· Part 1 - Explanation and Summary
· Part 2 - Articles of the Constitution
· Part 4 - Procedure Rules verbal update
The Assistant Director of Governance and Deputy Monitoring Officer presented the report which provided the Committee with an update on the Constitution review and asked for Parts 1 and 2 to be recommended to Council for approval.
Following the last meeting of the Committee further Member workshops had been held in respect of Part 1 and Part 2 of the Constitution. No substantial changes had been made to the documents following the workshops other than typographical errors. Clean copies of the documents had been appended to the report.
The Assistant Director of Governance and Deputy Monitoring Officer highlighted two small amendments to the documents before Members. A question was asked in relation to Council meetings on page 39 of the pack and the word “normally” in respect of meetings being held in the public domain. It was stated that a Council meeting may need to be held in private as it may contain exempt information to which the press and public would not be party to.
The Chairman stated that a further meeting of the Committee would need to be held to discuss Part 4 of the Constitution which dealt with Procedure Rules. Monday 9 May 2022 at 2pm was proposed for the extra meeting. (This date was moved to Tuesday 10 May 2022 at 2pm due to clashes with Member Training).
Before the next meeting, Member workshops would be held in respect of the proposed changes to Part 4 of the Constitution to which all Members would be invited to attend. Mapping documents would be undertaken showing the proposed changes to Part 4 as submitted with the other parts of the Constitution. The Contract Procedure Rules and the Financial Regulations would also be discussed at the next meeting of the Committee following recommendations made at the Governance and Audit Committee on Wednesday 26 April 2022.
Part 5 of the Constitution would contain codes and protocols, including the Members Code of Conduct which had already been approved. It was not intended to hold any workshops in relation to this part of the Constitution.
Part 6 of the Constitution would cover the Members Allowance Scheme which was currently being reviewed by the Renumeration Panel whose findings would be submitted to Full Council in May.
Part 7 would contain a Management Structure which was a factual document.
A question was asked in respect of Councillors having to sit on Committees. The Assistant Director of Governance and Deputy Monitoring Officer stated that there was no legislation that required a Councillor to sit on a committee. The only legislation in respect of Councillors being able to sit on committees was that Cabinet Members were not allowed to sit on Overview and Scrutiny Committees. There was nothing to prevent Cabinet Members sitting on regulatory committees or any other committee as long as it was not a scrutiny committee.
The recommendations before the Committee were discussed. Some Members felt that they were unable to support the recommendation in respect of Parts 1 and 2 until they had seen the proposal for Part 4.
It was therefore proposed, seconded and AGREED to defer a decision until the next meeting of the Constitution Committee.
That the recommendations in respect of Part 1 and Part 2 of the Constitution be deferred to the next meeting of the Constitution Committee.