APC Policies

Policies  Updated  2015

 

ASTON INSTITIUTIONS

A1       Village Hall

The Council supports the hall in principle and is prepared to give financial aid to a level determined by the
Council when there is a proven need, in the eyes of the Council.  There is no automatic annual grant.

A2       Churchyard. 

The Council accepts that it is a burial authority and so gives an automatic annual grant to the PCC, the level of which
is determined by the Council and is not a set % of total cost.

A3       Playing Field. 

The field should be for the free use of Parishioners.  Organised sport needs the
permission of the field committee, who give priorities to parishioners.

A4       Aston School. 

While not required by law to pay for the use of the school, the Council will make an annual donation which
approximates to the letting fee.  Similar arrangements will be made with any other meeting place.

A5       Aston Parish News: 

 This is used as a form of pressrelease.  The clerk shall attempt to insert some topical items in each month. While preferring there to be an editor, the Council is determined that the magazine should continue and will run it with other sponsors if necessary.  There should be a publishe annual report.

A6      

Aston Fete:  If the village continues to want this, then the Council will support it with financial & practical help.

A7       Govt. Directives: 

The Council endorses the Govt. Policy Directives on Conduct of Members, Racial Policy and Ethical code
of practice.

A8       The Parish Council, via the Clerk, will see that there is a Service of Remembrance at the
War Memorial on Remembrance Sunday.

 

ENVIRONMENT

E1        Dogs. 

The Council is opposed to dogs fouling the Village & Centre Fields and the footpaths.

E2       

Trees & Hedges:  Those which are a problem or dangerous are brought to the attention of their owners.  A kindly request is made in the case of unsightly hedges.  The danger & responsibility is pointed out to owners of dangerous trees.

E3        Blocked Footpaths: 

Are immediately notified to the landowner.  It is policy to maintain
a group of volunteer walkers to report problems promptly.

E4        River Beane. 

 In favour of policies to enhance & restore the water flow.

E5        To support the Centre Field Trust in improving the Centre Field.

E6        To organise an annual community litter pick in those areas not covered by lengthmen.

 

HOUSING

H1       Tenancies:
This Council wishes to see the greatest % of Aston rented properties tenanted by Aston Families.

H2       All affordable housing units must be offered firstly to local qualifying persons.

 

LAW & ORDER.

L2        Emergency Plans: 

The Council supports and helps HCC on such matters.

 

PLANNING

P1        Stevenage:  The Council is not prepared to lose any more of the Parish to further expansion.

P2        Development: 

Generally the Council is against further development in the Parish unless there is a need or special case.  In these cases the Planning Committee will involve all members.

P3        Stevenage Pony Route. 

Is supported in principle but should not use any Aston roads.

P4        Aston End. 

Is regarded as, “That part of Aston known as Aston End.”  It is part of the Aston Community.

P5        Stevenage Borough Boundary: 

If SBC policy were to develop to take the whole of the Parish into the Borough it would be
opposed.  Policies are not to be made which make this more likely.

P6        Greenbelt: 

 The Council is in favour of this covering the whole of the parish.

P7        Conservation Area: 

The Council is in favour of this and that its conditions are enforced. 
Also that it is extended to the area shown in the Parish Plan.

P8        The Parish Plan, and the subsequent supplement, is the Planning Guideline and its policies
should be reviewed from time to time.

P9        All new developments should comply with Green Belt as described in section 4.4.3 of the
Aston Parish Plan supplement 2010.  .

P10      All planning policies will be modified in light of the EHDC LDF agreement when available.

P11      Solar Panel applications will be considered with the following criteria: The application is
in proportion to the locality and the need for local energy.  That it is not visually intrusive to
dwellings in close proximity (250m). that it is a reasonable distance from local dwellings.  That it recognises the environmental
circumstances of the proposed site.

P12      The Council supports the Village Envelope shown in the draft EHDC Plan and hence opposes new
development outside the envelope.

P13      Any new development should provide parking to comply with current (2014) EHDC parking
ratios and should not impinge, or make worse, parking provision for existing
vehicles.

