Who is the Council’s Monitoring Officer?
What is the the role of the Monitoring Officer
The monitoring officer needs to be aware of the potential conflicts involved in advising the Standards Committee and Members.
Advising the Standards Committee
The monitoring officer normally is the adviser to the Standards Committee, unless she has an interest in the matter that prevents her from performing this role independently. If this situation arises the monitoring officer would arrange for another appropriately qualified officer to advise the Standards Committee.
In advising the Standards Committee, the monitoring officer or her/his deputy or other legal adviser should:
- make sure that members of the Standards Committee understand their powers and procedures
- make sure that the determination procedure is fair and will allow the allegations to be dealt with as efficiently and effectively as possible
- make sure that the member about who the allegation is made understands the procedures the Standards Committee will follow
- provide advice to the Standards Committee during the hearing and their determination
- help the Standards Committee produce a written decision and a summary decision
Monitoring officers play an important role in advising their members on a day to day basis. In performing this role, monitoring officers need to be aware of the potential conflict that can arise, as these conflicts could prevent them from advising the Standards Committee at a later stage.
However, conflicts of interest are not likely to arise simply from informal discussions with members and the monitoring officer.
The monitoring officer has a duty to appoint an independent person to give advice on matters connected to the Code of Conduct.