Venue: Council Chamber, Allerdale House. View directions
Contact: Dean Devine
Procedural Rule 22.2
Councillor Hilary Harrington attended the meeting under Procedural Rule 22.2
To sign as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 11 March 2013.
The minutes of the meeting held on 11 March 2013 were agreed as a correct record.
Declaration of interests
Councillors/Staff to give notice of any disclosable pecuniary interest, other registrable interest or any other interest and the nature of that interest relating to any item on the agenda, in accordance with the adopted Code of Conduct.
5. Complaint 2013/N003, 2013/N004 and 2013/N005.
Town Cllr Carole Armstrong; Other Interest; Due to her name being mentioned in Appendix 1 - 'Bullies and Liars' leaflet.
6. Complaint 2013/N009.
Councillor Janice Wood; Other Interest; Due to being a friend of the Councillor who the complaint is against and due to being present at a meeting referred to in the complaint.
To answer questions from members of the public – 2 days notice of which must have been given in writing or by electronic mail.
Complaint 2013/N003, 2013/N004 and 2013/N005
To consider whether there has been a breach of Workington Town Council’s adopted Code of Conduct for members.
The Standards Committee met to consider complaints received against Councillor Stephen Stoddart of Workington Town Council alleging that he had breached Workington Town Council’s Code of Conduct.
Councillor Stoddart was not present at the meeting although members were informed that he had been invited to attend.
The Standards Committee considered the evidence contained within the Investigating Officer’s report. After a consideration of evidence, the Standards Committee felt that the following provisions of Workington Town Council’s Code of Conduct were relevant:
1 Paragraph 5(3)
You must not disclose any information given to you as a member in breach of any confidence
2 Paragraph 5(4)
You must not bring your office or the Council into disrepute
The Standards Committee found that Councillor Stephen Stoddart had failed to comply with the Code of Conduct and agreed that the following actions be taken:
· That Workington Town Council be recommended to arrange Code of Conduct Training for Councillor Stoddart
· That a press release be sent out, disclosing the decision of the Standards Committee in relation to the complaints received against Councillor Stoddart
· A decision notice resulting from the Standards Committee’s findings be sent to both Councillor Stoddart and the clerk of Workington Town Council
Agreed – That:
a) Workington Town Council be recommended to arrange Code of Conduct Training for Councillor Stoddart
b) the Deputy Monitoring Officer send out a press release, disclosing the decision of the Standards Committee in relation to the complaints received against Councillor Stoddart
c) the Deputy Monitoring Officer send out a decision notice to both Councillor Stoddart and the clerk of Workington Town Council
To consider how to deal with a complaint received. (Verbal report)
The Standards Committee considered how to deal with a complaint that had been received.
The Chair, Deputy Monitoring Officer and Independent Person were required to meet informally to determine whether there were grounds to take the complaint to the Standards Committee or not however the Chair had declared an interest in this complaint.
The Standards Committee had to decide on who would meet with the Independent Person and Deputy Monitoring Officer in the Chair’s place.
It was decided that Councillor Christine Smith would meet with the Deputy Monitoring Officer and the Independent Person in Councillor Janice Wood’s place in order to determine whether there were grounds to take the complaint to the Standards Committee or not.
Agreed – That Councillor Christine Smith attends an informal meeting with the Deputy Monitoring Officer and the Independent Person so that it could be determined whether to escalate a complaint that had been received to the Standards Committee or not.