What the Council does
The Council is led by 9 democratically elected Councillors, who together set the vision and direction of the Council, and represent the local community. Councillors are unpaid but have the services of a part-time (10 hours per week) paid Clerk to the Council. A Responsible Financial Officer is also employed to look after the financial affairs of the Council.
The Council meets in public on the last Tuesday of each month except for December. Notice of meetings is displayed on the parish notice boards and additionally on this website.
A period for the public to address the Councillors is allowed at the start of each meeting. Normally a County Councillor, together with Rother District Councillors attend reporting on the activities of their respective Councils.
In addition to the monthly meetings, each year there is a Parish Assembly in April at which the Parish Council reports on the year’s activities and local organisations are also invited to report on their activities.
The Council has the powers to raise income by means of a precept levied on households in the parish and this is collected together with Council Tax by Rother District Council. The Council precept and expenditure is monitored annually by independent auditors. You can find out more about this in the Financial Records section of this website.
Powers and duties
The Council has a variety of powers and duties, all of which impact directly on the community. These include:
- Allotments – the parish council has a duty to provide allotments.
- Burial grounds and cemeteries – power to contribute towards expenses at cemeteries and to maintain burial grounds.
- Community Centres – power to provide and equip buildings for use of clubs having athletic, social or educational objectives.
- Crime prevention – power to spend money on crime prevention measures.
- Entertainment and the arts – provision of entertainment and support of the arts.
- Lighting – power to light roads and public places.
- Parking – power to provide parking places for vehicles, bicycles and motor-cycles.
- Parish property and documents – the power to direct as to their custody.
- Power to complain to district council as to protection of rights of way and roadside wastes.
- Public shelters – power to provide and maintain roadside seats, shelters, and bus shelters.
- Public buildings and village halls – Power to provide buildings for offices and for public meetings and assemblies.
- Tree and Hedges – the power to plant trees and hedges and to create and maintain verges.
- Land and open spaces – power to acquire by agreement, to appropriate, to dispose of land and open spaces.
- Litter – the provision of litter bins.
- Memorials – the power to maintain, repair, protect and adapt war monuments and memorials
- Notices – the power to provide traffic signs and other notices.
- Nuisances – the power to deal with offensive ditches, and the power to deal with the drainage relating to ponds and ditches.
- Recreation – the power to acquire land for or to provide recreation grounds, playing fields, public walks, pleasure grounds and open spaces and to control and manage them
- Gyms and gym equipment – the power to provide gymnasiums.
- Planning – the right to be notified of planning applications.
- Roads and passageways – the power to repair and maintain public footpaths and bridleways, and the power to enter into agreement as to dedication and widening. In addition, power to contribute financially to traffic calming schemes. The consent of parish council is also required for ending maintenance of highway at public expense, or for stopping up or a diversion of any highway.
- Tourism – the power to encourage visitors and provide conferencing, and other tourism facilities.
- Transport – the power to spend money on community transport schemes.
The Parish Council is not a planning authority and as such does not make final decisions on planning applications; in most cases Rother District Council is the Planning Authority (in some cases East Sussex County Council). However, the Council has a right to receive notification of all planning applications relating to the parish and if comments are submitted by the Council, the District Council must take them into account when determining the application.
Planning applications are considered by the Council which meets monthly.
Councillors encourage residents who are thinking of, or who are submitting planning applications to attend a Parish Council meeting to be on-hand, and to explain their application to the Council in person.
History of Hurst Green
Visitors may be interested in a brief history of Hurst Green.