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Agenda Item No. 8

 

The Vale of Glamorgan Council

 

Democratic Services Committee: 17th April 2013

 

Report of the Head of Democratic Services

 

Draft Supplementary Report of the Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales re. Remuneration for Chairs of Joint Overview and Scrutiny Committees

 

Purpose of the Report

1.             To afford Members the opportunity of expressing views on a draft Supplementary report of the Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales (IRPW) regarding the payment of Senior Salaries for Chairs of Joint Overview and Scrutiny Committees.

Recommendation

That the views of the Committee be sought.

Reason for the Recommendation

To enable any comments of the Committee to be submitted to the Remuneration Panel by the deadline for submissions of 14th May 2013.

 

Background

2.             On 1st October 2012 the Welsh Government issued a Consultation Document comprising draft Regulations and Statutory Guidance on Joint Scrutiny Committees.  A detailed report on this matter was submitted to the last meeting of the Committee.  The draft guidance included reference to the eligibility of a Chairman of a joint Scrutiny Committee to receive remuneration which would be comparable to the payment to a Chairman in receipt of a 'senior salary' of a Scrutiny Committee of the local authority of which that person was a Member.  It was considered by the Committee that this would require clarification given existing capping arrangements already in existence within each constituent Council on the basis of the Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales' recommendations.  The Committee also felt that there should not be a presumption in favour of any remuneration unless there was a clear case to do so on the basis of responsibilities attached to the role and the frequency of meetings held.

3.             The Committee resolved that the Welsh Government be requested to clarify, and include in the final guidance on Joint Overview and Scrutiny, the mechanism for payment of a Senior Salary to the Chairman of the Joint Scrutiny Committee including:

  • The means by which such a salary would be expected to be funded
  • The implications, in terms of its overall limit on senior salaries set by the Independent Remuneration Panel for Wales, for the local authority from whom a Chairman was appointed.

4.             It was further resolved that the Welsh Government be urged to ensure that the final guidance was distributed as soon as practicable after the end of the consultation period.

Relevant Issues and Options

5.             Attached as Appendix A is a draft Supplementary Report of the IRPW relating to matters of remuneration for Joint Overview and Scrutiny Committees.  As indicated above, the Welsh Government had previously issued a consultation document, to which the Council had responded as shown.  The Welsh Government has indicated that the actual Regulations will be issued in the Spring. 

6.             Members will note that the IRPW in issuing the draft report for consultation, has considered the following issues (each of which are expanded upon in Appendix A):

(a)   the appropriate level of remuneration for the Chair of a Joint Overview and Scrutiny Committee

(b)   which local authority should be responsible for the payment

(c)   whether the remuneration of Joint Overview and Scrutiny office holders should count against the maximum proportion of Members a Council is allowed to pay a senior salary

(d)   whether a Member who is already in receipt of a senior salary should receive payment if appointed as Chair of a Joint Overview and Scrutiny Committee

(e)   whether Chairs of sub committees of Joint Overview and Scrutiny Committees should be remunerated

(f)   the position regarding Deputy Chairs of Joint Overview and Scrutiny Committees and sub committees

(g)   co-optees.

7.             The Panel's determinations are set out and the Committee is asked to consider whether it wishes to submit any comments regarding the draft Supplementary Report.

Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)

8.             Resource implications, if any, could only be determined once the IRPW has made its final determination and in the event of a Member of this Council being appointed a Chair of a Joint Overview and Scrutiny Committee.

Sustainability and Climate Change Implications

9.             There are no direct implications arising from the report.

Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)

10.        As set out in the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011.

Crime and Disorder Implications

11.        None.

Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)

12.        These matters would have been taken into account by the Welsh Government in making the Measure.

Corporate/Service Objectives

13.        The Measure makes arrangements for changes to the political structure of local government in Wales and the way in which local government operates.

Policy Framework and Budget

14.        The terms of reference of the Democratic Services Committee include "to have regard to Welsh Ministerial guidance when exercising its functions".

Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)

15.        This is an internal matter and no consultation has, therefore, been necessary.

Relevant Scrutiny Committee

16.        All.

Background Papers

Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011

Draft Welsh Government Guidance: 1st October 2012

Report to Democratic Services Committee: 21st November 2012

 

Contact Officer

Mr. J. Wyatt, tel: 01446 709408

 

Officers Consulted

Managing Director

 

Responsible Officer:

Mr. J. Wyatt, Head of Democratic Services

 

 

 

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