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Information

Items
No. Item

Contents

1.

The Constitution

Bookmark 1

1                   Powers of the Council

 

The Council will exercise all its powers and duties in accordance with the law and this Constitution.

 

2                   The Constitution

 

This document is the Constitution of the City and County of Swansea.

 

3                   Purpose of the Constitution

 

The purpose of the Constitution is to facilitate the effective operation and governance of the Council. This will, for example, assist the Council to:

 

a)                 Provide clear Leadership to the community in partnership with citizens, businesses and other organisations;

b)                 Support the active involvement of the citizens in the process of local authority decision-making;

c)                  Help Councillors represent their constituents more effectively;

d)                 Enable decisions to be taken efficiently and effectively;

e)                 Create a powerful and effective means of holding decision makers to public account;

f)                   Ensure that no one will review or scrutinise a decision in which they were directly involved;

g)                 Ensure that those responsible for decision making are clearly identifiable to local people and that they explain the reasons for decisions;

h)                 Provide a means of improving the delivery of services to the community;

i)                   Assist the Council to adhere to its Mission, Values and Guiding Principles; and

j)                   Assist the Council to deliver its Corporate Aims.

 

4                   Interpretation and Review of the Constitution

 

Where the Constitution permits the Council to choose between different courses of action, the Council will always choose that option that it thinks is closest to the purposes stated above.

 

The Council will monitor and evaluate the operation of the Constitution as set out in Article 15 (Review and Revision of the Constitution).

 

5                   Policy Commitments

 

The Council adopted its Policy Commitments Statement 2017-22 on 27 July 2017. The Policy Commitments are the key policy pledges that the Council has identified for delivery during this electoral cycle.

 

a)                 The Council’s Vision for Swansea

 

i)                   Swansea is a very special place with distinctive communities and rich in its culture, history, arts, and sporting achievements. We are very proud to live in such a beautiful place with its wonderful range of natural habitats, parks and open spaces. No other city can match Swansea with its miles of glorious beaches, the Gower Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and local and national nature reserves.

 

ii)                  Swansea Council will continue to work in partnership and develop the well-being of all our citizens and every community. We will work closely with other bodies/organisations and put the well-being of our citizens and communities and our seven well-being goals at the heart of everything we do, aiming to create;

 

             a prosperous Swansea,

             a globally responsible Swansea,

             a resilient Swansea,

             a Swansea of cohesive communities,

             a more equal Swansea,

             a healthier Swansea,

             a Swansea of vibrant culture.

 

iii)                 Swansea Council’s draft well-being objectives will form the basis of our corporate plan in 2017-22 and are focused on; 

 

             Economy and Infrastructure

             Education and Skills

             Tackling Poverty

             Safeguarding

             Transformation and Future Council

 

iv)                We will establish a Strategic Delivery Unit to embed effective delivery and cross-departmental co-ordination.

 

b)                 A Prosperous Swansea

 

Standing up for Education Learning and Skills

 

i)                   Swansea Council will strive to make our city one of the best places for children and young people to be educated in Wales and the UK.

 

ii)                  We will continue to work with our local universities and continue to innovate, learn from the best, share best practice with all schools and run an ambitious, supportive and effective performance framework for our teachers and schools.

 

Investing in Education

 

iii)                 Swansea Council will commit to spending nearly £1bn on schools, teaching and learning in the next 5 years and invest over £100 million in extensive improvements to school buildings across Swansea.

 

iv)                We will continue to invest in facilities for those who have additional learning needs or require additional wellbeing and mobility support in our schools and in our special schools, ensuring that all children and young people have the opportunity to realise their potential.

 

v)                  Working in partnership with schools, colleges and employers, we will support pupils to choose the best career path. This will include alternatives to traditional exams and assist those who want to progress through to college and university education, ensuring that all young people have the opportunity to build a career and access well paid jobs.

 

vi)                Working with our regional partners, we will align our education system to ensure we create the right people with the right skills to supply the new economy, and to fill jobs offering routes to well-paid careers. As part of the Swansea Bay City Deal, and working closely with the Regional Skills & Learning          Partnership, we will help all people to attain the skills they need to find a job.

 

High Performing Community Schools

 

vii)               Swansea Council will continue to work in partnership with head teachers and governing bodies to help ensure that schools are accessible and available for community activities and that children, young people, their families and the wider community can all benefit from these new arrangements.

 

viii)             We will promote school buildings as a resource for the whole community, not just children and young people. We will assist schools to develop and promote Family Learning, Wellbeing, Healthy Eating and Exercise, Recreation and Sports.

 

The Best Start in Life for all our Children: Happy, Healthy and Safe

 

ix)                Swansea Council will work with partners locally and internationally to seek to continue to participate in the World Health Organisation’s ‘Healthy City’ initiative and encourage schools to provide school breakfast clubs and provide a safe and supportive environment before and after the school day. 

 

x)                  Working with the Welsh Government, we will work in partnership with schools to encourage participation in the Welsh Government's plan to provide 30 hours a week for 48 weeks a year, free to 3 and 4 year old children, to ensure that all young children have the best start in life.

 

 

xi)                Swansea Council will aim to provide the right number of places, in both English and Welsh medium education to meet the wishes of children and families who want to be educated in the two languages of Wales.

 

A City of Life Long Learning

 

xii)               Working with our regional partners, Swansea Council will lead in creating an intelligent knowledge regional network, based on a new dynamic relationship with schools, the further education colleges, our two universities and employers. We will aim to create a seamless education and skills 'pipeline' through all levels education collaborating closely with partners we will create the workforce for the new technology skills and knowledge economy we will need to compete and succeed in the 21st century.

 

xiii)             Building upon our membership of the UNESCO Global Network of Learning Cities, the Council will build on our international links through our membership to share ideas and best practice, learning from each other and building strong economic and cultural ties.

 

The Swansea Bay City Deal

 

xiv)             Swansea Council will continue to work with our regional partners and the business community to deliver the City Deal, the 35,000 associated regional jobs, and promote the Swansea Bay City region.

 

xv)              We will establish a dedicated investment and growth team.  By increasing wider economic and social prosperity and the well-being of all our communities in Swansea, we will create better jobs closer to home.

 

xvi)             Swansea Council will regenerate the Kingsway area and develop a digital  employment district. We will improve the Highways and public realm in order to support the transformation of the area.

 

xvii)            Swansea Council will deliver the Swansea Central and Swansea Waterfront regeneration schemes on the old St David's and Civic Centre sites, creating new shopping, dining and leisure attractions. This will include a multipurpose digital arena, digital aquarium and gallery, new hotels, offices and public squares.

 

xviii)          We will make the city more attractive and accessible all year round for pedestrians and shoppers, by encouraging the development of more homes with a mix of tenures, exploring the  provision  of continuous covered walkways to guarantee weather proof shopping in the city centre’s main streets, creating new outside dining areas and performance spaces in Wind Street and encouraging independent businesses to set up in Swansea.

 

c)                  A Globally Responsible Swansea

 

i)                   Swansea Council will establish new bilateral trade and economic agreements with cities and regions around the world.

 

ii)                  We will develop international links, our special links with China and our twinned Cities around the world. We will build strong economic and cultural ties thereby growing Swansea's wealth and reputation.

 

d)                 A Greener More Resilient Swansea

 

Standing Up for a Greener Swansea

 

i)                   Swansea Council will continue to put sustainable development at the heart of all our policies and value and seek to protect Swansea's unique natural and built environment.

 

Delivering Green Energy

 

ii)                  We will strive to make Swansea Bay one of the greenest regions in the UK and seek to create a low carbon economy which promotes renewable energy developments like the Tidal Bay Lagoon. We will promote renewable green energy and aim for all developments to have as low a carbon footprint as possible. We will not promote fracking and other contentious gas extraction methods.

