10.35. Chairman opened meeting and gave fire evacuation procedure.
Apologies: Mrs Perkins and John Dymott.
Matters Arising from last meeting – none.
We welcomed Councillor Nicola Greene as representative of the BBC to update on the future of the merger of Bournemouth, Poole and Christchurch which will form the New Council from next April 2019. Christchurch Council is seeking a Judicial Review. We will learn of progress by the end of July.
In April this year representatives from all three Councils met to formulate the new Shadow Body which will then be The Shadow Council. In early June a meeting of representatives was held where the Chairperson was elected and the setting up of committees took place, also the Shadow Executive of 16 members who will take decisions forward. Anything of significance will have to go back to the Shadow Authority. Later in Autumn a Chief Executive will be chosen for the future Council. The Budget for 2019 will be determined in February.
The Boundary Commission has published proposals for the new Authority. Saving costs is the priority. The Boundaries Commission has worked hard on reducing 125 members down to 76. The Commission has done what they see best to ensure equal representation for each Ward. Significant
changes will be made to some Ward areas. The proposed boundary for The Bournemouth Wallisdown Winton West Ward will remain as it is now. The Boundary Commission’s website is available to consult on the proposed changes. Residents who are not familiar with the internet or Town Planning can visit their Libraries.
A resident highlighted the work load and with only two Councillors would we be under represented? Cllr Greene explained that bearing in mind some councillors have other jobs they will have to work that much harder to look after their residents in that Ward!
All three Councils coming together will be creating something new and serving 400,000 residents, having said that, Bournemouth and Poole are already working closely together. Cllr Philips commented that new committees coming together will be working for the greater good of the residents regardless of party politics. Some teething problems are to be expected.
Cllr Greene expressed that it will be a challenging experience to provide the services we all care about. Adults and Children’s Services takes up 80% of what the Council raises. Having said that there is an ambitious programme to develop an economy that works for residents.
A resident raised the issue of prime location car parks being sold off for flats, Cllr Greene explained that all town centre car parking used was going to be replaced elsewhere. The council is not trying to kill off town trade as at the present moment the footfall has increased.
A resident raised the spending monies from Bournemouth Council assets. These can only be spent once. So where will the funding come for future expenditure if used on short term expenses?
Cllr Greene informed us that any Council assets being sold off could only be used to invest in something that will remain in the council’s ownership. Such as the 100 properties the Council has purchased to help accommodate people whilst they are waiting for permanent housing. This will not only be an asset for the future but will also save the cost of temporary accommodation in the private sector.
A resident asked about Council Tax increases knowing that the Government support will cease in 2020. Cllr Greene explained that the level of increases in Council taxes will be controlled by the Government. The intentions are to harmonise the Council Tax between the three councils within the next 7 years.
In respect of forums in the future. It was highlighted by Cllr Phillips that a lot has been achieved in our Ward through our Area Forum Meetings and more should be done to promote the quarterly Residents Public Meetings.
A resident was shocked to see that new saplings planted in Talbot Rise, near the allotments appeared to have been mown down. Cllr Hedges said that he would follow this up.
WWW Turbary Park Centre Public Forum Meeting – extra points….
The Chairman , with the meeting ‘overrunning’ , wanted to convey the following Ward issue points to assist those not only at the meeting but those on this occasion unable to attend. The long gaps between meetings brought a suggestion that ‘more work’ should be carried out between Public Forums to seek prompter answers/resolutions wherever possible.
In no particular order :
* The Chair and one Ward Councillor had attended a high level ‘Anti Social Behaviour’ meeting at The Learning Centre the previous week which saw in attendance Sgt Gemma Barber , Dorset Police , Active Dorset , Matthew King and Cat Macmillan from the Council’s Enforcement Team , Michael Rowland , Head of Parks , the Executive Principal of Winton and Glenmoor Schools Ben Antell , Cllr David Smith , Mr Karol , Manager of the Bournemouth Learning Centre , Tina Kirkman from BBC Communities and Brian Hawkins from EPCC along with Cllr Nigel Hedges. Minutes of the meeting will be distributed in due course. Major points of discussion were around cctv coverage , for the stakeholders in Slades Farm , especially the Community Centre , to seek involvement with the Learning Centre’s security regimes which have been very successful , the frustrations of the Police being unable to identify the culprits ( despite ‘good’ cctv footage ) , the falling off of incidents after the last incident where thieves tried to steal heavy plant equipment , and the ‘Dalek Sentinels’ around the new Active Dorset building which has deterred any further incidents there.
* At the ASB meeting , the latest ( fourth in ten years ) Crime Prevention report was distributed. It gave continued worthwhile advice and assessed measures in place at present. This can be made available.
* The new building delivered by Active Dorset is now being fitted out and will prove a substantial community asset to encourage and allow more residents to access this valuable community space. Active Dorset will be sending out invites to view the building upon completion.
* The Consultation on the road works planned for Wallisdown Road has been published. All residents’ thoughts are sought. Bournemouth Council is the lead Highway Authority but like the Boundary Road Roundabout will be working closely with Poole Council’s Highways department ( one authority after May 2018 ) and the major project is delivered in conjunction with the Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership ( which petitions Government on Dorset’s behalf for funding for such major projects ).
* Several residents have contacted their Ward Councillors on weed and street clearance of gutters and in all instances Bournemouth’s Street Teams have responded very promptly , spraying and clearing away some recurring prolific weed growth in Acton Road and Hood Crescent.
* Ward Councillors had been out on a Litter Pick around Columbia Road and Slades Farm ( approaches ) taking away sacks of rubbish. Larger items ( two smashed tvs , two car bumpers and a bike in a hedge ) were collected again most promptly by Street Services and a leaking overflow was fixed by the Council’s Housing Maintenance Team upon reporting. Another one or two litter picks by the Ward Councillors were proposed so those wishing to participate are encouraged to register their interest.
* Some ‘severe strimming’ has been reported with the loss of much loved lavender plants and a similar issue raised by Mr Perkins. Cllr Hedges is dealing with these issues.
* One attendee mentioned traffic movements around Beswick Avenue and the schools there. There was also a question about the general availability of parking in Bournemouth Town Centre. It was mentioned that there are 8,500 car parking spaces , more multi storey car parks being built as the town continues to enjoy it’s continuing redevelopment but at present only seeing an average occupancy rate of 65% except during the Air Festival and at Christmas at the times the Council makes the parking free when all spaces are occupied at peak times. The Ward Councillors are willing to take this debate further and in more depth if required prior to the next meeting.
* There have been ongoing discussions about traffic movements at the beginning and end of the school’s days in Oswald Road and local Councillors are in discussion with the Head , Mr Tarchetti and Highways seeking further progress on road safety and ‘illegal’ parking by parents at these times.