February 12th 2015 Minutes

Johnstone Community Council

Minutes of the ordinary meeting of Johnstone Community Council held on Thursday 12th February 2015 at 7.00pm in Cochrane Castle Community Centre.

Present

Members: Brian Cairns, Ron Ewing, Carole Ewing, Wilma Dean, Elizabeth Cosgrove, Linda Flint, Dennis Lavery, Malcolm Hill, George Kennedy, Daniel McKay and Callum MacMillan.

Also in attendance:-

Councillors (Wd. 7) John Hood, John Caldwell, Iain McMillan, Stephen McGee

(Wd. 8) Andy Doig.

The Gazette - Lisa Boyle, Senior Reporter.

Johnstone Police – Chief Inspector Simon Wright, Area Commander “K” Div.

1. Apologies

David Higginson, Pamela Higginson, Evelyn Cairns, Stewart Clark, Rob Bowater, Valerie Reilly, Elizabeth Forest, Christina Leon.

Councillors Christopher Gilmour, Derek Bibby.

2. Minutes

The minutes of the previous meeting were read and agreed.

Proposed by Linda Flint.

Seconded by Elizabeth Cosgrove.

3. Matters Arising

Cllr Doig added an amendment to the minutes in that the Play Park meeting would now be held on 26th February.

BC raised concerns voiced by a member who felt that the last meeting had become heated and requested that in future, business be conducted with more restraint and control.

4. Police Report

Chief Inspector Simon Wright, Area Commander for Johnstone and Renfrew attended the meeting and gave a presentation on the proposed merger of “K” Division (Renfrewshire & Inverclyde) and “L” Division (Dunbartonshire). Chief Inspector Wright explained that the merger would realise significant savings by reducing duplication at senior level and would create more efficient operation. Assurances were given that there would be no reduction in lower rank officers and that policing at the “sharp end” would not be reduced. During the following discussion, DL suggested that the merger would mean less opportunity for promotion and GK mentioned that local officers change around so often that local people don’t get the chance to get to know them. GK also questioned why not all reported crime was recorded and suggested that all crimes reported to the police should be recorded, to keep the figures accurate Chief Inspector Wright accepted the comments and reported that recorded crime in Johnstone had reduced since the last meeting and that Police were targeting Party Houses, Drugs and associated Criminality.

LF again reported that vehicles were parking dangerously on the corners of John Lang Street / Peockland Gardens and Thorn Brae. This issue had been brought up at previous meetings, but nothing appears to have been done. Chief Inspector Wright promised to look into the matter.

Cllr D raised concerns of cars speeding in Collier Street and Clark Street at night. Chief Inspector Wright said that Police will look into this.

5. Town Hall Focus Group

LF had reported that a wall at the new building appeared to be affected by a fungal growth, probably moss. This has now been dealt with.

Work now seems to be progressing at a fair pace and it is expected that the new building will open in mid-March. Several members had expressed an interest in previewing the new building before opening day and RE said that he would discuss this with Fraser Carlin and try and make arrangements. A discussion followed regarding the possibility of future meetings being held at the new town hall. LC and Cllr McM agreed to look into letting costs.

6. Planning

Application had been submitted from Johnstone Baptist Church for change of use to a dwelling and a proposal of application from Persimmons Homes for redevelopment of former St Cuthbert’s school at Hallhill Road. Cllr McM reported that a pre-application meeting and consultation would be held.

7. Environmental

Once again the issue of Sunday bin collections has been raised. During the following discussion, LF reported that this practice was causing problems and that Karen Anderson should be asked to provide a breakdown of the claimed £70,000 cost for changing the collection day. Cllr H will pursue this.

RE raised the lack of litter bins and pavement cleaning generally & Cllr D agreed to look into this. Cllr D also reported on discussions with Morrisons and the Council on the litter trail from the school. GK raised the issue of dog fouling and asked the Cllrs present if statistics could be provided to show the number of prosecutions and fixed penalty notices issued for this offence

8. Secretary’s Report

RE apologised for the mix up with dates for the JCC meetings and with LC agreed the following dates for the next two meetings – 9th April & 4th June. Further dates beyond this will be confirmed when the cost of the town hall lettings has been received and discussed.

RE reported on a letter from Anne McNaughton to member Martin Brett, terminating his membership of the JCC due to non-attendance at meetings.

RE reported that Renfrewshire Council will require the dissolution of the JCC and re-election of all members during the course of 2015, as required by the Rules for Community Councils.

9. Sub-Group Reports

Roads

Several members raised concerns with Cllrs present about the standard of repair work and poor condition of the roads.

10. Safety

RE reported that the proposals for the town centre traffic management were currently with council officers before going out to public consultation. GK & Cllr D thanked RE & BC for the work carried out in this area.

General discussion raised the questions of yellow lines and traffic wardens etc. RE suggested that these matters would be considered by the council in their final plans for the town centre.

Several members raised the matter of McGill’s buses parking dangerously near Milliken Park station. Cllr McM said that he had already raised this with McGill's and was awaiting a reply.

11. Play Park & Youth Issues.

Cllr McM discussed the possibility of requesting funding / donations / sponsorships etc. from companies engaged in developments and construction in Johnstone, with monies raised channelled towards new equipment and resources for Thomas Shanks Play Park.

12. AOCB

EC raised concerns over the lack of gritting on pavements and the provision of grit bins. RE also asked if the Council operatives carrying out pavement gritting operations could be reminded that Kilbarchan Road has pavements on both sides of the road, as only the south side is ever gritted.

EC again raised the matter of street lights not being repaired. Cllr H will look into this.

Cllr McM reported the Street Stuff is now funded from Council budget.

There being no further business the meeting closed at 8.55pm.

The next meeting will be held at Cochrane Castle Community Centre on Thursday 9th April 2015 at 7.00pm.


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