The item was introduced by the Area Council Manager. The meeting noted the apologies from Tom Handley of Growforest, and it was acknowledged that he was due to attend the Ward Alliance meeting.
Members heard how the necessary documentation to implement a waiver to contract procedure rules had been completed, in order to extend the Countryside Skills commission without the need for retendering. The necessary contract outputs for this had also been agreed.
A meeting had been arranged on 24th September, 2015 for the Area Manager and Tom Handley to discuss the ‘lessons learned’ following the completion of the first year of the contract. Outputs to date for the contract were considered, with the majority in line with that agreed, and with no areas of concern.
Members noted that 13 new learners had joined the current cohort with 8 remaining on the programme to date, all of which were preparing for the level 1 qualification in dry stone walling. 8 learners from the previous cohort had attained a Lantra level 1 qualification in dry stone walling, with a further learner preparing for level 2.
Members heard how learners from the programme had recently come 1st and 2nd in the Yorkshire Drystone Walling Guild competition.
The meeting noted that the exercise to procure a Clean and Tidy service had recently concluded. Four organisations had submitted tenders, with Barnsley MBC (Environment and Transportation) being identified as a preferred provider. Necessary service level agreement documentation was therefore being prepared, and it was expected that the service would commence on 1st October, 2015.
With regards to the Working Together Fund, it was noted that only one expression of interest had been received, and therefore a panel would be convened to consider whether the application met required criteria to be invited to work up a full application . Members suggested that further expressions of interest were expected following meetings of the Parish Councils in September.
Attention was drawn to the financial position of the Area Council, noting that £80,956 remained unallocated for 2015/16 and £125,401 for 2016/17.
i) that the progress of the Countryside Skills Training commission be noted;
ii) that the progress of the Clean and Tidy commission be noted;
iii) that the current financial situation of the Area Council be noted.