Officer attendance at scrutiny meetings - Printable Version
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RE: Officer attendance at scrutiny meetings - Ed Hammond - 07-06-2011 06:04 PM
Chief Officer or Cabinet Member every time, surely?
Realistically Head of Service (Tier 3) is the lowest I would go personally, although there are always exceptions - eg when members are looking for technical, operational information. But of course if they are looking for that information, is scrutiny the best place to discuss it?
RE: Officer attendance at scrutiny meetings - Josh Mynott - 08-06-2011 03:29 PM
I think that in practice it depends on what you're trying to achieve, but in the constitution it should say "Chief Officer" or "Executive Director" or whatever title you give your most senior management level. You can always add "or their nominated representative" if you want to give a little wiggle room.
Generally, I think you would always suggest that the Chief Officer attends, usually with the Cabinet Member, and let them decide if they want to bring along the service expert to help them with the tricky technical bits. Depends a bit on the size of your organisation as well, though, and bigger councils might want to drop the requirement down a level or two
RE: Officer attendance at scrutiny meetings - tim gilling - 09-06-2011 06:19 AM
Your approach should be designed to get the best value from hearing from a range of people.
Formal scrutiny committee meetings can be intimidating for people not used to that kind of environment (obviously there are ways to mitigate this - for example good briefings for people, good chairing and questioning techniques). So formal 'town hall' meetings might not be the best place to hear about operational detail or to get the views of people who need or experience services - this might be best captured for example through task and finish groups or visits to where people are or where services are being delivered. I realise that this approach has resource implications in terms of councillors time and officer support.
In your constitution you should probably be specifying something along the lines suggested by Josh. In the way you structure and operate your scrutiny function you should probably take Ed's comment on board and think about building in a range of ways to hear different people.