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Breach of Standing Order

0 votes
How should a breach of a Parish Council's Standing Orders be dealt with?
by (390 points)

4 Answers

0 votes
That depends on the breach you would have to explain more about the breach for anyone to give advice
by (5.8k points)
+1 vote
A breach of a council's standing orders would in the first instance be brought to the attention of the clerk either at the meeting where it occurred or for review at the next meeting. Depending on what it referred to (as most standing orders are definitions of agreed procedures of the council) then they can usually easily be corrected (if they occurred) by councillors in attendance.
by (13.3k points)
+1 vote
I am not sure if councillors are aware but all councillors are responsible for maintaining standards. As a councillor you should be alerting everyone one if standing orders are not adhered to
by (5.8k points)
+1 vote
It should be reported to the external Auditor & the Principal Authority monitoring officer.
by (27.3k points)
It is of course an easy way out of passing the buck to run to the MO at the first sign of trouble. The complainant should only see such action as a final resort when all else has failed to remedy the problem. In the first instance the complaint should be made to the clerk as the council's guidance on matters for their adjudication and remedial required action should it be necessary. Only then, if not corrected or ignored ta complain to MO is the next step. PC's and all councillors need to take responsibility for  their actions and have a duty to ensure that codes of conduct and standing orders are adhered to at all times by all members.
I disagree, the clue is in the title of the post, "Monitoring".  He or she should be made aware of breaches even if they are resolved eventually. If he or she isn't, how can they do the role from an informed position? They should be monitoring so that they know the extent of non conformances.
Does the role of Monitoring Officer extend beyond monitoring compliance with the Code of Conduct? From my experience, I don't think it does, but I've never seen a job description for the role. In this particular case, we don't know the nature of the breach and it may simply be an oversight that can be rectified easily.
The problem with running to the MO with every glitch that should be dealt with by clerk and council is that the already ineffectual MO position with become more unworkable as they cannot deal expediently or resolve  serious complaints at the moment. The MO should only be involved in my opinion if the resolution cannot be found at council level. I agree with Dave that it appears that the MO deals with breaches of codes of conduct. Standing orders are agreed and adopted by PC's as procedural matters not codes of conduct per say
On the local govt lawyer website Doreen Forrester-Brown says that it is to report on matters he or she believes are, or are likely to be, illegal or amount to maladministration;
to be responsible for matters relating to the conduct of councillors and officers; and
to be responsible for the operation of the council’s constitution.   For a town or parish council that would be their standing orders - if the breach of S.O. s was deliberate and wilful that would say to me that the monitoring officer should at least be informed.
Agreed, but does that refer only to the Council in which they are employed, or do those responsibilities extend to parish and town councils within their district?
Strictly speaking the MO only has jurisdiction against town or parish cllrs beaching their code of conduct. However it could be argued that willfully disregarding SO's or turning a blind eye  is a breach of the code of conduct. All PC or TC codes of conduct should include that members must behave accordingly with respect to  Selflessness, Integrity, Objectivity, Accountability, Openness, Honesty and Leadership. Allowing a wilful breach of SO's should certainly raise questions about cllrs  compliance with integrity and accountability

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