Litton Cheney Parish CouncilStanding OrdersIssued 18 April 2016 – Adopted 10 May 2016Based upon NALC Standing Orders-2010 and 2013 as amended following the Openness of Local Government Regulations 20141Meetingsa.Meetings of the Council shall be held at Litton and Thorner's Community Hall at 7:30pm unless the Council otherwise decides at a previous meeting. Smoking is not permitted at any meeting of the Council.b.At every meeting other than the Annual Meeting the first business shall be to appoint a Chairman, if the Chairman and Vice Chairman be absent, and to receive such declarations of acceptance of office that are required by law to be made, or if not then received to decide when they shall be received.c.Meetings shall not take place which, at the time of the meeting, are used for the supply of alcohol unless no other premises are available free of charge or at reasonable cost.d.When calculating the 3 days clear notice for a meeting, the day on which the notice was issued, the day of the meeting, a Sunday, a day of the Christmas break, a day of the Easter break, a bank holiday, or a day appointed for public thanksgiving or mourning, shall not count.e.No business may be transacted at a meeting unless at least one third of the total members of the Council are present, and in no case shall the quorum of a meeting be less than three. If a quorum is not present or if during the meeting the number of councillors present (not counting those debarred by reason of a disclosable pecuniary interest) falls below the required quorum, the meeting shall be adjourned and business not transacted shall be transacted at the next meeting.f.Meetings shall be open to the public unless their presence is prejudicial to the public interest by reason of the confidential nature of the business to be transacted or for special reasons. The public’s exclusion from part or, all of a meeting shall be by a resolution, which shall give reasons for the exclusion. g.Subject to standing order 1f above, members of the public are permitted to make representations, answer questions and give evidence in respect of business included in the agenda during the democratic time. No member of the public has a right to speak unless the council (not the Chairman) approves.h.The period of time designated for public participation (democratic time) at a meeting shall not exceed 15 minutes unless directed by the Chairman. A member of the public shall not speak for more than 3 minutes.i.In accordance with standing order 1g above a question shall not require a response at a meeting nor start a debate on the question. The Chairman of the meeting may direct that a written or an oral response be given. j.The local MP, County councillors, District councillors, police representatives, and incumbent vicar are allowed to talk at meetings.k.Any person who attends a council meeting may report on the proceedings at that meeting. A person present may not give an oral report, or commentary during that meeting, but may: film, photograph or make an audio recording of proceedings, use any other means to make people not present at that meeting to see or hear proceedings, as it takes place or later, use written reporting on proceedings, during or after the meeting, or use oral reporting after the meeting.l.The press shall be provided with reasonable facilities for the taking of that report of all or part of the meeting at which they are entitled to be present.m.The Chairman if present shall chair the meeting. If the Chairman is absent from the meeting the Vice Chairman shall preside. If both the Chairman and Vice Chairman are absent from the meeting a councillor as chosen by the councillors at the meeting shall preside.n.The person presiding at the meeting may exercise all powers and duties of the Chairman in relation to the conduct of the meeting.o.Members must make a verbal declaration of the existence and nature of any disclosable pecuniary interest at any meeting that they are present, where an item of business which affects or relates to a matter of that interest is under consideration (unless the interest is a sensitive interest, as defined by the Localism Act, in which event, you need not disclose the nature of that interest). Members must leave the room when this item of business is discussed.p.Members must make verbal declaration of the existence and nature of a non disclosable pecuniary interest at any meeting that they are present.q.A dispensation may be granted to allow a Member to discuss a vote on an item where they have a disclosable pecuniary interest if after having regard to all relevant circumstances the council considers that without that dispensation the number of persons prohibited from participating in any particular business would be so great a proportion of the body transacting the business as to impede the transaction of the business, or considers that granting the dispensation is in the interest of the persons living in