Puddington Parish Council
(1) Meetings shall not take place in premises which, at the time of the meeting, are used for the supply of alcohol unless no other premises are available free of charge or at a reasonable cost.
(2) Smoking is not permitted at meetings
(3) Meetings shall be open to the public unless their presence is prejudicial to the public interest by reason of the confidential nature or other special reason. The public’s exclusion from part or all of a meeting shall be by resolution which shall give reasons for the public’s exclusion.
(4) Subject to Standing Order 1(3) above, members of the public may make representations, answer questions and give evidence in respect of any item of business included in the agenda.
(5) The period of time designated for public participation in accordance with Standing Order 1(4) shall not exceed 30 minutes.
(6) Subject to Standing Order 1(5) above, each member of the public is entitled to speak once only in respect of any business itemised on the agenda and shall not speak for more than three minutes.
(7) In accordance with Standing Order 1(5), any question asked by a member of the public during a public participation session at a meeting shall not require response or debate.
(8) With regard to Standing Order 1(7), the Chairman may direct that a response to a question posed by a member of the public be referred to a councillor or to the Clerk to provide a written or other response.
(9) A record of any public participation session at a meeting shall be included in the minutes.
(10) A person wishing to speak shall raise their hand and shall stand when speaking except where that person is likely to suffer discomfort. The Chairman may at any time permit an individual to be seated when speaking.
(11) Any person speaking shall address their comments to the Chairman.
(12) Only one person is permitted to speak at a time. If more than one person wants to speak, the Chairman shall direct the order of speaking.
(13) Photographing, recording, broadcasting or transmitting the proceedings of a meeting by any means is not permitted without the council’s consent.
(14) Subject to Standing Order 1(3) above, the press shall be provided reasonable facilities for the taking of their report of all or part of a meeting at which they are entitled to be present.
(15) Subject to Standing Orders that indicate otherwise, anything authorised or required to be done by, to or before the Chairman may, in his absence, be done by, to or before the Vice-Chairman.
(16) If both the Chairman and the Vice-Chairman are absent from a meeting, a councillor as chosen by the councillors present at the meeting shall preside at the meeting.
(17) Voting at a meeting shall be by show of hands unless Standing Orders provide otherwise.
(18) The Chairman may give an original vote on any matter put to the vote, and in any case of an equality of votes must give a casting vote whether or not he gave an original vote.
(19) At the request of a councillor, the voting on any question shall be recorded so as to show whether each councillor present and voting gave his vote for or against that question. Such a request must be made before moving on to the next item of business on the agenda.
(20) The minutes of a meeting shall record the names of councillors present and absent.
(21) If prior to a meeting a councillor has submitted reasons for his absence at the meeting, which have been approved, such approval shall be recorded in the minutes.
(22) The Code of Conduct adopted by the Council on 20 September 2012 shall apply to councillors in respect of the entire meeting.
(23) Any interest arising from the Code of Conduct, the existence and nature of which is required to be disclosed by a councillor at a meeting shall be recorded in the minutes [see also Standing Orders 7(1) and (2)].
(24) No business may be transacted at a meeting of the council unless at least one third of the whole number of members are present and in no case shall the quorum of any meeting be less than three.
(25) If a meeting is or becomes inquorate no business shall be transacted and the meeting shall be adjourned.
(26) Meetings shall not exceed a period of two hours, except by resolution of the Council.
2. Statutory Meetings of the Council
(1) In an election year the Annual Meeting of the Council shall be held on or within 14 days following the day on which the new councillors elected take office.
(2) In a year that is not an election year the Annual Meeting of the Council shall be held on such day in May as the Council may direct.
(3) The Annual Meeting of the Council shall take place at 7.30pm.
(4) In addition to the Annual Meeting of the Council at least three other ordinary meetings shall be held in each year on such dates and times as the Council may direct.
(5) The election of the Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Council shall be the first business completed at the Annual Meeting of the Council.
(6) The Chairman of the Council, unless he/she has resigned or becomes disqualified, shall continue in office and preside at the annual meeting until a successor is elected at the next Annual Meeting of the Council.
(7) The Vice-Chairman of the Council, unless he/she resigns or becomes disqualified, shall hold office until immediately after the election of the Chairman at the next annual meeting of the Council.
(8) In an election year, if the current Chairman of the Council has not been re-elected as a member of the Council, he/she shall preside at the meeting until a successor Chairman of the Council has been elected. The current Chairman of the Council shall not have an original vote in respect of the election of the new Chairman to the Council, but must give a casting vote if there is an equality of votes.
