Agenda and decisions

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No. Item


Appointment of Chair

To appoint a Member to chair the hearing.


Declarations of Interest

At this point in the meeting, Members are asked to declare any disclosable pecuniary interest or other registerable interest they might have in respect of business on this agenda, if they have not already done so in advance on the Register of Interests.



Exclusion of Press and Public

To consider whether to exclude the Press and Public during the deliberations and decision-making at the end of the hearing.


Complaint Against Councillor E Pearson (City of York Council and Haxby Town Council) pdf icon PDF 525 KB

To consider a complaint made against the above Member of City of York Council and Haxby Town Council, which has been referred to the Hearings Sub-Committee for determination following an investigation.

Additional documents:



Joint Standards Committee

Hearings Sub Committee – 2 September 2022

Code of Conduct Complaints Relating To City of York Council and Haxby Town Council




In Attendance:


Hearing Panel:


Parish Councillor S Rawlings (Chair)

Councillor M Rowley BEM

Councillor M Pavlovic


Advisors to the Hearing Panel:


Alex Oram, Independent Person

Janie Berry, Monitoring Officer, City of York Council

Frances Harrison, Deputy Monitoring Officer


Investigating Officer:


Stephen Pearson, externally appointed Investigating Officer


Complainant and Subject Member:


Councillor M Guilford, Haxby Town Council (complainant)

Councillor E Pearson, City of York Council and Haxby Town Council (subject member)


Councillor Guilford attended the hearing.

Councillor E Pearson sent his apologies and did not attend the hearing though he did provide a written position statement for the Panel’s consideration.



Councillor T Carmichael, Haxby Town Council – called at the request of the Panel.



The Hearing Panel, a sub-committee of the Joint Standards Committee, was constituted in accordance with procedures approved by the City of York Council’s Joint Standards Committee to consider one complaint in relation to the conduct of Councillor E Pearson of City of York Council and Haxby Town Council.


The Hearing Panel noted that the complaint was submitted on 23rd October 2021.


The Hearing Panel had the benefit of an Investigating Officer report prepared by Stephen Pearson, an externally appointed Investigator. 


The Hearing Panel did hear from one witness, called at the request of the Panel, and also took into careful consideration all written material and statements provided either in support of or to counter the complaint.


The Hearing Panel considered the allegations in light of the Joint Standards Committee published criteria for the assessment of complaints.


The Panel noted that Councillor E Pearson had been offered the support of Alex Oram, Independent Person.


Evidence and Finding of Fact


The Panel was concerned with one complaint received from Councillor Guilford in respect of Councillor E Pearson of City of York Council and of Haxby Town Council.  At the time of making the complaint, Councillor Guilford was the Chair of Haxby Town Council.  Councillor E Pearson is the Ward Councillor for Haxby and is also a Haxby Town Councillor.  Councillor E Pearson was elected to City of York Council in May 2019 and was co-opted to Haxby Town Council in December 2020.


The Panel carefully considered the wording of the City of York Council Code of Conduct which was in place at the time of this complaint. 


The Panel carefully considered the wording of the Haxby Town Council Code of Conduct which was in place at the time of this complaint.


The Panel is satisfied that the Investigating Officer gave ample opportunities to Councillor E Pearson to provide evidence and respond to the draft investigation report prior to its completion.


The Panel has carefully considered the written material provided by Councillor E Pearson and noted that Councillor E Pearson wished to contest a number of issues in the Investigation Report and the Investigating Officers findings.


The  ...  view the full decision text for item 4.


Urgent Business

Any other business which the Chair considers urgent under the Local Government Act 1972.


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