the council area or considers that it is otherwise appropriate to grant a dispensation. A Member must issue a written request to the council for a dispensation.r.A dispensation must specify the period for which it has effect and not exceed 4 years.s.No Member shall disclose to any person, not a member of the council any business declared to be confidential to the council.t.A meeting shall not exceed a period of 2 hours.2.Votinga.Members shall vote verbally or by a show of hands.b.All questions at a meeting shall be decided by the majority of Members present and voting.c.At the request of a Member the voting on any question shall be recorded so as to show whether each Member present and voting gave his vote for or against that question. Such a request must be made before moving on to the next item on the Agenda.d.The Chairman may give an original vote on any matter put to the vote and in the case of an equality of votes may exercise his casting vote, whether or not he gave an original vote. 3.Statutory Annual Meetinga.The Statutory Annual Meeting in an election year shall be held on the Tuesday following the fourth day after the ordinary day of elections to the Council. In the year, which is not an election year, it shall be held on the second Tuesday in May. The Village Assembly will be held on the same day as the Annual Meeting in May.b.The four other statutory meetings will be held on the second Tuesday in the months of July, September, November, and January. An additional meeting shall be held on the second Tuesday in the month of March.c.The election of the Chairman and Vice Chairman shall be the first business completed at the annual meeting of the Council.d.The Chairman of the Council unless he/she resigns or becomes disqualified shall continue in office and preside at the annual meeting until his/her successor is elected at the next annual meeting of the Council.e.The Vice Chairman of the Council, unless he/she resigns or becomes disqualified shall hold office until immediately after the election of the Chairman of the Council at the next annual meeting of the Council.f.In an election year, if the current Chairman of the Council has not been re-elected as a member of the Council, he/she shall preside at the meeting until a successor Chairman of the Council is elected. The current Chairman of the Council shall not have an original vote in respect of the election of the new Chairman of the Council but must give a casting vote in the case of an equality of votes.g.At the Annual Meeting of the Council the business shall include:I)Elect a Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Council.II)Receive the Chairman’s declaration of the acceptance of office, or if then not received to decide when it shall be received. In an election year delivery by the Chairman of the Council and Members of their acceptance of office forms unless the council resolves for this to be done at a later date. In a year, which is not an election year, delivery by the Chairman of the Council of his acceptance of Office form unless, the Council resolves for this to be done at a later date.III)In an ordinary year of elections of the Council to fill any vacancies left unfilled at the election by reason of insufficient nominations.IV)To decide when any declarations of acceptance of office which have not been received as provided by law shall be received.4.Extraordinary Meetingsa.The Chairman of the Council may convene an extraordinary meeting of the Council at any time. b.If the Chairman of the Council does not, or refuses to call an extraordinary meeting of the Council within 7 days of having been requested to do so by two councillors those two councillors may convene an extraordinary meeting of the Council. The statutory public notices giving the time, venue and agenda for such a meeting must be signed by two councillors.5.Disorderly Conducta.No person shall obstruct the transaction of business at a meeting or behave offensively or improperly. If this standing order is ignored the Chairman of the meeting shall request such person(s) moderate or improve their conduct.b.If a person(s) disregards the request of the chairman to moderate or improve their conduct, any Member or The Chairman may move that the person be no longer heard or excluded from the meeting. The motion, if seconded, shall be put to the vote without discussion.c.If a resolution made under standing order 5(b) above is ignored the Chairman of the meeting may take other reasonable steps to restore order or to progress the meeting. This may include temporarily suspending the meeting or closing the meeting.6.Minutesa.The minutes of the meeting shall record the names of the members present or absent.b.All minutes kept by the Council shall be open for the inspection of any member of the Council.c.If a copy of the draft minutes of the preceding meeting has been circulated to members no later than the day of the service of the summons to attend