The Localism Act 2011 made provision for the abolition of the Standards Board for England and included a requirement for relevant authorities including town and parish councils to adopt a revised code of conduct.
It is Allerdale Borough Council’s responsibility to investigate a complaint about an alleged failure by a parish councillor to comply with the Code’s provisions. Allerdale Borough Council no longer has the power to suspend members. Were an investigation results in a finding that there has been a failure by a parish councillor to uphold the Code this will lead to a recommendation to the local council. This could include a request to make an apology, to undertake training or to refrain from the use of certain council premises
DISCLOSABLE PECUNIARY INTERESTS AND OTHER REGISTRABLE INTERESTS
Regulations have also been published by the Secretary of State which set out specified pecuniary interests. The register must be published on Allerdale Borough Council’s web site and on the relevant parish council’s website.
The new code does not make provision with regard to members leaving the room during the discussion to vote on matters where they do have a disclosable pecuniary interest. However our standing orders allow for such exclusion.
It is possible for the town council to grant a dispensation from the restrictions which apply to a member’s participation in or voting in the discussion on any matter where he or she has a disclosable pecuniary interest.
GIFTS AND HOSPITALITY
The limit with regard to the declaration and registration of gifts and hospitality has risen from £25 to £50