 

iii)                 Working with Swansea University and other local partners, Swansea Council will create a greener, smart and sustainable city by encouraging the development of 5th Generation network technologies to promote the development of 'low carbon' approaches and innovations in energy capture, storage, and distribution.

 

iv)                Swansea Council will explore establishing an energy company to manage the new energy generating facilities across the authority and to ensure the taxpayers of Swansea receive the benefits of income from energy generated in Swansea.

 

Lighting Our Communities

 

v)                  Swansea Council will convert all remaining street lights to low energy LED in the next 5 years.

 

Delivering Better & Smarter Transport

 

vi)                Working with our regional partners, Swansea Council will work towards developing an efficient and integrated transport system which develops the built and natural environment and encourages higher levels of physical activity.

 

Smart, Sustainable Transport

 

vii)               We will work with the Welsh Government, regional local authorities, the health service and other major employers and transport users, to develop a sustainable transport plan that works for everyone in whichever community they live.

 

viii)             Swansea Council will develop an integrated smart transport infrastructure that supports growth and makes commuting easier for all, whichever mode of transport local people choose to use.

 

ix)                We will develop new relationships with bus and rail operators to ensure connectivity and coverage exists for the entire city, county and the region.

 

x)                  We will pursue ways to improve our City's public transport services with simplified services using modern clean efficient vehicles, improved bus service frequencies, especially to our poorer communities, plus a simplified fares system. We will explore the benefits of introducing a more demanding customer focused Quality Bus Partnership and/or Quality Bus Contract between the Council and bus operators.

 

Greener, More Sustainable Transport

 

xi)                We will look to expand the transport network to ensure better coverage in the west of the city, in the east around the growing university campuses, and in the north as part of planning with the Swans and Ospreys for match day parking.

 

xii)               Working with the Welsh Government, we will explore the roll out of an 'Oyster card' style cashless card system as part of the integrated smarter transport system.

 

xiii)             We will continue to lobby the UK Government to confirm a date for completion of the electrification of the main line from London to Swansea so that the cleanest energy and most efficient trains run in and out of Swansea.

 

xiv)             Working in partnership with Sport Wales, our local universities and many other partners, we will make Swansea an 'Active City' by encouraging greater physical activity and improving people's health and wellbeing. We will seek to follow NICE (National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence) Guidance on Physical Activity and the Environment.

 

xv)              Swansea Council will continue to invest in our road, walkway and cycle path network. We will continue to focus resources to deal with road and highway repairs in 48 hours.

 

xvi)             We will explore and bid for infrastructure funding to invest in better road and cycle links to the city, so that those travelling from the west, north or east of the county can commute more easily.

 

xvii)            Swansea Council is committed to increasing the numbers of electric and hydrogen vehicles in Swansea. We will seek to secure investment to create a network of charging stations and hydrogen filling stations to promote the use of electric vehicles and hydrogen vehicles for public transport.

 

xviii)          Working with global partners to develop the technologies to support the development of new green technologies we will aim to attract inward investment in R&D and production facilities for these technologies in the city and region.

 

A Bike and Cyclist Friendly Swansea

 

xix)             Swansea Council will support the 'Wheelrights Manifesto', aiming to increase access to safe, quicker and more cost effective cycle and walking routes through many different parts of the city.

 

xx)              We will continue to encourage quality cycle training in schools for adults and will support the establishment of a bike hire scheme in Swansea and explore the introduction of electric bikes in Swansea.

 

Fairer Parking

 

xxi)             Swansea Council will examine the feasibility of introducing a comprehensive city centre parking system, adopting more flexible and fairer car park charges in local authority controlled car parks. We will also expand parking provision across the city and commit to freezing car parking charges across Swansea for at least two years.

 

Valuing Our Parks, Open Spaces and Natural Environment

 

xxii)            Swansea has an outstanding collection of beautiful parks and open spaces across the city, many recognised by the prestigious ‘Green Flag’ accreditation. We will enhance and sustain our parks and natural habitats for the present and future generations by re-greening our communities and investing in wildflower displays across Swansea.

 

xxiii)          Working with 'friends of parks' organisations Swansea Council will encourage greater community ownership of parks and public spaces to ensure long-term sustainability and control of these assets.

 

xxiv)          We will seek to protect Swansea’s natural and built environment by ensuring that any development and major event within the city complies with sustainable development principles.

 

xxv)           Working in partnership with our public and private sector partners Swansea Council will seek to develop 'Green Infrastructure' in our buildings and estates.

 

xxvi)          We will modernise the planning system and ensure the city is a place where appropriate sustainable development can take place efficiently and ensure Swansea is open for business and an attractive place for investment and development.

 

xxvii)        Swansea Council will encourage the greater use of public access land such as our commons and forests for informal recreation.

 

Growing Local

 

xxviii)       We will seek to promote the greater use of allotment and garden sharing particularly where publicly owned land is available and appropriate for such use.

 

xxix)          Swansea Council will support and expand community enterprises that help people gain growing and cooking skills and to help people escape food poverty.

 

e)                 A City of Cohesive Communities

 

Standing Up for Stronger and Safer Communities

 

i)                   Swansea Council will make imaginative use of digital technologies and put this at the heart of all its policies.

 

Community Action

 

ii)                  We will continue to follow the co-operative 'one council' model and ensure that the whole council - elected Members and Staff - work together to empower local communities to do more, to achieve more and to be involved in more of the decisions that affect them.

 

Cleaner Communities

 

iii)                 Swansea Council will create a task force to tackle fly tipping and ensure our streets are cleaned regularly. We will support recycling and ensure we will  continue to be the leading urban authority in Wales for recycling. We will increase the recycling options, but not reduce the 3 black bag limit.

 

Community Resilience

 

iv)                We will continue to support community budgets so that local people have the funds to address their local priorities.

 

Libraries and Community Buildings

 

v)                  Swansea Council will invest in Libraries and Community buildings to make them sustainable and ensure people have local access to services across Swansea.

 

Celebrating Diversity

 

vi)                Swansea Council will continue to stand up for the rights of all people in Swansea to live their lives, freely without fear, hatred, discrimination, or repression regardless of race, colour, religion and beliefs, sexual orientation, gender or age.

 

Promoting Community Safety

 

vii)               By developing and sustaining a strong partnership between the community, the  police and other agencies, we will focus on cutting crime by promoting local ownership of community safety.

 

viii)             Swansea Council will support people to live independently by developing a network of local area coordinators to cover the whole of Swansea. This network will work with voluntary organisations and others to ensure people get the information, advice and support they need in their community.

 

ix)                Swansea Council will not tolerate anti-social behaviour and neighbour nuisance and working with Police and our partners we will adopt a zero tolerance approach towards those who seek to disrupt the lives of people in Swansea.

 

x)                  We will continue to work with our partners and support a zero tolerance approach to tackling domestic abuse.

 

xi)                Swansea Council will implement 'public space protection orders' where required to prevent on street drinking and the sale and distribution of so called 'legal highs' in order to protect local communities from fear and intimidation.

 

xii)               We will continue to work with residents and community groups to consider further traffic calming measures or community safety measures to ensure our communities are as safe as they can be.

 

xiii)             We will establish and enforce ‘no cold calling zones’.

 

 

Strong Council Finances

 

xiv)             Swansea Council will continue to modernise Council services; protect jobs, improve performance and bring services back in-house.

 

xv)              We will robustly manage the Council's finances to ensure money is used wisely and Council finances remain on a sound  ...  view the full agenda text for item 1.

2.

Members of the Council

Bookmark 2

1                    Composition and Eligibility

 

The Council will comprise 72 Members, otherwise called Councillors. These 72 Councillors will be elected by the voters of each electoral division in accordance with a scheme drawn up by the Boundary Commission in Wales and approved by the National Assembly.

