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Re. minutes of the private section. After a Parish Councillor resigns does he/she have a right to see the minutes of the private section for the meeting prior to their resignation (ie when they were still a Parish Councillor and fully involved in the discussion). Especially as there was a controversial matter discussed of some importance which is now very likely to come into the public domain at subsequent meetings.
by (1.0k points)

2 Answers

0 votes
I would have thought not, as once you resign you have no more rights than a member of the public at that moment of resignation (and therefore the COC does not apply to you which would be pretty key, although morally it should always apply to anything you do during your tenure as a councillor?).  The key is to time your resignation correctly!
by (2.5k points)
There is a common fallacy that minutes for sessions when the public or press  are excluded are not in the public domain this is untrue it’s only when GDPR is involved that minutes are not put into the public domain
Thanks - yes, the minutes of closed sessions do appear in the public domain.  For some reason I was thinking of your ability to question them as a member of the public.  Ho hum.
0 votes
Suppose the issue for me is that there is no such thing legally as "private" minutes.  The decisions taken in closed session should be reported in exactly the same format as those in public session.  That been "RESOLVED X Y Z" or similar.  As others have said once a member has resigned even less sanction (frankly nothing happens even when a Cllr) in terms of confidential disclosures.
by (9.1k points)
Sorry I didn't make myself clear.

Yes items in the private section are, where appropriate, reported publicly, but the actual minutes recording councillor's comments or votes are not always conveyed as actual minutes.

It is the latter ie, votes for and against by councillor's names that is the issue. For me votes in private session for something that has great public interest is a complete NO GO! but that is what we are faced with in this instance.

So what I was meaning, without getting too specific, is that normally we get a draft copy prior to minutes being published proper; this in case a Parish Councillor objects to a certain minute. If the details of the questionable vote mentioned above is just recorded in the private section minutes as so many in favour and so many against, there is nothing officially on record as to who was for and against, which sort of creates rabbit holes for any councillor who want to side step future public annoyance (which there is very likely to be).

So what I was seeking more experienced opion on was, can the resigned PC request to see the draft minutes including the private session minutes in order to make sure the voting has been recorded by name for and against before publication.

Hope that makes sense

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