Agenda and draft minutes

Standards Assessment Sub-Committee
Thursday, 26th September, 2019 6.00 pm

Venue: Shaw Room, Civic Centre, Oldham, West Street, Oldham, OL1 1NL. View directions

Contact: Sian Walter-Browne  4710

Items
No. Item

1.

Election of Chair

The Panel is asked to elect a Chair for the duration of the meeting.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that Councillor Williams be elected Chair for the duration of the meeting.

 

2.

Apologies For Absence

Minutes:

There were no apologies for absence received.

 

3.

Exclusion of the Press and Public

That, in accordance with Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they contain exempt information under paragraphs 1 and 2 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act, and it would not, on balance, be in the public interest to disclose the reports.

Minutes:

RESOLVED that, in accordance with Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that they contain exempt information under paragraphs 1 and 2 of Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Act, and it would not, on balance, be in the public interest to disclose the reports.

 

4.

Consideration of a Standards Complaint

Minutes:

Consideration was given to information provided by the Director of Legal Services which had required an assessment of complaints related to three Councillors, which said that the Councillor’s Code of Conduct had been breached. These matters had previously been considered at the meeting of the Assessment Sub-Committee held on 20th June 2019.

 

The criteria considered in relation to the complaint was:

 

·       Was the complaint about someone who was no longer a Member of the Council but is a Member of another authority?

·       Had the complaint already been the subject of an investigation or other action related to the Code of Conduct?  Similarly, had the complaint been the subject of an investigation by other regulatory authorities?

·       Was the complaint about something that happened so long ago that there would be little benefit in taking action now?

·       Was the complaint too trivial to warrant further action?

·       Did the complaint appear to be simply malicious, politically motivated or tit-for-tat?

 

Members gave consideration to the complaint form, the responses and the options available to them.

 

It had previously been noted that the allegation of electoral fraud had been referred to the Police and was not a matter for the Sub-Committee.

 

It had previously been resolved that:-

 

  1. In relation to the complaints about a former Councillor, no further action would be taken as they were no longer a Councillor.
  2. In relation to the complaints about conduct as a Governor, no action would be taken, as this post was held in a personal capacity and any conduct did not occur in their capacity as a Councillor.
  3. Consideration of the other complaints would be deferred for further information to be provided in relation to the specific allegations.

 

Further information had now been provided and the Sub-Committee gave this consideration. Following discussions and an assessment of the facts, the Sub-Committee came to their decision.

 

RESOLVED that:-

1.     In relation to allegation 1 concerning current Councillors, the matter be investigated further.

2.     Allegation 2 had been referred to the Police and was not a matter for the Sub-Committee.

3.     Allegation 3 was a complaint about conduct as a Governor and no action would be taken, as this post was held in a personal capacity and any conduct did not occur in their capacity as a Councillor.

4.     In relation to allegation 4, no further action be taken in relation to the complaints received about the Borough Councillor.