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Agenda Item No. 8

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Council: 14th December 2016

 

Report of the Monitoring Officer

 

Review of the Council's Constitution / Officer Delegations

 

Purpose of the Report

  1. To facilitate consideration of a number of proposed changes to the Council's Constitution.

Recommendations

(1)      That Council consider the proposed changes to existing delegations resting with the Director of Environment and Housing and Head of Shared Regulatory Services, as set out in Appendix A to the report and, if approved, the Constitution be amended accordingly.

(2)      That Council consider the proposed changes to Section 2 of the Constitution and to the Financial Procedure Rules (Section 16) and Contract Procedure Rules (Section 17) as set out in Appendix B to the report and, if approved, the Constitution be amended accordingly.

(3)      That page 1 of the Guide to Public Speaking at Scrutiny Committees (Section 19.2) be amended to reflect the revised Scrutiny Committees and their terms of reference which are now in place.

Reason for the Recommendations

(1)      To update and remove duplication within the delegations as currently worded.

(2)      To ensure the Rules remain correct and up to date.

(3)      To reflect current Scrutiny arrangements.

Background

  1. Since the formal introduction of the Council's new Executive arrangements in May 2002, the Constitution has remained under review and will continue to be so on an ongoing basis. Under Section 2.4 of the Constitution, the Monitoring Officer has a duty to monitor and review the operation of the Constitution to ensure that the aims and principles contained therein are given full effect.
  2. Section 2.6.2 of the Constitution provides for changes considered by the Monitoring Officer to be "required to be made to remove any inconsistency, ambiguity or typographical correction" to be made and then reported to the next Full Council meeting for information.

Relevant Issues and Options

  1. The changes alluded to below relate to:
  • delegations in relation to Shared Regulatory Services
  • Financial Procedure Rules and Contracts Procedure Rules
  • Section 2 - "Purpose, Definition, Interpretation and Amendment of the Constitution"
  • the Guide to Public Speaking at Scrutiny Committees.
  1. The current Constitution contains (from pages 284 to 287 the delegations resting with the Director of Environment and Housing and Head of Shared Regulatory Services, the latter of whom has undertaken a review of those delegations. Attached as Appendix A to the report is a track-changed version, designed to update where appropriate, but also to remove quite a lot of duplicated (and, consequently, unnecessary) wording which the Head of Shared Regulatory Services considers to currently exist. Members are asked to note that, if approved, the two delegations relating to the Safety of Sports Grounds Act 1975 and the Fire Safety and Safety of Places of Sport Act 1987 would instead rest solely with the Director of Environment and Housing.
  2. In addition to the above, and in accordance with Audit recommendations, the Operational Manager (Exchequer), in agreement with the Head of Finance and Head of Legal Services, has reviewed the Financial Procedure Rules and Contract Procedure Rules to ensure their correctness. The changes are set out in Appendix B and are minor amendments to guarantee accuracy of the wording of the documents rather than alterations to their meanings. The changes are part of a wider ranging review to update all procurement documentation.
  3. It is also proposed that Section 2 of the Constitution "Purpose, Definition, Interpretation and Amendment …." be amended by the addition of the following: "2.6.3(b)  Any reference in the Constitution to legislation or a statutory instrument shall be construed as a reference to any legislation or statutory instrument as amended, replaced, consolidated or re-enacted." The existing paragraph 2.6.3 will be renumbered 2.6.3(a).
  4. Finally, Members are asked to approve page 1 of the Council's Guide to Public Speaking at Scrutiny Committees being amended to reflect the revised Scrutiny Committees and their terms of reference which are now in place. Reference is made to the change as the Guide is included within the Constitution.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

  1. None as a direct result of this report.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

  1. None as a direct result of this report.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

  1. The Council is required to comply with the Local Government Act 2000 and subordinate legislation in the drawing up and subsequent operation of the Constitution.

Crime and Disorder Implications

  1. None as a direct result of this report.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

  1. None as a direct result of this report.

Corporate/Service Objectives

  1. The Constitution is part of the framework supporting the Council's commitment to provide political leadership and active relationship and engagement.

Policy Framework and Budget

  1. The adoption and subsequent changing of the Constitution is a matter for the Full Council.

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

  1. The monitoring and amendment of the Constitution is an internal matter and therefore no external consultation is necessary.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

  1. Corporate Resources

Background Papers

Council Constitution

Contact Officer

Jeff Wyatt, Tel: 01446 709408

Officers Consulted

Director of Environment and Housing

Head of Shared Regulatory Services

Head of Regeneration and Planning

Head of Finance

Operational Manager (Exchequer)

Responsible Officer:

Debbie Marles, Monitoring Officer