Committees of the Council
The Council has a number of standing committees which deal with regular items and make recommendations to the full Council on actions to be taken or decisions to be approved. When necessary, other Sub-Committees and Working Groups are convened, which report directly back to the main Committees and ultimately the Council. The Committees are regulated by Standing Orders and Financial Regulations.
There are a number of decisions which must be taken by the full Council. The Council must approve its financial budget and must set its precept. These decisions cannot be delegated to a Committee.
What is the “precept”? The Parish Council receives the majority of its funding from an annual charge, called the precept, which is levied on its local electors. This is set each year by the Council, as part of its annual budget setting process and is collected on its behalf by Kirklees Council. The level of precept depends on the range and nature of the Council’s activities.
The Council normally meets once a month, with Finance & Management matters considered one month, and Service Provision matters considered at the next month’s meeting; the Council used to have separate committees for Finance & Management and General Purposes (the latter now referred to as ‘Service Provision’) but, following a review (in 2010-11) of the way the Council operates, the Council agreed to reduce the number of Committees, with the aim of reducing the number of meetings and associated administration. The changes to the way the Council works were implemented in 2011-12, resulting in a significant reduction in the number of meetings and associated administration and, in turn, this has enabled the Council to considerably reduce its staffing costs.
The Planning Committee deals with all planning issues, including scrutinising all planning applications relevant to the Holme Valley and making advisory comments to Kirklees Council, the planning authority. The Committee has delegated authority allowing it to make such comments immediately, without waiting for full Council approval.
It is consulted and comments on planning strategies developed by Kirklees Council, the Peak District National Park Authority, and neighbouring authorities, and any other Central Government publication relevant to planning matters.
Publicity and Special Projects Committee (formerly Publications & Communications)
This Committee has delegated authority to oversee and approve the creation, printing and distribution of the Council’s publications, with editorial responsibility for their content, and to monitor and approve the content and operation of the Council’s website. It is also responsible for the organisation and co-ordination of many of the Council’s Special Projects and events, e.g. the Council’s involvement in preparations for the Tour de France coming through Holmfirth on Sunday, 6 July 2014.
The Staffing Committee meets annually to review the performance of its Officer, and to discuss and deal with any staffing issues including conditions of service, contracted hours of work and any necessary appointments. This Committee meets on other occasions through the year, as required.