 

Only registered voters of the City and County of Swansea or those living or working in the area will be eligible to hold the Office of Councillor.

 

2                    Election and Terms of Councillors

 

The regular election of Councillors will be held as determined by legislation. The Terms of Office of Councillors is normally for 4 or 5 years. The term starts and finishes as defined in legislation.

 

3                    Roles, Rights and Duties of all Councillors

 

a)                  Key Roles

 

All Councillors will:

 

i)            Collectively be the ultimate policy-makers and carry out a number of strategic and corporate management functions;

ii)           Represent their communities and bring their views into the Council’s decision-making process, i.e. become the advocate of and for their communities;

iii)         Deal with individual casework and act as an advocate for constituents in resolving particular concerns or grievances;

iv)         Balance different interests identified within the electoral division and represent the electoral division as a whole;

v)          Contribute to the continual improvement of Council services;

vi)         Be involved in decision-making through the Council meeting;

vii)       Be available to represent the Council on other bodies; and

viii)      Maintain the highest standards of conduct and ethics.

 

b)                  Rights and Duties

 

i)            Councillors will have such rights of access to such documents, information, land and buildings of the Council as are necessary for the proper discharge of their functions and in accordance with the law;

ii)           Councillors will not make public information which is confidential or exempt without the consent of the Council or divulge information given in confidence to anyone other than a Councillor or Officer entitled to know it;

iii)         For these purposes, “confidential” and “exempt” information are defined in the Access to Information Rules in Part 4 of this Constitution.



 

4                    Conduct

 

Councillors will at all times observe the Members’ Code of Conduct and the Officer/Councillor Relations Protocol set out in Part 5 of this Constitution.

 

5                    Allowances

 

Councillors will be entitled to receive allowances in accordance with the Councillors’ Allowances Scheme set out in Part 6 of this Constitution.

 

 

3.

Citizens and the Council

Bookmark 3

Councils and their Constitutions should be outward looking and seek to engage with the public wherever possible. Setting out what citizens can expect from their Council and what rights they have is therefore an important part of the Constitution. However, with rights come responsibilities and it is also the role of the Constitution to show how the Council expects to be treated in return.

 

1                    Citizens’ Rights

 

Citizens have the following rights. Their rights to information and to participate are subject to the general law of Access to Information and/or meetings. There are set out and explained in more detail in the Access to Information Rules in Part 4 of this Constitution:

 

2                    Voting and Petitions

 

Citizens on the electoral roll for the area have the right to vote and sign a petition to request a referendum for an elected mayor form of Constitution. To be a valid petition for a referendum must contain the signatures of 10% of the Council’s registered electors.

 

3                    Information

 

            Citizens have the right to:

 

a)                  Attend meetings of the Council, it’s Committees, the Cabinet and Overview & Scrutiny Boards except where confidential or exempt information is likely to be disclosed, and the meeting is therefore held in private;

b)                  Find out from the Forward Work Programme what decisions will be taken by the Cabinet or the Council meeting, which issues the Overview & Scrutiny Boards will be considering, and when these matters will be discussed;

c)                  See reports and background papers, (subject to the Access to Information Rules) and any records of decisions made by the Council and/or the Cabinet; and

d)                  Inspect the Council’s accounts and make their views known to the external auditor.

 

5                    Participation

 

Citizens have the right to participate in the Council and Cabinet question times and attend meetings of Overview & Scrutiny Boards (subject to Access to Information Rules).

 

6                    Complaints

 

            Citizens have the right to complain:

 

a)                  To the Council itself under its Complaints Scheme;

b)                  To the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales about maladministration after using the Council’s own Complaints Scheme;

c)                  To the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales where they believe there has been a breach of the Councillor’s Code of Conduct;

d)                  To the Social Services Complaints Officer where appropriate.

 

 

4.

The Council Meeting

Bookmark 4

1                   Policy Framework

 

The following policies, strategies and plans are:

 

a)                 Required by the Local Authority Executive Arrangements (Functions and Responsibilities) (Wales) Regulations 2007 (as amended) to be adopted by the Council, namely:

 

i)                   Corporate Improvement Plan

ii)                  Development Plan (UDP)

iii)                 Local Housing Strategy

iv)                Local/Regional Transport Plan

v)                  Rights of Way Improvement Plan

vi)                Single Integrated Plan*

vii)               Welsh Language Scheme

viii)             Youth Justice Plan

 

*The Single Integrated Plan replaces four of the existing plans and strategies which formed part of the Policy Framework, namely the Community Strategy, the Children and Young Person’s Plan, the Health, Social Care and Wellbeing Strategy and the Community Safety Partnership Plan.

 

b)                 Recommended by Guidance to be adopted by Council.

 

c)          In addition the Council have adopted the following strategies and plans:

 

·                    A Strategy for Engagement of Children and Young People in Swansea

·                    Accessibility Strategy and Guidance to Schools on the production of Accessibility Plans

·                    Admission Arrangements for Schools

·                    Adoption Policy;

·                    Air Quality Action Plan

·                    Anti-Bullying Policy

·                    Anti-Fraud and Corruption Policy and Strategy

·                    Asset Management Plan

·                    Building Regulation Charges Policy Document

·                    Charging Framework for Home Care and other Non-Residential Social Services

·                    Children’s Play Strategy

·                    Civic Visits and Hospitality Policy;

·                    Contaminated Land Strategy;

·                    Corporate Policy on Records Management

·                    Councillors Allowances Scheme

·                    Countryside Access Plan

·                    Data Protection Policy

·                    Disability Equality Scheme

·                    Domestic Abuse Strategy

·                    Environment Strategy for Swansea

·                    Felindre Strategy

·                    Framework For Community Regeneration

·                    Freedom of Information Policy

·                    Gambling Policy

·                    Gorseinon Regeneration Strategy;

·                    Gower AONB – Management Plan

·                    Gypsy Traveller Policy

·                    Home to School Transport/Special Education Needs Transport Policy

·                    Housing Multiple Occupation Licensing Policy

·                    Inclusion Policy

·                    Interim City Centre Retail Strategy

·                    Library Plan

·                    Licensing Policy

·                    Policy and Procedure for the Appointment of LA Governors and the Establishment of an LA Panel

·                    Private Sector Housing Renewal and Disabled Adaptations Policy to Provide Assistance

·                    Procurement Strategy

·                    Protection of Vulnerable Adults

·                    Protocol for the Election of Lord Mayor

·                    Providing Better Access to Customer Services

·                    Provision Of ICT Support to Members

·                    Publication Scheme

·                    Race Equality Scheme

·                    Rehousing Policy

·                    Resilience Policy

·                    Safer Swansea Partnership Strategy

·                    Shoreline Management Plans;

·                    Special Education Needs Policy

·                    Sustainable Development Policy

·                    Swansea 2020 - Swansea’s Economic Regeneration Strategy

·                    Swansea Bay Strategy

·                    Swansea City Centre Strategic Framework

·                    Swansea Climbing Higher Strategy

·                    Swansea Learning Policy and Strategy

·                    Swansea Strategy for People Aged 50+

·                    Swansea’s Local Bio-Diversity Plan.

·                    Tawe Riverside Corridor Strategy, Master Plan and Action Plan

·                    Tourism Strategy

·                    United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (1989)

·                    Waste Strategy for Swansea

·                    Welsh Declaration on Climate Change

 

2                   Budget

 

The budget includes the allocation of financial resources to different services and projects, proposed contingency funds, the council tax base, setting the council tax and decisions relating to the control of the Council’s borrowing requirement, the control of its capital expenditure and the setting of virement limits.

