Public consultation on new model of governance

What do we have now?

At present the Council operates what is known as the Cabinet model of governance. This means that apart from the decisions which legally have to be taken by the Council, the Licensing Committee and the Planning Committee, all other decisions are taken by the Cabinet which is made up of between 7-9 councillors selected by the Leader.

What is being proposed?

At the Council meeting on 30 July 2020, Spelthorne Borough Council approved a motion as the first step of moving to a change in the governance arrangements of the Council. This means a change in how decisions are made.

What is proposed is a move to a Committee system of governance which means that the decisions which are currently taken by the Cabinet are taken by a number of Committees.

With a Committee system, more of your local councillors will be directly in involved decision making and they will gain expertise in their areas of interest. It is considered to be a more open, democratic, and transparent way of conducting Council business.

Clear objectives

At the Council meeting of the 22 October 2020, the Councillors agreed the clear objectives they want the new system of governance to achieve :

1. Accountability – responsibilities and accountability about who does what should be clear, within the Council and to residents

2. Credibility – governance should assist good decision making, which involves proper and early scrutiny of policies and proposals

3. Transparency – the decision-making process should be open and transparent to councillors, officers and to the public

4. Collaboration - decision making should be collaborative across parties and less combative

5. Timeliness – decision making should be both quick and effective and, when necessary, allow for urgent decision-making

Why are we consulting?

Engagement of the public in local democracy is at the heart of what we want to achieve and we are undertaking a public consultation exercise to ensure we understand the views of local residents and use this information to help us decide if we should move to a Committee system of decision making.

Timeline

  • Opened
    14 Dec 2020 at 09:00
  • Closed
    14 Jan 2021 at 23:59
  • Response to be published
    14 Apr 2021