Burntisland Community Council

 

Minutes of Meeting Held in Burgh Chambers on

Friday 10th April 2009

 

Present

            A MacDonald (Chair)

            R Smith (Vice Chair)

            G Ritchie (Secretary)                 

            G Mc Gregor, S McGregor, T Hailey, M Douglas, C Dewar,        

            Councillor Edwards, Councillor Kay and

             K Halley FC Locality Manager

            9 Members of the public were in attendance

 

1)                 Apologies for Absence

            Ron Blanchard, H Leuchars, A Grant, S Purvis, G Lowe,

Councillor S Leslie and Sergeant E Potter

 

2)                 Minutes of Previous meeting (13/3/09)

These were unanimously approved as a true and correct record with the addition to Item 3.3 Common Good Fund of an amendment as follows “it was agreed that councillors be asked formally to take up the issue on behalf of the Community Council”. Adoption of the minutes was proposed by Morag Douglas and seconded by Christine Dewar.

 

3)          Notification of Community Concerns see under Any Other Business.

            Replacement of broken Slabs on High Street

            Grass cutting on Links

 

4)          Police Report

 

No Police representation at tonight’s meeting due to operational commitments .Sgt. Potter submitted the following brief report regarding Kinghorn Road work:--

The Kinghorn Road improvements are causing concern and numerious complaints have been received about vehicles parking too close to the new bollards and other vehicles having to pass on the wrong side of the road. Work is still incomplete and we will now have to wait until completion to ascertain if the system is working as it should.

 

5                    Presentation on Sustainable Communities Initiatives

Paula Cowie Development Manager SCI, who is based at the Earthship Fife Visitors Centre near Kinghorn Loch, gave a most interesting talk explaining how SCI uses waste to bring people together and to demonstrate and support initiatives that help people live in a more creative low impact way. She went on to illustrate how they can make toys, crafts, structures and even houses out of waste.

She openly issued an invitation to all to visit ‘Earthship Fife’ and come on the guided tour and learn how it was built and why. Visitors can even have fun measuring their personal eco-footprint and join in on a workshop to discover your micro-renewables.

Paula concluded her talk by again stressing that we should all work creatively with waste as a resource and enhances people’s lives by providing creative solutions to global problems.

The Chairman proposed an appreciative vote of thanks.

 

6) Matters Arising

 

6.1   Common Good

 

A letter was read out to the meeting from Andrew Ferguson Team Leader, Standards and Governance on behalf of Fife Council in response to the FC Councillors letter expressing the frustrating lack of action over the past few months following the meeting with the Community Council on 19th September 2008.

He explained they were experiencing difficulties with the allocation of resources in some of the other Council services and they are working with the other services involved to try to address the queries raised by the Community Council.

He gave his assurance of their best efforts to ensure that things improve in the coming weeks and months.

 

6.2   Scots Verse Competition

 

The Chairman gave a brief report on the very successful  Primary School prize winners reception held in the Council Chambers on 27th March .He explained that some of the trophies were now past their best and some had been damaged. He undertook the task of investigating costs of replacements trophies and at the same time makes proposals for the future format and organisation of the competition. It was agreed that we include Primaries and 2 in the competition in future

 

 

7)         Locality Manager’s Report

The following items 7.1 to 7.9 are in response to various issues raised at the Community Council 13th March meeting.

 

7.1 Common Good Fund

As agreed at the last meeting a joint letter was sent from the Councilors to Andrew Ferguson (Fife Council) requesting an update on progress in responding to the questions raised following the FC presentation to the September meeting.

 

 

7.2 Burntisland Local Services Centre

A sign with the opening times is on display outside the Centre.  The Centre is open on Friday afternoons; the only exception to this was Friday 6.3.09 when the Centre was closed all day because of staff shortages due to sickness.  On this occasion the Elected Members were notified and a notice displayed explaining the situation.

 

 

7.3 Damaged Masonry

The damaged masonry at the Local Services Centre has been reported to the Building Inspector and an order has been raised for the repair and it should be carried out before the end of the month.

 

 

7.4 Payment Methods

Kirkcaldy East, North and Burntisland have never had the facility to pay rent and other payments by a credit or debit cards in the Local Services Centres.  Swipe machines were installed in the main centres (like Kirkcaldy) and this was mainly to receive Registration income.  The scheme was not considered much of a success and before the implementation of the new Payment Strategy it was decided to remove the swipe machines from the centres.

