Minutes – 17 January 2017

Attendees

John Quinn, Kimberley Moore, Gordon Wilson, Dorothy Tough, David Blair, Sarrah Ahmed, Leanne Geschwind-Duffy, Anna Glazier, Christine Walmsley, Ruth Holmes, D. Verstegen, Fiona Henderson, Peter McGabriel, Phil McLean, Alan Thomsonn, Fionna Thomson, Pat Keogh, M. Manganiellu, S. Reynolds, Jeff Haddow, Maureen Chalmers, Liz Mulligan, Jim Orr, Steve, Susan Fraser (Social), Craig Hamnett (Communications/Minutes), Candice Peden (Vice-chair), Stephanie Wint (Treasurer), Davie McCrae Jnr (Environment)

Apologies

Gillian Hamnett, David McCrae Snr (Chair), Catarina Costa Gallon (Housing)

Agenda

  1. All attendees welcomed in and apologies announced.
  2. Apologies were given for no minutes from the previous meeting as there was no secretary taking notes. These will be done retrospectively and distributed soon.
  3. There are no formal secretary nomination as of yet. One tentative nomination, but anyone wishing to apply for role of Secretary should do so at the next DRA meeting.
  4. Parking Update –
    • A lot of people mentioned that they did not receive the consultation through the door.
    • Parking officer has asked for an update to the road survey and the council said that they did not need to do a survey because they know what the problems are.
    • Questions were raised about what the 12% completion rate figure was out of.
    • Concerns raised about which zone Dumbiedykes is in.
    • The DRA doesn’t support the current proposition from the council.
    • ACTION – Email to Gavin with concerns about not being guaranteed a parking space, to gather names of those who didn’t receive the survey. Did Paul Swann look into the other issue about the Glasgow scheme?
    • It was explained that a physical copy could be picked up from a number of locations, including the Braidwood Centre.
    • Observations that people are finding it cheaper to use a garage than city parking.
  5. SKELF Update –
    • Building of loops 1 and 2 is underway.
    • Cannot accept volunteers at this time because of legislation around diggers.
    • Currently slightly ahead of schedule with planned opening on 31st March.
    • Possibility of using the previously planned loop 3 area for different uses.
    • Suggestions welcomed at future DRA meetings.
    • The pump tracks will still be opening despite vandalism of diggers.
    • Currently asking about subleasing possibilities.
    • ACTION – Come up with ideas for the area of loop 3 for an open consultation.
  6. Other items –
    • Some people have noted that the cold calling at doors is to do with smart energy meters. The police have been informed and people are asked to remain vigilant and ensure neighbours that might be vulnerable are protected.
    • Any problems with stairwells that are not clean should be made to the direct numbers. Something that Caterina could maybe be liased with.
    • Fly tipping – Wardens have been spoken to about misuse of recycling. Fly tipping seems to be due to landlords, and fines can come into place.
      • Was noted that an uplift is sometimes seen. Is this still a paid service from the council?
      • ACTION – Print signs about what can be recycled in what bins and place in stairwells.
      • The great work of John has not gone unnoticed within the community and this should be also fed back to the council.

Action Items

  • For Candice Peden – Email to Gavin with concerns about not being guaranteed a parking space, to gather names of those who didn’t receive the survey. Did Paul Swann look into the other issue about the Glasgow scheme?
  • For everyone – Come up with ideas for the area of loop 3 for an open consultation.
  • For Davie McCrae Jnr – Print signs about what can be recycled in what bins and place in stairwells.

Next meeting date

Next meeting agreed for:

  • Tuesday 21st February at 6.30pm
  • in the Braidwood Centre
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EGM – Minutes – 11 November 2016

Published on 10th March 2017

Agenda

  1. Chair welcomed all to the meeting.
  2. Chair explained that he had met with the Association’s committee officer board regarding what he believed to be the non-fulfilment by the Secretary of their role, including:
    • Giving very short notice of non-attendance at meetings, leaving the committee struggling to find someone to take minutes
    • Not distributing minutes of meetings they had attended and ostensibly minuted – in particular the AGM in June
    • Refusal to engage with other members of the committee on tasks – either by email or in person
    • Pursuing an agenda not agreed by the association, in a non-transparent manner

    As FH had also not attended this meeting, DMc said he felt he had no other option but to ask the association members for a vote of no confidence in the Secretary as he was unable to work with someone who worked in this manner. He then made it clear that if the Secretary’s position was upheld, he would resign with immediate effect.

