Part 4 - Panel operating principles
Referred to in Cabinet Procedure Rule 13 and Scrutiny Procedure Rule 21
References to Panels includes references to Scrutiny Task Groups and Working Groups.
- Panels may be established by the Cabinet, Leader of the Council, Cabinet Member or Officer acting under delegated powers or a committee to undertake standing or task-based work in support of the Cabinet, Leader of the Council, Cabinet Member or a committee. Panels may also be established jointly by the Cabinet, Leader of the Council, Cabinet Member or a committee. The full Council will not establish panels and may instead call upon the Cabinet, Leader of the Council, Cabinet Member and/or a committee to support its work.
Occasionally full Council may wish to set up a working group outside of the scrutiny arrangements and these will follow the panel operating principles where appropriate.
2. Panels will not have any decision taking powers.
3. If appropriate the task to be undertaken by the Panel will be scoped and defined beforehand, together with the timeframe within which the work of the Panel is to be completed and the reporting time for the outcome of the Panel’s work. Each Panel will operate on a time limited basis unless otherwise agreed by the Cabinet, Leader of the Council, Cabinet Member and / or committee.
4. Panels will be politically balanced where possible, unless otherwise agreed by Cabinet, the Leader of the Council, Cabinet Member or committee.
5. All members, except Members of the Cabinet, may serve on Scrutiny Task Groups.
6. Cabinet Panels will be chaired by the Leader of the Council or Cabinet Member as appropriate.
7. Other panels will be chaired as they determine.
8. Panel meetings may be conducted informally. In consultation with other Panel members, the Chair of the Panel will determine whether any meetings of the Panel should be held in public. In the event the Chair of a Panel is not a County Councillor, the majority of those members of the Panel who are County Councillors will determine whether any meetings of the Panel should be held in public.
9. Panels may request the attendance of relevant County Councillors and Officers at meetings to assist in the issues under discussion. People from outside the Council may be invited to attend also for particular issues as appropriate.
10. Each Panel will appoint a Lead Officer who will seek to ensure effective progress and communication in respect of the work of the Panel.
11. The administration of Panels will be supported by Democratic Services.