Agenda and minutes

Boston Town Area Committee (BTAC) - Wednesday, 29th August, 2018 6.30 pm

Venue: Committee Room, Municipal Buildings, West Street, Boston, PE21 8QR

Contact: Janette Collier, Senior Democratic Services Officer  01205 314227 email:  janette.collier@boston.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

28.

MINUTES pdf icon PDF 155 KB

To sign and confirm the minutes of the last meeting, held on 25th July 2018.

Minutes:

The minutes of the Committee’s last meeting, held on 25th July 2018, were agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman. 

29.

UPDATE ON ACTIONS FROM THE MINUTES OF THE LAST MEETING

To report progress on outstanding actions from the minutes of the last meeting, for information only

Minutes:

At the last meeting, it was agreed that a meeting be arranged for the Ward Members to visit the Ingelow Avenue play area and report back to the Committee at this meeting.  The Operations Manager reported that the visit had taken place on with officers and Councillor Anton Dani attending.  Also, Councillor Dani was provided with two previous reports to BTAC outlining the potential development opportunities regarding the open space.  They had a positive meeting with a Registered Social Landlord and a private developer, but development was subject to a range of matters and BTAC would be updated on this in due course.

30.

APOLOGIES

To receive apologies for absence.

Minutes:

There were apologies for absence from Councillor Stephen Raven.

31.

POLICING ISSUES - STANDING ITEM

(Inspector Andy Morrice will be in attendance to discuss any policing issues with Members.)

Minutes:

Inspector Morrice updated the Committee on a recent Community Alcohol Partnership event, Boston Active, which had been very successful, resulting in a significant amount of engagement. 

 

The Mini Police scheme was going extremely well, with 109 schools participating across Lincolnshire, 32 in Boston and South Holland.  There were plans to hold a Mini Police Marathon in Central Park and they were also considering a 999 day, with proceeds to go to the Air Ambulance

 

Inspector Morrice then responded to issues raised. 

 

House to house enquiries would be initiated regarding reports of youths driving at high speed on St Thomas’ Drive.  The first Community Speed Watch scheme had just been set up in Kirton following complaints received about speeding.  Some members of the public were trained to operate the speed cameras.  Car registration numbers were recorded, warning letters were issued and prosecution could result.  There was danger from vehicles speeding on straight country roads; however, the complaints received mainly related to built up areas.

 

[Councillor Nigel Welton arrived at this point.]

 

The Police received intelligence about drug-taking, but nothing had suggested that it was increasing.  However, due to concerns raised, they would look at this with respect to Central Park. 

 

Following a significant recruitment drive for additional staff, two cohorts would begin by the end of the year, including four EU nationals who would work in Boston. 

 

The CCTV camera system was extremely good quality and effective, with a high number of crimes being reported speedily to the Police. 

 

Inspector Morrice was not aware of any complaints of anti-social behaviour in West Street near the cinema, but would check this. 

 

In response to a question from a member of the public, Inspector Morrice reported that the area near station bridge was regularly patrolled and the Police had used powers under the Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) many times to ask people to hand over alcohol or face a Fixed Penalty Notice and they had always handed it over so far rather than pay the £100 fine.  Inspector Morrice highly commended the Council’s Anti-Social Behaviour team for their work and said that the process was working better than anywhere else in the country.  

 

An ongoing issue with obstructive parking was raised though it was being resolved by dialogue with the relevant parties.  Inspector Morrice confirmed that parking was a County Council issue.  The Police did not give priority to obstructions caused by parking and matters were often resolved before Police attended, though they would speak to people to try to resolve ongoing issues. 

 

Inspector Morrice invited Members to contact him directly if they needed any more information or statistics.

32.

FINANCIAL REPORT - STANDING ITEM pdf icon PDF 93 KB

(A report presented by Paul Julian, Head of Financial Services.)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee noted the update by the Chief Finance Officer.  The Accountancy Manager - Revenues & Systems would be the Committee’s financial representative at future meetings.

33.

UPDATE ON BTAC OPERATIVES' ACTIVITY pdf icon PDF 156 KB

(Details of work undertaken during July 2018, presented by Matt Fisher, Operations Manager)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Operations Manager presented details of the activity of the BTAC Operatives for the month of July, which included ‘before and after’ photographs that clearly illustrated the extent of the work of the operatives.

 

The operatives had been very busy with 16 separate items of work in the month.  The resulting improvements were due to BTAC’s investment of resources and were much appreciated by members of the public. 

 

Members greatly commended the team and confirmed that the operatives and the work they had carried out had been highly praised by the public.  Members agreed that the three operatives should receive thank you letters from the Committee. 

 

In response to further comments, the Operations Manager explained that the separate Street Cleaning team, made up of 7.1 full time equivalents, cleaned the town once a day, every day of the week.  They were currently looking at ways to provide the service differently.  It was a difficult job and could be demoralising, but litter had reduced significantly in recent years and the Enforcement team had issued 960 Fixed Penalty Notices since the start in April 2017. 

