Meetings 2020

12 new Community Councillors :

Hamish Bain, Steven Bain, Peter Gibson,  Ian Gordon, Tommy Hogg, Mandy Lawson, Veronica Mackinnon, Paul McIvor, Simon Noble, Stewart Stansfield, David Thomson, Katrina Woods were elected by public vote in January  2020

The following Office Bearers were elected later that month at the inception meeting.

Tommy Hogg Chair

Hamish Bain Vice Chair, Mandy Lawson Secretary, Veronica Mackinnon Treasurer.

Only 4 public meetings could be held in 2020 – 2 face to face, and 2 online. 

During the COVID pandemic public buildings were closed and indoor gatherings not allowed, which meant that communication among members and with the public was restricted to  email,  our website and the Noticeboard in Castle Square.   

Despite these restrictions, our members continued to scrutinise local planning and development matters during 2020, including several Common Good consultations. We also responded as best we could, to residents enquiries and concerns,  and kept the public informed and involved of community council business via our website. 

 February 11th 2020 Minutes of Ordinary Meeting
Minutes of NRCC 10 March 2020 AGM (2018/19) and Ordinary Meeting

 That was the last face to face public meeting we held before lockdown on 23rd March 

From then on, all NRCC members were kept informed of CC business and correspondence by email from Office Bearers.

 Several community councillors had to  overcome IT and broadband difficulties to adapt to online meetings which were a steep learning curve for everyone.  We even tried out Google voting by email to help us progress planning submissions within deadline. 

We held  two online meetings using Zoom,  in April and May 2020.

Minute of 12 May 2020 online Ordinary meeting

The May meeting  had to be terminated due to technical difficulties and disorderly conduct from several community councillors who refused to defer to the Chair.

Unfortunately, throughout 2020  a pattern of disrespectful and at times abusive communications  was directed towards elected NRCC Office Bearers from a few serving community councillors  whose verbal attacks on our community council spilled over into  the local press and social media.  The divisive atmosphere and  personal hostility towards the Chair and Office Bearers  this generated within our organisation,  meant that we were not able to safely hold another public meeting online in 2020

Minute of 14 April 2020 online Ordinary meeting

Minute of 12 May 2020 online Ordinary meeting

In late 2020 Office Bearers  raised  concerns with Highland Council that the practicalities, and perils, of online operations were not covered by current rules for Community Councils and worked with Highland Council Officers to prepare our own ‘good practice’ guidelines for online meetings which were included in a training session for all members in November on the Code of Conduct for community councillors.

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