Agenda and minutes
Venue: Virtual Meeting - Online access
Contact: Karen Shepherd 01628 796529
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Apologies for Absence
To receive any apologies for absence
An apology for absence was received from Councillor Targowski
To receive any declarations of interest
The deadline for public questions (directly related to an item on the agenda) is 12noon on Wednesday 18 November.
For information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or 01628 796529
(The Council will set aside a period of 30 minutes to deal with public questions, which may be extended at the discretion of the Mayor in exceptional circumstances. The Member who provides the initial response will do so in writing. The written response will be published as a supplement to the agenda by 5pm one working day before the meeting. The questioner shall be allowed up to one minute to put a supplementary question at the meeting. The supplementary question must arise directly out of the reply provided and shall not have the effect of introducing any new subject matter. A Member responding to a supplementary question will have two minutes to respond).
No public questions had been received.
Referrals from other bodies
To consider referrals from other bodies (e.g. Cabinet)
Appointment of Statutory Officer
Members considered approval of the statutory appointment of Monitoring Officer.
Councillor Johnson proposed the motion in the report.
Councillor Rayner seconded the motion and thanked Mary Severin for her three years of loyal and dedicated service to the council and residents in the role of Monitoring Officer. Mary had served as the guardian of the constitution, contributed to decision making and provided advice on legal matters. She had always been fair and had working on behalf of the residents. Mary had given good notice to enable a full recruitment process to take place. Councillor Rayner thanked the officers involved in facilitating that process. Mary Severin’s retirement had provided the opportunity to consider changes including the establishment of a full time Monitoring Officer role. This increased resource would help to strengthen the council.
Councillor Baldwin thanked the Leader of the Council and officers for organising a COVID-safe face to face interview process. It had made an enormous difference to be able to meet the candidate in person.
Councillor Davey commented that one recently-departed resident, David Knowles-Leak, would have been pleased to hear the Monitoring Officer role would be full time and have wider corporate responsibilities. Mr Knowles-Leak had raised concerns after the last election which may have gone further under different governance.
Councillor Werner extended his thanks to Mary Severin for the last three years’ service. He knew how difficult the role was and he was thankful for Mary’s support and advice. The new expanded role was important to ensure work continued on improving the governance and decision-making process at the council.
Councillor Stimson thanked Mary Severin, in particular for the support she had provided when Councillor Stimson had been a new Development Management Panel Chairman.
Councillor Jones thanked Mary Severin and commented on their good working relationship. She also thanked officers for the detailed recruitment process. She felt the candidate would be an excellent addition to the council and she welcomed the move to have an in-house legal specialist.
Councillor Walters commented that his dealings with Mary Severin had mainly been in relation to planning matters. Mary had always been thorough and fair and would be missed.
Councillor Hill thanked Mary Severin, who had helped him on a number of occasions. He was extremely grateful for Mary’s professionalism, expertise and good humour. She would be missed.
Mary Severin thanked Members for their good wishes and commented that she had enjoyed working with every one of them.
Members continued the debate in Part II, but agreed to minute the decision in Part I.
It was proposed by Councillor Johnson, seconded by Councillor Rayner, and:
RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: ThatCouncil notes the report and:
i) Appoints the candidate named in Appendix A as the Council’s Monitoring Officer and Deputy Director of Law and Strategy with effect from 1 February 2021, on the recommendation of the Appointment Committee.
ii) Acknowledges and thanks Mary Severin for her contribution as Monitoring Officer over the past 3 years and notes Mary will continue ... view the full minutes text for item 54.
Local Government Act 1972 - Exclusion of Public
To consider passing the following resolution:-
“That under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the remainder of the meeting whilst discussion takes place on item 6 on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraphs 1-7 of part I of Schedule 12A of the Act"
RESOLVED UNANIMOUSLY: That under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the remainder of the meeting whilst discussion takes place on item 6 on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraphs 1-7 of part I of Schedule 12A of the Act.
Referrals from Other Bodies