 

7.5 Use of Rent Books

Rent Cards (not books) were issued to tenants at the start of the financial year; however, when the Payment Strategy was implemented a decision was taken that the old type rent cards would be no longer issued. 

 Tenants are now issued with a rent payment card that allows them to make payments at any pay point.  A receipt is issued for each payment but this does not contain a rent balance.  A rent statement, detailing rent periods and payments made, was enclosed with the rent notification letters issued recently and at any time tenants can call into a Local Services Centre and obtain a rent statement.

 

7.6 Arrears Letters

Promptness of Arrears letters – Low level arrears letters are system generated and the trigger for the first of these letters is £20.00.  LSA Customer Service staff monitors the low level debt on a fortnightly basis and tries to make contact at the earliest opportunity to work with tenant to prevent the arrears increasing.  If despite the letters the arrears continue to increase LSA Neighbourhood Staff assume responsibility for the case and continue to try to make contact in order to work with the tenant to make arrangements to clear the arrears.  Failure on the tenant’s part to make an arrangement results in the escalation of case and at all times letters are issued notifying the tenant of the action being proposed to resolve the situation.  

 

7.7 Burntisland Sports Group

The Group has been awarded a seed corn grant of £150.00.

 

7.8 Skate Park

The Contractor Thomas Menzies was due on-site late February/early March.  This start date has been delayed slightly because they had commitments elsewhere due to the weather conditions; however, they intend to start work week beginning 13th April and plan to finish before the end of June.

 

7.9 Pelican Crossing, Kirkton Road

Transportation Services are continuing to try to get the developer to do the outstanding works and the matter is being passed to planning enforcement to pursue.

Colinswell Land’s “Kirkton flats” planning application is going to the next Kirkcaldy Area committee and it has been advised that conditions covering the above outstanding works be included.

 

 

 

8)                 Secretary’s Report

The Secretary outlined details of the Community Payback Scheme where (for example) scrubland may be cleared- a new fence around a play park can be constructed .etc. These are the sort of things to be done by offenders paying back to their community. For more info go online to www.fifedirect.org.uk/payback and fill in the form provided.

 

He also circulated Information and leaflets on the developments at Queen Margaret Hospital planned over the next several years.

.

           

9)         Current Items of Business carried forward

 

9.1     Burntisland Blooms-

 Sheila McGregor reported that the P5 children from Burntisland Primary School planted 100 young trees on an area of land between the Islandbridge development and Colinswell House as part of a school project involving trees and woodlands during which they have visited woodlands, sown tree seeds and, in class, identified leaves and seeds.  The community council had been given a generous donation of assorted seeds which has been passed to the school to select any that might be useful in this or future projects.

 

9.2 Burntisland Sports Group Report

 

Gordon Ritchie updated members using Gillian Lowe’s report as Sports Group’s Secretary to the effect that sponsorship and a printing contract were being placed for the 4000 Information leaflets/questionnaires to be delivered throughout the town. These will be seeking the community’s views on what would be the most useful sports facilities and what is needed and what would be best for the town. A number of Organisations in the Town were very willing to help in the distribution collection during the summer months.

A next meeting of the group would be a site visit to the Toll Centre on Monday 20th April and Grant Ward from Fife Council will attend the meeting to advise us on sports facilities

The Group are very keen to progress the MUGA (Multi-Use Games Area) pitch and a number of possible sites have been identified including (A) the Beacon Centre on the Roundhouse car park-(B) adjacent to the Toll Centre and (C) on the Links near the car park. The allocated funding of around £100K it is understood could be made available in the 2009/2010 budget.

The Group still have fundamental and important issues to discuss and agree such as:-

A)  Development Trust Status

B) Formation of a Company limited by guarantee

C) Possible Charitable status

Gordon advised that he had submitted the application to Fife Council For start-up funds for the Group £150 (Seed corn Grant) and he understood this had been approved.

 

9.3 Proposed Community Noticeboard

 

Gordon Ritchie reported that the site between St Andrews Court and the Vet Surgery on the High Street seems to be a very popular choice as a location and a  three-sided security cabinet board is generally agreed to be the best possible solution to accommodate the Town’s needs. Grant and sponsorship funding is now being actively pursued. Best estimates indicate a budget of at least £5500 is required to provide a first class notice board fitted with a Community Council crest header panel.