  3. The Secretary then had the floor to make their case.The Secretary stated that they did not think that the Chair understood the role of Secretary; that there had not been a problem with the previous committee and asked that the members present think hard about what kind of a DRA they wanted.
  4. Feelings ran high while questions and comments were taken from the meeting.
  5. The meeting recognised local councillor Cameron Rose who summarised the situation and clarified protocol-“There needs to be a motion which is clear, that everybody can understand and vote on…and then we simply take a vote.”FH interjected to say that the reason for the EGM wasn’t explicit enough as advertised, because it didn’t say ‘a vote of no confidence in the Secretary’, it said ‘voting for committee members’. It was stated that this was due to the possibility that the phrase could be considered prejudicial, so a more ambiguous phrase, which still made it clear that there were personnel changes happening within the committee, was used instead.

    Paragraph eight of the Constitution was referred to and it was considered that the detail of the EGM notice was sufficient and that the meeting move to a vote on the motion put forward.

  6. DMc proposed a motion of no confidence in the Secretary; seconded by Candice Peden. As there was no corresponding motion against, Cameron Rose offered to conduct a vote and explicitly asked:”Is the meeting happy for me to conduct it?”When no objections were made, he continued, saying:

    “Those against that (motion), in other words, those not in favour of removing Fiona from the chair, please vote now- I’m counting six votes here. Those in favour of the motion, as described by Davie, please vote now- fourteen. So the motion is passed by 14 votes to remove Fiona from the chair.”

    FH made representation that she had more votes at home from people who weren’t able to attend. The Constitution was again consulted re: proxy votes and found it to be quite clear that there has to be the name, address and signature of a member, not for a general purpose, but for a specific vote. Committee agreed with the Chair that these were not legitimate proxy votes.

    As discussions again became heated, those present were reminded that the decision had been made by a constituted meeting and that that decision, to remove Fiona from the Committee, should be carried out; with a further meeting to elect a new Secretary at a later date.

  7. The meeting was adjourned; date of next meeting to be arranged- notification to be sent out in the usual way.

Minutes – 24 August 2016

1. Welcome

Chair welcomed all to the meeting, passed on apologies

Present: Davie McCrae (chair), Candice Peden (vice-chair), Stephanie Wint (treasurer), Catarina Costa Gallon (housing), Davie McCrae, Jnr (environment), Julie Logan, Maureen Chalmers, Liz Mulligan, Phil McLean, Agnes Logan, Jeff Haddow, Monika Kasprzyk, Riaz Agaui, Stuart Reynolds, Tanya Fyans (communications), Louise Weeze, David Blair, Susie McCrae (minutes), Jim Orr (CEC), Kim Soliman (Spirit of Dumbiedykes), Joe (Comas/Tower Power), Harriet (Comas/Tower Power)

Apologies: Fiona Henderson (secretary), Susan Fraser (social), Willie Buchan (communications), Craig Hamnett (communications), Gillian Hamnett

3.

Due to length of last meetings minutes and the fact that the minutes had been mailed out, only 2 hard copies were printed out for this evening in a bid to reduce our environmental impact; several people however stated they had not received email. Communications group to follow up.

Approval of minutes held over til all can read minutes.

4a.

Kim from Spirit of Dumbiedykes gave a short talk about the group and then answered questions from the members. The main points were: money from the sale of assets for Commonwealth Games created a legacy fund which was to be ploughed back into communities over three years, with up to £250,000 available to each one; 14 communities in the UK, 6 in Scotland, received funding after a tendering process, Dumbiedykes was one of these communities. Spirit has been operating for 18 months so far, with another 18 months to go. A community panel has been established with 11 members including 6 community members and 5 organisational representatives to help decide how to distribute the resource budget.

There are three tiers of grants available to apply for, for projects which will benefit the community in one of the four priority areas: sports and physical activities/arts and culture/youth development/volunteering and social action.
The three tiers are: Sparks- individuals and informal groups can apply for funds up to £500; On Your Marks- constituted groups can apply for £250-£2000; Go- also for constituted groups, up to £25,000 is available.