 

The Operations Manager was not aware of any specific issues in the area of the cinema on West Street currently, but would update Members if this changed.  It was incumbent on the operatives and street cleaners to clean up areas and make safe anything dangerous, identifying owners afterwards. 

 

The Council had worked with the Community Payback team on many projects and continued to work with them.  There were also 150 litter champions who the Council supported with equipment and risk assessments. 

 

A report of a burnt bin in Fenside would be followed up.  The area between the White Hart hotel and Dunelm’s fabric shop would be prioritised for cleaning if there were still problems there; Fixed Penalty Notices had been issued with respect to this area and information on this could be provided. 

Members’ comments included reference to Placecheck schemes in that they had started well, but now only a few small groups remained; BTAC could support them and help them expand to other areas.  It would be beneficial to empower the local community again to take ownership of areas and work with the Council and action should be taken to get owners to tidy up a significant building in the town.

 

In response to a question, the Head of Place and Space confirmed that the Council could clean off any graffiti appearing on the three phone boxes in the town and that he was seeking to speak to BT regarding their repair and condition as well as the possibility of adopting them. 

 

Action: JC/ Chairman

Send letters of thanks to the BTAC Operatives in appreciation of their work.

 

Action: PP

Obtain an answer from BT regarding potential adoption of phone boxes in BTAC area.

 

Action: MF

1.    Follow up Councillor Dani’s reference to a report of burnt bin in Fenside Ward to ensure it is being replaced.

2.    Provide Councillor Dani with information on the number  ...  view the full minutes text for item 33.

34.

TOWN CENTRE MAPPING & INFORMATION BOARDS pdf icon PDF 133 KB

(A report by Phil Perry, Head of Place and Space)

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Place and Space presented a report, requested at the last meeting, regarding town centre mapping and information boards.

 

The report provided an update on matters relating to the existence of town centre maps and the provision of notice boards to promote BTAC events to be sited in prominent places around the town, in order to enable consideration for future improvement and development opportunities.

 

The report had been requested by the Portfolio Holder who felt there was a lack of general information in the town to promote what it had to offer for residents and visitors, particularly so that people knew what events were taking place that BTAC’s sub group worked hard to organise.  Other towns had vending machine maps and large advertising boards in prominent places.  BTAC could fund inexpensive notice boards and sponsorship should be easily sought from local businesses for maps.

 

During discussion, Members spoke in support of the provision of notice boards and agreed that events needed promotion.  One suggestion was for a notice board in Central Park that community groups and individuals could post on, though it was suggested it could be misused.  Boards should also be provided in other key areas and in wards, and would have to be kept up to date.  Maps produced for visitors by the Town Team were still available; when and where they were made available for the public was important, e.g. for coach drivers bringing in visitors.  Events could be advertised in the Municipal Buildings foyer, perhaps by having a leaflet stand.  There was also a suggestion for interactive notice boards. 

 

The Head of Place and Space advised Members that there were 16,000 maps available and they had been sponsored.  More maps were being sourced, as illustrated in the appendix to the report.  Officers had been working with the Portfolio Holder on provision of notice boards and a bid for funding had been submitted through a community group to put up notice boards in the best locations, starting with Central Park.

 

[Councillor Alison Austin left the meeting at this point.]

 

It was important to work with businesses and secure sponsorship; perhaps a social event could be arranged to encourage engagement.  It was noted that the Events Sub Group was looking at the idea of providing street banners to promote events and work was underway regarding the necessary permissions. 

 

[Councillor Paul Gleeson left the meeting at this point.]

 

In response to a question, the Head of Place and Space confirmed that costs so far had been covered by grant monies from the Heritage Lottery Fund and a further bid had been submitted.  A significant amount of work was underway for schemes that would be little or no cost to the Council.  As many leaflets were made available as possible, located at the Guildhall etc. 

 

The Portfolio Holder advised Members that notice boards could be produced and installed by Boston College at a cost of around £89 each, and there was some support for this.  However, Members agreed  ...  view the full minutes text for item 34.

35.

BTAC PLANNING SUB-COMMITTEE MINUTE pdf icon PDF 6 KB

(To receive the minute of the meeting of the BTAC Planning Sub-Committee held on 25th July 2018, for information.)

Minutes:

The minute of the meeting of the BTAC Planning Sub-Committee, held on 25th July 2018, was noted.

36.

WORK PROGRAMME - STANDING ITEM pdf icon PDF 169 KB

(The Committee’s work programme for the current year for discussion and/or updating.)

Minutes:

Members considered the work programme and added the following items:

 

Action: PP

Invite County Council officers to update BTAC on the Into Town Bus operating in the Market Place and invite the bus operator to write to give the company’s current view on its operation.

 

Action: JC

Add consideration of interactive notice boards to the meeting on 30th January.