the scheduled meeting, they shall be taken as read.d.No discussion of the draft minutes of a preceding meeting shall take place except in relation to their accuracy.e.Minutes, including any amendments to correct their accuracy, shall be confirmed by resolution and shall be signed by the chairman of the meeting as an accurate record of the meeting to which the minutes relate.f.Upon a resolution, which confirms the accuracy of the minutes of meeting, any previous draft minutes or recordings shall be destroyed.g.If the Chairman of the meeting does not consider the minutes to be an accurate record of the meeting to which they relate, he shall sign the minutes and include a paragraph in the following terms:“The Chairman of the meeting does not believe that the minutes of the Parish Council held on (date) were a correct record but his view was not upheld by the meeting and the minutes are confirmed as an accurate record”7.Advisory Committeesa.The Council may appoint advisory committees comprised of a number of councillors and non- councillors. Advisory committees may consist wholly of persons who are non-councillors.b.An advisory committee may make representations and give notice thereof to the Council.8.Code of Conducta.All Members and non-Members with voting rights shall observe the code of conduct adopted by the Council.b.Unless he/she has been granted a dispensation, a councillor or non- councillor with voting rights shall withdraw from a meeting when it is considered a matter on which he/she has a disclosable pecuniary interest.c.Dispensations requests shall be in writing and submitted to the Proper Officer as soon as possible before the meeting or failing that at the start of the meeting for which the dispensation is required.d.A decision whether to grant a dispensation shall be made by the meeting of the Council and that decision is final.e.Subject to d. above dispensation requests shall be considered at the start of the meeting for which the dispensation is required.f.A dispensation may be granted in accordance with 8 e above if having regard to all the relevant circumstances the following appliesi.Without the dispensation the number of persons prohibited from participating in the particular business would be so great a proportion of the meeting transacting the business as to impede the transaction of the business or:ii.Granting the dispensation is in the interest of persons living in the councils area or:iii.It is otherwise appropriate to grant a dispensation.9.Code of Conduct ComplaintsUpon notification by the District Council that a councillor has breached the councils code of conduct, the council shall consider, if any, what action to take against him/her.10.Accounts and Financial Statementa. “Proper practices” in Standing orders refer to the most recent version of Governance and Accountability for Local Councils –a Practitioners Guide.b.All payments by the Council shall be authorised, approved and paid in accordance with the law, proper practices, and the Council's financial regulations.c.As soon as possible after the financial year end at the 31 March the Responsible Finance Officer shall provide:a.A statement summarising the councils receipts and payments for the last quarter and the year to date.b.The accounting statements for the year in the form of section 1 of the annual return, as required by proper practices for consideration and approval.c.The year-end accounting statements shall be prepared in accordance with proper practices and applying the form of accounts determined by the Council (receipts and payments) for a year to 31 March. A completed draft annual return shall be completed before the end of the following May. The annual return of the Council, which is subject to external audit, including the annual governance statement, shall be presented to the Council for consideration and approval before 30 June.11.Financial MattersThe Council shall consider and approve financial regulations drawn up by the Responsible Financial Officer which shall include detailed arrangements in respect of the following:i.Keeping of accounting records and systems of internal controls.ii.Assessment and management of financial risks faced by the Council.iii.The work of an independent internal auditor, in accordance with proper practices and the receipt of regular reports from the internal auditor which shall be required at least annually.iv.Procurement policies for a proposed contract for the supply of goods, materials, services, and execution of works with an estimated value in excess of £2000 shall be procured on the basis of a formal tender.v.Orders for payment of money shall be authorized by resolution of the Council and signed by two members. Payments may be made by cheque or via online banking. 