Parish Councillors / Co-Option / Basic Information
Picture left to right – Geoffrey Dorrity – Jennifer Taylor – Zoe North – Teri England
The council has a maximum of five councillors and three are required to be quorate. There is currently only 4 and therefore the Council are looking for a new councillor.
|Role||Name||E-Mail Address||Status||Register of Interest|
|RFO||Zoe Northfirstname.lastname@example.org||Temp’||Not Applicable|
|Chairman||Geoffrey Michael Dorrity||Via Clerk||Co-Opted||Click here|
|Vice Chair||Jennifer Taylor||Via Clerk||Co-Opted||Click here|
|Councillor||Teri England||Via Clerk||Co-Opted||Click here|
|Councillor||Zoe North||Via Clerk||Co-Opted||Click here|
|Councillor||Andrew Watkins||Via Clerk||Co-Opted||Click here|
The email address: email@example.com does not appear to be associated with anyone.
For Councillor register of interests CLICK HERE! Here is a useful document stipulating that the Council must publish Register of Interests within 28 days of becoming a councillor.
It is a legal requirement to provide the Monitoring Officer with a register of disclosable pecuniary interests within 28 days of election or co-option to the office of Councillor. Failure to comply with this requirement is a criminal offence, but does not disqualify the person from continuing to be a Parish Council. Successful prosecutions can result in a fine of £5000 and disqualification for five years from your local council and from other local authorities.
|Alexander Paul Maughan||Houghfirstname.lastname@example.org||07707 060022||LCC Link|
|Penny Milnes||Loveden Heathemail@example.com||07973 954685||SKDC Link|
Very useful Council Documents
Useful Reference Documents
- Model Councillor Guide
- Good Councillor Guide – 2018
- The Good Councillors Guide to Finance and Transparency – NALC
- Guide for Councillors – 2019/2020
- Good Councillors Guide to Cyber Security – NALC
- All About Local Councils – NALC
- It Takes All Sorts – NALC
- How Councillors Should respond to Planning Permissions – NALC
- A link to an On-Line Government Manual that explains everything a councillor NEEDS TO KNOW
- Can you stand as a Councillor – Charity Commission
- Website Accessibility and Publishing Guidelines – NALC
- Points of Light – Case Studies by NALC
Below is the definition of Co-Option
The council chooses someone to fill a vacancy if insufficient candidates are proposed for seats at an election. An ordinary election occurs every four years but there may be an election when a seat falls vacant at other times. In addition, if a vacancy occurs between elections (for example, by the resignation of a councillor), the council must generally publicly notify the vacancy and if no poll is claimed co-opt. It is better for democracy if councillors are elected rather than relying on co-option, so they can be confident that the council is the community’s choice of representatives.
Diversity often arises because councillors have different backgrounds, enthusiasms and interests. We should celebrate this. Councillors have different skills and attitudes; for example, some work with ideas while others are very practical; some like accounts while others prefer reports. The local council needs a range of skills to work as a team.
Your chairman has the role of team leader for council meetings (see Part Three) while your clerk is also a
vital team member. The clerk provides advice and administrative support, and takes action to implement council decisions. The clerk may have to act as a project manager, personnel director, public relations officer or finance administrator. The clerk is not a secretary and is not at the beck and call of the chairman or other councillors; the clerk is answerable only to the council as a whole. The clerk is the proper officer of the council in law. Legally councils can delegate decisions to clerks because they are trusted professional officers whose objectivity allows them to act for the council.
The best councils will have a clerk and councillors who work as a team to provide a service for the community.
Rules for Councillors
As a councillor you have a responsibility to:
You cannot act as a councillor until you have signed a formal declaration of acceptance of your office.
You must sign it at or before the first council meeting following your election or co-option in the presence
of another councillor or the clerk. Failure to sign means you cannot continue as a councillor, unless you were given permission to sign later.
- attend meetings when summoned to do so; the notice to attend a council meeting is, in law, a summons, because you have a duty to attend
- consider, in advance of the meeting, the agenda and any related
- documents which were sent to you with the summons
- take part in meetings and consider all the relevant facts and issues on matters which require a decision including the views of others expressed at the meeting
- take part in voting and respect decisions made by the majority of those present and voting
- ensure, with other councillors, that the council is properly managed
- represent the whole electorate, and not just those who voted for you.
Councillors Conduct and Interests
There seven Nolan principles apply to the conduct of people in public life. They are:
- Selflessness – you should act in the public interest
- Integrity – you should not put yourself under any obligations to others, allow them improperly to influence you or seek benefit for yourself, family, friends or close associates
- Objectivity – you should act impartially, fairly and on merit
- Accountability – you should be prepared to submit to public scrutiny necessary to ensure accountabilityOpenness – you should be open and transparent in your actions and decisions unless there are clear and lawful reasons for non-disclosure
- Honesty – you should always be truthful
- Leadership – as a councillor, you should promote, support and exhibit high standards of conduct and be willing to challenge poor behaviour.
Code of Conduct
Each local council must adopt and publicise a code of conduct that is in line with the Nolan principles.
The code should deal with councillors’obligations about their conduct including the registration and disclosure of their interests (see below). Complaints about councillors’ conduct are dealt with by the principal authority.
The National Association of Local Councils has developed a template code of conduct specifically for parish councils, which covers these issues. Your council is not obliged to use this template.
Alternative models are also available from your principal authority or from the MHCLG website.
You should ask to see your council’s code of conduct to ensure that you are aware of your responsibilities and any personal disclosure requirements.
As a councillor, you must abide by rules that apply to the disclosure of some business or financial interests. These are called “disclosable pecuniary interests” or “DPIs”. DPIs include your employment, ownership of land, and business interests in your parish. Other interests are usually non-pecuniary or personal interests. Your council’s code will establish what actions you must take for personal interests.
You must disclose to your principal authority’s monitoring officer any DPIs and any other disclosable interests that are referred to in your council’s code of conduct within 28 days of becoming a member of the council. The monitoring officer will make a register of your interests available to the public – usually on the principal authority’s website. This rule on disclosure also applies to your spouse, civil partner or cohabitee, as
if their interests were yours. You should be aware that the register of interests does not distinguish between a councillor’s interests and those that are held by
If the monitoring officer decides that, by making a disclosable interest public, you might be subject to a threat of violence or intimidation the fact that you have the interest can be registered without details of the interest. This is known as a sensitive interest.
You should give a copy of your register of interests to your clerk for your council’s website.
If an agenda item relates to one of your DPIs – such as the expansion of a supermarket chain in which you own
shares – you must not participate in the discussion or vote. You must withdraw if your council’s standing orders say so. Also, if the interest has not been registered with the monitoring officer, you must disclose the interest at the meeting (or, for sensitive interests, disclose the issue but not the detail). You must then notify the monitoring officer within 28 days of the meeting.
The declaration of interests at meetings is intended to give the public confidence in your council’s decision making. It helps if the agenda gives councillors an opportunity to declare an interest early in a meeting.
A council can decide that a councillor with a DPI can participate and vote on a council motion. This is called granting a dispensation. If you have a DPI but think you should be able to participate in the discussion and vote on the matter, you put your request in writing to the council. Your clerk will advise. As a councillor, you can vote on your own request for a dispensation.
There are a number of potential criminal offences associated with:
- the failure to register or disclose a DPI
- discussion and/or voting on a DPI. Successful prosecutions can result in a fine of £5000 and disqualification for five years from your local council and from other local authorities.