Venue: Eyres Monsell Community Centre
Contact: Angie Smith
ELECTION OF CHAIR
Councillors will elect a Chair for the meeting.
Councillor Palmer was elected Chair for the meeting.
APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Apologies for absence were received from Jean Dutfield and Joan Garrity.
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST
The first main item on theagenda is Declarations of Interest where Councillors have to say if there is anything on the agenda they have a personal interest in. For example if a meeting was due to discuss a budget application put forward by a community group and one of the Councillors was a member of that group, they would not be able to take part in the decision on that budget application.
Councillors are asked to declare any interest they may have in the business on the agenda, and/or indicate that Section 106 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 applies to them.
There were no declarations of interest.
The minutes of the previous Eyres Monsell Community Meeting, held on 21st March 2012 are attached, and Members are asked to confirm them as a correct record.
that the Minutes of the meeting of the Eyres Monsell Community Meeting held on 21 March 2012 were agreed as a correct record, subject to correcting the spelling of Jean Dutfield’s name in the apologies for absence item.
COUNCILLORS' COMMUNITY REPORT
Your Ward Councillors will report on things they have been involved in within the ward and there will be an opportunity to ask questions.
Councillor Cleaver reported the following:
· The Sheltered Housing Charter, detailing standards which private landlords were required to adhere to, was to be adopted shortly.
· The success of the recent Goldhills event was welcomed and thanks were extended to the organisers.
· The Forum for Older People was reviewing its Charter and its structure to improve the Council’s engagement with older people in the city.
· The Rupert House Friendship Group had held a successful Jubilee Event.
· The area of redundant land at Featherstone Drive, which was formerly an allotment, was being considered for garden use. A proposal to plant an orchard and the installation of raised planted beds had been put forward.
· It was reported that despite significant publicity a large number of places on various Adult Learning courses were not being taken up. Details of the types of courses available and enrolment details were made available.
· Memory Clinics were to be held at the Community Centre which would give advice and support to people suffering with dementia. Residents were encouraged to attend the clinics to learn about the problems of dementia and the support available to sufferers and carers.
· The Catch 22 police initiative was continuing to reduce anti-social behaviour and in liaison with Voluntary Action Leicester funds had been received to continue this important community work, particularly to reduce drug misuse and increase engagement with young people.
Councillor Palmer reported the following:
· The Annual Horticultural and Craft Show had been successful and the organisers were congratulated, particularly as the event had continued to improve year on year.
· The Management Group concerned with the Linwood/Aylestone Football Club site had asked for representation and Councillor Palmer had been pleased to accept.
· The Saffron Acres Open Day had been a good event, and the publicity concerning the ‘Blaby’ tomato variety had been of great interest.
· The recent Advice Fair had been a success with a number of service providers attending, giving information and details of their services. Further similar events would be organised.
· Welcome news had been received concerning an Eyres Monsell School which had received an improved Ofsted report and grading, bringing it out of the special measures category.
· Consultation on the A426 Bus Corridor Project had commenced and it was hoped that improved junction arrangements would reduce congestion and improve air quality. Residents were encouraged to become involved in the consultation process.
· The recent flooding of the new play area had caused frustration to parents and the matter was being investigated with a view to remedial works being undertaken to improve drainage.
· The annual Register of Electors canvass was ongoing and residents were urged to ensure that they had registered their right to vote.
· Changes to the Council Tax Benefit arrangements were causing considerable concern to Councillors. It was noted that various groups would no longer receive benefit, or receive reduced benefits, under the Government’s proposals. Consultation was ongoing to ensure the best protection for those affected.
· The campaign against the planned closure of the Children’s Heart Unit at Glenfied Hospital ... view the full minutes text for item 5.
PLANNED CHANGES TO THE WARD MEETING
Councillors will present future plans for ways of engaging with the Ward’s community.
Councillor Palmer gave a presentation which suggested changes to the structure and organisation of future Ward Community Meetings.
Instead of formal meetings in a fixed venue it was suggested that a series of community walkabouts covering every street in the ward over the course of the year would be preferable. All households would be informed and all relevant agencies would be asked to attend to answer questions, hear concerns and pick up work to do including Councillors, Housing Officers, City wardens, Cleansing Services, Highways Officers, Police and any other relevant representation. Residents would not have to attend for the whole walkabout (they could if they wished), but could attend the walkabout on just their own street.
It was reported that the meetings in their current format generally had a good attendance, had a wide range of issues discussed at them and were lively meetings, with people beinmg able to have their say.
Councillor Palmer expressed a view that Meetings were sometimes too formal with presentations from the front and then questions and that whilst attendance had been good, it was from a very low proportion of the population living in the area. He felt it was wrong to assume that just because people did not turn up they were not interested in their local community.
The timing of meetings was also considered to be an issue, together with venues. Councillor Palmer felt that the idea of a “meeting” could also be detrimental as some people wanted to be involved in community issues but did not want to attend a formal meeting.
It was proposed that a report and action list could be produced and published (like meeting minutes) after each walkabout and that progress on previous issues would be reported.
It was noted that Housing Officers already do patch walks and discussions on how the community walkabouts couldlink to those patch walks were being held.
It was considered that people would see the walkabout and take part which would involve more people and reach more people in the community.
In respect of the Ward Community Budget applications it was suggested that these would still be transparent and that decisions would be reported back to the community. A more organised system was proposed with funding application deadlines through the year being agreed and Councillor’s Budget Meetings being convened which would be formally minuted and reported back to the community.
A proposal to allocate the budget to different areas of activity based on the funding bids approved since 2008/09 was submitted. From the £18,000 annual budget it was proposed that £2,500 would be required for community meeting/walkabout communication. The remaining £15,500 would be allocated proportionally to the following categories:
§ Community events
§ Community safety and crime prevention
§ Children and youth projects
§ Older people projects
Councillor Palmer asked for questions and comments on the proposed changes to the structure an organisation of Ward Community Meetings.
The meeting discussed the ideas within the presentation and expressed support for a ... view the full minutes text for item 6.
ANY OTHER BUSINESS
There were no items of Urgent Business.
CLOSE OF MEETING
The meeting closed at 6:00 pm.