 

a)                 The Council will adopt the:

 

i)            Capital Programme;

ii)          Housing Revenue Account;

iii)         Revenue Budget;

iv)         Statutory Resolution;

v)          Treasury Management, Prudential Indicators, Investment Strategy; and

vi)         Minimum Revenue Position (MRP) Policy.

 

b)                 The Council will receive a report on the Treasury Management Annual Report.

 

3                   Housing and Land Transfer

 

Housing Land Transfer means the approval or adoption of applications (whether in draft form or not) to the National Assembly for Wales for approval of a programme of disposal of 500 or more properties to a person under the Leasehold Reform, Housing and Urban Development Act 1993 or to dispose of land used for residential purposes where approval is required under Sections 32 or 43 of the Housing Act 1985.

 

4                   Functions of the Council Meeting

 

Only the Council will exercise the following functions:

 

a)                 adopting and changing the Constitution;

b)                 approving or adopting the Policy Framework, the budget and any application to the National Assembly for Wales in respect of any Housing Land Transfer;

c)                  subject to the Urgency Procedure contained in the Access to Information Procedure Rules in Part 4 of this Constitution, making decisions about any matter in the discharge of an executive function which is covered by the Policy Framework or the budget where the decision maker is minded to make it in a manner which would be contrary to a policy or beyond the budget virement limits;

d)                 appointing the Leader;

e)                 agreeing and/or amending the Terms of Reference for Committees and other constitutional bodies, deciding on their composition and making appointments to them;

f)                   adopting an Allowances Scheme under Article 2, item 2.5;

g)                 changing the name of the area, conferring the title of Honorary Alderman or Freedom of the City;

h)                 making the appointment of the Head of Paid Service and Chief Officers;

i)                   making, amending, revoking, re-enacting or adopting bylaws and promoting or opposing the making of local legislation or personal Bills;

j)                   all other matters which, by law, must be reserved to Council.

 

5                   Five Types of Council Meeting

 

a)                 The First Annual Meeting.

b)                 The Annual Meeting.

c)                  Ordinary Meetings.

d)                 Extraordinary Meetings.

e)                 Ceremonial Meeting of Council.

 

They will be conducted in accordance with the Council Procedure Rules in Part 4 of this Constitution.

 

6                   Responsibility for Functions

 

The Council will maintain Part 3 of this Constitution setting out the responsibilities for the Council’s functions which are not the responsibility of the Cabinet.

 

 

5.

Overview and Scrutiny

Bookmark 6

1                    Scrutiny

 

The main aim of scrutiny is to act as a ‘critical friend’ to the Cabinet and other decision makers in order to promote better services, policies and decisions. Working in a similar way to parliamentary select committees, overview & scrutiny involves councillors who are not in the cabinet

 

The overview & scrutiny function was set up under Section 21 of the Local Government Act 2000. Every local council needs to have at least one overview & scrutiny committee.

 

In Swansea there is a Scrutiny Programme Committee that will be responsible for coordinating the work of scrutiny which will hold the Council’s Executive to account and examine the work of all Council departments as well as other public services.

 

a)                  It is expected that the work of scrutiny should represent a significant and constructive programme of activities that will:

 

i)            Help improve services;

ii)           Provide an effective challenge to the executive

iii)         Engage Members in the development of policies, strategies and plans; and

iv)         Engage the public.

 

b)                  In practical terms the work of overview & scrutiny follows four stages:

 

i)            Work planning to identify issues and decide how to address them;

ii)           Gathering evidence through consultation and research;

iii)         Making recommendations to the Cabinet, to Council and to other decision making bodies;

iv)         Following up to check that agreed actions have been taken and an impact made.

 

2                    General Roles

 

Within its terms of reference, scrutiny will:

 

a)                  Review and/or scrutinise (a) decisions or actions taken, (b) policies or processes in connection with the discharge of any of the Council’s functions;

b)                  Make reports and/or recommendations to the Council meeting and /or the Cabinet on the discharge of any of the Council’s functions;

c)                  Consider any matter affecting the area of its inhabitants and make recommendations to any decision making body as appropriate.

 

3                    Specific Functions

 

Scrutiny may:

 

a)                  Assist the Council in reviewing service delivery and performance through in-depth analysis;

b)                  Review and scrutinise the decisions made by and the performance of the Cabinet and/or Committees and/or other Constitutional Bodies and the Council and/or any Chief Officers both in relation to individual decisions and over time;

c)                  Review and scrutinise the performance of the Council in relation to its policy objectives, performance targets and/or particular service areas;

d)                  Conduct research, community and other consultation in the analysis of service or policy issues and possible options;

e)                  Consider and implement mechanisms to encourage and enhance community participation in the development of policy or the improvement of services;

f)                    Question Members of the Cabinet and/or Committees and/or other Constitutional bodies and appropriate Officers about their proposed policies, decisions and performance;

g)                  Make recommendations to the Cabinet and/or appropriate Committee and/or other constitutional bodies and/or Council arising from the outcome of the overview & scrutiny process;

h)                  Review and scrutinise the performance of other public bodies in the area and invite reports from them about their activities and performance;

i)                    Question and gather evidence from any person outside of the Authority (with their consent).

j)                    Assist the Council and the Cabinet in the review of its budget and policies by in-depth analysis of policy issues;

k)                  Liaise with other external organisations operating in the area, whether national, regional or local, to ensure that collaborative working enhances the interests of local people.

 

4                    Annual Report

 

An annual report will be provided to Council detailing the work undertaken by scrutiny during the preceding municipal year.

 

5                    Work Programme

 

The Scrutiny Programme Committee will exercise overall responsibility for the work programme.

 

6                    Proceedings of Scrutiny

 

The Scrutiny Programme Committee will conduct proceedings in accordance with the Overview and Scrutiny Procedure Rules set out in Part 4 of this Constitution.

 

 

6.

Chairing the Council

Bookmark 5

1                    The Presiding Member

 

The Chair of Council is to be known as the Presiding Member and the Vice Chair is to be known as the Deputy Presiding Member. The Presiding Member and, in his/her absence, the Deputy Presiding Member will have the following roles and functions:

 

a)                  To uphold and promote the purposes of the Constitution, and to interpret the Constitution when necessary;

b)                  To preside over meetings of the Council so that its business can be carried out efficiently and with regard to the rights of Councillors and the interests of the community;

c)                  To ensure that the Council meeting is a forum for the debate of matters of concern to the local community and the place at which Members are able to hold the Cabinet and other office holders to account;

d)                  To promote public involvement in the Council’s activities;

e)                  To be responsible for deciding the validity of any call-in of Cabinet decisions;

f)                    To be the conscience of the Council;

g)                  To attend such civic and ceremonial functions as the Council and he/she determines appropriate;

h)                  The Council shall elect the Presiding Member annually at the Annual Meeting of Council; and

i)                    To undertake the requirements of the Local Government (Wales) Measure 2011 and the Family Absence for Members of Local Authorities (Wales) Regulations 2013.

 

2                    The Ceremonial Role

 

The Presiding Member shall deputise for the Lord Mayor if the Deputy Lord Mayor is unavailable for that purpose.

 

 

7.

The Cabinet (Executive)

Bookmark 7

1                    Role

 

The executive (known as the Cabinet in the City and County of Swansea) will carry out all of the local authority’s functions, which are not the responsibility of any other part of the local authority, whether by law, or under this Constitution.

 

2                    Form and Composition

 

The Executive will consist of the Leader together with 9 Councillors appointed to the Executive by the Leader. It will be called the Cabinet.