 

 

9.4 Planning Applications Review

 

Tim Hailey gave an update on the current situation regarding current local application. The Palace Cinema planning approval was briefly discussed and there was no update available on the Lammerlaws Road proposed developments.

 

9.5     Household  Waste Collection Service

Press speculation a few weeks ago indicated that Fife Council was “planning to introduce four weekly collection services for household waste”. We are advised that the council has made no such decision.

The Council has established a Member/Officer Group to investigate options for the collection of food waste. The Group, which includes elected members from all parties and a consultant in public health from NHS Fife, will also take into consideration what other changes to services may be required to enable householders to recycle more waste more easily. For example, making it easier for householders to recycle more cans, plastics and glass

The Group will have to consider the challenging issue of residual waste collection services, especially if additional services are provided to collect food waste and, potentially, cans, plastics and glass from the kerbside. Any decision as to whether new or significantly changed services are to be applied on a Fife wide basis will be made by elected members following full evaluation of options that are tested.

 

 

10)      New Business

 

            10.1 Recommended Local Holidays

It is proposed that in future years (beginning 2010), the recommended
local holidays will follow a set formula and be the same across Fife.
This proposal will be submitted to Fife Council*s Policy, Finance and
Asset Management Committee at a meeting to be held on 11th June 2009 and
that report will include the results of consultation with local members,
community Councils and  relevant business organizations.

 

            The following formula is proposed for 2010 onwards:-

 

            Spring Holiday              -           First Monday of school Easter Holiday

May Day                       -           set to coincide with May Public Holiday

Victoria Day                  -           First Monday in June

Summer Holiday            -           First Monday of Fife Holiday (3rd Monday in July)

Autumn Holiday -           First Monday of school October Holiday

 

            For 2010, this would mean the actual dates were:-

 

Spring Holiday              -           Monday 5th April

May Day                       -           Monday 3rd May

Victoria Day                  -           Monday 7th June

Summer Holiday            -           Monday 19th July

Autumn Holiday -           TBA

 

!0.2 Forthcoming Changes to Planning System

 

Tim Hailey highlighted the changes to the planning system this year and that this will lead to an enhanced role for Community Councils.  A major package of new planning legislation has just been passed by the Scottish Parliament and some changes will occur between the end of February and the beginning of August 2009. 

There will be a direct impact on the relationship between planning authorities and community councils in the modernized planning system.  Further information on the modernization of the planning system is available on the Scottish Government website at: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/built-environment/planning.

 

10.2.1 Development Planning

 

The key changes in Development Planning took effect from 28 February 2009.

 

There are new requirements to ensure that community councils are kept up to date with Plan progress and have an opportunity to shape the development of their community. Instead of producing draft plans, authorities will initially be preparing main issues reports. This is designed to be the stage where communities can most usefully contribute to the plan.

 

Circular 1/2009 on Development Planning was published on the internet in February (http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2009/02/13153723/0).

 

10.2.2 Development Management

 

There are two particular dates of importance.

 

6 April 2009

 

From 3 August, any application for planning permission for a National or Major development received by a planning authority will require to have had a ‘pre-application consultation’ (PAC) with communities. 

 

Prospective applicants are required to send relevant community council details of the proposed application and how they intend to consult the wider community.  This must include at least one public event where members of the public may make comments.  The planning authority may require additional consultation but that is for the planning authority to decide in each instance.   The developer must submit a report on the consultation with the application.  If they don’t do so, or don’t do what is required of them, then the planning authority cannot process the application.

 

We should be aware that our Community Councils may therefore begin to be consulted by prospective applicants soon after 6 April.

 

 

 

 

10.3  Licence Application No.348

 

Burntisland Civic Week Parade 20th June 2009. This was agreed and the Chairman stressed the importance of supporting this community event.



 

11)      Any Other Business

 

           11.1 Broken Paving on High Street

It was noted that a good number of broken paving slabs on the High Street had been renewed, particularly in way of the Palace Cinema site, but there remained many random damaged slabs particularly at the east end in need of attention

 

11.2 Grass Cutting on Links

Complaints had been received regarding what could be considered alleged manpower wastage on the grass cutting operations on the links during week commencing 5th April.

 

11.3 Kinghorn Road Improvements

Several complaints have been received regarding the incomplete road works and highlighting possible potential hazards- See Police Report Agenda Item 4)

 

The Meeting closed at 2115 hours

 

            Next meeting  to be held on Friday  8th May 2009 at 7.00pm 

 

 

           

           

 

 

                       

 

           

 

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