Present: Fiona Barnes, Barbro Fitzjohn, John Hayward, Ally Hayes, Andy Hazlehurst, Hilary Jackson, Barbara Matcham, Sue Swallow
1. Apologies: Phine Dahle, Petrina Boddington.
2. Notice of any urgent other business to be discussed at end of meeting: Julian Jenkinson.
3. Approval of Minutes of Committee Meeting Feb. 8th 2016 and Matters Arising: Minutes agreed. Membership of FoSOC to be discontinued. Next OARA OGM will be on May 10th to allow Councillors to attend.
4. Membership Report: There has been a large turnover since 2012 but membership is still doing well. Barbro and Phine aim to go out once a month recruiting and renewing memberships. Short list should be a list of residents only. The long list will include others such as Council, landlords etc. Groups can be affiliated but not full voting members, to be discussed on case by case basis at Committee meetings.
5. Finance: The latest accounts were shared by Andrew.
6. Correspondence: NORA (National Organisation of Residents’ Associations) meeting in Durham in July. Sue may attend. Highfield RA AGM is on April 14th. Barbara, Barbro and Andrew may attend.
7. Protocols: Hilary asked for clarification about when is it legitimate to use email list? Agreed it should only be used for OARA business but relevant associated events could go on Facebook or website.
8. Spreading the load: Agreed to put “Calling all volunteers” section in the next bulletin with mini list of tasks and ask for ideas and skills.
9. COMMON GROUND Updates, Proposals & Plans
a) Hilary will do landlords’ letter.
b) Bulletin: John will produce March/April edition. He would like to produce a more attractive version and asked for a template to use for the next bulletin. Barbro asked if it could be emailed as text rather than/as well as an attachment? Any items to John for next bulletin.
d) Common Ground Newsletter: Hilary will coordinate update of next edition for October.
9.2 History and Heritage
a) Community Mural: (Slam Daniels, the artist, had listened to members’ ideas about the middle panel before the meeting.) BMH will seek pledges of financial support as soon as Slam comes back with final design. Francis Benali (local boy) is happy to be identified with the project. First fundraising event, quiz at The Guide Dog, takes place on Thursday March 23rd. Proposals had also been discussed at open meeting at Blue Door. Fiona and Ally had canvassed local residences which would be most affected and received very positive response.
a) Changes in HMO regs proposals: There was discussion re the proposed changes to HMO regs under the Southampton Local Plan: e.g. it shouldn’t be possible to increase number of HMOs where density is already over 10% and no sandwiching of an HMO either side of a resident’s property (but too late in parts of this area). Unfortunately, flats are not included in the regulations. Density of population in this area is already very high. Sue will respond to Council consultation.
Hilary raised issue of similar houses being in different Council Tax bands, including example of an HMO in lower tax band than identical adjacent houses. And how much does central government give to councils to compensate for students not paying tax? Hilary to investigate.
b) Kingsley House update: A Lawful Development Certificate has been granted to confirm lawful use of property as a hostel. It is now the Alma Road Hostel. There have been continuing problems for residents. There was support for the letter which had been sent to Council from the KH group. Hilary will draft covering letter to Councillors urging their support, in consultation with KH group.
9.4 Smart Streets
a) New equipment: Barbara is going to order new cleaning equipment from best value supplier. We were awaiting a response from John Horton about street cleaning. Refuse from printers in Cambridge Rd is a problem. Hilary to chase Jason for two more sets of bin nos.
c) Other: Drugs related materials found in Livingstone Rd during last street clean. Will be passed to PCSO.
Tree planting and tree protection: Tree planting ceremony to take place 10 – 12 am 29th March with Roy Lancaster. Location – probably Gordon Ave- Sue waiting for contact at Posh Pads to get in touch. Invitations to people who have had trees, Councillors, Echo. Photos to be taken.
Tree protection – did droopy tree outside St Barnabas survive bombing? Barbara and Fiona to liaise.
Table Top Sale 16th April. (NB new proposed date – 14th May)
a) Art Exhibition: Barbro and Rosie have received responses from local artists. Exhibition to be put up April 20th. Preview Fri 22nd 6-9pm. Barbro would like power point to advertise at Blue Door.
b) Anti-social behaviour: Letter has been finalised. Will not go on website but bulletin will inform about it.
c) Speeding: Some concerns have been raised. PCSO Michaela can arrange an assessment of the situation but locals would have to raise money for speed guns and use them. To be aired at OGM.
10. AOB: The Committee noted the news of the sudden death of Julian Jenkinson, the Student No Fee landlord who had given support to OARA. John to draft a letter of condolence to be sent to office and then forwarded.
11. Dates of Next Meetings: Monday 18th April at Sue’s (Hilary apologised in advance)
- Landlords’ letter – Hilary – Next mtg
- March/April Bulletin – John – April
- Send response to SCC HMO planning consultation – Sue – March d’line
- Common Ground Newsletter – Hilary – October
- Investigate inconsistent Council Tax bands and how councils are compensated for student non-payment of
- council tax. – Hilary – For nxt mtg
- Letters to be drafted to Councillors re Kingsley House – Hilary – For nxt mtg
- Order new street cleaning equipment. – Barbara – April
- Letter of Condolence re JJ – John – ASAP