12.Proper OfficerThe Council’s Proper Officer shall be the Clerk who shall:i.Sign and serve on Members by email a summons confirming the time, date, venue and agenda of a meeting of the Council at least 3 clear days before the meeting.ii.Give public notice of the time, date venue at least 3 clear days before a meeting of the Council (provided that the public notice with agenda of an extraordinary meeting of the Council and convened by Members is signed by them).iii.Facilitate an inspection of the minute book by local government electors.iv.Retain a copy of every Member’s Register of Interests, include those on the web site and make them available for inspection.v.Arrange for prompt authorisation, approval and instruction, regarding any payments to be made by the Council in accordance with the Council’s Financial Regulations.vi.Forward to the Council every planning application received within 96 hours of receipt, by email, and to facilitate an extraordinary meeting if the nature of the planning application requires consideration before the next ordinary meeting of the Council.vii.Where an application is considered routine and non-contentious, a collective response by consensus of the council may be made by electronic communication, and minuted at the next ordinary meeting.viii.It is sometimes not possible for Members to submit comments on Planning Applications for Tree Works and in this instance the Council delegates its response to the Clerk who will submit the following comments on behalf of the Council:“The Parish Council has no objection provided that it can rely upon the professional expertise of the Tree Officer”. ix.Receive and send correspondence and notices on behalf of the Council except where there is a resolution to the contrary.x.Manage the organisation, storage of and access to and destruction of information held by the Council in paper and electronic form.xi.Process requests made under the freedom of information Act 2000 and Data Protection Act 1998 in accordance with and subject to the Councils procedures relating to the same.xii.Convene a meeting of the full Council for the election of a new Chairman of the Council occasioned by a casual vacancy in his office.xiii.Receive and retain copies of bylaws made by other local authorities.xiv.A copy of these Standing Orders and the Council's Code of Conduct shall be given to each Member by the Clerk upon delivery to him of the Members declaration of acceptance of office and written undertaking to comply with the Code of Conduct adopted by the Council.13.Execution and Sealing of Legal Deedsa.A legal deed shall not be executed on behalf of the Council unless the same has been authorised by a resolution.b.In accordance with a resolution made under Standing Order 14a, any two members of the Council may sign on behalf of the Council, any deed required by law, and the Proper Officer shall witness their signatures.14.Handling Confidential Informationa.The Agenda, papers that support the Agenda and the minutes of the meeting shall not disclose or otherwise undermine confidential or sensitive information which for special reasons would not be in the public interest.b.Councillors and staff shall not disclose confidential or sensitive information, which for special reasons should not be in the public interest.15.Freedom of Information Act 2000The Parish Council has adopted the Model Scheme for Local Councils (Core Classes only) and requests for information under the Freedom of information Act 2000 shall be handled in accordance with this policy.16. Variation, Revocation and Suspension of Standing Ordersa. Any or every part of the Standing orders, except those that are mandatory by law, (those in bold type) may be suspended by resolution, in relation to any specific item of business.b.A motion to permanently add to, to vary, or revoke, one or more of the Council's Standing Orders, not mandatory by law, shall not be carried unless two thirds of the councillors at a meeting of the Council vote in favour of the same.c.The Chairman’s decision as to the application of Standing Orders at a meeting shall be final.17.Data Protection Act 1998The Parish Council has adopted the Model Scheme for Local Councils and No records of names or address shall be held in a computer unless registered as a Controller of Data with the Information Controller and payment of an annual fee.18.General StatementThe Council shall accept its general duty to consider the following matters in the exercise of any of its functions:a.Equal Opportunities.b.Race Relations Act 2000.c.Crime and Disorder Act 1998.d.Disability Discrimination Act 1995.e.Human Rights Act 1998.f.Health and Safety at Work Act 1974.g.Transparency code for smaller authorities Dec 2014.h.Protection of Freedoms Act 2012.i.NALC Code of Conduct June 2012.
Mr W OrchardChairman Bill OrchardHighways, Transport01308 482669Mr S KourikDeputy ChairmanSteve Kourik Footpaths, ROW(inc. Rocks), Mobile Phone01308 482552Mrs K Brooks Kathryn BrooksRisk Assessment/Transparency/Annual Report01308 482548Mr J FirrellJohn Firrell Village Fabric, Maintenance, Devolved Services01308 482313Mr A King Andrew KingPlaying Fields/Magna Green, Allotments01308 482594Mrs A SpurrierArabella SpurrierAgricultural Liaison01308 482367Mrs T Mulhall01308 482687Mrs M Walsh Clerk and RFOResponsible Finance Officer & Council Officer01308 email@example.com
