Agenda and minutes
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Declarations of Interest
Members are asked to declare:
· Any personal interests not included on the Register of Interests
· Any prejudicial interests
· Any disclosable pecuniary interests
which they may have in respect of business on this agenda.
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.
To consider a complaint made against a Member of City of York Council, which has been referred to the Hearings Sub-Committee for determination following an investigation.
Details of the procedure to be followed at the hearing can be found at pages 7 to 11 of the agenda papers.
Consideration was given to a complaint brought by Mr Andrew Dickinson, Mrs Rosy Dickinson and Mr Michael Askew against Councillor Galvin, a City of York Councillor. The complaint related to the behaviour of Councillor Galvin at a planning site visit on 9 March 2016, and at a meeting of the Planning Sub-Committee on 7 April 2016.
The matter had been referred to the Hearings Sub-Committee for determination following an investigation.
Introductions were carried out and the procedure for the hearing was explained.
Determining factual disputes
Copies of the investigator’s report and the written submissions received had been circulated to the Panel and to the parties prior to the meeting. During the meeting the Panel took advice from the Independent Persons.
The investigating officer presented her report and responded to questions.
Mr Dickinson presented his case and responded to questions.
[Mrs Dickinson arrived at the meeting at 10:25am and introductions were carried out for her benefit]
Mrs Dickinson presented her case and responded to questions.
Councillor Galvin presented his case and responded to questions.
[The parties, press and public left the meeting at 11.25am whilst the Panel deliberated in private]
The Panel gave consideration to the following allegations of breaches of the Code of Conduct:
(a) At the Planning Sub-Committee meeting on 7 April 2016,
Councillor Galvin, being both a Governor of York Hospital and a Member of Council, had a conflict of interest in agenda items 3(a) and (b) and should not have taken part in the meeting.
(b) That Councillor Galvin acted with bias at the meeting.
(c) At the meeting Councillor Galvin failed to treat those present
with respect, and bullied and intimidated them.
(d) At the site visit on 9 March 2016, Councillor Galvin failed to
treat members of the public who were present with respect, bullied, swore and intimidated them.
Having considered the written documentation and the verbal representations made at the meeting, the Panel
Resolved: (i) That, in respect of allegation (a) – Councillor
Galvin’s alleged conflict of interest, the Panel was satisfied that Councillor Galvin did not have a prejudicial interest in the planning application and the Panel therefore found no breach of Part 2 of the Code. He had sought the advice of the Monitoring Officer and had acted in accordance with this guidance. Whilst the Panel noted the advice in the Governors Code of Conduct, they believed that there was a lack of clarity and prominence given to the clause Governors must “act in the best interests of the Trust at all times”. The Panel also noted that the sale of Groves Chapel would realise funds well below the threshold for Governor approval.
(ii) That, in respect of allegation (b) – Councillor
Galvin’s alleged bias at the Planning Committee meeting, the Panel did not believe that Councillor Galvin had acted with bias at the meeting and therefore there had been no breach of the Code. The Panel noted that all speakers at the Planning Committee meeting had had the opportunity ... view the full minutes text for item 5.