Public Participation at Meetings

Introduction

The Parish Council believes in open government and involving the general public whenever possible.

To this end the Council has adopted a policy of having periods at both Council and Committee meetings when members of the public can speak.

Obviously in order for this to work effectively it is necessary to have a protocol on how these sessions are to run.This protocol is set down in the Council's "Standing Orders" document 17.1 and 17.2 which have been reproduced below to help you make the best of the opportunity.

Protocol

17.1 A maximum of fifteen minutes will be allowed for members of the public to address the meeting. The public forum will be subject to the following conditions.

(a) These sessions form part of the Council meeting in law and shall be duly minuted.

(b) Speeches will not last more than 3 minutes.

(c) No elector will be allowed to speak more than once.

(d) Members of the public will not be able to speak on any planning applications being considered at that Planning Committee meeting.

(e) Any member of the Public attending the Public Forum may submit a written question if they wish.

(f) The Code of Conduct which was adopted by the Council on 11 July 2012 shall apply to members of the Council in respect of the entire meeting.

17.2 For information on photographing, recording, broadcasting or transmitting the proceedings of a meeting please see 'Recording and Use of Social Media at Council Meetings'.

General

The Chairman is in overall control of the meeting and he or she will decide who may speak and in which order.When it is your turn to speak the chairman will ask you to identify yourself and to address the meeting.

The Chairman also has the right to say that any question or statement is inappropriate and will not be accepted.

In order to be fair to all, when planning applications are being discussed neither the applicant nor other interested persons are allowed to take part in the debate or discuss the application in the public participation period.

Whilst the members of the Council will endeavour to respond to the questions that are raised they may decide not to discuss the issue there and then but to defer discussion to a later date or refer the matter to a committee for consideration.

If you wish to take part in the forum please be aware that you will be speaking in public and that press reporters may be present, therefore you should not say anything you would not wish to be reported.

If a group of you wish to cover the same subject it may be best to nominate one to speak on your behalf. This will avoid duplication and make the best use of the public participation period.

Further Information

If you would like any further information please contact the Clerk to the Council.

Membership and Meetings

There are 13 Members on the Council.  For a list of current Councillors and Committee Chairmen follow the Who are the Councillors link on the right

The Council meets 12 times during the municipal year on the second Wednesday of every month at 8pm in the Council Chamber at The Grove.

There is also a Planning Committee which meets immediately prior to the Council meeting at 6.45pm in the same location. Occasionally the Council's Personnel Committee meet to discuss staffing matters and these are organised on an 'as required' basis.

Meetings of all the above are open to the public and Press.

 
For schedule of meetings follow the Council Meetings Dates link

For the previous Agendas and Minutes click on the relevant Council or Committee Meeting link on the left hand side of the page.