED: that no action be taken regarding this matter.

c. All Councillors Should Address The Chair As "Mr. Mayor."

Members expressed the view that this form of address was already used by members when addressing the Mayor and "Madam Mayor" was used if there is a female Mayor.

RESOLVED: that Councillors address the Mayor as "Mr Mayor" and should there be a female Mayor she should be addressed as "Madam Mayor".
 40. TOWN CENTRE MANAGER

At the request of Cllr. Moss members considered the Terms of Reference and work initiated by the Town Centre Manager and a copy of the Town Centre Manager's Job Specification was circulated to members for information.

Discussion ensued and a member expressed his disappointment with regard to the Town Centre Manager's role in promoting the town.

It was noted that the Terms of Reference stated that the Town Centre Manager should report at Town Council meetings and it was suggested that he be invited to report at the Town Council meeting to be held on 15th September, 2003.

RESOLVED: that the Town Centre Manager be invited to attend and report at the Town Council meeting to be held on 15th September, 2003.
 41. PROMENADE PARK

a. Proposed Promenade Park Working Party

At the request of Cllr. Moss members considered approaching the Maldon District Council requesting them to consider forming a Working Party between the two Councils to discuss the Promenade Park.

Cllr. Moss expressed the view that the Promenade Park was not exploited to its full extent and the site was not fully utilised when events such as the Maldon Mud Race and Maldon Regatta were taking place.

The Mayor indicated that such events were not organised by the Maldon District Council but by specific organisations who individually hired the Park from the District Council.

It was suggested that Cllr. Moss should contact the Friends of the Prom, a group who are looking at long term investments and the development of the park.

RESOLVED: that no further action be taken regarding this matter and notes of the Friends of the Prom meetings continue to be circulated to members.

b. Marine Lake

Members received and considered a copy report circulated at the District Council meeting held on 26th June, 2003 which detailed the current situation concerning the Marine Lake.

With reference to the copy letter from the Chief Executive, Maldon District Council dated 27th June, 2003, attached to the report, replying to the Health and Safety Executive - item 2. Number of Lifeguards and Control of Admissions - a member expressed concern that any safety boat to be used on the Marine Lake should be driven by water jet propulsion rather than a propeller to ensure public safety. It was agreed that a letter regarding this concern be forwarded to the Maldon District Council.

RESOLVED: that a letter be forwarded to the Maldon District Council expressing concern that the safety boat to be used on the Marine Lake should be driven by water jet propulsion to ensure public safety.
 42.

 42.1
ESSEX ASSOCIATION OF LOCAL COUNCILS (EALC)

Area Forum - Mid Essex

Members were informed that a letter had been received from the EALC regarding the Area Forum - Mid Essex which stated that Cllr. Mrs. Pink had been nominated to attend meetings of the Area Forum - Mid Essex and that any issues that the Town Council wished to be raised at the Area Forum should be forwarded to Cllr. Mrs Pink via the EALC area office. It was also noted that Cllr. Prior had been named as the substitute to attend the Forum.

RESOLVED: that the information be noted.
 42.2 Annual General Meeting

Members noted that at the Annual General Meeting held on 25th June, 2003

a. Annual Report Award

The Town Council received the 2003 Annual Larger Local Council's Annual Report Award for the Maldon Town Council Annual Report and it was noted that this was the second year that the Town Council had won this award. The winning certificate was available to be viewed by members at the meeting.

RESOLVED: that the information be noted.

b. Buckingham Palace Garden Party

The Town Clerk's name had been pulled out of the ballot to attend a Buckingham Palace Garden Party next year (minute 1 of the Annual Council Meeting 12th May, 2003 refers).

RESOLVED: that the information be noted.
 43. LOCAL ACCESS FORUM FOR ESSEX

Members received and considered a letter from the Head of Highways and Transportation, Essex County Council regarding the formation of the Local Access Forum for Essex.

RESOLVED: that the information be noted.
 44. CCTV

Members recalled that the Town Council had contributed £10,000 towards a CCTV system in Maldon. The system was now operational and being tested and members were informed that should they wish to view the equipment arrangements were to be made through Mr. Richard Holmes at Maldon District Council.

The view was expressed that as the cameras were located on buildings in the Conservation Area they should be painted black, as was recommended for the installation of satellite dishes in the Conservation Area, and it was suggested that a letter be forwarded to the Maldon District Council regarding this matter.

RESOLVED: that the information be noted and a letter be forwarded to the Maldon District Council regarding the colour of the cameras.
 45.

 45.1
MINUTES/NOTES FROM OUTSIDE ORGANISATIONS

Members received the minutes/notes from outside organisations

Larger Local Councils Forum - 5th March, 2003

RESOLVED: that the minutes to noted.
 45.2 Maldon District Museum Association - 10th June, 2003

In response to a question regarding item 4.a. the Town Clerk confirmed that the cinema equipment mentioned in the minutes had been collected from the Town Council and not the District Council and that she would inform them of their error.

RESOLVED: that (a) the Maldon District Museum Association be advised that item 4.a. was incorrect and that the cinema equipment had been collected from the Town Council and not the District Council.

(b) in all other respect the minutes be noted.
 45.3 Maldon District Council - Tollesbury Parishes Group - 11th June 2003

In response to a question the Town Clerk advised that this meeting had been for Parishes incorporated in the Tollesbury Parishes Group.

RESOLVED: that the notes be noted.
 46. THE MAYOR ADJOURNED THE MEETING FOR QUESTIONS FROM THE PRESS AND PUBLIC

In response to a question from a member of the public the Town Clerk advised that candidates for co-option would be notified of how and when to re-apply for the Town Council vacancies.

RESOLVED: that the information be noted.
   Meeting closed at 8.50 p.m.

Councillor Ken Smith
Mayor of Maldon

Signed…………………………………………… Date……………………………….



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