Agenda and draft minutes

Venue: Meeting to be held pursuant to Statutory Instrument 2020/392. Link to live stream will be found at https://www.tendringdc.gov.uk/livemeetings

Contact: Debbie Bunce Email:  democraticservices@tendringdc.gov.uk or Telephone  01255 686573

Items
No. Item

1.

Apologies for Absence and Substitutions

The Committee is asked to note any apologies for absence and substitutions received from Members.

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillor Sue Honeywood, with no substitute on this occasion.

2.

Minutes of the Last Meeting pdf icon PDF 112 KB

To confirm and sign as a correct record, the minutes of the meeting of the Standards Committee, held on 3 February 2021.

Minutes:

It was moved by Councillor Land, seconded by Councillor Turner and:-

 

RESOLVED that the minutes of the last meeting of the Committee, held on Wednesday 3 February 2021 be approved as a correct record.

 

3.

Declarations of Interest

Councillors are invited to declare any Disclosable Pecuniary Interests or Personal Interest, and the nature of it, in relation to any item on the agenda.

 

Minutes:

There were none on this occasion.

4.

Questions on Notice pursuant to Council Procedure Rule 38

Subject to providing two working days’ notice, a Member of the Committee may ask the Chairman of the Committee a question on any matter in relation to which the Council has powers or duties which affect the Tendring District and which falls within the terms of reference of the Committee.

Minutes:

There were none on this occasion.

5.

Report of the Monitoring Officer - A.1 - Mandatory Training for Members - Annual Update pdf icon PDF 212 KB

To update the Standards Committee, as part of its agreed work programme, on the current position of mandatory training for Members (and named substitute members) of the Council’s Audit, Licensing & Registration, Planning and Standards Committees.

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

There was submitted a report (A.1) by the Monitoring Officer which sought to update the Committee, as part of its agreed work programme, on the current position of mandatory training for Members and named substitute Members of the Council’s Audit, Licensing & Registration, Planning and Standards Committees.

 

The report reiterated the Council’s decision and constitutional requirement to make relevant training mandatory for Members, and their named substitutes, in respect of their membership on those committees which provided regulatory type functions. The report also detailed training undertaken and attendance to date.

 

Appendix A to the report provided details of those Members who had attended Licensing Refresher Training in October 2020

 

Members were made aware that members of the Planning Committee had been invited to a session on Section 1 of the Local Plan following receipt of the Planning Inspector’s letter confirming soundness.

 

It was reported that one Member also received training for the Planning Committee during 2020.

 

It was also reported that a Member Training Session on Planning Appeals had been held on 20 April 2021, where with the exception of one member, the Planning Committee members all attended together with a number of other interested members.

 

It was noted that due to the current COVID-19 Pandemic Members had received training to enable them to continue conducting Committee meetings remotely using Skype for Business and Microsoft Teams and there had also been regular All Member Briefings throughout the year.

 

The mandatory training referenced in this report also formed part of the overall training provision for all Councillors within the framework established by the Council’s “Councillor Development Statement” as reported to this Committee on 2 October 2019 (Minute 14 referred).  It was clear that the development of that overall training provision as envisaged in the Statement had been adversely impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.  However, other training had been enhanced to address, for instance, use of IT for remote meetings and undertaking scrutiny in a remote meeting setting.  

 

In relation to the general position on training for Councillors, Council on 16 March 2021 had endorsed the following as part of its consideration of the report of the Monitoring Officer on the outcome of the latest review of the Constitution:

 

“that the views and wishes expressed by the Review of the Constitution Portfolio Holder Working Party in relation to Members’ training and development be endorsed and that the Head of Democratic Services & Elections be requested to take all necessary action to implement those wishes as soon as possible.”

 

The specific views expressed by the Review of the Constitution Portfolio Holder Working Party, included:

 

“There was support from Members for E-learning and a webinar based approach especially an E-learning modular approach whereby participants had to answer Questions to a high enough success rate in order to be deemed to have sufficient knowledge of that topic and be Passed;

 

Essex County Council be put forward as an approach to emulate; and

 

Officers investigate a suitable mechanism for regular Member input going forward such as a cross-party  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

Report of the Monitoring Officer - A.2 - Annual Report on Declarations of Interest and Associated Matters pdf icon PDF 143 KB

To present the Committee with an overview on the register of, and declarations of, interests made by Members from 20 February 2019 until 31 March 2021.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

There was submitted a report (A.2) by the Monitoring Officer which provided the

Committee with an overview on the register of, and declarations of, interests made by

Members in the period 20 February 2019 to 31 March 2021. The report provided statistics and related information on –

 

1) the Register of Members’ Disclosable Pecuniary Interests;

2) the number of declarations of interest made at meetings;

3) the use of blank dispensations; and

4) the number of offers of gifts and hospitality that had been registered by Members during this period.

 

Having considered the information submitted the Committee noted the contents of the report.

7.

Work Programme for 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 127 KB

The Committee is invited to give consideration to its Work Programme for the 2021/22 Municipal Year.

Minutes:

The Committee gave consideration to its work programme for the 2021/2022 Municipal Year.

 

Members had before them a suggested work programme which had been submitted by the Monitoring Officer.

 

It was moved by Councillor Henderson and seconded by Councillor Turner and:–

 

RESOLVED that the Annual Work Programme for 2021/2022 be approved.

8.

Quarterly Complaints Update

The Monitoring Officer will give an update on existing cases together with general details of new cases, if any.

Minutes:

The Monitoring Officer circulated to the Committee the quarterly schedule, which gave an update on existing cases together with general details of new cases, without providing any names, and went through them with the Committee. There had been no requests for dispensations from Members.

 

 

DISTRICT

 

TDC CLLR

 

Closed

 

No further action

 

IP consulted – related to behaviour in a remote meeting

 

 

PARISH (X3)

 

PUBLIC

 

Closed

 

No further action

 

Related to alleged failure to declare interests at a very difficult meeting.  All Councillors apologised for the oversight and MO has offered to provide training to the Parish Council.

 

 

DISTRICT

 

MO

 

With investigator

 

Pending

 

Deputy MO is dealing with the case due to conflict. Case has been referred for investigation.

 

New Cases since last update:

Council

Complainant

Current status

Final outcome

Comments

DISTRICT

MEMBER OF THE PUBLIC

CLOSED

No further action

 

Complaint was historical (over a year old) and refers to matters relating to a council decision and separate legal proceedings.

 

 

TOWN

 

TOWN COUNCILLORS (x3)

 

With MO to go to Cllr subject member of the complaint to respond to.

 

 

Pending

 

Behaviour complained of refers to bullying.

 

The Committee noted the foregoing.