Issue - meetings

Constitution and other matters

Meeting: 08/04/2021 - Council (Item 45)

45 Constitutional amendments following the Council's decision to activate clause 8 of the Memorandum of Agreement between Breckland District Council and South Holland District Council and the associated designation of Statutory Officers; and the appointment of Proper Officers, and Virtual Meetings (Agenda item 9) pdf icon PDF 186 KB

Report of Councillor Suggitt, Executive Member for Governance.


Members are asked to note that the ADDENDUM – DESIGNATION OF STATUTORY OFFICERS attached as a supplement to this report at page 97 of the agenda pack updates recommendation 3 of the report.


Paragraph 3.3 of the report at agenda item 9 refers to this addendum.


Additional documents:


Councillor Suggitt, the Executive Member for Governance presented the report that covered the urgent matters that needed to be addressed following the termination of the Memorandum of Agreement between Breckland and South Holland District Councils.


The report dealt with the designation of the Head of Paid Service, the Monitoring Officer and the S151 Officer which were statutory posts and was a legislative requirement.


The names of the Officers designated to these posts had been highlighted on page 97 of the agenda pack.  The Proper Officer appointment had also been updated as certain post titles had been amended in the interim structure.


The reference to the joint arrangements would also be removed and a new Committee titled the “Shared Memorandum of Agreement Committee” had been appointed to deal solely with any disputes that could arise following the termination of the Agreement.


The report also dealt with the continued use of South Holland’s Independent person in specific circumstances.


A number of clerical errors had already been brought to the report author’s attention on pages 83, 75 and 95 of the agenda pack and these would be corrected accordingly.


It had also been prudent to consider virtual meetings as the Constitution would need to revert back to its previous version once the virtual meeting regulations came to an end.   


Any further amendments would be dealt with at a later date.


The Executive Member for Governance thanked the Legal Team for all their hard work in getting the report prepared for this Full Council meeting.  In normal circumstances this would have been a challenge, but she felt that it had been no mean feat to pull this together whilst working through the separation of the Councils itself.


The proposal to take the recommendations enbloc was seconded.


Before the vote was taken, Members were invited to ask questions.


Councillor Birt commented on the appointments being considered.  He felt that the S151 Officer had proved her worth and was happy for the said Officer to continue in this role, but the remainder of the job placements seemed to him a little odd and asked in the longer term if these positions would be advertised or reviewed going forward.


In response, the Leader advised that colleagues would be aware that when the Council appointed the Head of Paid Service it had been for a short-term fixed period and the individuals concerned already existed as Chief Officers.  The legislation as a Council required the designation of those relevant Officers to these posts and had been reflected in the recommendation. 


There was no recruitment process or appointment to these posts, and it was not necessary to go through the normal committee process. It was this Council’s duty to appoint such designations and those Chief Officers identified were the most suitable and as such had been brought forward to this Full Council meeting.


The Leader was sorry that Councillor Birt had not praised the other members of staff as he felt that all staff throughout the last 12 months  ...  view the full minutes text for item 45