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Any further documents to be included (s228 LGA 1972)?

0 votes

Hi

What further documents (if any) could a local government elector expect to be included with any minutes of proceedings under s228 of the Local Government Act 1972?

Any advice would be most appreciated.

Thank you.

Sam

asked by (2.3k points)

3 Answers

+1 vote
I don't think that this is a case of what is legally required (in this case minutes of meetings) but what level of openness and transparency should be expected by the electorate of their Parish Council in meeting this stated requirement of them. The electorate can then judge whether this requirement has been met to the electorates satisfaction and reacted to at the next election. This as we all know is the only remedy for a non performing council. The ballot box
answered by (3.1k points)
Many thanks Mentorman.
+1 vote
Not sure what you mean by 'included with the minutes' as minutes usually are themselves a self contained document separate from other proceedings of a meeting.

The only (hard copy) meeting document which is normally issued as a matter of course is the agenda and presently with Zoom being forced upon us it is not really practical to provide hard copy of that. However the agenda should be downloadable from your councils website several days prior to the meeting at anytme not just the present. The same should be so regarding any ongoing operational records that are of public concern or interest including your councils expenditure, ongoing running cost, planning issues and so on. Everything should be completely transparent. The only area you are not entitled access to is the private section of a meeting as that is normally reserved for personal items or other confidential issues that have been brought to the councils attention.

If you feel there is some information that is of public interest/concern which is being intentionally withheld you can of course request that information under the Freedom of Information Act, but that is getting a bit heavy and of course is unlikely to be appreciated by your council. It would be much better that you first search your councils website (presuming they have one) and if you can't find what you are looking for just ask the Clerk where/how you can see it, you are perfectly entitled to do that.

NB not all information has to be revealed under the Freedom of Info. Act. If it is confidential or contains an individuals private details etc. or may infer a judgement by the council and so on but I would seriously reserve that route as a last resort and keep it amicable if possible.
answered by (430 points)
edited by
Many thanks James for your explicit response. Unfortunately, my parish council are vindictive and inept, and are also the subject of damning criticism from the Information Commissioner.
+2 votes
All of the accounting records should be available for inspection. The Transparency Codes contain the more up-to-date regulations regarding public access, including minutes, agendas and all supporting paperwork.
answered by (18.5k points)
Thanks for that DtC.  However, The Local Government (Transparency Requirements) (England) Regulations 2015 are also irrelevant to my parish council.
Irrelevant by choice, or because they fall between the £25,000 and the £200,000 and believe they can ignore them?
Irrelevant by choice - their gross annual income or expenditure is below £25K.

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