List of Council Members, Contact Details, Interests and ResponsibilitiesNamePositionInterests - Click on Links BelowResponsibilites
LITTON CHENEY PARISH COUNCIL FINANCIAL REGULATIONSThese updated Financial Regulations were adopted by the Council at its March 2017 Meeting. They form part of the Council's Standing Orders and are intended to direct and assist the Council and its Officers in the general carrying out of their ascribed duties. It should be noted that given the regulations so adopted are constructed on a one size fits all basis, not all the regulations may be relevant to a council the size of Litton Cheney. Notwithstanding, and while the regulations are set out in a formal guise, they are intended to direct, guide and assist the council in applying common sense, fairness and due diligence in the interests of the community at large. 1. GENERAL1.1 These financial regulations govern the conduct of financial management by Litton Cheney Parish Council and may only be amended or varied by resolution of the Council.1.2 The Responsible Financial Officer (RFO) shall be appointed by the council. Unless so stated at the time of initial appointment, the task will be combined with that of Clerk. The RFO, acting under the policy direction of the Council, shall administer the Council's financial affairs in accordance with proper practices.1.3 The RFO shall produce financial management information as required by the council.1.4 Prior to approving the Annual Return the council shall conduct a review of the effectiveness of its system of internal control and of these financial regulations which shall be in accordance with proper practices. The Clerk shall monitor changes in legislation and/or proper practices and shall advise the council of any requirement for a consequential amendment to these financial regulations. The review will take place at the Council’s Annual Meeting in May.2. ANNUAL BUDGET2.1 The RFO shall prepare an annual budget not later than the end of December to be considered by the council.2.2 The Council shall review the budget not later than the end of January each year and shall fix the Precept to be levied for the ensuing financial year. The RFO shall issue the precept to the billing authority and shall supply each member with a copy of the approved budget.2.3 The annual budget shall form the basis of financial control for the ensuing year.3. BUDGETARY CONTROL3.1 Expenditure on revenue items may be incurred up to the amounts included in the approved budget. This authority is to be determined by the Council for all items over £500 and the Clerk in conjunction with the Chairman of Council for any items below £500.3.2 No expenditure may be incurred that will exceed the amount provided in the revenue budget for that class of expenditure other than by resolution of Council.3.3 The RFO shall provide the Council with a statement of receipts and payments to date at each monthly meeting.3.4 The Clerk may incur expenditure on behalf of the Council, which is necessary to carry out any repair replacement or other work, which is of such extreme urgency that it must be done at once, whether or not there is any budgetary provision for the expenditure, subject to a limit of £250. The Clerk shall report such action to the Chairman as soon as possible and the Council within 28 days.3.5 No expenditure shall be incurred in relation to any capital project and no contract entered or tender accepted involving capital expenditure unless the Council is satisfied that the necessary funds are available, or the requisite borrowing approval has been obtained.3.6 All capital works shall be administered in accordance with the Council's standing orders and financial regulations relating to contracts. 4. ACCOUNTING AND AUDIT4.1 All accounting procedures and financial records of the Council shall be determined by the RFO in accordance with the Accounts and Audit Regulations 2003 or other statutory instrument which may supersede those regulations.4.2 The RFO shall complete the annual financial statements of the Council, including the council’s annual return by the statutory date of the 30th June and shall submit them for approval to the Council no later than the May meeting.4.3 The RFO shall ensure that there is adequate and effective system of internal audit of the Council's accounting, financial and other operations in accordance with proper practices (regulation 5 of the Accounts and Regulations 2003).4.4 The Internal Auditor shall be appointed by and shall carry out the work required by the council in accordance with proper practices. The Internal Auditor, shall be competent and independent of the operations of the Council, and shall report to Council in writing, or