Examples of previous projects funded included the two gala/fun days(’15 & ’16) and the Christmas event (’15)- organised by a subgroup from the panel and other community volunteers; currently there is a campaign to solicit tenders for a community art project, the winning bid will be chosen by a popular vote from the community. Other groups to receive funding include CYP for the Playrangers, Libertus (targeting over 50s), The Crags and Comas.

The Spirit panel are especially keen to support projects which will be sustainable, ideally supporting local people to help each other, after the initial funding runs out.

Agreed that communication was an issue- initial engagement sessions had been held along with door-knocking, Facebook and the newsletter; past six months had not had so much proactive efforts (apart from the fun day).

Query about benefit to the community of the bee-keeping (one of the recipients of a sparks grant) found that once established the project would indeed be open to the public to view and learn from; the lady also hopes to set up a live feed via web-cam.

Query about whether the “My Dumbiedykes” Facebook page was run by Spirit of Dumbiedykes- no, it is operated by The Crags.

4b.

Joe and Harriet from Comas gave a brief history of Comas- means ‘ability’ in Gaelic and tries to help people achieve their full potential; it is a community development charity whose projects include:

  • 20More shop – aims to make everybody better off by £20 per week; includes Financial Inclusion Officer who can provide advice and support regarding debt, benefits, etc; access to a landline for telephone calls where needed; provides a social space for residents and a garden area; shop with many items bought in bulk from cash and carry and then sold at cost-price; also have a hot food lunch deal (soup, crisps and a piece of fruit for £1).
  • Tower Power – scheme developed to get as many Dumbiedykes residents as possible cheaper electricity. Noticed that fuel poverty is a big issue for many residents and have joined forces with Community Energy Scotland to help reduce energy costs- this will include bulk buying, use of solar panels and smart meters.
  • Green Drying – project looking at environmental, economic and health impact of drying clothes indoors; raising awareness and looking for alternatives for residents; running workshops and trialling various drying equipment.
  • WomanZone – project aimed at helping women in recovery; includes yoga, singing and craft sessions.
    Serenity cafe- operated for and with people in recovery; also hosts a lot of other support groups (Families Anonymous, Cocaine Anonymous); contains office space where many Comas staff are based (when not in 20More).

Q: how many solar panels? On which flats? Would there be consultation with the residents or would it just be imposed?

A: numbers will depend on residents- project still in development so no definitive answers yet, but will be full consultation with residents.


Q: how much money did you get?

A: not entirely sure I can say, can tell you we’re partly funded by Community Energy Scotland, one for the office.


Q: do you employ any local people?

A: yes, Karen and Monika both live in the area.


Q: do smart meters actually make a difference?

A: can help people change their behaviours re: energy use; for example- smart meter can show how much energy you use boiling a full kettle as opposed to a cup’s worth of water.


Q: are you actually a business? Could it not have run as a community cooperative?

A: we are a limited company and a registered charity; easier to set up this way, however will be looking for community members to sit on the board, looking for lots of local involvement.


Q: would we have to have the smart meter if we signed up to the scheme.

A: don’t know for sure, something to check out with CES.


Q: Small scale operation, limited staff- how would you manage customer service? If I made switch and had an issue with my supply how quickly could you respond and fix a problem? Would there be someone I could speak to?

A: would aim to have a member of staff available to deal with customer issues by phone/email, can contact us through the 20More too, customer service a huge consideration. Still putting project together, we want you to keep telling us your concerns and ideas.

5a.

Susie gave a brief update on communications: thanked Tanya and Craig for work on getting website up and running, outlined its use as an archive of minutes from meetings, it’s contact page and the proposed addition of a problems contact page so that all residents could have the correct departments and phone numbers to contact with queries and complaints. It was noted that in some cases it requires several separate complaints for an individual issue to draw response, so was especially important to ensure that these were directed to the right office.

Facebook page continuing to build steadily. Query about duplication of information on various pages perhaps confusing; agreed that provided information not conflicting, then multiple streams not a problem.

Pointed out by member that not all are receiving emails and that many people don’t use social media so posters and newsletter are particularly important. Agreed that non-digital communications very important, will try to link up with MyDumbiedykes and Braidwood Blethers about newsletters; will look at gaps in email list.

5b.

Candice reported that Gavin Brown has prepared a survey for residents regarding parking and that this would be sent to the Braidwood Centre for delivery to households on the estate when printed. It is very important that we get as many responses as possible to ensure that our voice is heard and that we have our requirements met. This is our chance to let CEC know what we need here.

