April Minutes – 2018

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Largs Community Council

Approved Minutes
19 April 2018 at 7pm at Largs Library


Present: CCllr D Blair (Chair), CCllr V Lundie, CCllr A Carson, CCllr D Cochrane, CCllr P Perman, CCllr J Perman, CCllr A Adair, CCllr M Wood, CCllr J Phillips, Cllr I Murdoch, Cllr T Marshall, Sgt J Cook

Apologies: CCllr E Marshall, CCllr J Stewart, Cllr A Hill

Item Business
1 Welcome

Welcome to all present.

2 Apologises

As noted above

3 North Ayrshire Council Report

Cllr Murdoch reported that follow up from last meeting the missing bollard from the prom at the pier end will be replaced next week.  The square and the shelters were to be completed by Easter, alas these weren’t. There is to be a site meeting this coming Monday.  There have been a lot of complaints regarding the topic of yellows lines; this will be covered under transportation.  The recent road closures of the A78 were to carry out structural issues and not maintenance.  Cllr Murdoch has written to ask what are the plans for the rest of the road, through Fairlie and Largs to Skelmorlie are in a particularly bad state.  He had meeting regarding possible cycle counter with suggested site at kiosk near RNLI station. With recent road works there followed issues with Brisbane Glen Road and had to ask for this to be closed due to volume of traffic and it all became total gridlock and vehicles being damaged.  Cllr Murdoch has been trying to arrange a meeting with other elected members with a view to getting a pilot up and running and arrange finance for some form of parking marshal.
CCllr Marshall stated that the whole problem with traffic management is that it has to be Ayrshire wide. NAC has steadfastly refused to de-criminalise parking. However, they have now agreed to put it into the budget mainly because they can make money from it.  This will help Largs.
Cllr Murdoch continued that the majority of local take away outlets now use biodegradable packaging. There are no recycling facilities on the prom or town centre so he has asked the council if we could have some recycling bins. A local gentleman had contacted Cllr Murdoch and asked to meet with him on the prom regarding rubbish.  The rubbish at the mouth of the Gogo burn is atrocious!  Syringes, colostomy bags, sanity products. CCllr Carson says this sounds like untreated sewerage. Cllr Murdoch is going to approach SEPA and the council.

NAC has submitted a response to the Forestry EIA.

Cllr Marshall advised of a local development plan which has earmarked where new housing is to go and there will be a new development up Brisbane Glen. The population of North Ayrshire is dropping so they have identified 10 new sites for developing with a view to boosting the local economy and bring in new people to the area.  There is debate as to whether this is a suitable area due to flooding.  CCllr Lundie asked that assuming there will be family housing in this development has this been taken into account with the construction of the new campus?

CCllr Wood asked that with all this proposed development what will be done for the community. There is not even a Community Centre in the town.  Cllr Murdoch pointed out the facilities available at the new campus, the Vikingar etc.
CCllr Blair expressed concern about what the plan is for Largs in 10 years time. Cllr Marshall stated that he felt Largs has done well, with £50m being spent on the school, £12m on Inverclyde Sports Centre, lots of new housing planned.

Cllr Murdoch pointed out that the prom has recently been done albeit not up to standard, the investment in Gallowgate Square and the new skate park.
CCllr Cochrane pointed out we have a very good facility in the AD Cameron centre and is struggling for people to run it. Helter Skelter collapsed as it had no-one to run it.
Cllr Murdoch advised it’s not that easy to do things as you have to get all councillors in the ward to agree. It’s a long drawn out process.  Largs is fortunate in that it has funds(common good) that other towns don’t have.  CCllr Blair asked for clarity on the status of the Common Good fund and the possibility of it being depleted to zero.  Cllr Marshall stated that there is currently £400K in it and the carpark fund brings in almost £200k a year.

4 Minutes of Meeting of 15 March 2018

Proposed CCllr Adair and 2nd CCllr Woods.

5 Matters Arising from Minutes

Re item 6 FOI – update from CCllr J Perman – what Jennifer Ross has conceded now is that she had advised that NAC had received representation from 2 councillors, this is incorrect and there was only 1 representation. Prior to 14 July there was no complaints lodged with NAC and Mr Hatton had to solicit input from the Police on 14 July.  Nothing had ever come directly from the Police to NAC. Mr Hatton then contacted local members at which time there had been no report from PMI and PMI made no recommendation for demolition.  Inspection was made subsequent to members agreeing to demolition. The only person who proposed the demolition was Mr Hatton.  Only on 12 September did the Organic Growers concede to asset transfer/lease request for the building.  Mr Hatton emailed on 18 July to Councillors Murdoch, Marshall, Gallagher, Hill and Andrew Fraser stated that “I am minded to demolish the shelter”.  Cllr Gallagher responded on 19 July “It sticks in the throat that we have to destroy what is a perfectly sound structure built for the public good. We need to co-operate with the Police etc. to see if there is a long term solution we can apply. Also, we obviously cannot knock down the building without replacing it with something.”  A further response from Mr Hatton on 20 July “Happy to consider form of replacement, although we need something that won’t attract anti-social behaviour. Once we have a clear way forward and timescale around potential demolition I’ll arrange to meet with ward members to discuss thoughts on potential replacement.”  As at last Community Council meeting (15 March), Cllrs Murdoch and Hill confirmed that this has still not taken place.
Jennifer Ross has asked if we are happy that we now have all the information available. So, there is no report available, only one person complained no police reports prior to 14 July.
CCllr Blair proposed that we hold a private meeting to discuss this and a way forward. 2nd CCllr Phillips. To be arranged as soon as possible.
Cllr Marshall confirmed he contacted Craig Hatton. Mr Hatton had delegated powers to do what he did and he acted on the belief that there was a danger of the shelter being set on fire.
CCllr J Perman questioned that if Mr Hatton thought there was a distinct danger of the building going on fire, why wasn’t it cordoned off?
CCllr Blair stated that the FOI Officer has re-enforced our suspicions and FOI has been helpful. He also thanked CCllr J Perman for all his work on this FOI request and confirmed that he should respond to FOI Officer closing case.

