A copy of the Consultation Document is attached. The covering report setting out proposed responses etc will follow.
The Standards Committee considered the report and the responses to the department of Communities and Local Government’s Consultation Paper on “Orders and Regulations relating to the conduct of Local Authority Members in England”. The Chair informed the Committee that the final version of responses had been fully agreed by the appropriate Officers and himself.
A member raised two points. The first was regarding paragraph 3 and 4 of the consultation. The Member felt that these paragraphs contradicted each other regarding a member of the standards committee who had taken part in decision making on the initial assessment of an allegation being involved in the review of any subsequent request. The Chair informed the Committee that although at first these two paragraphs did appear to contradict each other the second paragraph contained the ultimate recommendation taking into account the resource implications.
The second issue was in relation to question 9. The Member felt that an additional bullet point in the list of circumstances that would trigger suspension of a committees powers should be included which stated that “a disproportionate number of cases that result in maximum sanctions proposed”. The Chair noted that the proposal was related to a breakdown of a Standards Committee and there may be legitimate reasons for a high number of maximum sanctions being proposed.
Resolved – That the responses on the consultation as set out in appendix 1 of the report be submitted to the Department of Communities and Local Government.