Agenda and minutes

Standards and Conduct Committee - Friday, 3rd March, 2017 2.00 pm

Venue: Civic Hall, Leeds, LS1 1UR. View directions

Contact: Kevin Tomkinson  Principal Governance Officer

No. Item


Appeals against refusal of inspection of documents

To consider any appeals in accordance with Procedure Rule 15.2 of the Access to Information Procedure Rules (in the event of an appeal the press and public will be excluded).


(*In accordance with Procedure Rule 15.2, written notice of an appeal must be received by the Head of Governance Services at least 24 hours before the meeting)


There were no appeals against refusals of inspection of documents.




Exempt Information - Possible exclusion of the press and public

1.  To highlight reports or appendices which officers have identified as containing exempt information, and where officers consider that the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information, for the reasons outlined in the report.


2.  To consider whether or not to accept the officers recommendation in respect of the above information.


3.  If so, to formally pass the following resolution:-


RESOLVED – That the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following parts of the agenda designated as containing exempt information on the grounds that it is likely, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the press and public were present there would be disclosure to them of exempt information, as follows:-


There were no resolutions to exclude the public.




Late items

To identify items which have been admitted to the agenda by the Chair for consideration.  


(The special circumstances shall be specified in the minutes.)


There were no late items submitted for consideration – although two appendices inadvertently omitted from the agenda pack for Item 7 were circulated.




Declaration of Disclosable Pecuniary and Other Interests

To disclose or draw attention to any disclosable pecuniary interests for the purposes of Section 31 of the Localism Act 2011 and paragraphs 13-18 of the Members’ Code of Conduct.  Also to declare any other significant interests which the Member wishes to declare in the public interest, in accordance with paragraphs 19-20 of the Members’ Code of Conduct.


There were no declarations made.




Apologies for absence

To receive any apologies for absence from the meeting.


Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Townsley.



Minutes - 4th March 2016 pdf icon PDF 52 KB

To receive the minutes of the meeting held on 4th March 2016.



RESOLVED – That the minutes of the meeting held on 4th March 2016 be approved as a correct record.




Annual Report of the Standards and Conduct Committee pdf icon PDF 104 KB

To consider the report of the City Solicitor presenting to the committee an annual report relating to matters within the committee’s terms of reference.

Additional documents:



  The Head of Governance and Scrutiny Support presented an annual report relating to matters within the committee’s terms of reference and which provided assurances in respect of the arrangements in place for standards and conduct matters.  By way of update Members were informed that since the agenda had been published a further complaint had been received in respect of a Leeds City Council member.


In reviewing the matters set out in the report, the following issues were discussed:


  • Quarterly reminders issued to Leeds City Council Members to review registers of interest and the intention for the next reminder to focus on gifts and hospitality – the Chair asked if this reminder facility could also be extended to Parish and Town Councillors (via Parish and Town Council clerks);
  • Sensitive Interests and the annual review of these undertaken by the Monitoring Officer;
  • The intention to seek renewal of existing dispensations for Leeds City Council Members – the committee were supportive of this;
  • The outcome of the assessments made of complaints which had been submitted;
  • That no complaints had been received in respect of Parish and Town Councillors;
  • The new Social Media guidance provided to Leeds City Council Members – the committee were supportive of the guidance being reissued to all Councillors.
  • The anticipated extension to Mr Tollefson’s term of office as Independent Person.


The committee noted that the annual report would be received by full Council in March in order for full Council to receive assurances as to how the authority’s duty to promote and maintain high standards of conduct (by Members and co-opted Members of the Council) is being discharged.


RESOLVED – The Committee resolved


(a)  To receive and note the assurances provided in respect of the Council’s arrangements for Standards and Conduct;

(b)  To note that the annual report on Standards and Conduct will be considered by full Council in March 2017;

(c)  To request that quarterly reminders to review Registers of Interest be also extended to Parish and Town Councillors;

(d)   That no amendments, to either the Members’ Code of Conduct or the procedures for considering complaints, are required at this time;

(e)   That the guidance to Members on the use of Social Media be reissued to all Members;

(f)  That a reminder be sent to all Members to check their register of interests on a three monthly basis.