Agenda and minutes

Constitution Committee - Friday 31 March 2023 10.00 am

Venue: Committee Room - Shire Hall, Gloucester. View directions

Contact: Sophie Benfield 

Items
No. Item

2.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 90 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 16 January 2023.

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 16 January 2023 were agreed as a correct record, subject to the following minor amendment at section 6, second paragraph:

 

“The recommended changes included an amendment so that the SHE annual report would be brought to Audit and Governance Committee. One member stated that if there was an important issue arising from the report that Audit and Governance should be in a position to then raise that with Cabinet or Council as appropriate.”

3.

Public Questions

To answer any written public questions about matters which are within the powers and duties of the Committee. The closingdate/time for receipt of questions is 10.00am on 24 March 2023.

Minutes:

No questions had been received from members of the public.

4.

Members' Questions

To answer any written member questions about matters which are within the powers and duties of the Committee. The closingdate/time for receipt of questions is 10.00am on 24 March 2023.

Minutes:

No questions had been received from Members.

5.

Gloucestershire Health and Wellbeing Board and Gloucestershire Health and Wellbeing Partnership Terms of Reference pdf icon PDF 546 KB

To consider the attached report.

Minutes:

5.1       Members were reminded that the Health and Care Act required all local authorities to set up an Integrated Care Partnership (ICP) as a joint committee with the Integrated Care Board (ICB). For Gloucestershire, the Terms of Reference for the Gloucestershire Health and Wellbeing Partnership (GHWP) were agreed at full Council on the 9 November 2022.

 

5.2       The new Partnership had a distinct but complimentary role to the Health and Wellbeing Board (HWBB) that already existed as a council committee. The HWBB provided a forum where political, clinical, professional and community leaders from across the health and social care system came together to improve the health and wellbeing of the local population, and work to reduce inequalities. The new ICP had a statutory duty to prepare an Integrated Care Strategy (ICS) which set out how the ICB, NHS and councils would work together to address the needs of the population in respect to health and social care.

 

5.3       One the clear distinctions between the two was the legislation described footprint for each as set out in legislation. The HWBB followed boundaries of upper-tier local authorities, where as the ICP followed the ICB boundaries. In Gloucestershire’s case, these were the same footprint as health and local authority were coterminous, this however was not the case in most other areas of the country.

 

5.4       The guidance allowed Gloucestershire to take advantage of this unusual situation in that it was able to align the roles and ways of working of the two boards very closely. This paper therefore proposed to do so by amending the HWBB terms of reference and align them with those for the GHWP. This would result in both boards being able to meet on the same day, in the same place with the same group of people in attendance to discharge their separate but interrelated functions.

 

5.5       There was also a minor proposed change to the GHWP terms of reference to reduce the quorum to a quarter of the membership, rather than 50% which was unusually high.

 

5.6       A member highlighted an error on page 8, paragraph 3.11 of the report:

 

Membership of the Health and Wellbeing Board comprises:

 

·         Chair (will be the same as the Chair for the Health and Wellbeing Board Gloucestershire Health and Wellbeing Partnership); to be appointed by the County Council

 

5.7       Noting that the new GHWP was statutory required to produce the ICS, there was a discussion around scrutiny arrangements and call-in procedures for the Strategy. It was advised that the Strategy could not be called in the same way that an executive decision within GCC could. The Strategy was more akin to policies that would go through budget and policy framework processes and then be signed off by full council. Any decisions however that public health made as a result of the Strategy would be subject to the same call-in procedure.

 

5.8       A member requested that the sign off procedure for the Strategy was clarified before this Committee’s recommendation was considered at  ...  view the full minutes text for item 5.

6.

Independent Remuneration Panel Allowances pdf icon PDF 77 KB

To consider the attached report.

Minutes:

7.1       The Committee were reminded that this item followed on from discussions at its previous meeting where officers were asked to give consideration to a number of issues in relation to the Independent Remuneration Panel (IRP) as follows:

 

7.2       Allowances

 

a)     It was confirmed having reviewed allowances paid by district councils and other authorities that GCC’s current rate was in line. Some other authorities did not have a distinction between the Chair and panel member allowance, but Gloucestershire’s set up reflected the fact that the Chair attended several more meetings than the panel members.

b)     Having reviewed similar positions across GCC, it was confirmed that the allowance was in line with that paid to the Independent Member of the Audit and Governance Committee.

c)      The Panel’s views were also taken into consideration, and as a result the recommendation was that the allowance, going forward, be linked to the annual employee pay award.

d)     Since publication of this report, a representation was received from the Chair on behalf of the Panel, requesting the Committee take into account that the allowance had been static since 2016, in which time inflation had increased by 27% and the basic members allowance 14%.

 

7.3       Membership

 

a)     When the Panel was initially set up it had five members, and this had dropped to four members since 2016.

b)     Both the Panel and officers felt that it was working well as four members, they were perfectly able to fulfil their remit and therefore saw no benefit in increasing the size of the Panel.

c)      The recommendation was to fix the membership at four members going forward.

 

7.4       Term of office

 

a)     When the Panel was initially set up, panel members were appointed on a 3-year term of office. This had lapsed in practise since 2012.

b)     It was deemed appropriate to reinstate the 3-year term of office as it would provide a natural review point.

c)      This would not prevent members standing for successive terms.

 

7.5       Process for Reviewing and Determining Allowances

 

a)     Members asked for consideration to be given to switching to a less frequent review by the Panel and index linking allowance increases on the in-between years.

b)     It was noted that there were arguments on both sides, and it should be for the Committee to decide.

c)      The Panel expressed a very strong view against index linking the allowance increases as they felt this would be less democratic and transparent.

 

7.6      In relation to allowances paid to the Panel, members agreed that it would a sensible way forward to link this to GCC’s employees pay award going forward.

 

7.7      There was a discussion over the representation that this should retrospectively take into account inflation increases. Some members felt that this was a good opportunity to create a ‘year zero’ scenario that could be benchmarked against to ensure GCC was paying in line with other local authorities. The risk of the allowance being backdated was losing the opportunity to create a baseline. An example was  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

Monitoring Officer changes pdf icon PDF 113 KB

To note the attached reports:

 

1.    To update the constitution as set out in appendix 1, in order to reflect changes to the assignment of Cabinet Portfolios made by the Leader of the Council

 

2.    To update Article 13 of the constitution following the appointment of Ann James to the statutory role of Director of Children’s Services with effect from 1 April 2023

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Members noted the changes as detailed in the report.