Council Terms of Reference

Council Terms of Reference

Approved by Council: 18th May 2021

Planned Review Date: May 2022

20 Members of the Authority

Quorum = 7

Annual Town Council meeting is held in May, and then Council will meet every second month in accordance with the Annual calendar of meetings.

The Town Council has full authority for all functions, duties and responsibility, but may delegate certain decisions to a committee, sub-committee or to an officer. It cannot legally delegate such decisions to an individual councillor. Certain decisions are reserved to Council either by legislation or
the choice of the Council.

General Governance
Function of Council - Column 1 Delegation of Functions - Column 2
1 Adoption and amendment of any strategies and policies. None generally, but to receive advice from Finance and Governance Committee as appropriate.

Personnel policies and Pensions Discretion policies delegated to Personnel Committee

2 Comments on Cheshire East Council’s Strategic Plans or strategies None generally, but Planning Committee have delegated authority for a range of planning consultations (see terms of reference for that Committee and 64 below)
3 Comments on the strategic plans or strategies of other public sector bodies To individual committees if within their terms of reference
4 Liaising with the Police and other outside bodies on matters pertaining to the Town. To individual committees as set out in their delegation, otherwise reserved for Council
5 Approval of any Neighbourhood Plan for Article 14 consultation or Article 15 submission to Cheshire East Council. None, but drafts delegated to Town Planning and Environment Committee
6 Adopting and changing the Constitution, Standing Orders, Standing Orders for Contracts or Financial Regulations None
7 Approving of annual budget, Precept, and Medium-Term Financial Plan None
8 Any delegated decision which may mean a breach of Council Policy or Budget outside virement rules None
9 Election of the Mayor, appointment of Deputy Mayor, Election of Leader of Council. None
10 Appointment of Chairmen and Vice Chairman of committees, established by Council. Council, or may delegate to individual committees
11 Agreeing and/or amending the Terms of Reference for Committees, deciding on their composition and making appointments to them. None
12 Appointment of Members or Officers to outside bodies None
13 Adopting an allowance scheme for Mayor or other members. None
14 Changing the name of the Town Council. None
15 Deciding on honorary titles or awards None
16 Making, amending, revoking, re-enacting or adopting Bylaws. None
17 To represent the view of the local community on matters of significance. None generally, but may be delegated to individual committees, through their terms of reference.
18 Power to make payments or provide other benefits in cases of fault or maladministration Appeals Committee up to the value of £500

Town Clerk up to £200

19 Appeals against any decision made on behalf of the Authority Appeals Committee
20 Data Protection, Access to Information, Freedom of Information and Human Rights. Policy and Publication Scheme reserved to Council

Strategic overview to Finance and Governance Committee

21 To monitor and control the Council’s Ethical Framework Strategic overview and monitoring to Finance and Governance Committee Proper Officer to obtain declarations, give up- date reminder annually and to act as necessary for Monitoring Officer. Mayor may obtain declarations in the absence of the Proper Officer.

Granting of a Dispensation is reserved to Council and only delegated to the Proper Officer where a decision is required in advance of a committee meeting when no Council meeting is to take place

22 To institute or defend legal proceedings including proceedings for an injunction, to authorise the carrying out of works in default of a notice, and to lodge an appeal against any Court decision. None generally

In cases of urgency, the Town Clerk in consultation with two of: Leader, Deputy Leader, Mayor, Deputy Mayor.

23 - 1. All powers of the Council (except those reserved to Council by legislation) in the case of a civil emergency (including health related emergency), limited to £10,000 expenditure in accordance with Financial Regulations. The Town Clerk in consultation with two of: Leader, Deputy Leader, Mayor, Deputy Mayor or committee chairman subject to reporting to next Council.
23 - 2. All powers of the Council (except those reserved to Council by legislation) in the case of utmost urgency, limited to £10,000 expenditure in accordance with Financial Regulations. The Town Clerk in consultation with two of: Leader, Deputy Leader, Mayor, Deputy Mayor or committee chairman subject to reporting justification to next Council.
23 - 3. In cases where a civil emergency is over an extended period and which hinders the holding of normal meetings, non-urgent decisions will be taken in consultation with all members of committee or Council. The Town Clerk in consultation with all members of Council or of the relevant committee subject to ratification at the next Council meeting.
24 Election issues and filling of vacancies None to Committee.

Proper Officer to undertake all statutory notifications and actions to advise members as necessary.

25 Power to direct as to the Custody of Town documents None
26 All duties of the Proper Officer under legislation, Standing Orders, Financial Regulations or Standing Orders for Contracts including issue of notifications and signing documents Town Clerk
27 All duties of the Responsible Financial Officer under legislation, Standing Orders, Financial Regulations or Standing Orders for Contracts including issue of notifications and signing documents Town Clerk or other officer designated by resolution of Council
28 Nomination for attendance at conferences None

Town Clerk for Member training in accordance with policy.

