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Parish Clerk

 

Overall Responsibilities

The Clerk to the Council will be the Proper Officer of the Council and, as such, is under statutory duty to carry out all the functions, and in particular to serve or issue all the notifications required by law of a local authority’s Proper Officer.

The Clerk will be totally responsible for ensuring that the instructions of the Council in connection with its function as a Local Authority are carried out.

The Clerk is expected to advise the Council on, and assist in the formation of, overall policies to be followed in respect of the Authority’s activities and, in particular, to produce all the information required for making effective decisions and to implement constructively all decisions.

The Clerk will be accountable to the Council for the effective management of all its resources and will report to them as and when required.

The Clerk will be the Responsible Financial Officer and be responsible for all financial records of the Council and the careful administration of its finances.

The Clerk will be acquainted with and act upon any requests made under the Freedom of Information Act.

 

Specific Responsibilities

To ensure that statutory and other provisions governing or affecting the running of the Council are observed.

Meetings                          
Attendance at bi-monthly meetings normally held on the second Monday of each second month usually at The Old Cart Shed, Tollard Royal. Start time 7.00 p.m. Clerk to arrive by 6.45 p.m. to set the room up and ensure all is ready for the meeting.
Attendance at Annual Parish Meeting which usually takes place in May each year, this meeting starts at 7 p.m. Arrival for setting up at 6.45 p.m.
To take and produce minutes, to be approved and amended, if necessary, by the Chair.
Implement decisions made at the meeting before the next meeting where possible, and report to Chair.

Agendas and Minutes
In liaison with the Chair, prepare Agenda and Minutes.
Circulate Agendas and Minutes to the Councillors, and to those on the Mailing List.
Draft Agenda to be delivered to Councillors fourteen days before the meeting, and when agreed by the Chairman, Agenda to be affixed to the Parish Notice Board at least three clear days before the meeting and issued to each Councillor, with any supporting documentation, as appropriate. (A clear day does not include the day of the notice or the day of the meeting and excludes weekends and Bank Holidays.)

First Draft Minutes are to be given to the Chairman for approval/amendment within 3 days of the meeting.

Final Draft Minutes to be delivered to each councillor as soon as they are approved and a copy to be affixed to the Parish Notice Board no later than 14 days after the meeting .

Correspondence
Receive and read all correspondence and documents, whether in hard copy, by email or in other format, on behalf of the Council and deal with or bring such items to the attention of the Council. Forward relevant incoming mail to the Chair and Councillors, as appropriate. Keep Chair up to date with any correspondence received, in particular those with deadlines for action or reply. Issue correspondence as a result of the instructions of, or the known policy of, the Council. File and keep securely. Bring all correspondence not distributed to the Council by email to the next meeting.

Planning
Attend to Planning Applications. Inform Chair, or in their absence, the Councillor responsible for Planning, as soon as applications are received. Look up previous history as necessary in preparation for any extra-ordinary planning meetings and send the Council’s comments to Wiltshire Council to arrive by the given deadline. File and keep securely.

General Administration

Hire and prepare the Old Cart Shed for meetings as appropriate and maintain the Village Notice Board in a tidy and up to date manner.
Be available to Parishioners during reasonable hours to receive information by telephone or email, answer queries, etc, unless prior confirmation is required by the Council.
Liaise with Wiltshire Council, the Area Board, the Area Community Partnership, the Parish Church and other bodies or individuals in connection with Council business.
Correspond or liaise with contractors regarding the upkeep and maintenance of the village land, footpaths, and any other work required in the Parish.
Maintain and update documents pertaining to legal legislation, such as Freedom of Information Act, Data Protection Act, Declaration and Register of Interests, Elections and formal notices of Audit Inspection. Bring to the notice of the Council any aspects of which they should be aware.

Accounts
Maintain the Council records and accounts, in accordance with the recommendations of the Internal Auditor and Accounts and Audit Regulations of 1996, which were set up to enforce proper financial controls, prevent and detect fraud and tackle bad debts. Receive and report on invoices for goods and services to be paid for by the Council and ensure such accounts are met. Prepare, receive and despatch payments, and give a resume of the financial position at each monthly Council meeting. Maintain a spreadsheet showing Actual Spend to Date and Forecast Annual Spend figures against Budget for production at each meeting.
Prepare the Account Books, End of Year Return and associated documents regarding the Internal and External Audit.
Receive visit once or twice a year by the Internal Auditor and provide all documents they may request.
Ensure that the Council has adequate Insurance and that Annual Risk Assessments are carried out.
With the Chairman and Councillors prepare a budget on which the precept calculations will be decided.

Miscellaneous
Other duties when reasonably required, at the request of the Council.
Attendance at other meetings, occasionally called by the Council, when necessary.
Attendance at functions or training sessions held by the Unitary Council or training bodies under approval of / as requested by the Council.
Maintain confidentiality of information in an independent, objective and professional manner.

PARISH COUNCIL EVENTS

Annual Events
The Parish Council financial year runs from 1st April to 31st March.

January           Apply for Precept/Budget
February         Decide on date for Annual Parish Meeting
Consider and help with draft of Chairman’s report for Annual Parish Meeting
May                  Annual Parish Meeting
November       Produce draft budget for approval and precept setting

Bi-Monthly Events

  1. At least 3 clear days before Parish Council meetings put the Agenda on the Village notice board. (A clear day does not include the day of the notice or the day of the meeting and excludes weekends and Bank Holidays.)
    As meetings are open to the public they have to be told when and where meetings are held.
  2. Meetings are held in The Old Cart Shed and start at 7.00pm.
  3. Draft Minutes are to be given to the Chairman within 3 days of the meeting.
  4. Minutes are then distributed to the other councillors and placed on the Village Notice Board. Any resident is entitled to see the minutes if they wish.