(9) In an election year, if the current Chairman of the Council has been re-elected as a member of the Council, he shall preside at the meeting until a new Chairman of the Council has been elected. He may exercise an original vote in respect of the election of the new Chairman to the Council and must give a casting vote if there is an equality of votes.
(10) Following the election of the Chairman of the Council and Vice-Chairman of the Council, at the Annual Meeting of the Council the order of business shall be:
(a) Approve the minutes of the last meeting of the Council
(b) Review delegation arrangements to committees, sub-committees, employees and any other local authorities.
(c) Review terms of reference of committees
(d) Receive nominations to existing committees
(e) Appoint any new committees, determining the terms of reference, the number of members (including, if appropriate, substitute councillors)
(f) Review and adopt any necessary Standing Orders
(g) Review arrangements, including any Charters, with other local authorities and review contributions made to expenditure incurred by other local authorities.
(h) Review representation on or work with external bodies and arrangements for reporting back
(i) In a year of elections, if a Council’s period of eligibility to exercise the power of wellbeing expired the day before the annual meeting, review and make arrangements to reaffirm eligibility.
(j) Review inventory of land and assets including buildings and office equipment
(k) Review arrangements for insurance cover in respect of all insured risks
(l) Review the council’s and/or employee’s membership of other bodies
(m) Establish or review the Council’s complaints procedure
(n) Establish or review the Council’s procedures for handling requests made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000
(o) Establish or review the Council’s policy for dealing with the press and media
(p) Set the dates, times and place of ordinary meetings of the full council for the year ahead.
3. Proper Officer
(1) The Council’s Proper Officer shall be the Clerk. The Proper Officer shall fulfil the duties assigned to the Proper Officer by Standing Orders.
(2) The Council’s Proper Officer shall
(a) sign and serve on councillors a summons which confirms the time, date, venue and the agenda of a meeting at least three clear days before a meeting
(b) give public notice of the time, date, venue and agenda at least three clear days before a meeting (the public notice with agenda of an extraordinary meeting convened by councillors is signed by them.)
(c) subject to Standing Orders 4(1)–(5), include in the agenda all motions in the order received unless a councillor has given written notice at least five clear days before the meeting confirming his withdrawal of it
(d) convene a meeting of full council for the election of a new Chairman of the Council, occasioned by a casual vacancy in his office, in accordance with (1) and (2) above
(e) make available for inspection and provide copies to any councillor, the accounts of the Council or any extract therefrom
(f) receive copies of byelaws made by other local authorities
(g) receive and retain declarations of acceptance of office from members
(h) retain a copy of every councillor’s register of interests and any changes to it
(i) keep proper records required before and after meetings
(j) process all requests made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, in accordance with and subject to the Council’s procedure relating to the same
(k) receive and send general correspondence and notices on behalf of the Council except where there is a resolution to the contrary
(l) manage the organisation, storage of and access to information held by the Council in paper and electronic form
(m) arrange for legal deeds to be signed by two councillors and witnesses [see Standing Orders 14(1) and (2)] (n) arrange for the prompt authorisation of any payments by the council, such authorisation to be evidenced by the signature of two councillors
(o) record every planning application notified to the Council and the Council’s response to the local planning authority
(p) refer every planning application received to the Chairman, or in his absence to the Vice-Chairman, as soon as possible after receiving notification and shall prepare an appropriate response to the principal authority. If the nature of the planning application requires an urgent discussion by the full Council, the Proper Officer shall call a special meeting for that purpose.
4. Motions requiring written notice
(1) In accordance with Standing Order 3(2)(c), no motion may be moved at a meeting unless it is included in the agenda and the mover has given written notice of its content to the Council’s Proper Officer at least ten clear days before the next meeting.
(2) The Proper Officer may, before including a motion in the agenda received in accordance with Standing Order 4(1), correct obvious grammatical or typographical errors in the motion.
(3) If the proper Officer considers the content of a motion received in accordance with Standing Order 4(1) vague or unclear, the motion shall be rejected until the mover of the motion resubmits it in writing to the Proper Officer in clear and certain language at least six clear days before the meeting.
(4) If the content or nature of a proposed motion is considered unlawful or improper the Proper Officer shall consult with the Chairman of the forthcoming meeting or, as the case may be, the councillors who have convened the meeting, to consider whether the motion shall be included in the agenda or rejected.
