City Neighbourhood Committee takes on local agenda

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News release: 01 July 2013

The new City Neighbourhood Committee had its inaugural meeting on Thursday 27 June.

St Albans market
The Committee replaces the former City Forum and aims to provide unparished areas of St Albans with a greater say in local-decision making. It has been created to help put �localism� into practice in unparished areas of the city following the Localism Act 2011.

The City Neighbourhood Committee covers the eight electoral wards in St Albans*. In addition, there are co-opted members from Neighbourhood Forums or Residents Associations where no Forum exists.

Councillor Michael Green, Chair of the City Neighbourhood Committee, said: �It�s very positive to see so many local residents associations and others getting involved. I was struck by the support shown by those at the meeting for the work we are setting out to do.  

�We will be exploring how best the City Neighbourhood Committee can oversee the management of some of the City�s local facilities.  

�The Committee has enhanced powers to help residents have a greater say in local decision-making. We will be getting involved in decisions that have an impact on the management of local assets such as the smaller parks and the allotments in St Albans.� 

Eight Residents Associations in the unparished areas of the city have come forward so far to join the Committee as co-opted members. These are: 

� SAPHRA, a residents association covering Sopwell Lane, Albert Street, Pageant Road, Hart Road, The Ryder Seed Mews Estate, Saracens Head Yard, Pearce�s Walk and Keyfield Terrace.
� Sopwell Residents Association
� Cell Barnes Lane Residents Association
� Verulam Residents Association
� Cunningham Residents Association
� Whitecroft & Meadowcroft Residents Association
� Society of St Michael�s & Kingsbury
� Carlisle & Waverley Area Residents Association

A number of other residents associations have expressed an interest in participating and the Committee expects to co-opt them at future meetings. Information is available by emailing carl.cheevers@stalbans.gov.uk or calling 01727 819518.

The Committee will have strategic oversight of certain community assets. It is now beginning the process of identifying what facilities this will include. At the meeting the Committee agreed in principle to consider responsibility for parks and other open spaces, playground equipment, allotments and war memorials in the unparished area. Officers were requested to bring back detailed proposals to the next meeting to determine how this would work in practice.

The papers from the first meeting of the City Neighbourhood Committee are available on the Council's website. 

Councillor Contact: 
Councillor Michael Green, Chair of the City Neighbourhood Committee, Tel: 01727 569035

Contact for the media: 
Amanda Wilkinson, Media and Internal Communications Officer, St Albans City and District Council, Tel: 01727 819317, E-mail: amanda.wilkinson@stalbans.gov.uk 
Tel: 01727 819317
E-mail: amanda.wilkinson@stalbans.gov.uk 
www.stalbans.gov.uk

Notes:

*  The eight City wards are: Ashley, Batchwood, Clarence, Cunningham, Marshalswick South, St Peters, Sopwell and Verulam.