Council Meetings

Frequently Asked Questions for this Service

Question: Where and when are meetings held?

Answer: Meetings are held in County Hall in the evenings unless notified previously - Related Link

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Question: How long do meetings last?

Answer: There is a maximum of three hours to all meetings unless there are exceptional circumstances.

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Question: When are the minutes available?

Answer: The minutes of a meeting are published with the next agenda.

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Question: What is the statutory requirement for keeping minutes and agendas?

Answer: The guidelines require us to keep a copy for six years.

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Question: How far in advance of a meeting is the agenda published?

Answer: The agenda is published five clear working days prior to the meeting (this does not include the day of dispatch and the day of the meeting).

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Question: Where can I view agendas and minutes?

Answer: Agendas and minutes can be viewed in the following ways:
The Council's website (see link)
County Hall reception
Spare copies are also provided at the meeting. - Related Link

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Question: In addition to minutes being taken are meetings recorded electronically?

Answer: Yes, this is not a statutory requirement, however we record them electronically to ensure best practice, as well as formal minutes.

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Question: Can I obtain a copy of the electronic recording or transcript of the meeting?

Answer: Yes, recordings can be accessed by clicking on the minutes of the meeting you are interested in and then clicking the heading for a particular agenda item, which will be in blue text. Alternatively you can request a copy of the recording at a cost of £20 plus VAT. However we do not provide transcripts of meetings.

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Question: How much does it cost to hold a Full Council meeting?

Answer: The council has to hold Full Council meetings by law. The cost of administering Full Council is met through the democratic services budget which covers all council meetings and constitutional matters. There are costs associated with getting agendas together and sending them out – but as we have to have council meetings by law these are already included within the various budgets. Because duties associated with running the Full Council meeting fall within people’s wider job roles, there are no additional staffing costs – except the cost of three members of staff to meet and greet/carry out general security duties during the meeting. This is paid at an hourly rate. Members (councillors) are paid an annual allowance and not by the number of (or indeed length of) meetings they attend.

If you require a lot more detail about the cost of council meetings, then please submit a formal request setting out exactly what you want us to include and we will provide a response under the Freedom of Information.

You can see every transaction the council makes, annual budgets, financial performance, councillors’ allowances, council contracts and suppliers – and information on how to submit a Freedom of Information request in the transparency pages of our website.

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Question: Can members of the public attend formal meetings?

Answer: Yes, members of the public are welcome to attend formal Council meetings. The only caveat would be on the rare occasion where confidential issues are discussed when the public will be temporarily excluded. - Related Link

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Question: Who provides council and committee minutes, agendas and reports?

Answer: Council and committee meeting minutes and agendas, together with reports, are compiled and dispatched by Democratic Services. However it is the officers who write the reports and their contact details can be found at the end of each report.

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