(5) Having consulted the Chairman or councillors pursuant to Standing Order 4(4), the decision of the Proper Officer whether to include the motion in the agenda or not shall be final.
(6) Notice of every motion received in accordance with the Council’s Standing Orders shall be numbered in the order received and shall be entered in a book which shall be open to inspection by all councillors.
(7) Every motion rejected in accordance with the Council’s Standing Orders shall be duly recorded in a book provided for that purpose with a note by the Proper Officer giving reasons for its rejection.
(8) Every motion and resolution shall relate to the Council’s statutory functions, powers and lawful obligations or shall relate to an issue which specifically affects the Council’s area or its residents.
5. Motions that do not require written notice
(1) Motions in respect of the following matters may be moved without written notice:
(a) To appoint a person to preside at a meeting
(b) To approve the accuracy of the minutes of the previous meeting
(c) To correct the minutes of the previous meeting
(d) To dispose of business, if any, remaining from the last meeting
(e) To alter the order of business on the grounds of urgency or expedience
(f) To proceed to the next business on the agenda
(g) To close or adjourn debate
(h) To refer by formal delegation a matter to a committee or to a sub-committee or to an employee
(i) To appoint a committee or sub-committee or any councillors (including substitutes) thereto
(j) To receive nominations to a committee or sub-committee
(k) To dissolve a committee or sub-committee
(l) To consider minutes of a committee or sub-committee
(m) To consider a report and/or recommendations from a committee or sub-committee or employee
(n) To consider a report and/or recommendations made by an employee, professional advisor, expert, or consultant
(o) To authorise the legal deeds to be signed by two councillors and witnessed [see Standing Orders 14(1) and 14(2)] (p) To authorise the payment of monies up to £1,000
(q) To amend a motion relevant to the original or substantive motion under consideration which shall not have the effect of nullifying it.
(r) To extend the time limit for speeches
(s) To exclude the press and public for all or part of a meeting
(t) To silence or exclude from the meeting a councillor or a member of the public for disorderly conduct
(u) To give the consent of the Council where such consent is required by Standing Orders
(v) To suspend any Standing Order except those which are mandatory by law
(w) To adjourn the meeting
(x) To appoint representatives to outside bodies and make arrangements for those representatives to report on the activities of outside bodies
(y) To answer questions from Councillors
(2) If a motion falls within the terms of reference of a committee or sub-committee or within the delegated powers conferred on an employee, a referral of the same to such committee, sub-committee or employee provided that the Chairman may direct that matter to be dealt with at the present meeting for reasons of urgency or expedience.
6. Rules of Debate
(1) Motions included in an agenda shall be considered in the order that they appear on the agenda unless for expedience the Chairman changes the order.
(2) Subject to Standing Orders 4(1)–(5), a motion shall not be considered unless it has been proposed and seconded.
(3) A motion included in the agenda for a meeting not moved by the councillor who in accordance with Standing Order 4(1) gave notice of it shall be treated as withdrawn.
(4) Any motions to amend an original or substantive motion shall not be considered unless proper notice has been given after the original or substantive motion has been seconded and notice of such amendment shall, if required by the Chairman, be reduced to writing and handed to the Chairman who shall determine the order in which they are considered.
(5) A Councillor may move amendments to his own motion. If a motion has already been seconded, any such amendment to it shall be with the consent of the seconder.
(6) Any amendment to a motion shall be either:
(a) to leave out words
(b) to add words
(c) to leave out words and add others
(7) A proposed or carried amendment to a motion shall not have the effect of rescinding the original or substantive motion under consideration.
(8) Only one amendment shall be moved and debated at a time, the order of which shall e directed by the Chairman. No further amendment to a motion shall be moved until the previous amendment has been disposed of.
(9) Subject to Standing Order 6(8) one or more amendments may be discussed but not voted upon together if the Chairman considers this expedient.
(10) Pursuant to Standing Order 6(8) the number of amendments to an original or substantive motion that may be moved by a councillor is limited to one.
(11) If an amendment is not carried, other amendments shall be moved in the order directed by the Chairman
(12) If an amendment is carried the original motion, as amended, shall take the place of the original motion and shall become the substantive motion upon which any further amendment may be moved.
(13) The mover of a motion or the mover of an amendment shall have a right of reply not exceeding three minutes.
