Agenda item

Recording of Officer Executive Decisions

To review existing arrangements for the recording of Officer Executive decisions.


The Committee received a report asking them to review the existing arrangements for the recording of Officer Executive decisions.


The Local Authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Meetings and Access to

Information) (England) Regulations 2012 stipulated that a decision be recorded as soon as reasonably practicable after a decision has been taken.


Whilst the requirement had been straightforward to comply with in terms of Executive

and Executive Member decisions, (which Democratic Services retained oversight)

the recording of officer Executive decisions had been more challenging due to a lack

of consistency in approach. The requirement applies whether or not the decision is a key decision with numerous executive decisions being undertaken by officers on a daily basis and a large number of these were administrative. A line therefore needed to be drawn as to what type of executive decision should be recorded as it could result in an administrative nightmare for all officer executive decisions to be recorded.


The Department of Communities and Local Government (‘DCLG’) published guidance in 2012 which provided that it was not intended that administrative and operationaldecisions were to be recorded.


Clarification had previouslybeen soughtby CMTover issuessuch asthe continuing viabilityof this£10k threshold criteria,whether expenditurealready agreedin the budgetneeded to berecorded and whetherthe requirement appliedto Contract Standing Order Waivers. CMT tasked the Borough Solicitor to review the thresholds with a view to reporting to Governance and Audit Committee as to what may be more appropriate today in the light of experience. As a result, the Borough Solicitor has undertaken a desktop analysis of the criteria applied across a handful of other local authorities and the results of that analysis were included in Annex A.


The proposed amendments were detailed at 5.8 in the report.

As a result of the Committees comments and questions, the following points were made:

·       Cumulative spend was taken into account under contact standard orders and was not required for Executive Decisions.

·       Under contract standard orders there was a requirement to ensure spend was aggregated.

·       It was important that preferential treatment was not given to providers.

·       It had been introduced in the criteria that Any Executive decision taken contrary to legal advice and that any Executive decision which conflicts with the Council’s Budget andPolicy Framework.

·       There was not a criterion to search by value on the website.

·       20 -25 decisions were recorded per year.

·       There were no issues with the arrangements being too much work.

·       It was expected that there would be more decisions recorded as awareness would be better communicated.

·       The requirement would be communicated and reinforced to officers following the Committees decision.

·       The communication plan hadn’t yet been decided but it had been thought there would be a session at the Senior Leadership group and the process detailed on the Councils intranet pages.

·       There were concerns with how the wording around the amount was written, and it was requested that this be worded as a one off spend.

·       Any cool off would have gone through a previous Executive decision.

·       There were concerns about the £25,000 figure being too high, and that £20,000 would have been a better figure.

·       Asset of Community Value were recorded under transparency, therefore this was deleting duplication of work.

Following the Committees debate, it was proposed and agreed that the criteria detailed within the report be amended at Point 1 and 2 with the value to be reduced from £25,000 to £20,000.

Therefore, the two points of the criteria would be:

1 - Any Executive decision arising directly from a constitutional delegation under Part 2 Section 6 involving expenditure or savings in excess of £20,000.


2. Any Executive decisionwhich is taken in exercise of an express delegation made to an officer by the Executive, an Executive Committee or an individual Executive Member involving expenditure or savings in excess of £20,000


RESOLVED that the Governance & Audit Committee approve the changes to the existing criteria for recording Officer Executive Decisions set out in paragraph 5.8 with the above amendments at point 1 and 2.

Supporting documents: