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Local Government in Hartley

Hartley Parish Council


Civil Parishes as we know them now were created by Gladstone's Local Government Act 1894. Before then parishes were run by the vestry - a committee of the leading members of the parish church. Naturally this system was unpopular with many, because it meant that parishes could only be run by those who were Anglicans. Under this act, parishes with a population over 300 had to have parish councils, those with a smaller population had parish meetings. Hartley being too small had a parish meeting, Longfield was above the threshold and got a parish council.

The 1921 census saw Hartley cross the 300 threshold at which a parish council became mandatory, but it was not until 14 April 1935 that the parish council came into being. Under the law, Hartley must still have an annual parish meeting, but it can no longer take decisions. It can vote on issues, but these are only advisory. However the meeting's biggest power is its ability to call a referendum (poll) on parish matters. This power was used in 1930, when the parish voted 185-70 against spending money on a new playing field, and in 2000 "A vote of no confidence in the Chairman with regard to Northfield" was lost by 282-516 votes.

Powers and Responsibilities

Income and Expenditure

Staff costs£0£0£150£0£0£0£0
General Costs£0£2,640£3,769£5,346£5,943£5,110£6,406
Office Costs£9£162£8£0£69£95£57
Burial Grounds£1,446£2,685£3,264£7,390£6,145£3,040£6,135
Open Spaces£1,969£3,558£3,587£3,933£5,068£3,517£3,311
Manor Field Pavilion£2,105£1,231£2,861£2,575£12,144£1,442£1,861
Youth Services£0£0£0£0£0£1,013£0
WI Hall£0£0£0£144£153£73£460
Misc Income£408£0£0£6£0£0£0
Section 137£0£0£0£33£34£34£0
Staff Costs£21,499£33,569£43,364£49,894£51,111£54,176£56,434
General Costs£8,472£10,408£14,988£15,582£17,480£15,228£15,342
Office Costs£5,974£10,323£5,892£5,087£5,741£9,639£6,075
Burial Grounds£3,684£2,768£7,272£5,877£4,967£10,784£4,216
Open Spaces£12,442£22,729£22,350£25,127£21,332£31,798£62,616
Manor Field Pavilion£5,011£6,521£7,202£9,249£15,042£9,403£6,402
Youth Services£1,350£1,702£2,040£1,499£2,188£1,513£1,215
Section 137£430£735£699£413£564£671£0
WI Hall£0£0£561£2,005£2,171£92£504
Misc Income£0£0£0£0£0£0£0
Doubtful debts£0£0£0£0£0£0£0
Capital Schemes£2,508£0£0£0£0£0£0
General Fund
Prev Year's balance£27,004£50,709£58,832£66,903£79,670£100,841£120,085
Add income£80,041£103,339£116,503£128,835£142,504£155,093£169,174
Deduct expenditure£77,176£93,633£108,009£116,068£121,334£135,568£155,459
Transfer to/from res£2,772£0£0£0£0-£280-£240

Sevenoaks District Council

Local government structure in England varies from area to area. Apart from the unitary authority of Medway, local government in Kent is two-tier. This means that the servies are split between the County Council and the District Counci.

Since 1974 Hartley and New Ash Green have been part of Sevenoaks District. In Hartley the average council tax band of Band F pays £273.26 in council tax to Sevenoaks (Band D - £189.18). The council tax is the main source of income to the council (£9m); Business Rates yield another £2m and other sources of income about £2.6m, making a total budget of about £15m.

Some of the main services supplied by the council by cost are:

  • Corporate Support(£3.2m)
  • Environmental Health(£2.5m)
  • Refuse Collection (£2.4m)
  • Planning(£1.3m)
  • Street Cleaning (£1.2m)
  • Housing(£0.7m)

Source - SDC Budget 2014/15