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Agenda and minutes

Venue: The George Hudson Board Room - 1st Floor West Offices (F045). View directions

Contact: Laura Clark  Executive Support Manager

Webcast: video recording

Items
No. Item

65.

Declarations of Interest

At this point in the meeting, Members are asked to declare:

 

·        any personal interests not included on the Register of Interests

·        any prejudicial interests or

·        any disclosable pecuniary interests

 

which they might have in respect of business on this agenda.

Minutes:

Members were asked to declare any personal interests not included on the Register of Interests, any prejudicial interests or any disclosable pecuniary interests which they may have in respect of business on the agenda. None were declared.

66.

Public Participation

It is at this point in the meeting that members of the public who have registered their wish to speak can do so. The deadline for registering is by 5:00pm on Friday 27 April 2018.

 

To register please contact the Democracy Officer for the meeting, on the details at the foot of this agenda.

 

Filming, Recording or Webcasting Meetings

Please note that, subject to available resources, this meeting will be filmed and webcast, or recorded, including any registered public speakers who have given their permission. This broadcast can be viewed at: http://www.york.gov.uk/webcasts.

 

Residents are welcome to photograph, film or record Councillors and Officers at all meetings open to the press and public. This includes the use of social media reporting, i.e. tweeting. Anyone wishing to film, record or take photos at any public meeting should contact the Democracy Officer (whose contact details are at the foot of this agenda) in advance of the meeting.

 

The Council’s protocol on Webcasting, Filming & Recording of Meetings ensures that these practices are carried out in a manner both respectful to the conduct of the meeting and all those present.  It can be viewed at:

http://www.york.gov.uk/download/downloads/id/11406/protocol_for_webcasting_filming_and_recording_of_council_meetings_20160809.pdf

Minutes:

It was reported that there had been five registrations to speak at the meeting under the Council’s Public Participation Scheme. The Chair advised all public speakers that they should avoid saying anything defamatory or discriminatory, anything that constitute a personal attack on an officer or anything that discloses confidential or exempt information including personal information.

 

Councillor Mark Warters, a Member of the Council, spoke on his concerns at the delay in publishing the report into the conduct of the Audit & Governance Committee on 22 February 2017 and asked for a full public disclosure of the report. He also raised further concerns in relation to historic procurement issues, which in his opinion have not been properly clarified and resolved. .

 

Mr Laverack, a resident, spoke about a lack of transparency and his concerns that Freedom of Information requests are not dealt with properly and that residents’ emails and social media communication have been blocked on social media. From his point of view residents with legitimate concerns are vilified and claims of defamation or discrimination are wrongly brought up. He also stressed that historic issues can and should be revisited by councillors until completely resolved.

 

Mr Hammill, a resident, also spoke on transparency issues and his feeling that it has been attempted to scare him off with legal threats of defamation and discrimination. He stated that residents should have a right to question the Council and urged the Committee to deal with these issues. He also raised concerns of the council funding legal advice on officer’s personal reputation claims.

 

Mr Fisher, a resident, spoke in relation to Members’ right of access to information. He suggested that Members should have the right to access any information held by the Council of which they are a Member, although they may be asked to sign a confidentiality agreement. He also stated that they should receive all necessary papers within the usual statutory deadline of 5 working days ahead of the meeting. He also raised a potential conflict between sessions in private and the rights of all members of the council to stay in meetings after press and public are excluded.

 

Ms Swinburn, a resident, spoke on her concerns that Members had yet to receive the unredacted report into the conduct of the Audit & Governance committee on 22 February 2017. She felt this showed a lack of trust between Officers and Members. Finally, she stated that this was a report written by a consultant and, as such,  she felt it should not be titled an ‘LGA report’.

67.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 109 KB

To approve and sign the minutes of the Audit & Governance  Committee meetings held on 7 February and 11 April 2018.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Resolved:  That the minutes of the meetings held on 7 February and 11 April be approved and then signed by the Chair as a correct record, subject to the following amendments:

 

7 February 2018:

 

49. In response to a member question it was explained that, like many other local authorities, CYC employed an external audit a treasury management provider.

 

50. VeritauMazars officers were in attendance to present the report and to respond to queries.

 

The auditor explained that a change to reporting deadlines would lead to an increase in incomplete audits reported in quarterly interim reports but members were reassured that audits would still be conducted to time.

 

53. It was explained that work was being doing done to complete one comprehensive spreadsheet of all the Council’s corporate and commercial premises, and to ensure appropriate surveys were completed of all properties.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

68.

Exclusion of Press and Public

To consider the exclusion of the press and public from the meeting during consideration of the following:

 

Annex A to Agenda Item 5 as it contains information:

 

·        relating to individuals;

·        which is likely to reveal the identity of individuals;

·        relating to consultations or negotiations, or contemplated consultations or negotiations, in connection with labour relations matters arising between the authority or a Minister of the Crown and employees of, or office holders under, the authority; and

·        in respect of which a claim to legal professional privilege could be maintained in legal proceedings

 

This information is classed as exempt under paragraphs 1,2,4 and 5 of Schedule 12A to Section 100A of the Local Government Act 1972 (as revised by The Local Government (Access to Information) (Variation) Order 2006).

Minutes:

Members expressed their disappointment that they had not yet received an unredacted version of the report (Annex A to Agenda Item 5). They stated they did not believe it was acceptable, or appropriate, for them to be asked to consider the full list of recommendations, or to make further recommendations, without having had advance sight of the report.

 

The committee also noted It was also suggested by Membersthat this report should be referred to ask the Walker Report after the consultant who wrote it. renamed ahead of the next meeting as They did not consider this an LGA report as Ms Linda Walker had only been asked by the LGA after being asked by the Council’s Chief Executive to carry out the investigation.

 

Resolved:   That Item 5 (minute Item 69) be deferred to a future meeting of the Audit & Governance committee, with the unredacted report being shared with Members of the Committee no less than 5 working days prior to the meeting.

 

A special meeting of the Audit and Governance Committee to be convened as soon as possible, where the report can be considered by the committee in private session.

 

Reason:     To allow Members to fully consider the report and the recommendations ahead of discussing the item in private session.

69.

Observations and Learning from the LGA Review into the Conduct of the Audit and Governance Committee on 22nd February 2017 pdf icon PDF 173 KB

This report is provided for Committee members to consider the recommendations in the LGA report that relate to Audit & Governance Committee [Exempt Annex A - to follow for Committee Members who have confirmed attendance at the meeting]

 

 

 

Minutes:

This item was deferred to a future meeting of the Audit and Governance Committee (date TBC). See minute item 68.

 

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