 

3                    Leader of the Council

 

The Leader will be a Councillor elected to the position of Leader by the Council Meeting. The Leader will hold Office until:

 

a)                  He/she resigns from the Office; or

b)                  He/she is suspended from being a Councillor under Part III of the Local Government Act 2000 (although he/she may resume Office at the end of the period of suspension); or

c)                  He/she is no longer a Councillor; or

d)                  He/she is removed from Office by resolution of more than half of all Council serving Members of the Council. The removal will take effect two working days after receipt of the notice by the Proper Officer.

 

4                    Other Cabinet Members

 

Only Councillors may be appointed to the Cabinet. Neither the Presiding Member nor Deputy Presiding Member may be appointed to the Cabinet and Members of the Cabinet (including the Leader) may not be Members of an Overview & Scrutiny Board.

 

Other Cabinet Members shall hold Office until:

 

a)                  They resign from Office; or

b)                  They are suspended from being Councillors under Part III of the Local Government Act 2000 (although they may resume Office at the end of the period of suspension); or

c)                  They are no longer Councillors; or

d)                  They are removed from Office by the Leader who must give written notice of any removal to the Proper Officer. The removal will take effect two working days after receipt of the notice by the Proper Officer

 

5                    Deputy Cabinet Members

 

a)                  The Leader may appoint members who are not existing members of the Cabinet as Deputy Cabinet Members to advise and assist Cabinet Members on any matters which the Leader shall determine. There shall be no more than 4 such Deputy Cabinet Members at any one time. Deputy Cabinet Members are not members of Cabinet. They can attend meetings of Cabinet and perform their roles in accordance with the provisions set out in the Cabinet Procedure Rules in Part 4 of the Constitution.

b)                  The Leader can remove a member from the role of Deputy Cabinet Members at any time and can either appoint a new member to the role or leave the role vacant as he wishes.

c)                  The Leader must inform the Monitoring Officer and the Head of Democratic Services in writing of any appointments which he makes of a Deputy Cabinet Members and also if he has removed a Member from the role of Deputy Cabinet Members.”

 

6                    Proceedings of the Cabinet

 

Proceedings of the Cabinet shall take place in accordance with the Cabinet Procedure Rules set out in Part 4 of this Constitution.

 

7                    Responsibility for Functions

 

The Leader will maintain a list in Part 3 of this Constitution, which will be reported to the Council meeting for information, setting out which individual members of the Cabinet, Committees of the Cabinet, officers or joint arrangements are responsible for the exercise of particular executive functions.

 

8                    Member Champions

 

The Leader may appoint Member Champions for specific areas of the Council’s business in order to assist the Leader and appropriate portfolio holders by advising on service issues across all Directorates.

 

 

8.

Regulatory and Other Committees

Bookmark 8

The Council will appoint a Planning Committee and a Licensing Committee to discharge those non-Executive functions listed within the table found at Part 3.

 

The Council will appoint those Committees/Panels/Forums whose terms of reference are set out at Part 3.

 

 

9.

The Standards Committee

Bookmark 9

1                    Standards Committee

 

The Council will establish a Standards Committee in accordance with the Standards Committees (Wales) Regulations 2001 (‘The Regulations’).

 

2                    Political Balance

 

Standards Committees do not have to comply with the Political Balance Rules in Section 15 of the Local Government and Housing Act 1989.

 

3                    Membership

 

The Standards Committee will compose of nine (9) Members:

 

a)                  Five (5) ‘Independent’ Members. Independent Members are not Councillors or Officers or the spouse of a Councillor or an Officer of this Council or any other relevant Authority as defined by the Regulations. They shall be appointed in accordance with the Regulations.

b)                  Three (3) Councillors of the City and County of Swansea appointed by Council.

c)                  One (1) Community / Town Councillor from within the boundaries of the City and County of Swansea appointed by Council.

 

4                    Term of Office

 

a)                  Independent Members are appointed for a period of no less than four nor more than six years and may be re-appointed for one further consecutive term not exceeding four years;

b)                  Members of the Local Authority who are members of the Standards Committee will have a term of office of no more than four years or ending at the next ordinary local government election following their appointment, whichever is the shorter. They may be re-appointed once.

c)                  Community / Town Councillors. The term of office shall be no more than 4 years or until the Ordinary Election for the Community Council of which the Community Councillor is a member, whichever is the shorter. They may be re-appointed once.

 

5                    Voting

 

All nine (9) members of the Standards Committee are entitled to vote.

 

6                    Community / Town Council Members

 

A Community / Town Council member shall not take part in the proceedings of the Standards Committee when any matters relating to their Community / Town Council is being considered.

 

7                    Chairing the Committee

 

Only an Independent Member of the Standards Committee may be the Chair.

 

The Members of the Standards Committee will elect the Chair.

 

The Chair can be removed by a resolution of two thirds of the members of the Committee.

 

8                    Role and Function

 

a)                  The Standards Committee will have the following roles and functions:

 

i)            Promoting and maintaining high standards of conduct by Councillors, Community / Town Councillors and Statutory Co-optees;

ii)           Assisting the Councillors, Community / Town Councillors and Statutory Co-optees to observe the Members’ Code of Conduct;

iii)         Advising the Council on the adoption or revision of the Members’ Code of Conduct;

iv)         Monitoring the operation of the Members’ Code of Conduct;

v)          Advising, training or arranging to train Councillors, Community / Town Councillors and Statutory Co-optees on matters relating to the Members’ Code of Conduct;

vi)         Granting dispensations to Councillors, Community / Town Councillors and Statutory Co-optees from requirements relating to interests set out in the Members’ Code of Conduct;

vii)       Dealing with any reports from the Monitoring Officer on any matter.

 

b)                  The Standards Committees will also undertake roles, for ethical audit purposes, including:

 

i)            Overview of the Whistleblowing Policy;

ii)           Overview of Complaints Handling and Public Services Ombudsman for Wales Investigations.

 

c)                  The Procedure for investigating complaints is determined by the Standards Committee, and may be amended by the Committee at any time.

 

 

10.

Area Committees and Forums

Bookmark 10

Area Committees

 

The Council may appoint, as it sees fit, Area Committees for the purposes of developing its policy and service delivery framework, particularly in relation to its community planning functions, if it is satisfied that to do so will ensure improved service delivery in the context of best value and provide more efficient, transparent and accountable decision making.

 

In areas with Community or Town Councils and Community Meetings, the Council will consult with relevant Community and Town Councils and the Chairmen of relevant community meetings when considering whether and how to establish Area Committees.

 

 

11.

Joint Arrangements

Bookmark 11

1                    Joint Arrangements

 

a)                  The Council may establish joint arrangements with one or more Local Authorities and/or their executives to exercise functions that are not executive functions in any of the participating authorities, or to advise the Council. Such arrangements may involve the appointment of a Joint Committee with these other Local Authorities;

b)                  The Cabinet may establish joint arrangements with one or more Local Authorities to exercise functions that are executive functions. Such arrangements may involve the appointment of Joint Committees with these other Local Authorities;

c)                  The Cabinet may appoint Executive or non-Executive members to a joint Committee and those members need not reflect the political composition of the Council;

d)                  Details of any joint arrangements including any delegations to Joint Committees will be found in the Council’s Scheme of Delegation in Part 3 of this Constitution.

 

2                    Arrangements to Promote Well Being

 

            The Cabinet, in order to promote the economic, social or environmental well being of its area, may:

 

a)                  Enter into arrangements or agreements with any person or body;

b)                  Co-operate with, or facilitate or co-ordinate the activities of, any person or body; and

c)                  Exercise on behalf of that person or body any functions of that person or body.

 

3                    Access to Information

 

            The Access to Information Rules in Part 4 of this Constitution apply;

 

4                    Delegation To and From Other Local Authorities

 

a)                  The Council may delegate non-executive functions to another Local Authority or, in certain circumstances, the executive of another Local Authority;

b)                  The Cabinet may delegate executive functions to another Local Authority or the executive of another Local Authority in certain circumstances;

c)                  The decision whether or not to accept such a delegation from another Local Authority shall be reserved to a Meeting of the Council.

