Agenda and minutes

Governance Committee
Wednesday 24th March 2021 6.00 pm

Venue: Remote Meeting

Contact: Deborah Merry  Head of Legal and Democratic Services 0121 704 6022

Items
No. Item

1.

Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests and conflicts of interest from Members.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of Interest.

2.

Questions and Deputations

To answer questions, if any, asked by any resident of the Borough pursuant to Standing Orders.

Minutes:

There were no questions or deputations from residents of the Borough.

3.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 190 KB

To approve the minutes of the last meeting as a correct record.

Minutes:

RESOLVED

That the minutes of the meeting held on 16 November 2020 be approved as a correct record.

4.

Financial Regulations – 2021/22 Update pdf icon PDF 177 KB

To consider the Council’s revised Financial Regulations and associated documents.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Committee was invited to consider the Council’s revised Financial Regulations.  The Finance Manager confirmed that the Audit Committee had considered the revised Financial Regulations on 15 March 2021 and had recommended that they be endorsed for approval by Council.

 

RECOMMENDED

That the revised Financial Regulations and other associated guidance documents as set out in Appendices A-C to the report be approved by Council with the revised Regulations to be enforced from April 2021.

 

5.

Review of New Member Induction Programme pdf icon PDF 176 KB

To seek approval of the New Member Induction Programme for 2021.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Democratic Services and Scrutiny Manager invited members to consider the proposed Induction Programme for newly elected Councillors who would be joining the authority following the elections in May 2021. 

 

Members of the Committee noted that programme included a range of briefings and workshops covering key service areas including governance, safeguarding, overview and scrutiny, housing, planning, and equalities and diversity.  Feedback on the induction programme provided for the Councillors newly elected in 2019 was positive and indicated that the induction sessions were useful and appropriate.

 

RESOLVED

That the programme of induction training for newly elected Councillors in 2021, as set out in Appendix A to the report, be approved.

6.

New Code of Conduct for Elected and Co-opted Members pdf icon PDF 233 KB

To ask the Committee to consider the new Local Government Association Model Code of Conduct for Elected and Co-opted Members with a view to recommending that the Council adopts the Code, either in whole or with modifications.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Legal and Democratic Services presented the new Model Code of Conduct for Elected and Co-opted Members which had been developed by the Local Government Association following the recommendations of the Committee on Standards in Public Life.

 

Members were invited to consider recommending that the Council adopts the new model Code, with or without amendments.

 

RECOMMENDED

That the Council adopt the Local Government Association Model Code of Conduct as set out in the Appendix to the report with effect from the start of the 2021/22 Municipal Year, subject to paragraph 10.2 being amended to read “I register with the Monitoring Officer any gift or hospitality within 28 days of its receipt”.

.

7.

INDEPENDENT REMUNERATION PANEL REVIEW OF SPECIAL RESPONSIBILITY ALLOWANCES FOR MINORITY GROUP LEADERS pdf icon PDF 153 KB

To consider the report of the Independent Remuneration Panel (IRP) and make recommendations to Council in respect of the Special Responsibility Allowances for minority political group leaders in the Council’s Members’ Allowances Scheme.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Legal & Democratic Services invited members to consider the report of the Independent Remuneration Panel on their review of the Special Responsibility Allowances payable to the Leaders of the minority political groups on the Council.

 

RECOMMENDED

That no change be made to the existing Scheme of Members’ Allowances.

8.

Update to Constitutional Standing Orders pdf icon PDF 157 KB

To update the Council’s Constitutional Standing Orders to reflect current practice.

Minutes:

The Head of Legal & Democratic Services referred to the Council’s Constitutional Standing Orders and advised that Standing Order 38 should be updated to reflect current practice.

 

RECOMMENDED

That Standing Order 38 be amended to include the following:

 

·  Appeals Panel (appointed by Governance Committee) – 3 Members

·  Remuneration Committee – 7 Members of the Council and a co-opted non-voting independent member

9.

RIPA – Annual report pdf icon PDF 167 KB

To provide members with an annual update on the use of RIPA powers.

Minutes:

The Solicitor to the Council presented an annual report on the Council’s use of and compliance with the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 (RIPA).

 

RESOLVED

That the report be noted.