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Agenda and minutes

Standards Committee
Thursday, 2nd March, 2017 3.30 pm

With effect from 1 April 2016 Agenda and Minutes will be available in both Welsh and English. Reports are working documents and produced in English only in accordance with Welsh Language Standard 41 of this Council’s Final Compliance Notice from the Welsh Language Commissioner.

Venue: Meeting Room 2, Guildhall, Wrexham

Contact: Jane Johnson  Committee Manager

Items
No. Item

16.

Appointment of Chair and Vice- Chair of the Committee

Minutes:

RESOLVED –

 

(i)         That Mr M W Pugh be appointed Chair of the Standards Committee

 

(ii)        That Mr N Benson be appointed Vice-Chair of the Standards Committee

17.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were submitted on behalf of Councillor P Jeffares.

18.

Declarations of personal interests, if any

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest

19.

Confirmation of Minutes pdf icon PDF 51 KB

To confirm as a correct record the Minutes of the following meetings:

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the Minutes of the Meetings of the Standards Committee held on 1 September 2015 and 1 December 2015 be confirmed as a correct record.

20.

Review of Ethics and Standards Training for Members pdf icon PDF 329 KB

Presentation slides attached

Minutes:

The Monitoring Officer explained that attached to the agenda were copies of workshop materials in relation to Ethics and Standards which had been circulated, by the Welsh Local Government Association, to all its member authorities for use as new Member induction training following the local government elections in May 2017.

 

The Monitoring Officer said that the training session he had run for the Committee, immediately prior to this meeting, had been based on these materials and he requested the Committees views on content and length of presentation.

 

The Committee commented as follows:

·                     the amount of time spent on the slide presentation meant there was little or no time devoted to worked examples.

·                     tuition materials should be sent to Members in advance of any training session. This would allow Members more time to consider the worked examples/case studies.

·                     the historical content should be condensed to one slide and a link provided for Members to obtain more background detail so that training sessions focused mainly on the content of the Code and case studies.

·                     a link to the Ombudsman’s video be included on the final slide.

·                     training sessions be run in a workshop mode with participants forming into groups to consider worked examples/case studies and encouraging more inter-active participation.

·                     run a series of sessions, each one dealing with a different section of the Code.

·                     the potential for an e-learning module and accredited training.

·                     role out to Community Councillors during the Autumn.

 

The Monitoring Officer thanked Members for their comments and said that independent members were encouraged to attend and participate at these training sessions.

21.

Public Services Ombudsman for Wales - The Code of Conduct Casebook pdf icon PDF 74 KB

To consider the report of the Deputy Monitoring Officer

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Monitoring Officer submitted a report (HCCS/15/17) to enable the Committee to consider recent decisions of the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales published in the Code of Conduct Casebook Issue 11 January 2017.

 

It was suggested that the case relating to Promotion of Equality and Respect would be a good case study to use in the Ethics and Standards Training for Members.

 

RESOLVED – That the decisions reported in the Code of Conduct Casebook be noted.

 

Reason for decision

 

To inform Members of the work undertaken by the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales.

22.

North Wales Standards Committees Forum

Minutes:

The Monitoring Officer reported that a request had been received from the Chair of Ceredigion Ethics and Standards Committee enquiring whether they, together with the Chairs of Powys and West Wales Fire and Rescue Ethics and Standards Committees, could join in with the Standards Committees Forum in North Wales.

 

This request had been circulated to all Monitoring Officers in North Wales to obtain initial views and the comments of those Monitoring Officers who had responded were reported.

 

The Committee considered the responses made by other authorities and agreed, in principal, that Ceredigion, Powys and West Wales Fire and Rescue, be invited to the next meeting of the North Wales Forum with this as an item on the Agenda.