Who are Parish Councils?
Parish councils are the first tier of governance and are the first point of contact for anyone concerned with a community issue. They are democratically elected local authorities and exist in England, Wales and Scotland. The term 'local council' is synonymous with 'parish council', 'town council' and 'community council'.
There are over 10,000 local councils in England and Wales, representing the concerns of local residents and providing services to meet local needs. Parish councils have a wide range of powers including looking after community buildings, planning, street lighting, allotments. They also have the power to raise money through council tax.
Local councils are made up of locally elected councillors. They are legally obliged to hold at least one meeting a year.
Occold Parish Council meet monthly on the first Monday of the month at 8pm to discuss council business and hear from local residents. The Agenda is published 3 clear days in advance and can be found with the minutes under the relevant month listed on the left of this page (except for August). In addition to these meetings, committees or sub-committees dealing with specific subjects will also meet from time to time in open sessions.
Occold is situated in the District of Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Council (BMSDC) - see the latest news from BMSDC https://www.babergh.gov.uk/news/rss
Your District Councillor is Lucy Elkin - Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Lucy attends meetings and her monthly reports can be found here
Your County Councillor is Andrew Stringer - Contact him at email@example.com. Andrew attends meetings and his monthly reports can be found here
List of Current Councillors and their roles
Cllr Colin Cripps - Chair and Planning
Cllr Kevin Chittock - Vice Chair/Personnel/Planning
Cllr Stephen Hubner - Planning
Cllr Andrew Duggett - Personnel/SID
Cllr Tim Weller
Cllr Heidi Stone - Personnel/Neighbourhood Plan lead
Cllr Angela Hall
Authorised signatories - Councillors Kevin Chittock and Colin Cripps
Clerk and Responsible Financial Officer - Libby Alexander
Contact numbers for Parish Councillors are listed under their individual profile.
How do you become a parish councillor?
To qualify to be a parish councillor you must be:
· A British citizen, or a citizen of the Commonwealth or the European Union.
· At least 18 on the day that he or she is nominated as a candidate
· A registered local government elector within the parish
· A resident in the parish, or within three miles of the parish, or working full time in the parish for at least 12 months prior to the nomination or election day.
A person is disqualified from holding office as a parish or town councillor if:
· They hold a paid office, or other place of profit in the council
· They are the subject of a bankruptcy restriction order or interim order.
· They have been convicted of a criminal offence and sentenced to more than 3 months imprisonment within the last five years · They incur illegal expenditure (when acting as a councillor) of over £2,000, or are found guilty of using corrupt or illegal practices
How are parish councils funded?
The funding for parish councils is allocated by the district council and is taken from the area’s council tax; this is called an annual precept. The income and expenditure for the next financial year are calculated in the form of estimates and this amount is added to the local council tax and then returned to the parishes in two yearly installments. They can also apply for UK grants and funding and EU money under Objectives 1 and 2.
Further information on the council and its administration can be requested from the Parish Clerk at Occoldparishcouncil@gmail.com