Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

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Speaking at a Council or Committee meeting

Venue: Oxford Town Hall, St Aldate's, Oxford

Contact: Alec Dubberley, Democratic Services Officer 

No. Item


Election of Chair

To elect a Chair for the 2011/12 Council year. The Chair must be an independent member.


John Lay was elected as Chair for the 2011/12 Council year.


Election of Vice Chair

To elect a Vice-Chair for the 2011/12 Council year. The Vice-Chair must be an Independent Member


Anne Gwinnett was elected as Vice-Chair for the 2011/12 Council year.


Apologies for Absence

The Constitution does not permit substitutions.


Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Clark Brundin.


The Committee placed on record their thanks to Councillor Stuart Craft who had served on the committee during the previous year. The Chair also welcomed Councillor Gotch to his first meeting of the Committee.


Declarations of Interest

Members serving on the Committee are asked to declare any personal or prejudicial interests they may have in any of the following agenda items.


10. Local Investigation Report - Complaint Reference 703/4/29.

Councillor Dick Wolff, Personal, Had been lobbied by the complainant.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 33 KB

To approve the minutes of the previous meeting held on 11 March 2011


Resolved to approve, as a correct record, the minutes of the meeting held on 11 March 2011 subject to replacing the word “adopting” with the word “amending” on page 3, bullet point 2 (minute 54 refers).


Work Programme 2011/12 pdf icon PDF 77 KB

To comment upon and agree the Committee’s work programme for the 20011/12 Council year

Additional documents:


The Head of Law and Governance submitted a report (previously circulated, now appended) setting out for the Committee’s a draft work programme for the coming year.


The Committee discussed the draft work programme concluding that changes may be necessary in light of developments with the Localism Bill.


Resolved to adopt the suggest work programme for the 2011/12 year subject to including regular updates on Assessment and Review Panel decision notices.


Members' Mandatory Training 2011/12

The Head of Law and Governance will provide a verbal update on the proposed training for Councillors in the 2011/12 year.


The Committee was informed that mandatory training sessions for all Councillors would be taking place. The training would consist of a planning legislation session for all members sitting on a planning committee and licensing training for members sitting on a licensing committee. All members of the Council would also be required to attend a code of conduct session which this year would focus on a “back to basics” approach to declarations of interest both at meetings and on registers of interest forms.


All Independent Members were invited to attend the training. Elected members that did not attend any element of the compulsory training without good reason would have their allowance cut by 15%.


Resolved to note the position.


Assessment and Review Panel Decision Notices pdf icon PDF 98 KB

To report on Assessment and Review Panels held since the last ordinary meeting.

Additional documents:


The Head of Law and Governance submitted two decision notices from Assessment and Review Panels held since the last ordinary meeting


Resolved to note the contents of the notices.


Dates and Times of Future Meetings

9 September 2011 – 3 pm

2 December 2011 – 9.30 am

9 March 2012 – 3 pm


The following dates and time were noted:-


9 September 2011 – 3 pm

2 December 2011 – 9.30 am

9 March 2012 – 3 pm

Exclusion of Public and Press


The Committee was advised that a request to exclude the press and public had been received from the subject member of Complaint Reference 703/4/29 and that the Committee was required to decided whether or not to conduct the consideration of item 10 in public.


Resolved that having regard to best practice advice from Officers and Standards for England, that the public interest in excluding the press and public did not outweigh the public interest in holding the consideration meeting in public. Consideration of item 10 would therefore be held in public.


Local Investigation Report - Complaint Reference 703/4/29 pdf icon PDF 85 KB

To consider a report from the investigating officer detailing the results of an investigation undertaken in respect of a complaint made against a Local Authority or Parish Councillor.


(Paragraph 2: This item contains information which is subject to an obligation of confidentiality)

Additional documents:


The Committee considered a report by the Monitoring Officer (previously circulated, now appended) attached to which was the final report and relevant documents prepared by the Investigating Officer appointed to investigate the alleged conduct of Councillor Bryan Keen.


Helen Lynch (Legal advisor to the Committee) advised that the Committee was required to decide whether, based on the facts presented, if it agreed or otherwise with the findings of the Investigating Officer. Daniel Smith, the Investigating Officer summarised his investigation report.


The Committee was given the opportunity to ask questions of the Investigating Officer before proceeding to consider the evidence presented by the investigation officer and the conclusions subsequently drawn in respect of the allegations.


Resolved that In accordance with Regulation 17(1)(a) of the Standards Committee (England) Regulations 2008 to agree with the finding of the Investigating Officer that Councillor Bryan Keen did not fail to comply with the provisions of Oxford City Council’s Code of Conduct.

Nine members of the Committee voted supported the resolution and two abstained from the vote.


A Decision Notice is attached to the minutes.