Managing Local Services Carries On Under Lockdown
As a result of the Covid-19 outbreak it is not sensible for the Parish Council to meet face-to-face as it usually does but the Government’s Coronavirus Regulations allow the Council to run its meetings electronically. This allows the Council to continue with the essential business of running local services and carrying out its legal obligations.
The first of these meetings took place (as advertised in the agenda posted last week) on Tuesday 14th April. Councillors joined the meeting from their own homes, using laptops or computers with microphones and cameras to allow them to see and hear and be seen and heard. The Signpost editor joined the meeting to listen in as any member of the public can using a PC, laptop, tablet or smart phone together with the Zoom application recommended by the Northamptonshire local council support group, NCALC.
Discussions included the impact of the Cornonavirus outbreak on council services and the support Council is giving to the Woodford Halse Community Support Group. Council also noted the delays to the Council’s annual meeting, the elector’s meeting and the planned elections that would have put in place the new combined local authority for West Northamptonshire. The details of the meeting will be reported in the minutes to be published later.
The system used for the meeting allowed the public to see and hear each of the councillors and their contributions. With ten councillors in the meeting, the Council had enough attendees (known as a “quorum”) to conduct business. Minutes of the previous meeting were approved, declarations of interest made and votes taken on points at issue in exactly the same way as when meetings take place in the Memorial Hall.
Meetings (including Woodland Management Committee and Estates Management Committee) will continue using the Zoom service until the current restrictions are lifted.