Agenda item

Notices of Motion

Notice of Motion’s shall be referred to the appropriate Committee meeting. The mover of the motion can outline the proposal and then it will stand adjourned. The motion may be debated to assist debate later if agreed by two-thirds of Council Members.



The following motion has been presented by Cllr Eden and supported by Cllrs Bradford, Daws, Macgregor, Orme and Patch.


Background provided by Cllr Eden to the Motion:


There are quite a number of gaps that have developed in the Standards Process – some highlighted in my previous motion on Standards Hearings procedure. There also needs to be a wider more precise application of what is or isn’t acceptable in terms of conflict of interest.


Recently, this council had to resort to requesting an intervention from the PAS (Planning Advisory Service) over a matter that from the perspective of the general public should be quite clear cut.


From my experience chairing ethics committees in the NHS and from my professional training in matters of conflict and probity, it is clear that the result of the PAS report was far from satisfactory. We need to sharpen our focus on conflict or interest and raise the standard of those definitions.


Doing so will reduce the possibility of a councillor having their impartiality, integrity or probity being called into account.


Wording of Motion proposed by Cllr Eden:-


With that in mind, I would like to propose that the following definitions are added or amended.

1)    The definition of a Conflict of Interest to be extended (in respect of family and friends) for all elected members to reflect the high standards set by the Charity Commission in respect of a ‘Connected Person’ - defined as follows;

Connected person: In broad terms this means family, relatives or business partners of a councillor, as well as businesses in which a councillor has an interest through ownership or influence. The term includes a councillor’s spouse or unmarried partner, or civil partner, children, siblings, grandchildren and grandparents, as well as businesses where a councillor or family member holds at least one-fifth of the shareholding or voting rights.”

The Council’s legal team would be able to advise (where there is any doubt), but such advice should be made a public record.


2)    Conflicts of Loyalty to be introduced as a notifiable requirement. This is defined as follows;

Conflict of loyalty: This means a particular type of conflict of interest, in which a councillor’s loyalty or duty to another person or organisation could prevent the councillor from making a decision only in the best interests of the council or the residents.”


3)    Register of interests to include membership of ANY organisation that the member knows an officer of the council is also a member – for instance; Freemasons, professional bodies etc. Devon County Council requires members notify their membership of the Freemasons and TDC should do so right away.

This is an extension of the second point in the motion about Conflicts of Loyalty but deals potentially with influence exerted externally on, or by a councillor or officer.



The Chair proposed that as Cllr Eden was not present her Notice of Motion be deferred to the next meeting of Full Council, this was seconded by Cllr D Cox.


RESOLVED that the Notice of Motion be deferred to the next meeting of Full Council.