Part 4 - Rules of access to information about the County Council's formal business
Below are the rules of access to information about the County Council's formal business.
- 1 - Introduction
- 2 - The public's right to attend meetings
- 3 - The public’s right to obtain copies of the agenda to meetings and reports and documents that are to be discussed at meetings
- 4 - Sub-committees, panels and groups
- 5 - Decisions by the Leader of the Council, Cabinet Members and Officers
- 6 - Minutes of meetings and executive decisions
- 7 - Charges for the supply of agenda, reports and background papers
- 8 - The special rules that apply to “key decisions”
- 9 - Exceptions to the need to publish notice of a key decision 28 days in advance
- 10 - The general exception rule
- 11 - The special urgency rule
- 12 - Scrutiny committees
- 13 - Elected Members’ additional rights of access to information
- 14 - Additional rights of access to information by Scrutiny Committees
- 14 - Elected Members’ duty of confidence
- Appendix to rules on the public's right of access to information about the council's formal business
- A key decision is an executive decision that may be taken by the Cabinet, a Cabinet committee, Leader of the Council, a Cabinet Member or any Officer under powers delegated to them and which, if implemented, would be likely to:
13.1 Result in the Council incurring expenditure or the making of a saving, which is significant having regard to the County Council’s budget for the service or function to which the decision relates; or
13.2 Be significant in terms of its effects on communities living or working in an area comprising two or more county electoral divisions in the county.
- As a general rule, a decision will fall into paragraph 13.1 if the value of any expenditure or saving exceeds £500,000 unless the Council’s Chief Financial Officer and Monitoring Officer certify that it would not be a key decision and state their reasons for this conclusion in writing.
Note 1: The Chief Financial Officer and Monitoring Officer may issue guidance from time to time on the meaning of “key decisions”
Note 2; In view of the importance of key decisions they should normally only be taken by the Cabinet.
- Subject to paragraphs 16, 17 and 18, the Council must publish at its offices and on its web site at least 28 days clear days before a key decision is made a document which states that
- a key decision is to be made
- the subject matter of the decision
- the identity of the decision maker – in the case of an individual, their name and title, or if the decision is to be taken by Cabinet, a list of its members
- the date, or period within which the decision is to be made
- a list of documents submitted to the decision maker relating to the decision
- the address from which copies of such documents may be obtained
- that other documents may be submitted to the decision maker and the procedure for obtaining copies of them
whether any part of the meeting at which the matter is to be discussed will be held in private.