 

5                    Contracting Out

 

The Council and the Cabinet for executive functions may contract out to another body or organisation functions which may be exercised by an Officer and which are subject to an Order under Section 70 of the De-regulation and Contracting Out Act 1994, or under contracting arrangements where the contractor acts as the Council’s agent under usual contracting principles, provided there is no delegation of the Council’s discretionary decision making.

 

 

12.

Officers

Bookmark 12

1           Management Structure

 

General The Council Meeting may engage such staff (referred to as Officers) as it considers necessary to carry out its functions. (See also Part 7 Management Structure).

 

2           Chief Officers

 

Post

Functions & Areas of Responsibility

 

Chief Executive (and Head of Paid Service)

 

Overall Corporate, Operational and Strategic Management responsibility for all Officers.

 

The provision of professional and impartial advice to all parties in the decision making process including the Cabinet, Scrutiny Committees, full Council and other committees.

 

Together with the Monitoring Officer responsibility for a system of record keeping for all the Authority decisions.

 

Representing the Authority on partnership and external bodies (as required by statute or the Council).

 

Service to the whole Council, on a politically neutral basis.

 

Acting as the Returning Officer / Electoral Registration Officer.

 

Variation of functions and areas of responsibility of the Deputy Chief Executive and Directors and any other directly managed staff.

 

Deputy Chief Executive / Director of Resources

 

To support the Chief Executive and overall Corporate, Operational and Strategic Management responsibility for Communications & Marketing,  Finance & the Service Centre, Legal, Democratic Services & Business Intelligence and Transformation Service Units together with Emergency Planning.

 

To deputise for the Chief Executive in his absence in respect of all directorate / service activities.

 

The Service Units deal with the following broad work areas:

 

Communications & Marketing.  Led by the Head of Communications & Marketing.  Broad areas of work include Communications and Marketing, Health & Safety and the Lord Mayoralty.

 

Finance & the Service Centre.  Led by the Chief Finance Officer.  Broad work areas include Financial Services, Payroll, Provision of the Authority’s Council Tax, Financial Planning & Management, Housing Benefits, Internal Tax and Accountancy services.

 

Legal, Democratic Services and Business Intelligence.  Led by the Chief Legal Officer.  Broad work areas include Legal Services, Democratic Services, Electoral Services, Coroner, Scrutiny and Access to Services.

 

Transformation.  Led by the Chief Transformation Officer.  Broad areas of work include Commercial Services, Customer Services & Complaints, Digital Transformation, Human Resources & Organisation Development; Strategic Delivery, Performance, Transformation and Training.

 

Commercial Services is led by the Head of Commercial Services.

 

Director of Education

 

This is a statutory post.  This Officer has Corporate Management responsibility and must provide the Council’s education services (including schools, school students, services to schools and strategic management of education across the City and County), subject to any variations determined by the Chief Executive.

 

The Service Units deal with the following broad work areas:

 

Achievement & Partnership Service.  Led by the Head of Achievement Partnership Service.  Broad areas of work include education partnerships across the system, school performance and links to the regional school improvement service. School and governor team, safeguarding and child protection in education.  School admissions and Swansea Music team.

 

Education Planning & Resources Service.  Led by the Head of Education Planning & Resources.  Broad areas of work include responsibility for the Catering and Cleaning, Stakeholder Engagement, Funding and Information and Capital Planning and Delivery.

 

Vulnerable Learner Service.  Led by the Head of Vulnerable Learner Service.  Broad areas of work include responsibility for additional learning needs. The support for and the performance of ethnic minority achievement pupils.  The work of the Behaviour Support Team and the Pupil Referral Unit.

 

Director of Social Services

 

This is a statutory post.  This Officer has Corporate Management responsibility and must provide the Council’s Social Services (including services for children, and families, people with mental health problems, people with disabilities and the elderly subject to any variations determined by the Chief Executive.

 

Corporate lead for the Health, Social Care and Well-Being Strategy.

 

The Service Units deal with the following broad work areas:

 

Adult Services.  Led by the Head of Adult Services.  Broad areas of work include responsibility for the provision of the Council’s Adult Social Services.

 

Child & Family.  Led by the Head of Child & Family.  Broad areas of work include responsibility for the provision of the Council’s Child & Family Social Services.

 

Poverty & Prevention.  Led by the Head of Poverty & Prevention.  Broad areas of work include responsibility for the provision of the Council’s Poverty, Prevention and Community Regeneration services.

 

Director of Place

 

Overall Corporate, Operational and Strategic Management responsibility for Building Services, Cultural Services, Highways & Transformation, Housing & Public Health, Planning & City Regeneration, Property Services and Waste, Cleansing & Parks Service Units.

 

This Officer is responsible for the delivery of front line operational services.  In addition the Officer has the Section 123 Best Value responsibility, corporate management responsibility and must provide the Council’s Building & Property Services, Facilities Management, Asset Management Service subject to any variations determined by the Chief Executive.

 

The Service Units deal with the following broad work areas:

 

Building Services.  Led by the Head of Building Services.  Broad areas of work include responsibility for the provision of the Council’s front line operational services.

 

Cultural Services.  Led by the Head of Cultural Services.  Broad areas of work include responsibility for the provision of cultural, sporting, arts and leisure facilities in the City and County. This includes tourism & destination management and the provision of Library and joint West Glamorgan Archive Service services.

 

Highways & Transportation.  Led by the Head of Highways & Transportation.  Broad areas of work include responsibility for the provision of the Council’s Highway, Transportation, Streetscene, Drainage, Coastal Protection, Fleet and Marina Services.

 

Housing & Public Protection.  Led by the Head of Housing & Public Protection.  Broad areas of work include responsibility for the provision of the Council’s Housing and Environment services (Building Control, Pollution, Housing & Public Health, Registrars, Burials, Cremations, Trading Standards, Licensing, Food & Safety, the Council’s Housing Stock, Homelessness Services, Housing Advice, Disabled Facility Grants and improving the condition of Private Sector Housing subject to any variations determined by the Chief Executive.

 

Planning & City Regeneration.  Led by the Head of Planning & City Regeneration.  Broad areas of work include responsibility for the provision of the Council’s services for the regeneration of the City and County, including economic & business development, physical regeneration, city centre management, development control design & conservation, planning policy & environment, This is subject to any variations determined by the Chief Executive.

 

Property Services.  Led by the Head of Property Services.  Broad areas of work include responsibility for the provision of the Council’s Corporate Property and Facilities Management functions.

 

Waste, Cleansing & Parks.  Led by the Head of Waste, Cleansing & Parks.  Broad areas of work include responsibility and provision of the Council’s waste, cleansing, recycling and parks services.

 

Monitoring Officer

 

Responsibility for the provision of the Council’s Monitoring Officer function.

 

The Chief Legal Officer acts as the Monitoring Officer.

 

Section 151 Officer

 

Responsibility for the provision of the Council’s Section 151 Officer function.

 

The Chief Finance Officer acts as the Section 151 Officer.

 

 

 

3                   Council Designated Posts

 

The Council will designate the following posts as shown:

Post

Designation

Chief Executive

Head of Paid Service

Director of Education

Director of Education

Director of Social Services

Director of Social Services.  Section 6 of the Local Authority Social Services Act 1970 states that “A Local Authority in Wales shall appoint an Officer, to be known as the Director of Social Services, for the purposes of their social services functions.

Chief Finance Officer

Chief Financial Officer (Section 151 Officer)

Chief Legal Officer

Chief Legal Officer (Monitoring Officer)

Head of Democratic Services

Head of Democratic Services

 

              Such posts will have the statutory functions described below.

