Colmworth Neighbourhood Plan Committee Constitution



  1. Name The name of the committee shall be the Colmworth Neighbourhood Plan Committee (the Committee).
  2. Relationship to Colmworth Parish Council Colmworth Parish Council (the Parish Council) shall be the lead body for the Neighbourhood Plan. The Committee shall have the status of an advisory committee and shall present its work at various stages as recommendation to the Parish Council; the Parish Council shall make the key decisions and shall take the Neighbourhood Plan forward. The Committee shall not act on behalf of the Parish Council.
  3. Area of Benefit The area in which the Committee shall pursue its objects is the Colmworth Neighbourhood Area (the Area), which is the civil parish of Colmworth, designated by Colmworth Parish Council, for which the Committee shall produce a Neighbourhood Plan.
  4. Objects The purpose of the Colmworth Neighbourhood Committee is • To prepare a Neighbourhood Plan for the Colmworth area; • To promote or improve the social, economic and environmental well-being of the civil parish of Colmworth and carrying on of trades, professions or other businesses in the area;
  5. Powers In furtherance of its objectives the Colmworth Committee may • Invite and receive contributions and raise funds where appropriate, to finance the work of the Committee; • Contracts deemed necessary by the committee shall be placed by the Parish Council or with its full knowledge and consent. Payments for such contracts will be made by the Parish Council; • Publicise and promote the work of the Committee and organise meetings, training courses, events or seminars etc.; • Work with groups of a similar nature and exchange information, advice and knowledge with them, including cooperation with other voluntary bodies, charities, statutory and nonstatutory organisations; • Employ staff and volunteers as are necessary to conduct activities to meet the objects of the Committee; 2
  6. Membership The Colmworth Neighbourhood Committee shall be open to individuals who are 18 years or older and live in the Colmworth Neighbourhood Area. It is also open to individuals who are elected members of Bedford Borough Council. Membership shall be drawn from different parts and sections of the community in the Colmworth Neighbourhood Area. New members may be proposed by members of the committee. Such proposals are subject to approval by a majority of members present at a committee meeting. Resignations from membership shall be received by the Committee. When seeking replacements for members who have resigned, the diversity, character and inclusivity of the Committee should be maintained, or improved. The Secretary shall keep a record of the members of the Committee, including the date of appointment and, if applicable, the date of resignation.
  7. Working Arrangements

7.1Taking Decisions & Voting Decisions shall be made at meetings of the Committee by show of hands. Only members of the Committee shall be entitled to vote and there shall be a quorum of 7 members. If there are an equal number of votes for and against, the Chair shall have the casting vote.

7.2 Recording Decisions & Taking Minutes All meetings of the Committee shall be minuted and decisions recorded. Where action is required, a person(s) shall be nominated and the date of completion recorded. Draft minutes shall be circulated to all members of the Committee within 14 days from the date of the meeting and, at the next meeting, any amendments shall be noted before approval by members of the Committee. After approval, a copy of the minutes shall be signed and dated by the Chair or the Secretary. The final minutes shall be distributed to members of the Committee and published on the website.

7.3 Governance and Elections Provided that there is a quorum of 7 members of the Committee, a Chair, Treasurer and Secretary (the Officers) shall be elected. Not less than one of the Officers shall be a member of the Parish Council. All members of the Committee shall be entitled to vote. For each Officer, a proposal shall be made by a member of the Committee and seconded by another member. Elections shall take place in accordance with para 6.1 and the candidate who wins the greatest number of votes shall be appointed. Should any of the three officers resign, 14 days notice shall be given of an election to determine their replacement. Should resignation of an Officer leave the Parish Council unrepresented, then the elected replacement shall be a Parish Councillor. 3 7.4. Composition of Management Committees Sub-groups may be appointed by the Committee to research and make recommendations regarding specialist policies. The working group shall include at least one member of the Committee but people who live or work in the Area and have a special interest or knowledge, may be co-opted. 7.5. Frequency and Pattern of Meetings Initially The Committee shall meet monthly but this may be varied by the Committee according to need. The date for the next meeting shall be decided by the Committee and minuted. Sub-groups shall meet from time to time and report to the Committee. Three Committee members shall be required to call an extraordinary general meeting. Seven days notice of the meeting shall be given. 7.6. Financial Management In order to receive and make payments, the bank account of Colmworth Parish Council shall be used. Payments shall be made by the Clerk of the Parish Council provided that they are authorised by two official signatories of the Parish Council. In order that payments can be made by bank transfer, authorisation by signatories may be sent to the Clerk using email. 7.7. Declarations of Interest Where there is a potential or actual conflict of interest, members of the Committee shall declare it and shall withdraw from the meeting whilst the matter is discussed. Declarations of interest shall be minuted. 7.8. Alteration to the Constitution Provided that there is a quorum of 7, the draft constitution shall be discussed by the members of the Committee. Any amendments shall be agreed by the majority of the members. Voting shall be in accordance with para 7.1. Thereafter the final version of the constitution shall be submitted to the Parish Council for approval. On approval it shall come into force. Any member may propose changes to the constitution by notifying the Secretary in writing or by email. Members of the Committee shall be notified of the proposed changes by email not less than 10 days before the next meeting. Provided that there is a quorum of 7, the proposed changes shall be discussed at the meeting of the Committee. Voting shall be in accordance with para 7.1 and, if a majority vote in favour, the change shall be accepted and the constitution amended. The amended constitution shall be submitted to the Parish Council for approval. On approval it shall come into force. 7.9. Duration The duration of the Colmworth Neighbourhood Committee is 5 years from 6 March 2015. In the event that the Committee is no longer required before this date, provided that there is a quorum of 7, the proposal that the Committee be dissolved shall be discussed at a meeting of the Committee. Voting shall be by show of hands and if a majority vote in favour, the decision shall be publicised and 28 days notice shall be given for the dissolution of the Committee. 27 May 2015