(14) Where a series of amendments to an original motion are carried, the mover of the last amendment shall have a right of reply in respect of the substantive motion at the very end of debate and immediately before the matter is put to the vote.
(15) Subject to Standing Order 6(12) and (13) above, a councillor may not speak further in respect of any one motion except to speak once on an amendment moved by another councillor or to make a point of order or to give a personal explanation.
(16) During the debate of a motion a councillor may interrupt only on a point of order or a personal explanation and the councillor who was interrupted shall stop speaking. A councillor raising a point of order shall identify the Standing Order that he considers has been infringed or specify the irregularity in the meeting he is concerned by.
(17) The Chairman shall decide a point of order and his decision shall be final.
(18) With the consent of the seconder and/or of the meeting, the proposer may withdraw a motion or amendment. A councillor shall not speak upon the said motion or amendment after permission has been asked for its withdrawal unless such permission has been refused.
(19) Subject to Standing Order 6(15), if a motion is under debate no other motion shall be moved except
(a) To amend the motion
(b) To proceed to the next business
(c) To adjourn the debate
(d) To put the motion to a vote
(e) That a person be asked to be silent or to leave the meeting
(f) That the motion be referred to a committee or sub-committee for consideration
(g) To exclude the public and press
(h) To adjourn the meeting
(i) To suspend any Standing Order except those which are mandatory
(20) In respect of Standing Order 6(19)((d) the Chairman must first be satisfied that the motion has been sufficiently debated before it is seconded and put to the vote. The Chairman shall call upon the mover of the motion under debate to exercise or waive his right of reply and shall put his motion to the vote after that right has been exercised or waived. The adjournment of a debate or of the Council shall not prejudice the mover’s right of reply at the resumption.
(21) If an issue is raised under Any Other Business that is so urgent that it cannot await the next meeting of the Parish Council, the Chairman may rule that it be discussed and a decision taken, or that a special meeting be called to discuss the matter, and the reason for that decision will be recorded in the minutes
7. Code of Conduct [see also Standing Orders 1(4) – (8)] (1) Where paragraph 12(2) of the Model Code of Conduct contained in the Local Authorities (Model Code of Conduct) Order 2007(SI No. 1159) has been adopted by the Council and councillors have exercised their rights pursuant to Standing Order 7(2) below, members of the public shall be allowed to (i) make representations, (ii) answer questions and (iii) give evidence relating to the business to be transacted.
(2) Councillors who have a prejudicial interest in relation to any item of business to be transacted at that meeting may (i) make representations, (ii) answer questions and (iii) give evidence relating to the business to be transacted.
(1) A councillor may ask the Chairman or the Proper Office a question at a meeting concerning any business of the Council provided five clear days notice of the question has been given to the person to whom it is addressed.
(2) Questions which are not connected to the business of a meeting shall only be asked during the part of the meeting set aside for such questions.
(3) Every question shall be put and answered without discussion.
(1) If a copy of the draft minutes of a preceding meeting has been circulated to councillors no later than the day of the issue of the summons to attend the meeting, they shall be taken as read.
(2) No discussion of the draft minutes of a preceding meeting shall take place except upon their accuracy. Any question in respect of their accuracy shall be raised by motion without notice.
(3) Minutes shall be signed by the Chairman and stand as an accurate record of the meeting.
(4) If the Chairman does not consider the minutes to be an accurate report of the meeting he shall sign the minutes and include a paragraph in the following terms or to the same effect:
“The Chairman did not believe that the minutes of the meeting of the Council held on (date) in respect of (item) were a correct record but his view was not upheld by the majority of the Council and the minutes are confirmed as an accurate record of the proceedings.”
(5) Upon approval as to the accuracy of minutes, any draft minutes or recordings of the meeting shall be destroyed.
10. Disorderly Conduct
(1) No person shall obstruct business at a meeting or behave offensively or improperly.
(2) If, in the opinion of the Chairman, a person has breached Standing Order 10(1), the Chairman shall express that opinion and thereafter any councillor (including the Chairman) may move that the person be silenced or excluded from the meeting, and the motion, if seconded, shall be put forthwith and without discussion.
(3) If a resolution made in accordance with Standing Order 10(2) is disobeyed, the Chairman may take such further steps as may reasonably be necessary to enforce it and/or may adjourn the meeting.