P14      The Council supports development of the Rose & Crown site providing the pub plans are
sustainable, no off road parking occurs for pub customers or residents, that
the bus and passing space on Benington Rd is maintained and the plans concur
with EHDC infill. 

 

STANDING PROCEDURES

S1        By-elections. 

The Council prefers to avoid these on thegrounds of cost but to still allow the democratic process to operate using an
opinion poll.

S2        Clerk.  The salary shall be the recommended NALC rate.

S3        Manual Labour.  Shall be determined in January
and be the National Minimum Wage.

S4        Meetings:  On the second Monday of the month at 8pm.  No meetings in December, April or
August.  The AGM is in May.  The Annual Parish Meeting in March or April.
The budget is set in January and a tour of parts of the Parish is in July.

S5        Chairman.  There is no set rotation to fill the post and the term is for 1 year only, being filled by open election by members at the
May Meeting.  In the event of any tied vote, the chairman has a second casting vote, voting in favour of the status
quo.  An automatic member of the Planning & Field Committees, also of the AVS Council.  Able to delegate responsibilities to the Vice
Chairman.

S6        Annual Parish Meeting:  It is policy to advertise this
by handbill and produce a list of the year’s work.  It will be followed by the Centre Field Trust
AGM.

S7        Membership:  The Council is a member of    

1) The clerk is a member of the Society of
Local Council Clerks.

2)     
CPRE

3)     
Herts & Middx Wildlife Trust

4)     
RBRA

S8        Merit:  Any Parishioner who is honoured in any field is congratulated by the Council.

S9        Elections:  The Council prefers voting to be held in the Hall not the School.

S10      Minutes & Agenda:  Members receive the minutes before public release.  Faults should be
notified to the clerk before the meeting where they are approved.  Agendas are received 4 days before the
meeting.  Agenda items must be with the clerk in time for publication.  Matters
are only dealt with under AOB if the Council agree and never a money item.

S11      Freedom of Information Act:  The Council keeps and
makes available all Minutes, Accounts and Planning Application Material.  Also letters received during the current
financial year.

S12      Parish Council Election: In favour of a contested election. 
Oct.Mtg. – Members state intention on standing.  Nov.Mtg. – Names are suggested to ensure an
election and an article in APN.  Feb.Mtg
– Candidates ‘invited’ to submit 100 word aticle by March 19th to be published in April APN.  Candidates
invited to speak at the APM in April.

S13      That Housing Bonus monies should be used for capital expenditure projects.

 

TRANSPORT

T2        Airport Expansion at Luton & Stansted: 
Opposed on grounds of air pollution, noise & traffic flows.

T3        Hooks Cross.  The Council is in favour of both
short run minor and long run major roads works to make the A602 safer for
motorists and residents.

T4        Roads.  Problems of all types are brought to the immediate attention of the highway authority – including roads not in the
Parish – eg Aston Hills.

T6        Stringers Lane:  The Council prefers through
traffic to Benington to use the route via the War Memorial.  This is especially true of articulated
lorries.

T7        Road Maintenance:  The Council is in favour of
higher HCC spending on minor road maintenance.

T8        Golf Traffic:  This should be routed via Bragbury End.  Hence the Golf Course
should not be sign posted up Aston Hills or Lanterns Lane.

T9        Aston Hills:  This should be open to light traffic only.

T10      Footpaths:  In favour of policies to enhance the network.

T11      To enhance Public Transport and encourage its use. Also car sharing, ealking, cycling plus
fewer unnecessary journeys.

T12      To encourage and support sustainable transport eg the walking bus

T13      APC is in favour of a 20mph zone in Benington Rd east of Queen’s Square and in New Park
Lane.

T14      APC is in favour of mirrors at blind junctions – like Dene Lane.

T15      Parking :  In favour of off road parking on frontages of dwellings,  Village Hall Car Park to be
used for School drop offs/pick ups and Centre Field to be used seasonally for Church events

                                   

UTILITIES

U1       Gas.  In favour of the whole parish beingconnected.

U2       Hall External Light.  The Council will pay for the energy used by these lights.

U3       The Council opposes further connections to Tatlers Lane sewer until the threat of flooding during a storm is removed.






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