Agenda and minutes

Standards Committee
Tuesday, 20 September 2016 6.30 p.m.

Venue: Georgian Room, Kendal Town Hall. View directions

Contact: Paul Rogers 

Items
No. Item

S/1

Minutes pdf icon PDF 133 KB

To authorise the Chairman to sign, as a correct record, the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 19 April 2016 (copy attached).

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the Chairman be authorised to sign, as a correct record, the minutes of the meeting of the Committee held on 14 April 2016.

S/2

Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations by Members and/or co-optees of interests in respect of items on this Agenda.

 

Members are reminded that, in accordance with the revised Code of Conduct, they are required to declare any disclosable pecuniary interests or other registrable interests which have not already been declared in the Council’s Register of Interests.  (It is a criminal offence not to declare a disclosable pecuniary interest either in the Register or at the meeting.)

 

Members may, however, also decide, in the interests of clarity and transparency, to declare at this point in the meeting, any such disclosable pecuniary interests which they have already declared in the Register, as well as any other registrable or other interests.

 

If a Member requires advice on any item involving a possible declaration of interest which could affect his/her ability to speak and/or vote, he/she is advised to contact the Monitoring Officer at least 24 hours in advance of the meeting.

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That it be noted that no declarations were made.

S/3

Local Government Act 1972 - Excluded Items

To consider whether the items, if any, in Part II of the Agenda should be considered in the presence of the press and public.

Minutes:

RESOLVED - That it be noted that there are no items in Part II of the Agenda.

S/4

Compliments, Customer Feedback and Complaints Received Between April 2016 to August 2016 pdf icon PDF 160 KB

To receive an update on the number of complaints and compliments received between April and August 2016.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Assistant Director Performance and Innovation presented a report which gave an update to Members on the number of complaints and compliments received during 2016/2017.

 

In response to a question regarding eight complaints falling outside the ten day target time, the Assistant Director Performance and Innovation informed Members that the complaints were mostly about complex planning matters arising from planning decisions. He informed the Committee that the complaints did not show any underlying trends.

 

Members made reference to and discussed the regularity and detail of the report to Standards Committee. It was suggested that this be reviewed at the April meeting in terms of the information provided.

 

RESOLVED – That the report be received

S/5

Local Government Ombudsman Annual Review 2015/16 pdf icon PDF 135 KB

To receive the annual report of the Local Government Ombudsman for 2015/16.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of Policy and Resources (Monitoring Officer) presented the annual report of the Local Government Ombudsman for 2015/16. She referred to paragraph 3.3 and the fact that there had been a reduction in the number of complaints referred, the main of which related to planning and development.

 

RESOLVED – That the report be noted.

S/6

Code of Conduct Complaints pdf icon PDF 137 KB

To receive the report of the Monitoring Officer with regards to complaints under the Council’s Standards Arrangements from 1 April 2016.

Minutes:

The Director of Policy and Resources (Monitoring Officer) presented a report which informed the Committee of complaints received under the Council’s Standards Arrangements from April 2016.

 

RESOLVED – That the report be noted.

S/7

Register of Disclosable and Other Pecuniary Interests (District) pdf icon PDF 138 KB

To review the register of disclosable pecuniary and other interests for District Council Members and co-optees for the period to September 2016.

Minutes:

The Director of Policy and Resources (Monitoring Officer) presented a report which reviewed the Register of Disclosable Pecuniary and Other Registrable Interests for District Council Members and Co-optees for the period to September 2016.

 

RESOLVED – That the review and the report be noted.

S/8

Parish Registers pdf icon PDF 139 KB

To review the register of disclosable pecuniary and other interests for Parish Councillors for the period to September 2016.

Minutes:

The Director of Policy and Resources (Monitoring Officer) presented a report which reviewed the Register of Disclosable Pecuniary and Other Registrable Interests for Parish Councillors for the period to September 2016.  She informed the Committee that of the 28 parishes where elections had taken place, the majority of the register of interest forms had been returned but that 12 forms had not been returned with a couple outstanding queries from 2015. She reminded Members about the procedure that had been agreed previously by the Committee with a view to ensuring receipt of completed register of interest forms.

 

RESOLVED – That

 

(1)       the Parish Councillors who have not returned the register of interests form be given 28 days from 21 September 2016 to return the forms and the Chairman to follow up on any outstanding forms after the 28 day period; and

 

(2)       the report be noted.

S/9

Employee Register of Interests and Gifts and Hospitality pdf icon PDF 136 KB

To review the register of interests and gifts and hospitality for employees for the period September 2015 to September 2016.

Minutes:

The Director of Policy and Resources (Monitoring Officer) presented a report requesting the Committee to review the Register of Interests and Gifts and Hospitality for Employees for the period September 2015 to September 2016. Details of interests and gifts and hospitality that had been declared during the period was provided to the meeting.

 

RESOLVED – That the review and the report be noted.

S/10

Retention of Register of Interests pdf icon PDF 146 KB

To consider a review of the policy on retention of interests forms.

Minutes:

The Director of Policy and Resources (Monitoring Officer) presented a report which requested the Committee to consider a review of the policy on the retention of interests forms. The report highlighted the current retention policy together with a suggested amendment to the policy which would reduce the retention period from 18 months to 12 months.

 

RESOLVED – That the Council’s policy on retention of Register of Financial and Other Interests forms be revised as follows:-

 

(1)       interest forms for parish or town councillors who are no longer in office be retained for a period of 12 months;

 

(2)       interest forms for district councillors who are no longer in office be retained for a period of 12 months following the end of the financial year in which they are no longer in office;

 

(3)       where interests form part of an investigation, the forms be retained as long as necessary; and

 

(4)       the interest forms for all ex-councillors be retained without public access.

S/11

Independent Person's Protocol pdf icon PDF 137 KB

To consider a review of the Independent Person Protocol for recommendation to full Council.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of Policy and Resources presented a report which requested the Committee to review the Independent Person Protocol for recommendation to full Council.

 

RESOLVED - That the draft amended Protocol for the Independent Person as shown in Appendix 1 to the report, be approved and referred to Council for adoption.

S/12

Standards Committee Work Programme pdf icon PDF 215 KB

To consider the Committee’s Work Programme.

Minutes:

The Director of Policy and Resources (Monitoring Officer) presented the Standards Committee Work Programme for June 2016 onwards. She emphasised that it was a rolling programme which would be reviewed as the year progressed.

 

RESOLVED – That the Work Programme be noted.