in person, on a regular basis, with a minimum of one annual written report in respect of each financial year. In order to demonstrate objectivity and independence, the internal auditor shall be free from any conflicts of interest and have no involvement in the financial decision making, management or control of the council.4.5 The council shall consider and act on any items appearing in the internal audit report for the financial year just ended.4.6 The council shall consider and act on any items appearing in the external audit report for the financial year just ended.4.7 The statement of governance shall be completed and approved by the council and signed and dated by the Chairman and the Clerk and the minute reference recorded.4.8 The RFO shall make arrangements for the opportunity for public inspection of the accounts, books, and vouchers and for the display or publication of any Notices and statements of account required by Audit Commission Act 1998 and the Accounts and Audit Regulations.4.9 The RFO shall, as soon as practicable, bring to the attention of all councillors any correspondence or report from the Internal or External Auditor, unless the correspondence is of a purely administrative matter.5. BANKING ARRANGEMENTS AND CHEQUES5.1 The Council's banking arrangements, including the Bank Mandate, shall be made by the RFO and approved by the Council. They shall be regularly reviewed for efficiency.5.2 A monthly schedule of the payments required, together with the relevant invoices, forming part of the agenda for the meeting, shall be prepared and presented by the RFO to Council for authorisation and payment by a resolution of the Council; which shall be initialled by the Chairman of the Meeting. Personal payments (including salaries, wages and expenses may be summarised to remove public access to any personal information).5.3 Cheques drawn on the bank account shall be signed by two of three named members of Council. The signatories shall each also initial the cheque counterfoil.6. PAYMENT OF ACCOUNTS6.1 All payments shall be effected by cheque, bank transfer or direct debit drawn on the Council's bankers. 6.2 All invoices for payment shall be examined, verified and certified by the RFO. Before certification, the RFO shall satisfy him/herself that the work, goods or services to which the invoice relates shall have been received, carried out, examined and approved.6.3 The Clerk shall present for approval all invoices submitted, and which are in order, at the next available Council Meeting.6.4 If a payment is necessary to avoid a charge to interest under the Late Payment of Commercial Debts (Interest) Act 1998, and the due date for payment is before the next scheduled Meeting of Council, where the RFO certifies that there is no dispute or other reason to delay payment, the Clerk may take all steps necessary to settle such invoices provided that a list of such payments shall be submitted to the next appropriate meeting of Council for ratification.7. PAYMENT OF SALARIES7.1 As an employer, the council shall make arrangements to meet fully the statutory requirements placed on all employers by PAYE and National Insurance legislation. Hours of payment shall be agreed by the council and payment made by the Clerk and audited/checked by a Councillor. Any changes to agreed hours will be approved by the council.8. LOANS AND INVESTMENTS (When applicable)8.1 All loans and investments shall be negotiated by the RFO in the name of the Council and shall be for a set period in accordance with Council policy.8.2 All investments of money under the control of the Council shall be in the name of the Council.8.3 All borrowings and application for borrowing approval shall be approved and be effected in the name of the Council. The terms and conditions of borrowings shall be reviewed at least annually.8.4 All investment certificates and other documents relating thereto shall be retained in the custody of the RFO9. INCOME9.1 The collection of all sums due to the Council shall be the responsibility of and under the supervision of the RFO.9.2 Particulars of all charges to be made for work done, services rendered or goods supplied shall be agreed annually by the Council, notified to the RFO and the RFO shall be responsible for the collection of all accounts due to the Council.9.3 The Council will review all fees and charges annually, following a report of the RFO.9.4 Any sums found to be irrecoverable and any bad debts shall be reported to the Council at the next meeting for consideration and appropriate action.9.5 All sums received on behalf of the Council shall be banked intact as directed by the RFO.9.6 The origin of each receipt shall be entered on the paying-in slip.9.7 Personal cheques shall not be cashed out of money held on behalf of the Council.9.8 The RFO or Clerk on behalf of the RFO shall promptly complete any VAT Return that is required. Any repayment claim due in accordance with VAT Act 