Standards Committee 24 January 2018
Chairman: Councillor Poole
Venue: Function Room 1, Civic Centre, Scunthorpe
Time: 2 pm
E- Mail Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
1. Substitutions (if any)
2. Declarations of Disclosable Pecuniary Interests and Personal or Personal and Prejudicial Interests.
3. To take the minutes of the meeting held on 22 November 2017 as a correct record and authorise the chairman to sign.
4. Intimidation in Public Life: A Review by the Committee on Standards in Public Life.
5. Town and Parish Council Training 2017 – Upholding Standards in Public Life. Update.
6. Complaints Schedule – Update.
7. Any other items which the Chairman decides are urgent by reason of special circumstances which must be specified.
Note: Reports are by the Director: Governance & Partnerships unless otherwise stated.
PRESENT: – Councillor Poole (in the Chair).
Councillors England (Vice-Chairman), Glover, Kataria, Kirk, Mumby-Croft and Oldfield.
Councillor Longcake attended the meeting in accordance with Procedure Rule 37(b).
J Goolden – Co-opted (Non-voting) Member.
The committee met at the Civic Centre, Scunthorpe
197 DECLARATIONS OF DISCLOSABLE PECUNIARY, PERSONAL OR PERSONAL AND PREJUDICIAL INTERESTS – There were no declarations of interests made at the meeting.
198 MINUTES – Resolved – That the minutes of the meeting of this committeeheld on 22 November 2017, having been printed and circulated amongst the members, be taken as read and correctly recorded and be signed by the chairman.
199 (7) INTIMIDATION IN PUBLIC LIFE: A REVIEW BY THE COMMITTEE ON STANDARDS IN PUBLIC LIFE – The Director: Governance and Partnerships submitted a report summarising a recently published document produced by the Committee on Standards in Public Life on intimidation in public life. The report was produced in response to widespread concerns about the intimidation and abuse of candidates during the 2017 General Election.
The Monitoring Officer explained that the report outlined a series of recommendations by the Committee on Standards in Public Life directed to local government, political parties, central government, those in public life, and others. The Monitoring Officer requested that the Standards Committee consider the report, actions taken to date, and any further steps to reduce the risk of any form of intimidation or abuse aimed towards those in public life within North Lincolnshire. It was also suggested that, when a response to the report was co-ordinated by central government, that Standards Committee receive a further report for consideration.
The Chairman led the Committee in a discussion about abuse and intimidation, and possible actions to address these.
Resolved – (a) That the Standards Committee note the actions undertaken to address the issue, as described in the report; (b) that members consider other practical arrangements to combat the risk of intimidation, harassment and abuse against those in public life, and (c) that a further report be considered by the Standards Committee when a response has been co-ordinated by central government.
200 TOWN AND PARISH COUNCIL TRAINING 2017 – UPHOLDING STANDARDS IN PUBLIC LIFE. The Monitoring Officer have an oral report on the two training sessions that the local authority had hosted for Town and Parish Councils on the standards regime. The sessions in late 2017 had involved more than 40 councillors and clerks, and had been very well received. It was noted by the Chairman that the more proactive approach taken by the Monitoring Officer may well be correlated with the recent reduction in complaints received.
Resolved – (a) That efforts continue to examine ways to improve the training and support provided by North Lincolnshire Council to all Town and Parish Councils, and (b) that the position be noted.
201 (8) COMPLAINTS SCHEDULE – The Director: Governance and Partnerships submitted a report updating the committee on progress made with complaints received.
It was confirmed that only one complaint was outstanding, with a date for an Assessment Panel set.
Resolved – That the report be noted.
202 ANY OTHER ITEMS – There were no other items identified by the Chairman.