Q: is this set to be a zone 3 controlled area then? Is there no vote or option to pay a private company?

A: the decision has been made by the council that this will happen, yes. A private company is legally unable to enforce fines on a public road; the system we had previously was entirely illegal and should never have happened.


Q: so we will have to pay hundreds of pounds but still not be guaranteed a parking space?

A: this is one of the reasons that we want to have as many responses as possible to the survey, so that we know what the level of need is from residents; there will also be creation of more spaces through removal of yellow lines, these being replaced by marked parking bays.


Q: so is this just about the council making money?

A: personally wish that there was a better, immediate solution; would also love to have free parking again; but think that this is the best solution going forward. Seven day parking controls are coming to the centre of town and the problems that we are having would become worse, this way there will at least be controls in place.

5c.

Catarina reported that the issue regarding the tokens for the launderettes housed in the two high rises was due to people bulk-buying and then hoarding them at home; Billy (concierge) has ordered more tokens so that there will be a larger number in circulation, hopefully avoiding this problem in future.

Catarina has also been in contact with council regarding the stair-cleaning contract: she found that in 2003 CEC introduced a stair cleaning service in tenements where there was a 50% or higher council ownership. Council tenants are charged £4.38 per fortnight, to be collected with their rent; homeowners are invoiced either quarterly (£26.22) or twice per year (£52.44). In blocks with more than 50% privately owned homes, residents can opt in to this cleaning contract providing there is a majority in agreement. Some blocks successfully operate a rota among the owners to look after the cleaning of the common areas.
In blocks which are covered by the council stair cleaning company, there should be a record sheet of cleaning team visits which also has contact numbers for complaints if it is felt that the contract specification is not being met. (The cleaning specification is attached to the end of this document.)

Q: is there any way for council tenants to opt out of this service as it does not provide value for money?

A: will find out and report back at the next meeting.

5d.

Stephanie reported that there is no change to the bank balance as there has been some difficulty arranging the second signatory, however she and Candice are working on it and hope to have this resolved soon.

There are also former signatories to the account from previous incarnation of residents association to be tracked down so they can complete the paperwork to be removed from the account.

Once these requirements have been met, SW will reimburse SMc for the cost of ink used in printing posters, minutes, agendas, etc.

5e.

Davie Jnr thanked Stephanie and Julie for their help in documenting the overflowing recycling bins; noted that in the absence of John (estate street cleaner) during his holiday between the 8th and 18th of August the problem was even worse than is normally the case and highlighted how badly the recycling facilities are being misused- largely by residents according to the pieces of mail which D has photographed lying with other rubbish).

Has contacted both SEPA and the Environmental Wardens to clarify what the situation is with having penalties enforced and found that 4 separate complaints about 1 location should draw a visit from the wardens; littering can be met with a £40 fine which if not paid becomes £80, if this ignored then will lead to a court summons and possible fine of £2,500.
However, leaving furniture or bags of rubbish by the recycling areas is classed not as littering but as fly-tipping and receives much stiffer penalties starting with an initial fixed penalty fine of £200, non-payment risks prosecution and a fine not exceeding £40,000.

Rather than launching straight into an attempt to have everybody misusing the facilities fined and/or prosecuted – given that this is our friends and neighbours we are talking about (business owners using the bins is not illegal and they tend to use them correctly anyway)- propose we begin an awareness and education programme aimed at residents.

Q: used to be free uplifts for bulk items, but this is chargeable now at £26 for up to 6 items- not everyone can afford this.

A: CEC can’t afford to fund this any more- can look at ways we can arrange to have people get together to split costs.


Q: could there be free pick up days?

A: there have been drying green ‘amnesties’ before where a skip was hired, but the council can’t afford to do this now. Jim Orr interjected to say that while CEC can’t afford to do this as a matter of course, there are funding streams available to apply to, perhaps on a block by block basis, if people get organised and apply for these grants.


Q: what about the weeds all over the place?

A: still on to do list, hope to have answers for you at next meeting.

6.

Davie Snr- We have heard lots tonight about different funding opportunities available to us as a community; have also heard some great ideas about what we could do. What we need is people who are willing to get involved in making these things happen! There is only so much that the officers can do: we work, we have families- just like everyone else. Organisations and associations like this fail when everything is left to the same people over and over again, so what we need are working groups for different projects- these may contain an association officer, but will not necessarily be led by them. If you have something in mind, get in touch with us and we will support you and put you in touch with other people who have similar ideas. Susie will put this on Facebook page too.

