Board minutes – 20th February 2017
Chair confirmed the agenda as correct and advised if there was any additions that they could be picked up under any other company business (AOCB).
Stephen Dobbin (Chair); Scott Watson; Davy Stevenson, Douglas Kerr, Kelly Norton, Darren McLachlan, Dougie Laidlaw and CEO, Michael Bertram.
Graeme Schreiber, Alan Hill and David Williamson.
The Chairperson (SD) also formally welcomed Dougie Laidlaw to the CCDC Board.
January’s Board minutes were approved by Stephen Dobbin and seconded by Kelly Norton.
4. Matters arising
The Chair advised that there were several items that he needed to discuss.
4.1 Confirmation of new Directors and reappointments.
The Board of Directors discussed the appointments of the ‘Alternative Directors’ subsequently re-approved the appointments of Kelly Norton and Alan Hill.
The Chairperson (SD) also formally thanked Graeme Schreiber, for his six years’ service and advised the Board that he would be writing formally to him to acknowledge his commitment and efforts over a number of years to the community of Cumbrae.
Mr Scott Watson was nominated and confirmed as the Vice-Chair.
4.2 Stormwater Defences and Flood Remedies
The Chairperson (SD) advised that he and Garrison House Chairperson Davy Stevenson (DS) had been invited to a meeting with the ‘Harbour Users Group’ to discuss their concerns over council plans for creating effective flood defences for the town.
SD advised that the meeting had proposed to seek alternate professional advice and wished CCDC to join their action.
Discussion took place over the costs and outcomes of appointing a professional.
CEO advised that that after the consultation process meeting with councils consultants (Royal Haskins) that he had briefly discussed his concerns with DS and SD who asked that he write and express our concerns to the CEO of North Ayrshire Council. Their CEO subsequently passed us back to the council officials dealing with the program.
Further discussion took place over whether CCDC should wait for the outcome of the next round of newsletters (the third edition).
It was resolved that CCDC did not feel that councils appointed contractor was listening to the community concerns, and the best way forward would be to obtain professional advice. Then we could engage further and present these findings to council and seek a better solution for the flood defence scheme.
Resolution 1: that the CEO be authorised to meet with the concerned users group and fund a professional report up to £1500 (plus VAT).
4.3 Audit Scotland request for feedback on CalMac.
The Chairperson (SD) advised that he been approached by the Chairperson of the Ferry Users Group (Mr. Bill Steele) who asked if CCDC could assist them in preparing a feedback report to the Audit Scotland.
SD took the Board through the feedback form and invited any questions.
Discussion took place over the service, costs and timings of the current ferry service.
Further discussion took place over the need to respond quickly, as SD explained that the report needed to back by the 27th of February 2017.
Resolution 2: that the CEO be authorised to compile a report from the Directors feedback and submit to Audit Scotland.
4.4 CCDC representation to the Board of Ferry Users Group.
CEO explained that previously this role had been carried out by Christine MacCulloch.
Discussion took place over the service and feedback to the CCDC Board.
Resolution 3: that the Darren McLachlan be authorised to represent CCDC at future Ferry Users Group meetings.
The Chair presented the January 2017 financial statements and an indicative budget for the forthcoming year.
General discussion took place and SD raised the issue of electricity costs charged to us from the West Lodge Business Centre.
CEO explained that only the IoCIC were currently using the centre, and all the heaters were switched off when not in use.
SW explained that this was the case, but raised concerns over the costs of the main server (Highnet Communications) being on 24 hours and what those charges were.
SD asked that John Thomson make this part of his daily checks and ensure that no one is leaving heaters on in the Lodge; and to establish through the process of elimination what was using the electricity.
January 2017 financial statements were subsequently approved and were proposed by Scott Watson and seconded by Kelly Norton.
6/. CEO Report
CEO advised that he was conscious of time constraints, and he would move quickly though the most important items requiring discussion.
The Chairperson advised the CEO to proceed with these items.
6.1 Cumbrae Toilets.
CEO advised that he has had several follow-up meetings with Council to formalise our concerns on maintenance, repairs and issues with Scottish Water and to discuss plans for possible sites for a new toilet block.
CEO added that we now had a much better understanding of the costs involved in managing these five toilets blocks and that we would need to generate at least £7,500 to cover our expenses.
General discussion took place around the costs and those of using a bowser to empty the holding tanks and the festival portaloos.
DS added that he had spoken to Billy Bowie who indicated that he could empty the slipway, Fintry bay and also cover the portaloos, and that it would be £600-00 per trip and a further £120-00 to empty the portaloos.
CEO advised that we were still waiting on council’s current contractor providing us with accurate costs to empty the portaloos and holding tanks.
DS added that he was advised to ensure that we did not put out the festival toilets too soon, rotate them and only use two at a time to ensure that early arrival campers do not fill them up.
DS continued to state that if we put them out too early them that would make us have to empty them on a Friday (as in previous years) before the festival has even begun.
Discussion took place over the service, costs and timings incurred by the festivals.
CEO advised that we make no money at all, once we have paid council for the extra rubbish collection, and factored in staff overtime hours etc.
General discussion took place around whether we could get more money from the festivals groups to cover the costs of using a bowser.
CEO advised that he would make representation.
Discussion took place over the potential of honesty boxes and sponsorship of individual toilets blocks; and the possibility of Millport shop owners supporting the realising of much needed funds to keep these toilets open.
SW advised that he was working with the CEO on developing an ‘app’ which could be used to alert users and also get small donations via ‘near field communications systems’.
Chair advised that his was a good idea, and SW and the CEO should continue to work on this concept.
CEO continued to add that he wanted to advertise for a contractor to take over the ‘day-to-day’ running of these five toilets blocks, but that CCDC would still have to provide the materials and cleaning incidentals.
Further discussion took place over the need to respond quickly, and CEO was authorised to place an advert in the local paper, and also to circulate to all shops and onto our own website.
Resolution 4: that the CEO be authorised to submit an advert for an external contractor to service the toilet blocks.
Discussion took place over the potential security and effectiveness of honesty boxes.
DL advised that we will need to recognise that if there is money stored in these, the likelihood of them being stolen is a reasonable assumption. He continued to add that they will need to be regularly emptied and this be advertised on signage at these sites.
Further discussion took place over the need to get everyone to contribute, but recognize that it would be mainly the visitors to the island who would use these facilities.
SD suggested that we ask shop owners if they will put a collection box on their counters (not a charity time).
CEO advised that he would approach the Tourism Board for their assistance in convincing retailers that we needed their support.
DS asked what the alternative was.
DK stated that we could source sponsorship.
Discussion took place over the potential of sponsorship.
CEO advised that he would approach some of the identified companies and associations and see if we could give them sufficient exposure to warrant a fee of between £1250 and £1500 to sponsor an individual toilet block.
Resolution 5: that the CEO be authorised to discuss collection boxes and sponsorship fees with the Cumbrae Tourism Association.
CEO advised that it was his intention to place A4 holders in the toilets advising visitors that they were managed now by the community on behalf of visitors and the community, and those involved in the programme could have their names added to the acknowledgments of sponsors.
Chair advised that this was a good idea, and the CEO should progress with this idea, and work closely with SW on the website and apps concept.
No issues were raised.
13 March 2017.
Meeting closed 7.30 pm.