 

4                   Functions of the Head of Paid Service

 

a)                 Discharge of Functions by the Council
The Head of Paid Service may report to Council on the manner in which the discharge of the Council’s functions is co-ordinated, the number and grade of Officers required for the discharge of functions and the organisation of Officers.

b)                 Restrictions on Functions
S151 Officer The Head of Paid Service may not be the Monitoring Officer but may hold the post of S151 Officer if a qualified Member of one of the accountancy bodies specified in Section 113 of the Local Government Finance Act, 1988.

c)                  Consultation

The Chief Executive is authorised to respond on the Council’s behalf to any consultation received by the Council and also to authorise any other officer of the Council to respond to any consultation received by the Council.

5                   Proper Officer

 

a)                 To act as the Proper Officer for the receipt of notices under Articles 12.7c and 12.7d.

b)                 To be the Proper Officer for the purpose of the following sections of the Local Government Act 1972:

 

i)            Witness and receipt of declarations of office (Section 83);

ii)          Receipt of declaration of resignation of office (Section 84);

iii)         Convening of meeting of council to fill casual vacancy in the office of Chairman (Section 88);

 

c)                  Receipt of notice of casual vacancy from 2 local government electors (Section 89).

d)                 For the purposes of Articles 12.5b and 12.5c the Proper Officer is assigned to the Head of Paid Service and to the Head of Democratic Services.

 

6                   Urgency or Absence of Responsible Officer

 

              All the powers delegated to other officers shall, unless prevented by statute, also be delegated to the Chief Executive, for exercise in cases of urgency or in the absence of the responsible officer.

 

7                   Functions of the Monitoring Officer

a)                 Ensuring Lawfulness and Fairness of Decision-Making
After consulting with the Head of Paid Service and Chief Financial Officer, the Monitoring Officer may report to the Council Meeting or to the Cabinet in relation to any  function if he or she considers that any proposal, decision or omission would give rise to unlawfulness or if any decision or omission has given rise to maladministration.
Such a report will have the effect of stopping the proposal or decision being implemented until the report has been considered.

b)                 Supporting the Standards Committee
The Monitoring Officer will contribute to the promotion and maintenance of high standards of conduct through the provision of support to the Standards Committee.

c)                  Receiving Reports
The Monitoring Officer will receive and act on reports made by the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales and decisions of the case tribunals and the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales.

d)                 Conducting Investigations
The Monitoring Officer will conduct investigations into matters in relation to vires, ethical matters, constitutional arrangements and maladministration, and matters referred by the Public Services Ombudsman for Wales and will have unqualified access to any information held by the Council and can require the co-operation or assistance of any employee who shall also assist the Monitoring Officer in order to make reports or recommendations in respect of them to the Council, the Cabinet, the Scrutiny Programme Committee or the Standards Committee, as appropriate.

e)                 Proper Officer for Access to Information
The Monitoring Officer will be the Proper Officer for Access to Information and will ensure that Council, Cabinet and Committee decisions, together with the reasons for those decisions and relevant officer reports and background papers are made publicly available as soon as possible.

f)                   Proper Officer for receipt of Notices
The Monitoring Officer will be the Proper Officer for receipt of all Notices save for those notices listed under the Head of Paid Service where the Monitoring Officer shall deputise for the Head of Paid Service.

g)                 Advising whether decisions of the Council’s Constitutional Bodies are within the Budget and Policy Framework
The Monitoring Officer will advise whether proposed decisions are in accordance with the budget and Policy Framework.

h)                 Providing Advice
The Monitoring Officer will provide advice on: the scope of powers and authority to take decisions; maladministration; probity and Policies issues to all Councillors and Officers.

i)                   Restrictions on Posts
The Monitoring Officer cannot be the Chief Financial Officer or the Head of Paid Service.

 

8                   Functions of the Chief Financial Officer

 

To ensure Lawfulness & Financial Prudence of Decision Making.

 

After consulting with the Head of Paid Service and the Monitoring Officer, the Chief Financial Officer may report to the Council Meeting or to the Cabinet in relation to any function and the Council’s external auditor if he or she considers that any proposal, decision or course of action will involve incurring unlawful expenditure, or is unlawful and is likely to cause a loss or deficiency or if the Council is about to enter an item or account unlawfully.

 

9                   Duty to Provide Sufficient Resources to the Monitoring Officer and Chief Financial Officer

 

The Council will provide the Monitoring Officer and Chief Financial Officer with such Officers, accommodation and other resources as are in their opinion sufficient to allow their duties to be performed.

 

10                Functions of the Director of Social Services

 

a)                 Designation as Director of Social Services
The Chief Social Services Officer is to be the officer known as the Director of Social Services for the purposes of the Authority’s statutory social services functions.  He /she will be required to provide clear professional leadership across Social Services and will have overall responsibility for Social Services workforce planning, training and professional development.

b)                 Responsibility for functions

 

i)            The Director of Social Services is to have overall responsibility for the Authority’s statutory social services functions, ensuring that strong performance management arrangements are in place across Social Services, including reporting at a corporate level and an annual report to Council on the Authority’s performance in respect of these.

ii)          The Director of Social Services is also to be responsible for ensuring that the Authority has proper safeguards to protect vulnerable children and young people, adults and older people, and reporting at a corporate level and to Elected Members on their effectiveness.

 

c)                  Ensure the delivery of all statutory social services functions

 

i)            The Director of Social Services is to ensure that there are adequate arrangements in place for Social Services to work effectively with others, both within and outside the Authority, in fulfilling its Social Services functions and in contributing to the achievement of wider policy objectives.

ii)          The Director of Social Services will have direct access to and will advise the Head of Paid Service and Elected Members on Social Services matters and on the direction and actions the Authority should take in fulfilling its Social Services responsibilities.

 

11                Conduct

 

Officers will comply with the Officers’ Code of Conduct and Protocol on Officer/Member Relations set out in Part 5 of this Constitution.

 

12                Employment

 

The recruitment, selection and dismissal of officers will comply with the Officer Employment Procedure Rules set out in Part 4 of this Constitution.

 

13                Political Advisors

 

A Political Assistant shall not be appointed for any political group until such posts have been allocated to all groups qualifying for one.  Political groups shall not appoint more than one such Officer and no group, which does not meet the statutory criteria, shall be allocated such a post.

 



 

 

13.

Decision Making


Bookmark 13

1                    Responsibility for Decision-Making

 

The Council will issue and keep up to date a record of which Constitutional Body or individual of the Council has responsibility for particular types of decisions or decisions relating to particular areas or functions.  This record is set out in Part 3 of this Constitution.

 

2                    Principles of Decision-Making

 

All decisions of the Council will be made in accordance with the following principles:

 

a)                  proportionality – any action taken must be proportionate to the aim(s) being pursued;

b)                  due consultation and the taking of professional advice from appropriate officers;

c)                  respect for human rights;

d)                  presumption in favour of openness;

e)                  clarity of aims and desired outcomes; and

f)                    proper recording of reasons for the decision, any personal interest declared and any dispensation to speak granted by the Authority’s Standards Committee together with details of any consultation.

 

3                    Decision Making Rules and Procedures

 

All Constitutional bodies have their own Procedure rules, set out in Part 4.

 

If a Constitutional Body has not adopted its own rules, or if they are silent on a point, then the Council Procedure Rules shall be applicable to that Constitutional Body (Note: References to the Presiding Member in these circumstances shall be taken to mean the Chair.

 

4                    Decision Making by the Council Meeting

 

Decisions reserved to the Council Meeting. These are listed in Article 4.4, and will be made by the Council Meeting and not delegated.

 

Subject to Article 13.7, the Council Meeting will follow the Council Procedure Rules and other relevant Procedures set out in Part 4 of this Constitution when considering any matter.