6 Secretary’s Report and Correspondence

Email received re Community Council Planning Training has been rescheduled for 9 May at Focus Centre, Saltcoats.  CCllr Wood confirmed she would attend.

Message received via our webpage suggesting local workers obtaining a pass for seafront carpark to free up town centre parking. CCllr Adair to take this forward to NAC.
We have been invited to visit the crematorium on 5 May at 10am.  Anyone wishing to attend to meet there.
Reminder from CCllr Carson for any members who haven’t submitted a profile picture yet, please do so.

CCllr Blair advise that we received email and call from FCS thanking Largs Community Council for being an active participation.

Re the meeting on Monday night about the forestry, arranged at very short notice, some very valid questions and points put to the applicant’s representatives from both interested groups and local residents. NAC have also submitted a response supporting the proposal subject to the following matters – access; buffer zones; deer fencing; traffic being via Blair Park; no tree planting in the prominent west facing areas.

Regardless of whether we as a group or individuals agree or not with the proposals and the specifics of it, the application is in and decision now up to the FSC. CCllr P Perman expressed disappointment at the low numbers of local people attending.
CCllr Blair was able to hand over a cheque to the treasurer for £1400 with another for £600 on its way for the SSE Microgrants.  We were able to approve 14/15 applications for either full or partial funds.


7 Treasurer’s Report

One expense this month with cheque being issued to TikTok for our web design and set up at £550. Balance in accounts – Project fund £1744.07 and Current account remains at £213.87.
Approved – CCllr Adair and 2nd CCllr Phillips


8 Sub Committee Reports

a.    Police CCllr Woods introduced Sgt John Cook from Police Scotland, Saltcoats. CCllr Blair raised an issued that had caused concern amongst several residents this afternoon, which were ‘explosion’ noises coming from the direction of Hunterston. Sgt Cook confirmed that they had been made aware of this in relation to planned works and there is absolutely nothing to be concerned about.  CCllr Blair suggested that perhaps some warning in future. It was very alarming. CCllr Wood concerned about the level of violence with 11 reported assaults over a 4 week period with 7 being detected and positive line of enquiry on a further 2.  Sgt Cook advised that they have had reports of the shelter at Moorburn being used as a drinking den. This is something that will be covered under their action plan.  West coast of Scotland is experiencing theft of batteries from temporary traffic lights and asks the public to report any lights that are out.  These batteries are extremely heavy.  There are no particular emerging crime patterns.
CCllr Wood advised that a resident of Greeto Falls was arrested for trapping wild finches.  Local PC Andy Phillips is retiring on 5 May. Sgt Cook advised that from 14 March to 19 April 43 parking tickets have been issued in and around the town centre.  CCllr J Perman advised that cars had been parked on the east side of Bath Street therefore preventing the workmen from completing the yellow lines. Could the police assist with this to allow this task to be completed? Broken lines can’t be enforced.

b.    Licensing Shortly after last month’s meeting couple of applications came in and as a response was time critical these were passed directly to CCllr Wood to respond.  Again another application that was time critical – from Sports Centre for licence for special occasions.  CCllr Wood responded on behalf of Community council with no objections.
Another application, again time critical, from Geraldo’s  to extend to alcohol display and sales on Sundays, given that we have objected to this on previous occasion have done so again based on over provision.
CCllr Cochrane expressed his surprised at this decision given that this business is ‘a specialist’ and felt this was harsh. CCllr Wood clarified the guidelines that regardless of size, amount and type, it’s alcohol sales and comes under the Licencing Scotland Act. Cllr Marshall agreed with CCllr Cochrane in that we should be supporting and encouraging local businesses that bring a lot to the town.

c.    Planning Application from Mr Clark re proposal for additional use of hardstanding which projects onto the prom.  The fairground ride is too big for existing hardstanding and owner wishes to lease part of the prom to accommodate this.  There was debate as to whether these showground rides were an asset to the town. CCllr J Perman proposal objection on basis that it narrows the prom 2nd CCllr Lundie, vote 4 for, 3 against and 1 abstention.
Application from Specsavers moving into former IBAC shop. No objections.
Application from Scotts Restaurant at marina to extend upstairs into restaurant and open out onto existing flat roof area. No objections.
Application from Anchor Bar for outdoor seating area for 7mx3m at rear of property. CCllr M Wood, proposes an objection, 2nd CCllr Adair. Vote for 3, against 4, abstention 1.  Therefore response is no objections on the basis that tables and chairs be removed if square needed for an event and that area partitioned off.
CCllr Blair reminded all members of our code of conduct.

d.    Environment Forestry as per earlier discussion.

e.    Transportation CCllr Adair reiterated parking and yellow line debate discussed at previous meetings. However more recently residents were not made aware that new double yellow lines were to be laid down in Bath Street area. Cllr Marshall emphasise that NAC were only refreshing existing traffic regulations therefore consultation was not required. The town is suffering as a result of RMT affecting Calmac and volume of traffic. Cllr Murdoch and Marshall will raise this issue at forthcoming NAC meeting.  CCllr P Perman stated that the report in local paper stating that LCC started the petition is inaccurate.

f.     Social Media – None

9 A.O.C.B. – None
10 Date of Next Meeting –  17 May 2018

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