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Agenda and minutes

Democratic Services Committee
Thursday, 8th March, 2018 2.00 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 1, Guildhall

Contact: Marie Russell  Committee Officer

Items
No. Item

19.

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were submitted on behalf of Councillors Carrie Harper, Rondo Roberts and Paul Rogers.

20.

Declarations of personal interests, if any

Members are reminded of their responsibility, under Paragraph 11 of the Members’ Code of Conduct, to declare the existence and nature of any personal interest in respect of any of the business to be transacted at this meeting

Minutes:

The Head of Democratic Services provided advice to Members in relation to the following item of business:

 

Agenda Item 7 – Members’ Remuneration - Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales.

 

The Monitoring Officer advised that all Members appeared to have a personal and prejudicial interest in respect of Agenda Item 7 which dealt with Member allowances and it would be advisable that they all declared such an interest in this matter. All Members present, agreed to declare a personal and prejudicial interest in Agenda Item 7 but claimed the exemption against it being a prejudicial interest contained in paragraph 12(2)(b) of the Member Code of Conduct.

21.

Confirmation of Minutes pdf icon PDF 81 KB

To sign as a correct record the Minutes of the Meeting held on 23 November 2017

 

Minutes:

The Minutes of the meeting held on 23 November 2017 were submitted.

 

AGREED – That the Minutes of the Meeting held on 23 November 2017 be signed as a correct record.

22.

Appointment of Designated Interim Head of Democratic Services pdf icon PDF 120 KB

To consider the report of the Head of Corporate and Customer Services

Minutes:

(The Designated Interim Head of Democratic Services vacated her seat during discussion of this item.)

 

The Head of Democratic Services (HCCS/19/18) submitted a report allowing Members to consider a recommendation for the appointment of an Interim Head of Democratic Services as required by the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011.

 

AGREED – That from 1 April 2018 the acting Service Manager, Legal, Democratic and Registration Services be appointed as the designated Interim Head of Democratic Services as required by the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011.

23.

Review of Member Development Strategy pdf icon PDF 82 KB

To consider the report of the Head of Democratic Services

Minutes:

The Head of Democratic Services submitted a report (HCCS/23/18) updating Members on the proposals for reviewing the Member Development Strategy revised and adopted by Council on 25 September 2013.

 

The Workforce Development Lead introduced the report and responded to Members questions accordingly.  She advised that a survey, as referred to in the report, would be available on Survey Monkey from the second week in March with a 3 week deadline.

 

The Head of Democratic Services Committee encouraged Members of the Committee to complete the survey and to encourage other Members within their respective political groups to do so.  It was noted that a positive response would enable Officers to carry out a meaningful review of the strategy.

 

AGREED – That Members be invited to complete the survey available on Survey Monkey. 

24.

Update on Member Development pdf icon PDF 86 KB

To consider the report of the Head of Democratic Services

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Democratic Services submitted a report (HCCS/22/18) updating Members on member development between 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2018 and consider training and development needs to inform the 2018/19 member development plan.

 

The Workforce Development Lead introduced the report and responded to Members questions accordingly.  She invited Members to notify her of any identified training needs for the future. 

 

During the discussion a Member suggested that training around public speaking should be included in the 2018/19 member development plan.  In particular she made reference to those meetings which were webcast and the need to receive support on issues around confidence, articulation and speaking in the Council Chamber.

 

In response to a Member query the Workforce Development Lead agreed to highlight training topics previously attended by Members in future reports.

 

AGREED – The Committee-

 

(i)            Notes the progress of training and development opportunities to date;

(ii)          Notes the opportunity to attend a personal support and development meeting;

(iii)         Be invited to identify specific subjects to be included in the 2018/19 member development plan.

25.

Members' Remuneration - Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales pdf icon PDF 87 KB

To consider the report of the Head of Corporate and Customer Services

Additional documents:

Minutes:

(Members declarations of interest in relation to this item are set out in Minute  12 above)

 

The Head of Democratic Services submitted a report (HCCS/24/18) allowing Members to consider the changes to the Members’ Remuneration Scheme for 2018/19 contained in the latest Annual Report of the Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales.

 

The Head of Democratic Services introduced the report and responded to Members questions accordingly. 

 

AGREED – The Committee note the changes in Members’ remuneration set out in the Annual Report of the Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales for 2018.

26.

Webcasting - Annual Review pdf icon PDF 111 KB

To consider the report of the Head of Democratic Services

Minutes:

The Head of Democratic Services submitted a report (HCCS/17/18) allowing Members to consider whether council meetings should continue to be webcast after the current contract has expired in January 2019 and if so to agree the basis on which webcasting should be procured.

 

The Head of Democratic Services introduced the report and responded to Members questions accordingly. 

 

During consideration of the report there was a general consensus from the Committee that the twelve month pilot for webcasting 10 hours of Scrutiny Committee (up to five meetings) from April 2016, which was extended into 2017 and 2018, had continued to be a positive and successful development.  It was further suggested by some Members that the number of hours available to Scrutiny Committee should be increased and that consideration should be given to the webcasting of ‘all’ Council meetings. 

 

The Head of Democratic Services reminded the Committee that when considering expansion of the webcasting service, apart from financial restraints there were many other factors to consider, such as the physical arrangements, room availability, staffing implications etc. 

 

Following a request from a Member it was agreed that the scope for holding Joint Scrutiny Committee meetings with neighbouring authorities for relevant cross border issues/topics (e.g. ‘Economic Growth Bid’) could be explored in principle by the Scrutiny Chairs Co-ordinating Group or the Constitutional Working Group in the first instance.

 

AGREED – The Committee give consideration to webcasting all Council meetings and to receive a report on the practicalities and implications of doing so at its next meeting.