 

5                    Decision Making by the Cabinet

 

The Cabinet will follow the Cabinet Procedure Rules set out in Part 4 of this Constitution when considering any matter.

 

6                    Decision Making by Overview & Scrutiny Boards

 

Overview & Scrutiny Boards will follow Overview & Scrutiny Board Procedure Rules set out in Part 4 of this Constitution when considering any matter.

 

7                    Decision Making by Other Constitutional Bodies

 

Council, Committees and Sub-Committees will follow those parts of the Council Procedure Rules and/or appropriate Procedures adopted and set out for the Committee as are set out in Part 4 of this Constitution as apply to them.  Should there be any conflict the Council Procedure Rule shall take precedence.

 

8                    Decision Making by Council Bodies Acting as Tribunals

 

The Council, a Councillor or an Officer acting as a tribunal or in a quasi judicial manner or determining/considering (other than for the purposes of giving advice) the civil rights and obligations or the criminal responsibility of any person will follow the appropriate Procedure set out for the decision maker, and all such proper Procedures which accord with the requirements of natural justice and the right to fair trial contained in Article 6 of the European Convention of Human Rights.

 

9                    Implementation of Decisions Taken by Council, Cabinet and Council Bodies

 

            All decisions made and to be implemented by Council, Cabinet or a Council Body shall be implemented within 6 months of the date of the meeting where the decision was made;

 

If any of the decisions mentioned in paragraph a) above are not implemented within this 6 month period then, the matter will be subject to a formal review by Council or Cabinet as appropriate.

 

10                 Tracking of Decisions Taken by Council, Cabinet and Council Bodies

 

Council/Cabinet will be made aware of progress on each of the decisions it has made based on a decision tracking system.

 

 

14.

Finance, Contracts and Legal Matters

Bookmark 14

(This Article refers to the Financial and Contract Procedure Rules in Part 4)

 

1                    Financial Management

 

The management of the Council’s financial affairs will be conducted in accordance with the financial rules set out in Part 4 of this Constitution.

 

2                    Contracts

 

Every contract made by the Council will comply with the Contracts Procedure Rules set out in Part 4 of this Constitution.

 

3                    Legal Proceedings

 

The Chief Legal Officer is authorised, in respect of any proceedings in any court, tribunal or forum, or any legal proceedings generally, to take all necessary steps to protect the Council’s interests or the interests of any, some or all of the inhabitants of the City and County of Swansea, including the initiation and defence of, or intervention in or settling of, legal proceedings or potential legal proceedings and to authorise officers to appear in such proceedings. To sign and serve all notices, to engross and execute legal and other documentation, to enter contracts and generally to authorise officers to carry out, as appropriate, the functions of the Chief Legal Officer.

 

4                    Authentication of Documents

 

a)                  Where any document is necessary to any legal Procedure or proceedings on behalf of the Council, it will be signed by the Chief Legal Officer or the Solicitor to the Council if appropriate or any other person authorised by him/her, unless any enactment otherwise authorises or requires, or the Council has given requisite authority to some other person.

b)                  All contracts shall be in accordance with the Contract Procedure Rules.

 

5                    Common Seal of the Council

 

Provision of the affixing of the Common Seal of the Council shall be in accordance with the Council Procedure Rules.

 


 

15.

Review and Revision of the Constitution

Bookmark 15

1                    Duty to Monitor and Review the Constitution

 

The Presiding Member, Monitoring Officer and Head of Democratic Services will monitor and review the operation of the Constitution to ensure that the aims and principles of the Constitution are given full effect.

 

2                    Protocol for Monitoring and Review of the Constitution by the Presiding Member, Monitoring Officer and the Head of Democratic Services

 

a)                  A key role for the Presiding Member, Monitoring Officer and Head of Democratic Services is to be aware of the strengths and weaknesses of the Constitution adopted by the Council, and to make recommendations for ways in which it could be amended in order better to achieve the purposes set out in Article 1.

b)                  In undertaking this task they may:

 

i)            observe meetings of different parts of the Member and Officer structure;

ii)           undertake an audit trail of a sample of decisions;

iii)         record and analyse issues raised with either of them by Members, Officers, the public and other relevant stakeholders; and

iv)         compare practices in this authority with those in other comparable authorities, or national examples of good practice;

v)          Form Ad Hoc Working Group(s) to consider specific issues affecting the Council.

 

3                    Changes to the Constitution

 

Approval

Changes to the Council Constitution may only be made by Council after consideration of a report by the Presiding Member, Monitoring Officer, Head of Democratic Services and/or Head of Paid Service except where any changes are to make any updates required by: 

 

a)                  Legislation;

b)                  Changes to the Officer structure or changes of responsibility within the Officer Structure;

c)                  The need to correct any administrative or typing errors.

 

Changes to the Constitution which fall under sub paragraphs a., b., or c., maybe made solely by the Monitoring Officer.

 

4                    Maintaining the Constitution

 

The Head of Paid Service or the Proper Officer will give a printed copy of this Constitution to each Member of the Authority upon delivery to him/her of that individual’s Declaration of Acceptance of Office on the Member first being elected to the Council. Following the provision of the initial printed version and

unless a Councillor requests in writing/email to the contrary, an electronic link will be provided for the remainder of the duration of their term of office.  Hard copies will be placed in Political Group Rooms.

 

 

16.

Suspension, Interpretation and Publication of the Constitution

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1                    Suspension of the Constitution

 

a)                  Limit to Suspension
The Articles of this Constitution may not be suspended. The Rules specified below may be suspended by the Council Meeting to the extent permitted within those Rules and the law.

b)                  Procedure to Suspend
A motion to suspend any rules will not be moved without notice unless at least one half of the whole number of Councillors is present. The extent and duration of suspension will be proportionate to the result to be achieved, taking account of the purposes of the Constitution set out in Article 1.

c)                  Rules capable of suspension

The Procedure Rules set out in part 4 specify which of these are not capable of suspension.

 

2                    Interpretation

 

            The ruling of the Presiding Member as to the construction of this Constitution or its application to any proceedings of the Council shall not be challenged. Such interpretation will have regard to the purposes of this Constitution contained in Article 1 and any guidance or advice of the Monitoring Officer.

 

3                    Publication

 

a)                  The Head of Paid Service or the Proper Officer will give a printed copy of this Constitution to each Member of the Authority upon delivery to him/her of that individual’s Declaration of Acceptance of Office on the Member first being elected to the Council.  Following the provision of the initial printed version and unless a Councillor requests in writing/email to the contrary, an electronic link will be provided for the remainder of the duration of their term of office.  Hard copies will be placed in political group rooms;

b)                  The Proper Officer will ensure that copies are available for inspection at Council Offices, Libraries and other appropriate locations, and can be purchased by members of the Local Press and the public on payment of a reasonable fee.

c)                  The Proper Officer will ensure that the summary of the Constitution is made widely available within the area and is updated as necessary.

 

 

17.

Schedule 1 - Description of Executive Arrangements

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1                    Executive Arrangements

 

The following Parts of this Constitution constitute the Executive Arrangements:

 

a)                  Overview & Scrutiny Boards and the Overview & Scrutiny Board Procedure Rules (Article 6);

b)                  The Cabinet and the Cabinet Procedure Rules (Article 7);

c)                  Area Committees and Forums – none (Article 10);

d)                  Joint Arrangements – The West Glamorgan Archives Committee (Article 11);

e)                  Decision Making and the Access to Information Procedure Rules (Article 13);

f)                    Responsibility for Functions (Part 3).

 

 

 

Contacts:
© 2011 City and County of Swansea
Civic Centre, Oystermouth Road, Swansea. SA1 3SN. Tel: 01792 636000 Fax: 01792 636340