Local democracy during coronavirus

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Agenda and minutes

Venue: The Snow Room - Ground Floor, West Offices (G035). View directions

Contact: Fiona Young  Interim Democratic Services Manager

Webcast: video recording

Items
No. Item

Part A - Matters Dealt With Under Delegated Powers

Chair's Remarks - Independent Member

The Chair announced that one of the Independent Members, Mr Mann, had decided to resign from the committee.  A new appointment would be made in due course

54.

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. 

 

Cllr Cullwick declared a personal interest in in Agenda Item 4 (Review of the Council’s Constitution), insofar as the proposals related to the Lord Mayoralty, as he was the Lord Mayor Elect.

55.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 158 KB

To approve and sign the minutes of the meeting held on 5 February 2020.

Minutes:

Resolved:  That the minutes of the meeting held on 5 February 2020 be approved and then signed by the Chair as a correct record.

56.

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 5:00pm on Tuesday, 10 March 2020.

 

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 two members of the public had registered to speak at the meeting under the Council’s Public Participation Scheme.  Neither was present at the meeting, but both had submitted written representations.

 

Having taken advice from the Monitoring Officer, the Chair indicated that the comments of the first speaker, Michael Hammill, would be held over to the next meeting since they did not relate to the review of the Constitution.  He then read out the comments of the second speaker, Gwen Swinburn, which detailed concerns about a number of the proposed amendments to the Constitution and the lack of reasons provided for each of the proposals.

Part B - Matters Referred to Council

57.

Review of the Council's Constitution pdf icon PDF 256 KB

This report sets out the proposed amendments to the City of York Council’s Constitution, for consideration by the Audit & Governance Committee and recommendation to Full Council.

 

Note: The documents that make up Appendix 3 to the above report (Tracked Changed Constitution) have not been included in the agenda pack but are available to view with this agenda on the Council’s website.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members considered a report which set out the amendments proposed to the City of York Council’s Constitution and asked Members to recommended these to Full Council for approval.

 

Proposals to review the Constitution had been agreed by both Audit and Governance Committee and Executive at their meetings in September 2019.  A staged approach had been agreed, with the first stage being a review of the current Constitution document for accuracy and consistency.  Appendix 1 to the report set out the amendments proposed as a result of that review, including proposed changes to the Audit & Governance Committee’s terms of reference at Appendix 1A.  Also attached, at Appendix 2, were draft terms of reference for a Governance Review Working Group that would be convened for the second stage of the review.

 

Officers explained that the document at Appendix 1 was essentially a work in progress and would be edited to correct any typographical errors and inconsistencies before being presented to Council.  Consideration would also be given to how best to make the Constitution available online.  Members then gave full consideration to Appendix 1 and agreed a number of further amendments.  With regard to Appendix 1A, it was agreed that officers make further changes on the basis of Members’ comments and circulate the revised document by email for their approval.

 

Guidance was also sought on the draft terms of reference for the Governance Review Working Group at Appendix 2.  Members advised that the proposed membership of the Group be increased and amended in order to properly reflect the membership of the council and ensure there was no political bias.

 

Recommended:  (i)      That the amendments set out in the tracked changed version of the Constitution at Appendix A to the report, as further amended by the changes set out below, be approved:

 

                             Section 2

 

Article 5, page 25 (Role and Function of the Lord Mayor)

                             Delete ‘4 year’ from the  second sentence.

 

                             Article 16, page 64 (Review/Revision of the Constitution)

                             In 2.6, include a requirement for minor changes to the Constitution to be reported to the Chair of Audit & Governance Committee.

 

                             Section 3

 

                             3C, pages 103-104 (Responsibility for Functions)

                             In the final sentence under paragraph (c), after ‘the head of HR’, insert ‘in consultation with the Head of Paid Service, the Monitoring Officer or the S151 Officer’.

 

                             3D, page 122 (Powers of Officers)

                             To the end of (i), add: ‘in consultation with the appropriate Chair’.

 

                             Section 6

 

                             Members’ Scheme of Allowances, page 353

                             Remove the reference to Itrent.

 

(ii)      That the proposed amendments to the Terms of Reference for Audit & Governance Committee at Appendix 1A to the report be approved, as further amended by the additional changes to be agreed by Audit & Governance Committee via email.

 

(iii)     That the proposed changes to the Constitution be considered at the Annual Council meeting on 21 May 2020 and approval given to implement the amended Constitution immediately after that meeting.

 

(iv)    That approval be given for the Director of Governance to liaise  ...  view the full minutes text for item 57.

 

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