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Attendance by Reserve Members
To note the attendance at this meeting of any duly appointed Reserve Members.
Reserve Members may attend meetings:-
(i) to take the place of an ordinary Member for whom they are a reserve;
(ii) where the ordinary Member will be absent for the whole of the meeting;
(iii) the meeting notes at the start of the meeting at the item ‘Reserves’ that the Reserve Member is or will be attending as a reserve;
(iv) if a Reserve Member whose intention to attend has been noted arrives after the commencement of the meeting, then that Reserve Member can only act as a Member from the start of the next item of business on the agenda after his/her arrival.
RESOLVED: To note the attendance at this meeting of the following duly appointed Reserve Members:-
Declarations of Interest
To receive declarations of personal or prejudicial interests, arising from business to be transacted at this meeting, from:
(a) all Members of the Sub-Committee;
(b) all other Members present.
Members of the Sub-Committee referred to the Councillor Code of Conduct and raised concerns about the presence of three Members of Cabinet in attendance at the meeting. Following advice from an officer and clarification as to their role in the meeting, the three Cabinet Members left the room due to their prejudicial interest in the item that was the subject of the Call In notice.
RESOLVED: To note that the following interests were declared:
Agenda Item 5 – Call-In of Cabinet Decision (9 February 2012) – Transformation Programme Mobile and Flexible Working
Councillor Sue Anderson declared a personal interest in relation to the HMRC working from home allowance. She would remain in the room whilst the matter was considered and voted upon.
Councillor Graham Henson declared a personal interest in that he had a cousin who worked for the Council and a prejudicial interest as a member of the Cabinet that had taken the decision on mobile and flexible working. He would remain in the room whilst the matter was considered and voted upon as he was responding to the Call In.
Councillor Barry Macleod-Cullinane, who was not a member of the Sub?Committee, declared a personal interest in that his sister was a teacher in a Harrow School. He would remain in the room whilst the matter was considered and voted upon.
Councillor Paul Osborn declared a personal interest in that he had received hospitality from Capita that was in excess of £25.00 in value. He would remain in the room whilst the matter was considered and voted upon.
That the minutes of the meeting held on 5 December 2011 be taken as read and signed as a correct record.
RESOLVED: That the minutes of the meeting held on 5 December 2011 be taken as read and signed as a correct record subject to noting that a Member of the Sub-Committee had given an undertaking that the Corporate Director of Place Shaping would carry out consultation.
The Chair drew attention to the document ‘Protocol for the Operation of the Call-In Sub-Committee’ which was included with the agenda papers and read paragraphs 5 and 8 to the meeting. The Chairman outlined the procedure to be followed at the meeting and explained that, in accordance with Committee Procedure Rule 46.5, a notice seeking to invoke the call-in procedure must state at least one of the following grounds in support of the request for a call?in of the decision:-
(a) inadequate consultation with stakeholders prior to the decision;
(b) the absence of adequate evidence on which to base a decision;
(c) the decision is contrary to the policy framework, or contrary to, or not wholly in accordance with the budget framework;
(d) the action is not proportionate to the desired outcome;
(e) a potential human rights challenge;
(f) insufficient consideration of legal and financial advice.
The following documents are attached:-
a) Notice invoking the Call-in.
b) Minutes of the Cabinet Meeting held on 9 February 2012.
c) Report and tabled documentation submitted to the Cabinet Meeting held on 9 February 2012.
The Chairman welcomed Councillor Macleod-Cullinane, lead signatory to the call?in notice, to the meeting. He also welcomed the Portfolio Holder for Performance, Customer Services and Corporate Services, who was in attendance, with his Cabinet Assistant, to respond to the call-in as part of a requirement of that process, the Corporate Director of Place Shaping and the Director of Customer Services and Business Transformation. In accordance with Committee Rule 4.1.1, the Sub-Committee agreed that Councillor Stephen Wright could speak on behalf of the signatories at the meeting.
The Chairman, prior to the commencement of the consideration of the call?ins in relation to the decision made by Cabinet on 9 February 2012 on the Transformation Programme Mobile and Flexible Working, detailed the papers available to the Sub-Committee. The call-in notice was submitted by seven Members of Council and cited 2 of the grounds set out in the Protocol (a and b).
Councillor Macleod-Cullinane confirmed that the Members call-in related to the decision made by Cabinet on the Transformation Programme Mobile and Flexible Working taken on 9 February 2012. He also confirmed that the basis of their reasons for call-in related to grounds (a) and (b) of the Protocol, namely that there was inadequate consultation with stakeholders prior to the decision and there was an absence of adequate evidence on which to base a decision.
Councillors Macleod-Cullinane and Wright outlined their reasons relating to each of the grounds raised in the call-in notice. During the course of their presentation, they raised the following issues:
· Members of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee were a key stakeholder and as such had requested a briefing on Mobile and Flexible Working. The proposals were a fundamental change, involved a significant amount of resource and affected a number of staff.
· Members of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee had not been given sufficient opportunity to challenge the proposals and had been led to believe that there would be a briefing prior to Cabinet.
· Insufficient attention had been given to Members of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee as stakeholders.
· There had been a briefing to the Administration on 14 January 2012 but the same opportunity had not been given to Members of the Opposition and therefore paragraph 3.1 of the Member/Officer Protocol had been breached. In addition, the leadership of the major Opposition had not been kept informed on the proposals.
· Part II information had not been provided to members of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee nor to Cabinet Members and therefore it was stated that information had not been available to Members in making their decision.
· The table detailing the savings did not explain how these would be made year on year. There was no justification for the decision.
· Whilst the outcome of the decision might be correct how it was arrived at was not supported by documented evidence.
· The Sub-Committee needed to determine whether the correct decision-making process had been followed.
· The briefing to members of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee had been held on ... view the full minutes text for item 18.