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SEDLESCOMBE FINANCIAL ACCOUNTS

1. CURRENT ACCOUNT. Sedlescombe Parish Council has had a current account with Barclays Bank plc for at least 36 years but has used various banks and building societies for its savings deposits.

 

2. DEPOSIT ACCOUNTS. Its current savings accounts are as follows:

  1. £20,500 in Barclays Bank Business Saver Account (0.05%)
  2. £15,000 in West Bromwich Building Society Account

Because of changes of councillors, the signatories on both the savings accounts require amendment, particularly, the West Bromwich BS where the only signatory is currently Valerie Wright.

 

The Clerk/Financial Officer will investigate the current possibilities for deposit accounts.

 

3. ONLINE BANKING. The use of online banking by parish councils is restricted because of the need for a dual authorisation system. A similar requirement is in place for charities.

 

The Charity Commission gives the example of the Unity Trust Bank which does offer a triple authority or dual authority online option which appears to meet the requirements. One user submits the transaction and up to two others can authorise it online.

 

4. CHARGES. Currently, no bank charges are raised at Barclays. The Unity Trust Bank charges £10/month. It does also pay a very small amount of interest on balances in the current account (currently 0.10%).The account is instant access and there is no set-up fee.

 

5. POST OFFICE. The United Trust Bank does not have branches. Cash or cheque deposits can, however, be made at The Post Office.

 

6. SUGGESTED CHANGE IN CURRENT ACCOUNT. Despite the additional bank charges, it is suggested that the Council considers moving its current account to a "Tailored Current Account" at the The Unity Trust Bank with immediate effect with online transactions being set up by the Clerk/Financial Officer and being authorised by the Chairman of the Finance Committee and the Chairman of the Council. Alternatively, payments can also be made by cheque.

 

7. CREDIT OR DEBIT CARD. The purchase of goods online by the Clerk/Financial Officer currently requires her to use her own credit or debit card. The Unity Bank offers an ALTO MasterCard prepaid card at the cost of £6 for three years. There are no transaction fees but it costs £0.50 to load the card. It is suggested that at the time of opening the new current account, an ALTo MasterCard prepaid card is opened with an initial deposit of £100 to be added to as approved by the Chairman of the Finance Committee and the Chairman of the Council.

 

 

 

PR

8 May 2011