11. Rescission of previous resolutions
(1) A decision (whether affirmative or negative) of the Council shall not be reversed within six months except either by special resolution, the written notice whereof bears the names of at least two councillors of the Council, or by a resolution moved in pursuance of the report or recommendation of a committee.
(2) When a special resolution or any other resolution moved under Standing Order 11(1) has been disposed of, no similar resolution may be moved within a further six months.
12. Voting on Appointments
Where more than two persons have been nominated for a position to be filled by the Council and none of those persons has received an absolute majority of votes in their favour, the name of the person having the least number of votes shall be struck off the list and a fresh vote taken. This process shall continue until a majority of votes is given in favour of one person.
Orders for the payment of money shall be authorised by resolution of the Council and signed by two councillors.
14. Execution and Sealing of Legal Deeds
(1) A legal deed shall not be executed on behalf of the Council unless the same has been authorised by resolution.
(2) In accordance with a resolution made under Standing Order 14(1), the Council’s common seal shall alone be used for sealing a deed required by law. It shall be applied by the Proper Officer in the presence of two councillors who shall sign the deed as witnesses.
The Council may, at its Annual Meeting, appoint standing committees and may at any other time appoint such other committees as are necessary and –
(1) Shall determine its terms of reference
(2) Shall appoint any councillors or non-councillors unless this is prohibited by law, so as to hold office no later than the next Annual Meeting
(3) May appoint substitute councillors whose role is to replace ordinary councillors at a meeting of a committee if ordinary councillors of the committee have confirmed to the Proper Officer three days before the meeting that they are unable to attend.
(4) If, in accordance with Standing Order 15(3) above, an ordinary member who has been replaced at a meeting by a substitute member shall not be permitted to participate in debate or vote on business at that meeting and may only speak during any public participation session during the meeting.
(5) May, in accordance with Standing Orders, dissolve a committee at any time.
(6) The Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Council shall not be members of every committee and every committee shall, at its first meeting before proceeding to any other business, elect a Chairman and may elect a Vice-Chairman.
(7) The Chairman of a committee may convene an additional meeting of the committee at any time. An additional meeting shall also be summoned on the requisition in writing by at least two members of the committee.
(8) Except where the quorum for a meeting of the committee is determined by Standing Orders, no business may be transacted at a meeting of a committee unless at least one third of the whole number of members of the committee are present and in no case shall the quorum for a meeting be less than three.
Unless there is a Council resolution to the contrary, every committee may appoint a sub-committee whose terms of reference and membership shall be by resolution of the committee.
17. Special Meeting
The Chairman of a committee or sub-committee may summon an additional meeting at any time. An additional meeting shall also be summoned on the requisition in writing by at least two members of the committee.
18 Advisory Committees
The Council may appoint advisory committees comprised of a number of councillors and non-councillor members and may consist wholly of persons who are not councillors of the Council.
19. Accounts and Financial Statement
(1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this Standing Order or by statute, all accounts for payment and claims upon the Council shall be laid before the Council.
(2) Where it is necessary to make a payment before it has been authorised by the Council, the Proper Officer shall certify such payment as to its correctness and urgency. Such payment shall be authorised by the Chairman or Vice-Chairman of the Council.
(3) All payments ratified under sub-paragraph (2) of this Standing Order shall be reported to and included in the minutes of the next meeting of the Council.
(4) The RFO shall supply to each member as soon as practicable after 31 March in each year, a statement of the receipts and payments of the Council for the completed financial year. A Financial Statement prepared on the appropriate accounting basis (receipts and payments or income and expenditure) for a year to 31 March shall be presented to each member before the end of the following month of May. The Annual Governance Statement and Accounting Statement for the Council shall be presented to the Council for formal approval at the Annual Meeting in May. With effect from the financial year 2018-19 the Council meets the criteria to qualify for an Exemption from an External Audit. Therefore a completed Certificate of Exemption notifying the External Auditor will be submitted in accordance with Section 9 of the Local Audit (Smaller Authorities) Regulations 2015 and the agreed timetable.
20. Estimates / Precepts
The Council shall approve written estimates for the coming financial year at its meeting before the end of the month of January.
21. Canvassing of and Recommendations by Councillors
(1) Canvassing members of the Council, directly or indirectly, for appointment under the Council shall disqualify the candidate from such appointment. The Clerk shall make known the purport of this sub-paragraph of this Standing Order to every candidate.
