Standards Committee – 2 April 2009
PRESENT: Mr P Kelly(Chair), Councillors Davison, Grant, Poole, Swift, Vickers and Whiteley.
Mrs Y Aubrey and Messrs D Cuckson, W Harvie and J Kitwood.
185 DECLARATIONS OF PERSONAL OR PERSONAL AND PREJUDICIAL INTERESTS – There were no declarations of interests.
186 MINUTES – Resolved – That the minutes of the meeting of this committee held on 29 January, 2009 having been printed and circulated amongst the members, be taken as read and correctly recorded and be signed by the chair.
187 COMPLAINTS UPDATE – The Monitoring Officer reported that two complaints referred by the Standards Board for England were still outstanding. Both investigations had been concluded and reports finalised and hearings would be arranged shortly.
Since the new complaints regime had come into place 39 complaints had been received, including composite complaints relating to 10 and 15 members respectively. Of these, 21 had been submitted to the Standards Board for England. The remainder had been considered by an Assessment Sub-Committee for either no action or for investigation.
Resolved – That the report be noted.
188 TIMEFRAME FOR INVESTIGATIONS – The committee discussed the length of time being taken to complete investigations and the factors that could lead to delays. It was considered that it would be useful to have an outline timeframe for such investigations.
Resolved – That the Monitoring Officer submit a report to a future meeting with a suggested timeframe for investigations.
189 MEMBERSHIP OF ASSESSMENT SUB-COMMITTEES – The Monitoring Officer outlined the way in which Assessment Sub-Committees were constituted. The committee also considered whether the members of the Sub-Committees should be named in the record of their decisions
Resolved – (a) That the situation be noted, and (b) that the members of Assessment Sub-committees should not be named on decision letters.
190 EXCLUSION OF THE PUBLIC – Resolved – That the public be excluded from the meeting for consideration of the following items (Minutes 191 refers) on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraphs 1 and 13 of Part 1 of Schedule 12a of the Local Government Act 1972.
191 DETERMINATIONS – The Monitoring Officer submitted two reports on the outcome of investigations by the Standards Board for England in respect of members of North Lincolnshire Council together with the decision of a sub-committee following a local investigation against another member.
Resolved – (a)That the reports be noted, and (b) that steps be taken to introduce the protocol requirements in the outcome of the Standards Board investigation.