Q: This is why we need our own space, for meetings at short notice about things like this. Can we not share the community room with Comas?

A: Don’t believe that this is needed- have never had a problem getting a space here at the Braidwood, the management committee have always been very accommodating; this is our neighbourhood centre and we should be actively supporting each other as organisations. There are also accessibility issues with the community flat as it set between two flights of stairs; the Braidwood Centre is equipped to enable access to everyone who wants to be involved.

Jim Orr- There are indeed lots of funds available, for example the South Central Neighbourhood Partnership offers grants of up to £5000 for community projects. Groups like CYP, Comas and the Crags receive funding from these things because they are organised, well-practised and they put in bids; there is nothing to stop the DRA applying to these funds. You just need to make plans and bid!

Kim Soliman- The Spirit panel has discussed opening themselves up to a wider panel, considering employing a paid facilitator to open the discussion and find out what do residents want?

7.

Received an invitation for a DRA member to sit on the Quality of Life panel: quarterly meeting involving agencies like the Fire Service; police; CEC Housing Safety Officer. Usually a morning meeting which is difficult for many people due to work commitments; Jim Orr offered to see if possible to reschedule for an evening. No volunteers, will put it out to wider community.

7 ii.

Riaz Agaui introduced himself to the meeting; he is moving into the area so will be a resident shortly; asked to talk about his group Dumbiedykes Youth Movement at next meeting. Chair requested more information to be sent to committee.

7 iii.

Stuart Reynolds asked if anyone knew what was happening regarding the cladding programme of works; also if we could have more information about the payment requirements. Will look for information for next meeting.

7 iv.

Suggestion that we look at obtaining noticeboards for each block, similar to high rises, for communication of information in addition to news letters and digital communication.

7 v.

Question via email from new resident regarding ownership and responsibilities in relation to upkeep of the allotments and small plots set in to the paving.

8. Agree date and time of next meeting

Next meeting agreed for:

  • Wednesday 28th September at 6.30
  • in the Braidwood Centre

Chair thanked all for attending and declared the meeting closed.

Minutes – 20 July 2016

1. Welcome and Introductions

Davie McCrae (chair) welcomed all to the meeting and introduced Gavin Brown, Parking Services Manager for the City of Edinburgh Council; also present Stevie Cockburn and Ian McConnachie from Comas.

Residents in attendance (from sign-in sheet)

  • Ball, Kathryn
  • Beverage, Sean
  • Blair, David
  • Bradley, Marion
  • Chalmers, Maureen
  • Clarke, Lin
  • Costa Gallon, Catarina
  • Fraser, Susie
  • Glazier, Derek
  • Haddow, Jeff
  • Hamnett, Craig
  • Hamnett, Gillian
  • Jaul, Jema
  • Keogh, Pat
  • Matthew, Jane
  • McCrae Jnr, Davie
  • McCrae Snr, Davie
  • McCrae, Susie
  • Moore Ede, Kimberley
  • Mulligan, Liz
  • Peden, Candice
  • Reynolds, Stuart
  • Thomson, Alan
  • Wint, Stephanie

2. Apologies

  • Fiona Henderson (Secretary)
  • Tanya Fyans (Communications sub-committee)
  • De Baisio, Guiseppe
  • Walmsley, Christine
  • Weeze, Louise

3. Minutes of previous meeting

We don’t yet have minutes of the AGM. Susie McCrae will take minutes this evening.

4. Matters arising

4a. Residents Parking Issues with Gavin Brown, CEC

Candice (Parking Officer) explained that she and the Chair had met with Gavin Brown (GB) on Monday to discuss the Council’s plans for parking going forwards and asked Gavin to address the meeting.

GB said that as a result of listening to what residents had said at the DRA meeting he had previously attended, he had gone back to the council committee to look for a solution that reflected our unique community.

He summarised the main problem as being the amount of commuters using the estate for free parking Mon-Fri to go to work nearby and at the weekend to use local leisure and shopping facilities; further, that these issues were exacerbated by not enough spaces to begin with.

Current CEC parking controls operate Mon-Fri, 8.30-17.30; however, from 2018, this will be extended to seven days a week – Mon-Sat 8.30-18.30 & Sun 12.30-18.30 in zones 1-4. This would likely make the problem worse – certainly at weekends as people looked to exploit free parking in a zone 7 area located so close to the city centre.

