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Minutes of the 29 January 2006 Committee Meeting

Present: Corinne Attwood, Peter Freeman, Adam Jones (in the chair), Philippa Sankey, Ann Smith, Nick von Tunzelman, Paul Vitalis.

Apologies from Graham Towers, Jenny and John Riddington

1. Direction of CMPCA

Responding to a recent email from Tony Davenport that referred to ‘concerns amongst myself and other members of the management committee about the democracy and direction of the association’ AJ asked whether members had such concerns. PV considered that the selection of Tim Moore of CityClean to speak at the March meeting had not been discussed by the Committee (see item 5).

2. Constitution and CMPCA meeting of 17 Jan

PS was thanked for her work in drafting the constitution and liaising with Community Matters.
Action: PF to look at section in Minutes on debate re Constitution and re-word passage relating to the indefinite re-election of Committee members to make it clearer. It was agreed that approval of the 17/1 Minutes would be deferred until this had been done (and section on police talk amended) and then they could agreed by e-mail. Any decisions made by Management Committee should be reported to community meetings.

3. Charitable Status

PS reported that the Charity Commission had confirmed that there was no immediate need to apply for charitable status provided we applied about a year from when we started operating. It would make sense to apply after the first AGM when the Officers and Committee were firmly in place. It was agreed that we would defer application until after the AGM and aim to apply over the summer/before our first anniversary in September.

4. AGM 25 April

No date could be found which all Committee members could make but 25 April agreed. PF suggested a Festival-related speaker:
Action: PF to invite two Festival organisers (Pippa Smith and Jane McMorrow), and. PS to approach Lynne Truss, also Glenda Clarke (Brighton tour guide) as a fallback/speaker on another occasion.
Elections etc:
Action: AJ to draft and circulate job descriptions for Officers.
The procedure for elections was discussed. It was agreed that CA as Acting Chair would co-ordinate the elections. All officers and committee members would need to be nominated and seconded and nominations sent to CA 2 weeks before AGM. At the AGM first Officers would be elected, then other Committee members. if more than 10 people stood for Committee, ballot papers would be needed; 10 or fewer, one vote for all would do.
Action: once agreed, procedures to appear in next newsletter. Also on local Noticeboards and in shops.
It was agreed that although formal accounts were not necessary when applying for charitable status (if we had an incomplete financial year) we should nonetheless prepare accounts for the year up to end Dec 2005 in format required by CC to present to AGM (Action: AJ).
It was also agreed that there should be a Chairman's Annual Report and a Financial Report – about 5 minutes each.

5. Future meetings

March meeting: There was a discussion about PV’s concerns regarding the decision to invite Tim Moore to address the March meeting. It was explained that the visit by CA and PS to Cityclean had been agreed and set in motion early in the autumn (to follow up the re-cycling initiative) and the meeting had been cleared prior to advertising it in the December newsletter possibly at a meeting that PV missed. It was confirmed that in future the Committee would continue to be consulted about the choice of speakers and topics for public meetings, at least by email. 

PV (who had seen the draft report by CA of the meeting) was concerned that TM would claim that the meeting amounted to public consultation. AJ pointed out that CC are stakeholders, doing a job for us, and having them speak at a meeting would provide an opportunity to expose them, if they did not subsequently follow through on what they said. PS pointed out that it is part of our remit as a Community Association to liaise with local authorities. Some people might have issues with any personality we could call on as a speaker. AS said that from the experience of Powis Square meetings, a meeting with TM would inevitably turn into a discussion about the black bins. PV felt that it would be better to deal with these matters (eg graffiti) by ourselves as a community and that we had little if anything to gain by involving CityClean.

It was agreed that, we must deal at some point and with careful management, with the Council (in this case CitycCean) as the authorities in charge of waste collection.

It was also agreed that the speaker would be changed for the March meeting and that discussion of whether TM should speak at a future date postponed until after the report of the meeting between CA, PS & TM had been finalised and circulated to all Committee members
Action: i. PS to add her notes to CA's report on Dec. meeting with TM; report to be circulated to Committee, then Committee discussion and decision about response to TM about the December and March meetings).
Action  ii. PV to spearhead graffiti clean up group.

March meeting: Main topic of March meeting to be decided and notified by e-mail after Feb. meeting (subsequently agreed by email to replace with CityCarClub presentation). Meeting also to cover update on RAH, (especially Feb meeting) also PV to give an introduction to graffiti task force with a view to a public meeting on graffiti in the summer.

It was agreed that we need not stick rigidly to monthly meetings. Meetings in May (Festival month), July and August (holidays) were duly cancelled (subsequently agreed by email that we might try to have an outdoor summer social in early July). Meetings to be held on 20 June (graffiti?) and 19 September.

6. Update on RAH SG meeting/site visit

PF had circulated full minutes prepared by Cllr RP. Everyone on site visit present at meeting – very productive discussion. RP is going to press Council to take more interest in fate of RAH. Should seek community view at Feb. meeting – this is significant site therefore Council should be more proactive, not just reactive. Robert Gregory - West Hill rep - agreed to contact other community groups in Brighton to tell them about the Feb. meeting to see if they want to send along reps, as it's of city-wide interest, and to publicise the situation at their own meetings. RP had written to the Primary Care Trust – will send rep to Feb meeting (not yet known who), but won't be able to speak. Agenda to be discussed at Steering Committee meeting on 6 Feb. PCT Rep will not make proposals but will be able to listen and go back and report to PCT. Good idea to get people to talk about potential use of the site for provision of health care. On 30/1 new govt initiative on Primary Care which will fit in very well – the govt is encouraging moving towards integrated primary care health development. Agreed that Steering Group should put forward ideas for 20/2 meeting – essential that main building is main thing to be preserved, also green spaces, flint walls and trees. This message carried among local amenity groups. RA wants to preserve all buildings, but not much support for this, or his proposal that SG itself should write a planning brief. Others take view that Council should be pressed to do this. Agreed that Feb Agenda should cover future of CH and Powis Villas as well as main building. RA said Lee Soden wouldn't be able to say much about CH as this meeting will take place only a few days before the bids come in. Minutes of Hospital Trust meeting that agreed to sell the site last November show that they are assuming sale will reduce their deficit by £150,000, so that's target price. Send rep to next hospital Trust meeting on 14/1 – there is space at meetings for members of public to ask questions. PF to go and raise issue of RAH. 6/2 meeting will do more planning for organisation of 20/2 meeting, and MCHA survey results. Some SG members think survey invalid, but RP has committed the Council to an analysis. RA & RP have discussed paying MCHA for their costs for producing the survey. 6/2 meeting – SG members will make their views about survey known, as we did in our meeting which RP attended. Another issue: whether the SG should continue – RA wants SG to continue, funded by the Council, to give guidance on development and negotiate with future owners of the site. GT & PF said SG was only to organise the 20/2 meeting and to come to a decision afterwards about their role, and define it.

7. Newsletter: (deadline for NL items is 27/1) next issue to have Festival pullout – centrefold – 7 Dials Art Trail. PS liaising with SDAT about this. NL to be available in the Open Houses. Musical events in churches, Interview (& possibly column) with Joanne Goode. CA to write article on City Car Club, also letter about car theft. NL must be ready by meeting on 20/2, apart from report on meeting to be added afterwards. Lot of positive feedback about NL particularly from people who can't attend meetings. It helps create community spirit.

8. Website: With prior agreement PS had found someone willing to take this on, and TD is also willing to do it now.

It was agreed that as with NL, it was best practice to have more than one person involved in managing and updating the website.
Action: CA to liaise with TD about WS.

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