1994 section 33 shall be made at least annually coinciding with the financial year end.10. ORDERS FOR WORK, GOODS AND SERVICES10.1 An official order or letter shall be issued for all work, goods and services unless a formal contract is to be prepared or an official order would be inappropriate. Copies of orders shall be retained.10.2 All Members and Officers are responsible for obtaining value for money at all times. The RFO shall ensure as far as reasonable and practicable that the best available terms are obtained in respect of each transaction, usually by obtaining appropriate quotations or estimates from suppliers.11. CONTRACTS11.1 Procedures as to contracts are laid down as follows:(a) Every contract shall comply with these financial regulations, and no exceptions shall be made otherwise than in an emergency provided that these regulations shall not apply to contracts which relate to items (i) to (vi) below:(i) for the supply of gas, electricity, water, sewerage and telephone services;(ii) for specialist services such as are provided by solicitors, accountants, surveyors and planning consultants;(iii) for work to be executed or goods or materials to be supplied which consist of repairs to or parts for existing machinery or equipment or plant;(iv) for work to be executed or goods or materials to be supplied which constitute an extension of an existing contract by the Council;(v) for additional audit work of the external Auditor up to an estimated value of £250 (in excess of this sum the Clerk and RFO shall act after consultation with the Chairman and Vice Chairman of Council);(vi) for goods or materials proposed to be purchased which are proprietary articles and/or are only sold at a fixed price.(b) Where it is intended to enter into a contract exceeding £500 in value for the supply of goods or materials or for the execution of works or specialist services other than those set out in paragraph (a) the RFO shall invite quotations/tenders from at least two firms. For contracts exceeding £2,000 in value the RFO shall invite quotations/tenders from at least three firms.(c) When applications are made to waive financial regulations relating to contracts to enable a price to be negotiated without competition the reason shall be embodied in a recommendation to the Council.(d) An invitation to tender shall state the general nature of the work or service and the RFO shall obtain the necessary technical assistance to prepare a specification in appropriate cases.Each tendering firm shall be supplied with a specifically marked envelope addressed to the RFO, in which the tender is to be sealed and remain sealed until the prescribed date for opening tenders for that contract. All sealed tenders shall be opened at the same time by such persons as the council may direct in the presence of the RFO.(e) If less than two tenders are received for contracts above £500 or three tenders for contracts over £2,000 or if all the tenders are identical the Council may make such arrangements as it thinks fit for procuring the goods or materials or executing the works.11.2 The Council shall not be obliged to accept the lowest or any tender, quote or estimate.12. ASSETS, PROPERTIES AND ESTATES12.1 The Clerk shall make appropriate arrangements for the custody of all title deeds of properties owned by the Council. The RFO shall ensure a record is maintained of all purchase details, nature of the interest, tenancies granted, rents payable and purpose for which held in accordance with Accounts and Audit Regulations.12.2 No property shall be sold, leased or otherwise disposed of without the authority of the Council, together with any other consents required by law.12.3 The RFO shall ensure that an appropriate and accurate Register of Assets and Investments is kept up to date. The continued existence of tangible assets shown in the Register shall be verified at least annually, possibly in conjunction with a health and safety/risk assessment inspection of assets.13. INSURANCE13.1 Following the annual risk assessment (as per Financial Regulation 14), the RFO shall, in consultation with the Chairman, effect all insurances and negotiate all claims on the Council's insurers and shall keep a record of all insurances effected by the Council and the property and risks covered thereby and annually review it.13.2 The RFO shall be notified of any loss liability or damage or of any event likely to lead to a claim being made.14. RISK MANAGEMENT14.1 The council is responsible for putting in place arrangements for the management of risk. The Clerk shall prepare, for approval by the council, risk management policy statements in respect of all activities of the council. Risk policy statements and consequential risk management arrangements shall be reviewed by the council at least annually.14.2 When considering any new activity, the Clerk shall prepare a draft risk assessment including risk management proposals for consideration.END.