Councillors' Attendance Statistics
Agenda and minutes
Standards Assessment Sub-Committee
Thursday, 25 March 2010 7:00 pm
Venue: Salon, York House, Twickenham
Contact: Kathryn Thomas, Interim Head of Democratic Services, 020 8891 7860, Email: email@example.com
APPOINTMENT OF CHAIR
Mr Greggains was appointed as the Chair for the meeting.
In order to ensure a quorum for the meeting and in accordance with Article 13.10 an urgent decision had been taken by the Chief Executive to allow Councillor Bennett to sit on this sub-committee as a substitute member for this meeting.
A third complaint received since publication of the agenda was tabled at the meeting and the sub-committee agreed to consider it. It was agreed to adjourn the meeting briefly at an appropriate point to allow the sub-committee to read the papers.
DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST (IF ANY)
Members are asked to declare any interests in matters for consideration at the meeting.
There were no declarations of interest.
The Committee will assess any allegations that a member of the Authority has failed, or may have failed, to comply with the Code of Conduct and either:
i. Refer the allegation to the Monitoring Officer, with an instruction that he arrange a formal investigation of the allegation, or direct that he arrange training, conciliation or such appropriate alternative steps as permitted by Regulations;
ii. Refer the allegation to the Standards Board for England;
iii. Decide that no action should be taken in respect of the allegation; or
iv. Consider that the matters raised are not within the jurisdiction of the sub-committee.
The criteria which the Committee will use to assist it in making the assessment are attached.
Any complaints received by the Monitoring Officer are circulated to Members of the Committee only.
A complaint had been received alleging a breach of paragraph 3(1), 3(2)(b), 3(2)(C)(i) and 5 of the Members’ Code of Conduct concerning speaking to the complainant’s wife in an intemperate manner.
RESOLVED that the complaint be not referred for further investigation or determination but that the following ‘other action’ be agreed,
Ø That the councillor be required to attend upon the Chair of the Standards Committee to review his recent conduct and be advised as to his future conduct as a Councillor when dealing with similar situations.
REASON: Standards for England had indicated that incidents sufficiently limited in their nature should not be considered for investigation. However the Standards Committee expected Members to treat the public with courtesy.
A complaint had been received alleging a breach of paragraph 5 of the Members’ Code of Conduct and that the councillors concerned were alleged to have published untrue and derogatory comments about a local campaign group.
RESOLVED that the complaint be not referred for further investigation or determination and be rejected.
REASON: The comments made and the issues involved were a matter of current political debate. The bases of the comments were explained within the political pamphlet itself and no individuals were criticised within the publication. The Standards Committee was reluctant to become involved in matters where there was a risk that local political debate would be stifled. In all the circumstances it was not in the public interest to pursue this complaint.
A complaint had been received alleging a breach of the Members’ Code of Conduct and making reference to the General Principles of Public Life. The complaint stemmed from an incident at an Area Consultation Meeting.
Following a vote which was carried by 3 votes with Councillor Bennett voting against, it was RESOLVED that the matter be referred to the Deputy Monitoring Officer for investigation.
REASON: That, prima facie, there appeared to be possible breaches of the Members’ Code of Conduct.