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Is there a requirement for our small parish council to allocate portfolios to Councillors

+1 vote
We are a small parish council with 4 councillors, is there a necessity to allocate portfolios to councillors or is it 'best practice' to do so or can the councillors be general - as in without specific portfolios?

Does the Chairman appoint specific briefs/portfolios, should acceptance or these roles be Minuted,entered in the standing orders and reviewed every year.  Is it advisable to cover the basics such as finance, planning, highways?  Would for example our neighbourhood watch councillor have that as portfolio or is it more or a representation role.
What I am basically trying to clarify as what is the difference between a specific brief, portfolio and representation and what are our requirements as a small parish council and how do we record this information?  Thank-you.
by (130 points)

1 Answer

+1 vote
There is no requirement for a Parish Council to allocate ‘portfolios’ to individual councillors. It is up to you (the Parish Council as a whole) to decide how best to organise your Parish Council to work effectively. To a certain extent it may depend on the particular skills and experience of individual councillors. However any decisions to divide up responsibilities should be taken by the whole Parish Council, and not just on the word of the Chairman. It is important that any decisions to delegate powers to individual councillors are properly made and recorded. Your standing orders may deal with this. If you do allocate areas of responsibility to councillors, this must be published as required by the Transparency Code for Smaller Authorities.
by (1.7k points)
I agree. Would just like to add that a council cannot delegate decision making to individual councillors, although it can delegate them to a committee or to an officer (say the clerk). Councillors can be delegated to review a question and bring recommendations to the council.
Thanks to Counterpoint for making this important point clear.

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