(2) A member of the Council shall not solicit for any person any appointment under the Council or recommend any person for such appointment or for promotion; but, nevertheless, any such member may give a written testimonial of a candidate’s ability, experience or character for submission to the Council with an application for appointment.
This Standing Order shall apply to tenders as if the person making the tender were a candidate for an appointment.
22. Inspection of Documents
A member may, for the purpose of his official duties (but not otherwise), inspect any document in possession of the Council, and if copies are available shall, on request, be supplied for the like purpose with a copy. All minutes kept by the Council shall be open for the inspection of any member of the Council.
23. Unauthorised Activities
No individual councillor shall, in the name of or on behalf of the Council:
(1) Inspect any lands or premises which the Council has a right or duty to inspect; or
(2) Issue orders, instructions or directions unless authorised to do so by resolution of the Council.
24. Confidential Business
Councillors and employees shall not disclose information given in confidence or which they believe or ought to be aware is of a confidential nature.
25. Power of Wellbeing
(1) Before exercising the power to promote wellbeing, a meeting of the full Council shall pass a resolution to confirm it has satisfied the prescribed statutory criteria required to qualify as an eligible parish council.
(2) A council’s period of eligibility begins on the date that the resolution under Standing Order 28(1) was made and expires on the day before the annual meeting of the council that takes place in a year of ordinary elections.
(3) After the expiry of its preceding period of eligibility, the Council continues to be an eligible parish council solely for the purpose of completing any activity undertaken in exercise of the power to promote wellbeing which was not completed before the expiry of the Council’s preceding period of eligibility.
26. Matters affecting Council employees
(1) If a meeting considers any matter personal to a Council employee, the matter shall not be considered until the Council has decided whether or not the press and public shall be excluded pursuant to Standing Order 1(3).
(2) The Clerk shall notify the Chairman (or in his absence the Vice-Chairman) of any absence occasioned by illness or urgency,
(3) The Chairman shall, upon resolution of the Council, conduct a review of the performance and/or appraisal of the officer concerned and shall keep a written record of it and report the matter back to the Council.
(4) Subject to the Council’s policy regarding grievance matters, the Clerk shall contact the Chairman (or in his absence the Vice-Chairman) in respect of an informal or formal grievance matter and this matter shall be reported and progressed by resolution of the Council.
(5) Subject to the Council’s policy regarding grievance and disciplinary matters, if an informal or formal grievance matter relates to the Chairman of the Council this shall be communicated to another member of the Council and progressed by resolution of the Council.
(6) Any persons responsible for all or part of the management of the Council’s employees shall keep written records of all meetings relating to their performance and capabilities, grievance and disciplinary matters.
(7) The Council shall keep secure any written records relating to employees. All paper employment records should be secured under lock and key and electronic employment records should be password protected.
(8) Records documenting reasons for an employee’s absence due to ill health or details of a medical condition shall be secured and made available only to those persons with responsibility for the same.
(9) Access and means of access by keys and/or computer passwords to records of employment should be provided only to the post holder and/or the Chairman of the Council.
27. Freedom of Information Act 2000
(1) All requests for information held by the Council shall be processed in accordance with the Council’s policy in respect of handling requests made under the Freedom of Information Act 2000
(2) The Proper Officer shall refer correspondence from and notices served by the Information Commissioner to the Chairman of the Council. The Council shall have the power to do anything to facilitate compliance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000, including exercising the powers of the Proper Office in respect of Freedom of Information requests set out under Standing Order 3 above.
28. Relations with the press/media
(1) All requests from the press or other media for an oral or written statement or comment from the Council shall be processed in accordance with the Council’s policy in respect of dealing with the press.
(2) In accordance with the Council’s policy in respect of dealing with the press, councillors shall not, in their official capacity, provide oral or written statements or written articles to the press or other media.
29. Liaison with Councillors from Principal Authority
An agenda for a meeting shall be sent, together with an invitation to attend, to the Cheshire West and Chester Borough Council Ward Councillor. Unless the Council orders otherwise, a copy of each letter ordered to be sent to the Borough Council shall be transmitted to the Ward Councillor.
30. Financial Matters
(1) The Council shall consider and approve Financial Regulations drawn up by the Responsible Financial Officer, which shall include detailed arrangements in respect of the following:
(a) the accounting records and systems of internal control
(b) the assessment and management of risks faced by the Council
(c) the work of the Internal Auditor and the receipt of regular reports from the Internal Auditor which shall be required at least annually
(d) the financial reporting requirements of councillors and local electors; and
(e) procurement policies (subject to (2) below) including the setting of values for different procedures where the contract has an estimated value of less than £50,000.