Proposal is to move the estate to zone 3, but to make it a Restricted Parking Zone. This would see residents only signs at entrances to the estate and parking only within the designated spaces; yellow lines would be eliminated. It would, to all intents and purposes, look like a separate “zone within a Proposal is to move the estate to zone 3, but to make it a Restricted Parking Zone. This would see residents only signs at entrances to the estate and parking only within the designated spaces; yellow lines would be eliminated. It would, to all intents and purposes, look like a separate “zone within a zone”. The spaces would be split between permit holders, disabled parking places and shared use (can be used by both permit holders and pay and display users).

GB stated that this scheme was concerned with maximising parking for residents as close to their homes as possible, while still allowing access via shared use spaces for local businesses & amenities and largely eliminating the wider commuter problem over the seven day week.

In order to maintain the paint markings & signs and to enforce the restrictions, the permits will be chargeable, but in recognition of the transition from free to paid parking, these will be available at zone 7 prices (roughly half that of city centre controlled zone fees) until 2020, when it will be reviewed. The price of a permit will be dependent on the emissions (fumes!) of the vehicle- £150 for an average (first) car; second cars are slightly more. See attached sheet Restricted Parking Zone- Dumbiedykes Fact Sheet.

150 visitor passes/permits will be available to all residents each year, (300 for blue badge holders), each one costing 60p for 90 minutes parking. Next steps will be to start traffic surveys to see what level of use there is just now, when it’s busiest, where spaces are most needed; take this back to the council committee for consultation; then begin the legal process which includes advertising the proposals- this may invite objections which will slow the process down; otherwise expect it all to take around 12 months.

Floor opened to questions:

MC: What if there are more blue badges than there are disabled spaces? Used to be able to park on yellow lines if no parking space – is that still the case?

GB: There are nuances which will need to be worked out, but it seems that they would still be able to park outside of a designated bay so long as they were not causing an obstruction.


MC: What about carers?

GB: One of the things we need to do is look at who is a carer? A family member, a friend, a council worker or a paid employee.


DMc: Had real problems in past getting a parking permit for my company car, will this still be a complicated process?

GB: This should be an easier process now. Will be able to do this online if desired.


LM: What about in the meantime? 12 month period is a long time and we have a real problem just now. You say we have to allow access for the hotel (local businesses), but they are telling everyone just to park here.

GB: Yes, I agree that it’s a huge problem and not easy striking a balance. The problem is that there is no legal response available just now.

CP: Have had some success with the use of cones, particularly to prevent the dangerous parking which was happening on Viewcraig Gardens. Will continue to look at temporary solutions.


SF: Previous system here and at Briery Baulks was open to abuse – how will that be regulated? Will it only be car owners who can apply for permits?

GB: Yes. The council have a fraud prevention team who as part of the paid for service are there to check these things.


LC: Will we still collect the permits from the Braidwood Centre?

GB: Permits will be issued from office at 249 High Street – can be posted out or collected in person. Exploring different methods to pay, potential cashless system through mobile phones in addition to cash and credit/debit cards.


JJ: You talked about us being a unique community, we are a unique community and we must be treated as such. I have 3 cars in my house, only being allowed 2 permits is not good for me, it is not good for the community.

GB: Unfortunately, Edinburgh is hugely oversubscribed with cars, council policy across the city is to issue no more than two permits per residence.


KB: How can the visitor passes be used – will it be only one session of 90 minutes per day?

GB: No, they can be ‘stacked up’. It’s the equivalent of 28 days parking, entirely up to you how you use them – if you have a visitor staying for a week you can use a block of them for that.

KB: Is it only car owners who can apply for visitor permits?

GB: No, open to all residents. Available in books of ten.


GH: I have concerns that it’s not just the issue of fraud, but of capacity. Is there actually enough space for all of this – residents permits, visitor passes and pay-and-display?

GB: The traffic/parking surveys will address both capacity and need; while there is a requirement to provide shared access parking, the need of residents should be thought of first and foremost. Proposal will create more parking spaces; the pay and display will have a max stay of 4 hours, if there is very strong opinion that this is proving too long, can look at reducing this time.


DMc: Will a maximum stay be enforced? Anecdotal evidence of meter-feeding not being prevented in other areas.

