As a result of the Covid-19/Coronavirus pandemic, the Government has introduced a number of changes to the way that Local Council’s and Parish Council deal with public meetings and Annual General Meetings (AGM’s) This has resulted in changes to Local Government legislation which took effect from early April 2020. For Parish Councils this affects us in three ways:-
The requirement to hold AGM’s has been temporarily suspended (Possibly until next year) This means the current arrangements will continue for the foreseeable future i.e Ian will remain chair with Clive as vice-chair.
Parish Council meetings should only be held if they are absolutely necessary.
If meetings do need to take place these should be done remotely using an alternative communication platform (i.e Google hangouts, GoToMeeting, Microsoft Teams, Skype, Slack or Zoom) However, whatever platform you use it must be accessible by the general public and you would be required to advertise the necessary links/passwords to join the meeting. This would have to be advertised on the Parish Council’s website and notice boards.
Having discussed the current situation with Ian this evening we have decided to temporarily suspend future Parish Council meetings. In the meantime we are still able to pay for the ongoing costs of running the Parish Council i.e paying annual insurances, making the annual donations, subscriptions etc as these have already been agreed when we signed off this year’s budget in January. I will simply ask Ian and one other Councillor to sign the cheques for all payments that are due and when we do eventually have our next formal meeting these can be retrospectively approved.
We should continue with our Parish Council business as normal as long as it does not require a new decision to be made. I will send out a separate e-mail about this in the next few days.
There are other tasks that I still need to continue with such as completing the year end accounts and getting these signed off our auditor but even here, the deadline for submitting the accounts has been put back by a couple of months.
As we all know, the situation with the Coronavirus changes by the week and we will just need to take a flexible approach to how we conduct Parish Council business in the coming weeks and months. I hope you all understand and agree with the decision to temporarily suspend our meetings. However, please feel free to contact me to discuss. I will try and keep you all updated as the situation changes.
If you need any further information you can contact your Parish Councillor