The Constitution Working Group has been working on reviewing the entire constitution during the course of the past year to update and simplify it as set out in point 2.2 below. As part of the principles for its work, the Group has looked to streamline the constitution so that the council has a shorter document which contains the main, essential elements of what should be in a modern updated core constitution. Other documents which are important, but which do not have to be in the core constitution, have been moved into a collection of documents we are referring to as the Council Operating Framework.
The Group is now ready to present its recommendations to the Standards and Constitution Committee, with a view to recommending to Full Council that the revised constitution as set out in Appendix 1, along with the Council Operating Framework which contains documents that have been reviewed and moved out of the core constitution as set out in Appendix 2, be adopted.
The Committee received a report setting out a proposed new Constitution and Operating Framework for the Council, following a review of the current Constitution by the Constitution Working Group.
The Constitution Working Group had reviewed the entire constitution during the course of the past year to update and simplify it. Within the principles for its work, the Group had looked to streamline the constitution so that the Council has a shorter document which contains the main, essential elements of what should be in a modern updated core constitution. It was proposed to move other documents which are important, but which do not have to be in the core constitution into a collection of documents, referred to as the “Council Operating Framework” or to the Officer Employment policy documents.
The following matters were considered:
a) Amendment: Petition Scheme. The Chair informed the Committee that the Constitution Working Group had not been able to come to a consensus with regard to the Council’s Petition Scheme. The Chair proposed an amendment to the report to include the following additional recommendation:
“(7) Recommend to Full Council that the Standards and Constitution Committee review the Petition Scheme in the forthcoming municipal year.”
The Committee unanimously agreed to include this amendment in the recommendations of the report.
b) Human Resources Panel and Committee responsibility for development of the local economy and regeneration. The Committee considered potential amendments to the recommendations of the report with regard to two matters:
· The terms of reference of the Human Resources Panel
· Committee responsibility for development of the local economy and regeneration.
Following consideration, the Committee considered that these matters should not be made as amendments to the recommendations of the report. The Committee considered that these matters should be considered within the forward work programme for the Committee.
c) Minor changes to documents in the Constitution and Operating Framework. The Committee noted that the following minor changes would be made:
· Page 12, paragraph 2.7 - Mayors Handbook. Reference to the Handbook for Mayors would be included. Wording that the Mayor should act subject to the guidance of the Chief Executive and the Chair of Strategy and Resources would also be included.
· Gender references. It was noted that gender specific references had been removed throughout the documents and that any remaining references would be removed by officers when identified. The Committee highlighted a reference to “him or her” on page 44, paragraph 6.1.
· Definition of “Proper Officer”. The Committee noted that the term “Proper Officer” was defined within the glossary of the Constitution.
· Page 45, paragraph 9.3.1. ii. The Committee requested that paragraph 9.3.1. ii on page 45 be re-phrased.
· Page 86, paragraph 14.4 – form for motions. The Committee requested that the wording “on the prescribed form” be removed from paragraph 14.4 on page 86.
· Page 89, paragraph 16.5. The Committee requested that paragraph 16.5 on page 89 be deleted.
d) Amendment: speeches on motions referred to Committee for consideration. Councillor Eber Kington PROPOSED and Councillor Kate Chinn SECONDED the ... view the full minutes text for item 4