GB: This should definitely not be the case, will have this looked at.


GH: Does there have to be pay and display parking at all? There is St Johns Hill car park extremely close by.

GB: St. John’s hill car park is run by a private company – NCP; as soon as we tried to prohibit non-residential parking on council roads, we would receive legal objections from local businesses and these would be upheld.


CP: The biggest problem just now is the commuter issue – there are currently 62 spaces on Viewcraig Gardens: Mon-Fri, 9-5.30 they are full, in the evenings there are loads of spaces.

LC: When you do the survey and come back to us, will you be able to tell us exactly how many spaces there will be for the residents?

GB: Yes.


SF: If the system is abused as happened under the previous scheme with people selling keys and permits, will they have their permits revoked and be banned from having permits?

GB: Not sure that we can ban them, but this would be stopped. Would be a matter for our fraud prevention team, but also for the residents themselves, if you became aware that the system was being abused, could pass that information on through the Association.

GH: What is the time frame for all of this?

GB: We would usually wait until after the school summer holidays for the traffic/parking survey to be done- physically counting cars and identifying the new bays, so August for the survey and I could return to a DRA meeting in September with the results.

SR: Would it be possible to start the survey earlier – at least the identification of new bays and a survey of residents and car ownership/disability needs etc?

GB: That’s certainly possible, I will continue to work with the Chair and Vice-Chair here to see what we can do.


SR: Can I also ask, will the residents survey include the students in the university blocks?

GB: Definitely not, nor will they be able to apply for residential parking permits.


??: Can anything be done about Tesco employees parking here just now?

CP: Will contact Tesco to ask them to remind staff that this is a residential area, not a public car park.


Chair: Mindful of the time and the fact that we’ve still a lot to cover. I’d like to thank Gavin for coming down tonight and going through all of it with us. I think we have to acknowledge that the days of parking here for free are gone and move forwards for a solution that will protect our ability to park near our homes.

4b. Review amendments to the Constitution

Three main amendments were discussed and voted on at last meeting- is everyone in agreement with the new wording?

Additional to email and current printed copy is the insertion of a line in Article 10 after “Each member may vote only once per issue; there will be no vote by proxy” to be “unless represented in writing and bearing a valid name, address and signature” to allow for residents ill health, incapacity or absence.

Ratification of the formal adoption of the Constitution

Proposed by Maureen Chalmers; Seconded by Liz Mulligan; passed unanimously by show of hands.

4c. Membership List

As stated in the Constitution, membership is indicated by a signature on the Membership list. As highlighted by the Secretary’s non-availability just now, it makes sense to hold two copies of this, one to be held on a digital database by the communications sub-committee and a physical one at the office of the Braidwood Centre. All private data will be held in strict confidence.

4d. Website

Tanya (via email, as unable to attend this evening) informed us that they have started work on the website, but feels unable to finish it until there is consultation with at least one other person who runs the current email account (preference being the secretary). Also wanted to check if there was agreement to have the website set up so that posts there would appear on the Facebook page and be emailed out to the mailing list. General agreement to this as an efficient means of wide-spread communication.

SMc and CH volunteered to help with the final process; SMc to coordinate a meeting.

5. New business

5a. Liason to other community groups

Many different groups working in Dumbiedykes, makes sense to communicate with them and try to work together for the good of the community. To this end we’d like to invite different representatives to come speak to us or perhaps send one of our members to them to report back to us at our regular meetings. Tonight we have two of the workers from Comas here to tell us a little bit about what they do.

Introduced Stevie Cockburn, development manager with Comas.

SC: Comas is a community based charity, running several projects in the area including the 20More shop on Dumbiedykes Road, green drying project and Tower Power.

Purpose is to try to help support everyone who lives here- the 20More shop aims to make people better off by £20 each week; the green drying project is raising awareness of the long term medical effects of drying washing in the house and looking for solutions/alternatives to this; Iain McConnachie will talk more about Tower Power next.

I am based in Serenity cafe, someone in the shop 7 days a week too.

We are also looking at a new initiative regarding child care: in Dumbiedykes, lack of affordable childcare can often be a bar to employment, looking at a cooperative approach to bringing together local child minders in the near future.