(2) Any proposed contract for the supply of goods, materials, services and the execution of works with an estimated value in excess of £50,000 shall be procured on the basis of a formal tender as summarised in (3) below.
(3) Any formal tender process shall comprise the following steps:
(a) a public notice of intention to place a contract to be placed in a local newspaper
(b) a specification of the goods, materials, services and the execution of works shall be drawn up
(c) tenders are to be sent, in a sealed marked envelope, to the Clerk by a stated date and time
(d) tenders submitted are to be opened, after the stated closing date and time, by the Clerk and one member of the Council
(e) tenders are then to be assessed and reported to the appropriate meeting of the Council.
(4) The Council is not bound to accept the lowest tender, estimate or quote. Any tender notice shall contain a reference to Standing Order 23 regarding improper activity.
(5) Where the value of a contract is likely to exceed £138,893 (or other threshold specified by the Office of Government commerce from time to time) the Council must consider whether the Public Contracts Regulations 2006 (SI No.5, as amended) and the Utilities Contracts Regulations 2006 (SI No.6, as amended) apply to the contract and, if either of those Regulations apply, the Council must comply with EU procurement rules.
(6) The Financial Regulations of the Council shall be subject to regular review, at least once every four years.
31. Allegations of breaches of the Code of Conduct
(1) On receipt of a notification that there has been an alleged breach of the Code of Conduct the Proper Officer shall refer it to a committee known as the Conduct Committee.
(2) Where the notification relates to a complaint made by the Proper Officer, the Proper Officer will notify the Chairman of the Conduct Committee of that fact who, upon receipt of such notification, will nominate a person to assume the duties of the Proper Officer set out in the remainder of this Standing Order, who will continue to act as such until the complaint is resolved.
(3) Where a notification relates to a complaint made by an employee not being the Proper Officer, the Proper Officer will ensure that the employee in question does not deal with any aspect of the complaint.
(4) The subject matter of notifications shall be confidential and, insofar as it is possible to do so by law, the Council (including the Proper Officer and the Chairman of the Conduct Committee) will take the steps set out below, together with other steps considered necessary, to maintain confidentiality.
(a) Draft the summonses and agendas in such a way that the identity and subject matter of the complaint are not disclosed
(b) Ensure that any background papers containing the information set out in paragraph 4(a) above are not made public
(c) Ensure that the public and press are excluded from meetings as appropriate
(d) Ensure that the minutes of meetings are drafted in such a way as to preserve confidentiality.
(5) Standing Order 31(4) above should not be taken to prohibit the Council (whether through the Proper Officer or the Chairman of the Conduct Committee or otherwise) from disclosing information to members and officers of the Council or to other persons where such disclosure is necessary to deal with the complaint or is required by law.
(6) The Conduct Committee shall have the power to:
(a) Seek documentary and other evidence
(b) seek and share information relevant to the complaint
(c) grant the member involved a financial indemnity in respect of legal costs which shall be in accordance with the law and subject to ratification by a meeting of the Council.
(7) A reference in this Standing Order to a “notification” shall be taken to refer to a communication of any kind which relates to a breach or an alleged breach of the Code of Conduct by a member of the Council whether co-opted or not.
32. Variation, Revocation and Suspension of Standing Orders
(1) Any or every part of the Standing Orders except those that are mandatory by law may be suspended by resolution in relation to any specific item of business.
(2) A motion to add to or to vary or to revoke one or more of the Council’s Standing Orders not mandatory by law shall not be carried unless two thirds of the councillors at a meeting vote in favour of the same.
33. Standing Orders to be given to Councillors
(1) The Proper Officer shall provide a copy of the Council’s Standing Orders upon his delivery of his declaration of acceptance of office to the Council.
(2) The Chairman’s decision as to the application of any of the Standing Orders, or as to the proceedings of a meeting shall be final.
(3) A councillor’s failure to observe Standing Orders more than three times in one meeting may result in him being excluded from the meeting in accordance with Standing Orders.
Puddington Parish Council
Revised Standing Orders based on NALC Model Standing Orders issued July 2009
Adopted September 2011
Amended November 2011
Amended & Adopted May 2015
Reviewed and Adopted 19 May 2016
Reviewed and Adopted 25 May 2017
Reviewed and Adopted 9 May 2019