The Service Lead, People introduced a report that provided an update on the current work of the Members’ Development Task and Finish Group on revising the Members’ Development Programme to ensure that it met the corporate and individual learning and development needs of councillors.
The Chair invited comments and questions from Members.
During the course of the discussion, the following points were raised:
· Clarification was sought regarding the final bullet point under paragraph 3.2.1 ‘Monitor attendances at development activities/events – consider actions against individual Members where this may be unsatisfactory, including disciplinary measures’. It was explained these were proposals being discussed by the Task and Finish Group. It was highlighted that matters relating to Member performance fell to the political whips to manage. There was an expectation that Members took up training and development opportunities available.
· It was noted that the 2019/20 Members’ Development budget was £20,000, and asked if this would be sufficient to fund an expanded programme of training events. It was agreed that the budget would be monitored and if it needed to be increased a business case would be submitted to request additional funding. In addition, it was noted that there had been a £14,000 underspend in 2019/20 due to the Covid-19 pandemic and it was asked if the underspend could be rolled over and added to the 2020/21 budget. It was explained that the underspend would not be rolled over into the next financial year and if the training budget required additional funding this would be reviewed.
· It was requested a variety of training methods be used to engage and interactive with Members rather than information being delivered via PowerPoint presentations. It was confirmed that a range of development opportunities would be explored including ‘e- learning’ modules.
· It was requested that target dates be set to implement the recommendations of the Task and Finish Group recommendations to ensure they did not ‘drift’.
(a) That the report be noted.
(b) That the comments and suggestions raised by Members be taken into consideration by the Members’ Development Task and Finish Group as part of the review of the Members’ Development Programme.