Code of conduct complaints
Complaints must be submitted in writing. If you need any support to complete this form, please contact the monitoring officer at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 01626 361101. Under Section 28(6) and (7) of the Localism Act 2011, we must investigate any allegations that a member has failed to comply with our Code of Conduct
Please contact the relevant Town and Parish Council for their code of conduct.
We will acknowledge receipt of your complaint within 5 working days, and will keep you informed of its progress. We will also inform the relevant member or Town and Parish Councillor about your complaint and seek their views before deciding whether it requires a formal investigation.
If you have serious concerns about the release of your details to any relevant parties, please tell us in the complaint form.
Your complaint will be reviewed by the monitoring officer and resolved informally where possible if the member accepts that their conduct was unacceptable and offers and apology. Where informal resolution is not possible, your complaint may be referred to the standards committee to decide whether formal investigation is required.
If your complaint identifies criminal conduct or breach of other regulation by any person, the monitoring officer has the power to call in the Police and other regulatory agencies.
If formal investigation is required, an investigating officer will be appointed who may need to speak to you to get a better understanding of your complaint. The member you have complained about will be given a copy of your complaint and asked to provide their explanation of events. Both you and the member will receive a draft copy of the investigating officer’s report and will have the opportunity to respond to it. The investigating officer will then produce a final report.
If it is found that the member did not fail to comply with the Code of Conduct no further action will be taken. This will be confirmed in the copy of the final report that you and the member will receive.
If the member is found to have failed to comply with the Code of Conduct, local resolution will be offered in the form of an apology from the member or other remedial action. If you do not accept this resolution, the monitoring officer may refer the matter for a local hearing.
If this happens, a local hearing will be held by the standards committee to decide whether the member has failed to comply with the Code of Conduct and if action should be taken. You, and the member, may be asked to attend a pre-hearing process to give evidence to the standards committee. They may then choose to dismiss the complaint or take action. The action standards committee can take include:
- Censure or reprimand the member
- Publish its findings in respect of the member’s conduct
- Report its findings to the council or to the Town or Parish Council for information
- Recommend to the member’s group leader (or in the case of ungrouped members, recommend to council or to committees) that they be removed from any or all committees or sub-committees of council
- Recommend to the leader of the council that the member be removed from the executive, or removed from particular portfolio responsibilities
- Recommend to council that the member be replaced as executive leader
- Instruct the monitoring officer to, or recommend that the Town or Parish Council, arrange training for the member
- Remove, or recommend to the Town or Parish Council that, the member be removed from all outside appointments to which they have been appointed or nominated by the authority or Town or Parish Council
- Withdraw, or recommend to the Town or Parish Council that it withdraws, facilities provided to the member by the council, such as a computer, website and/or email and internet access; or
- Exclude, or recommend that the Town or Parish Council exclude, the member from the council’s offices or other premises, with the exception of meeting rooms as necessary for attending council, committee and sub-committee meetings.
The standards committee has no power to suspend or disqualify the member, withdraw allowances or special responsibility allowances, or to take action which would prevent them carrying out their duties.
The standards committee will make a decision which will be announced by the chairman at the end of the hearing. You, the member, and the Town and Parish council (if appropriate), will receive a formal decision notice after the hearing has taken place. This will also be made publicly available and reported at the next council meeting
There is no right of appeal for the complainant (you) or for the member against a decision of the monitoring officer or of the standards committee. If you feel that the authority has failed to deal with your complaint properly, you may make a complaint to the Local Government Ombudsman.