Agenda Item No.
THE VALE OF GLAMORGAN COUNCIL
COUNCIL MEETING: 2 MARCH 2016
REFERENCE FROM CABINET: 8 FEBRUARY 2016
C3069 LOCAL GOVERNMENT (WALES) BILL DRAFT FOR CONSULTATION – PROPOSED COUNCIL RESPONSE (L) (SCRUTINY COMMITTEE – CORPORATE RESOURCES) –
Approval was sought for the proposed response by the Council to Welsh Government's Local Government (Wales) Bill consultation draft.
Welsh Government had published a consultation document, the Draft Local Government (Wales) Bill, which set out the intended programme for previously announced Council mergers and a legislative framework for local authority democracy, accountability, performance and elements of finance. The Draft Bill built on the previous White Paper "Reforming Local Government: Power to Local People" (February 2015), to which the Council responded in April 2015. Responses to the Draft Bill currently out for consultation were required by 15 February, 2016.
The Council's proposed response to the Draft Bill was contained in Appendix A as attached to the report. In summary, there was much that the Council agreed with in these provisions; however the report considered that a common trend was a tendency for huge over-prescription, so that Councils would be directed in a great many activities. For example, the need to respond formally to "improvement requests" from any community body, the requirement to establish community area committees, the details of how peer performance reviews should be carried out, the requirement to broadcast all meetings, prescription on the participation of children and young people and prescription on the performance of Elected Members.
The report considered that such over prescription could be a result of Welsh Government fears that not all Councils were equipped to deliver the necessary changes without detailed regulation; if that was the case, then the best performing Councils such as the Vale of Glamorgan would be unfairly penalised by being caught in the same net. As such the report recommended a more flexible approach.
At the meeting the Leader requested changes be made to Appendix A attached to the report, to the effect that 1.2 to 1.4 reflects the Council’s position on local government reorganisation as outlined in the response provided at 1.1 of Appendix A.
This was a matter for Executive decision
Cabinet, having considered the report and all the issues and implications contained therein
(3) T H A T the use of Article 14.14 of the Council's constitution (urgent decision procedure) be authorised to submit the response to Welsh Government by 15 February.
Reasons for decisions
(3) To ensure that the response is submitted by the due deadline.
Report to Cabinet