Code of Conduct and Register of Interest

Localism Act 2011: the new standards and conduct arrangements for members

Parliament has provided Regulations to provide that all Councils adopt a code of conduct for its members and to have a register of members ‘ interests. This is to ensure that there is openness and clarity in Council dealings and is based on the fundamental  ‘Nolan Principles’ upon which public service is founded; selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership.

Whilst Councils can adopt their own code, Thurgarton Parish Council has decided to adopt the recommended code drafted by Newark and Sherwood District Council but have adopted additionally a strict hospitality code. Thurgarton Parish Council are unanimously and firmly of the opinion that by offering themselves to stand for, and accept, election they are offering to serve on an altruistic and voluntary basis, without expectation of gain or preferment, on behalf of the local community.

Register of Disclosable Pecuniary Interests (DPI)

In summary, under the Regulations all Councillors must declare any DPI they or their spouses/partners have in the area they are serving. You can read more about what constitutes a DPI on the District Council website but basically this is relates to assets or liabilities within the area including any business interests.  This primary information is held at the District Council but also must be shown on the Parish website. This can be found below for our 7 Councillors.

Any councillor having a DPI relating to any business discussed at a Parish Council meeting must not participate in the discussion or vote. Only in certain circumstances may a dispensation be granted. It is a criminal offence to fail to tell the monitoring officer (without a reasonable excuse) of any DPI or carry on working on an issue in particular circumstances where a DPI is held. The full rules on DPI may be found in Chapter 7 of the Localism Act 2011 available at http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2011/part/1/chapter/7/enacted.

Summary of Interests

Councillor

Declared DPI

Tina Tsoukatos

Home Address: Fairways, Beck St, Thurgarton, NG14 7HB 

Charles Day

Home Address: Conifers, Bleasby Road, Thurgarton, NG14 7FW

Employment: Business Consultant - CGFD Consulting

Roger Aston

Home Address: Thornton Lea, Nottingham Road, Thurgarton, NG14 7GZ
Employment/Office: Clerk Bulcote Parish Council, Clerk Fiskerton-Cum-Morton Parish Council

David Lewis

Home address: Manor Farm House, Beck St, Thurgarton Employment/Office: Siemens, Lincoln, LN5 7FD

 

 

 

Hospitality Code

All our Councillors have signed up to a ‘nil’ Hospitality code, found here (link). This means that any gift or form of hospitality must be declared to the Chair/Clerk of the Council and may not be retained. A full record of the donor, value, circumstances is also to be retained. Again this is to ensure probity under the Nolan principles.   A register must be held and this is shown below updated if, as and when benefits are received.

Nature of gift/benefit

Name, address of donor and date

Approx. value of said

Date notified Chair/Clerk in writing with this information

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dispensations

Dispensations are formal agreements to permit Councillors with an interest in the matter being discussed to debate and make decisions on the issue. Normally a Councillor with an interest would, in advance or at the time, declare the interest and withdraw from the discussion. Thurgarton Parish Council take the view that the withdrawee may or may not remain in the room depending on the issue at hand. The decision on this is made at the time by the Chair. Dispensations therefore permit continued debate but it is then everyone is aware of the potentiality of a conflict of interests. Dispensations or potential conflicts should be in the public domain. Accordingly any formal dispensation is posted on the website for public awareness. See any dsipensations granted by Thurgarton Parish Council here.

Written October 2012