IMc: Work alongside colleague Joe Gair on Tower Power which is a new scheme aiming to bring residents cheaper electricity. Know that there are quite high levels of fuel poverty in the area and that there are a lot of pre-payment meters which are usually set at the most expensive rate. Idea is to get lots of residents to sign up and then be able to negotiate cheaper power deals. Have been able to get the Council to bring forward their heating programme; looking at their cladding programme of works and hoping to be able to use their scaffolding to erect solar panels on some roofs which would feed into the cheaper power for all residents deal.

This will be the first time such a project has happened in an urban setting; it’s fairly common on the islands- seen as a no-brainer there; but it’s a big, new and unique project for a city.

Will be conducting surveys among residents over the summer and are available in the 20More shop on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s, between 10am and 2pm.

5b. Stair cleaning issues

Chair informed the meeting that he had been approached by a council tenant to ask if there was anything the DRA could do regarding the poor level of service they felt was being provided by the company employed to clean communal stairs. While some residents clean their own stairs and are happy to do so, others agreed that the company were not providing this service and that perhaps not all residents are aware that they are also obliged to take a turn in cleaning their stair.

Consensus of meeting that Chair should approach Council to clarify the situation and report back.

6. Officer Reports

6a. Chairperson – Davie McCrae, Snr

Nothing additional to report.

6b. Treasurer – Stephanie Wint

Bank account from previous, now defunct Residents Association still in operation, although no transactions since 2007. Requires a second signatory to be registered online (in addition to SW).

Candice Peden proposed by Susie McCrae; Seconded by Marion Bradley.

Balance of account is £2,810.90.

6c. Parking – Candice Peden

Already covered.

6d. Communications – Willie Buchan

Already covered.

6e. Social Events – Susie Fraser

Want to bring the community together. Lots of ideas, some big events like a Christmas party; day trips for groups – perhaps a Christmas shopping trip to York for the ladies or a fishing trip for the gents. Open to ideas and more volunteers. Will check out what some other local organisations have going on and report back.

6f. Environment & Safety – Davie McCrae, Jnr

Lots of concern re: recycling facilities, particularly the mess, the seagulls, the improper use of bins – people dumping rubbish or not separating it appropriately. DMc reported that due to government legislation and heavy fines – there was no option to have it removed; however, we can and are looking at ways to improve management of the facilities. These might include installation of rubbish bins near the recycling bins; repair and consistent use of the locking lids on the bins; improved signage at the recycling areas and in stairwells beside hoppers; translation of this information into additional languages.

6g. Housing Issues – Catarina Costa Gallon

Finding way in new position, achieved resolution of first issue regarding the emptying out of a drying green. Stevie from Comas also working on the issue of drying greens in relation to the green drying project, will work collaboratively on this issue.

7. Any other issues

GH: Can the steps at the end of Viewcraig Gardens be repaired rather than just barricaded off?

CP: Funding has been awarded for this through South Central Decides; repairs should be started before winter.


LC: Could the children’s play park on Dumbiedykes road be made safer? Maybe bark chips put down?

CP: CEC parks and communities have included the play park in their budget for upgrades next year. Due to start by the end of next summer.

8. Agree date and time of next meeting

The next meeting of the DRA will be held in:

  • Room 1, Braidwood Centre
  • Wednesday 24th August
  • from 6.30pm – 8pm

Chair thanked all for attending and contributing to a very productive meeting; thanked Liz, Maureen and Jeff of the Braidwood Management Committee for their help and declared the meeting adjourned.

Next Meeting 20/07/2016

Hi folks,

Hope everyone has been enjoying the sunshine.

As agreed at the AGM, our next meeting is this Wednesday the 20th Julu, from 6.30 til 8pm at the Braidwood Centre. Gavin Brown from CEC parking services will be in attendance to advise of the council’s plan for parking in the city.

Below is a copy of the agenda for the meeting. If you need a copy of the Constitution, amended as per the discussion and voting at the AGM, then get in touch.

Hope to see as many people there as possible.

—–

1 Welcome and Introductions

2 Apologies

3 Minutes of previous meeting

4 Matters arising

  • Residents Parking Issues with Gavin Brown, CEC
  • Review amendments to Constitution
  • Ratify formal adoption of Constitution
  • Membership List
  • Website

5 New business

  • Liaison to other community groups

6 Officer Reports

  • Chairperson
  • Treasurer
  • Parking
  • Communications
  • Social events
  • Environment & Safety
  • Housing Issues

7 Any other business

8 Agree date and time of next meeting