29 To do anything calculated to facilitate or conducive or incidental to the discharge of any function Council unless specifically delegated.
30 Adoption of General Power of Competence None

 

Personnel Issues
Function of Council - Column 1 Delegation of Functions - Column 2
31 To direct which post holders will be designated Proper Officer to the Council, Responsible Financial Officer and Data Protection Officer. None but may be on recommendation of Personnel Committee
32 To determine the overall Staffing structure and approval of additional posts None but may be on recommendation of Personnel Committee
33 Confirming the appointment of the Town Clerk None but appointment, set out in Terms of Reference for Personnel Committee
34 Other Personnel matters As set out in Terms of Reference for Personnel Committee
35 Health and Safety Policy – General Statement and Organisation None. Arrangements to Personnel Committee

 

Quality and Integrated Management
Function of Council - Column 1 Delegation of Functions - Column 2
36 Matters relating to Quality systems and Local Council Award accreditation Finance and Governance Committee recommend and make decisions on process.

Resolutions regarding Local Council Awards reserved to Council.

37 Administration of the Complaints Procedure As set out in Complaints Procedure.

 

Finance and Audit
Function of Council - Column 1 Delegation of Functions - Column 2
38 Authorisation of Payment of accounts Council/Finance and Governance Committee/Town Clerk/RFO in accordance with Financial Regulations
39 Approval of Annual Return, Statement of Accounts and Governance Statement None
40 Approval of Banking Arrangements and choosing insurance providers. None but on advice of Finance and Governance Committee
41 Approval of Orders for work, goods or services and acceptance of tenders In accordance with Finance and Governance Committee TOR
42 Audit arrangements In accordance with TOR of Finance and Governance Committee
 - Appointment of internal auditor and determining method of external auditor appointment. None
 - Consideration of internal and external audit reports and response recommended by Committee or Sub- Committee. None
43 Power to accept gifts, Local Government Act 1972, S139 None
44 Power to participate in schemes of collective investment, Trustees Investments Act 1962 s11. None
45 Power to borrow, Local Government Act 1972 S111 and Sch. 13 None
46 Writing off bad debts None
47 Proceedings or other steps to recover debt owing to the Council RFO for routine action
Finance and Governance Committee to consider reports on aged debt and action.
48 Annual review of Fees and Chargers None
49 Approval of virements between committee budgets None

 

Powers of all Committees
Function of Council - Column 1 Delegation of Functions - Column 2
50 To undertake all functions delegated to them by Council. They may choose, because of uncertainty as to whether a function is delegated, or because of the sensitivity, controversy or seriousness of a matter, decide not to use the delegated power Committee
Town Clerk as set out in delegation
51 To make spending and income recommendations to Finance and Governance Committee and to Council during the Budget process Committee
52 To arrange extra meetings or alter time/date of meetings Committee or Town Clerk in consultation with Chair and/or Vice Chair
53 To monitor actions on minutes of the Committee. Committee
54 To manage services for which they are responsible within an approved budget and policy. Committee as delegated
Town Clerk as delegated
55 To authorise spending/ issue works orders within budgets delegated to a committee Committee/Town Clerk in accordance with Finance Regulations and Standing Orders for Contracts
For capital projects, an application is made to Council to access a rolling Capital Fund.
56 To appoint sub-committees or working groups on a task and finish basis, in accordance with Standing Orders, and appointment of their Chair and Vice Chair Committee

 

Land
Function of Council - Column 1 Delegation of Functions - Column 2
57 Power to acquire by agreement, to appropriate, to dispose of, Local Government Act 1972 s124, 126,127. None
58 Power to accept gifts of land, Local Government Act 1972 s139. None
59 Power to acquire land for open spaces, Public Health Act 1875, S164; Open Spaces Act 1906, S9 and10 None
60 To decide arrangements for the closure of the Council offices in the Christmas/New Year period in consultation with Mayor and Leader Town Clerk

 

Delegated Services
Function of Council - Column 1 Delegation of Functions - Column 2
61 To take on services from other local authorities or public bodies (LGA 1972, Sec 101, 111 and 112 or Localism Act 2011) None
62 To undertake services for another local authority or public body None

 

Planning and Development Control
Function of Council - Column 1 Delegation of Functions - Column 2
63 To make observations on major or controversial planning applications referred to it by Planning Committee. None.
64 To make observations on Planning consultation documents from the Principal Council or other bodies. None for Local Plan or HS2 Project, but to receive recommendations from Planning Committee.
65 All other Planning and Building Control matters. Town Planning and Environment Committee

 

Housing
Function of Council - Column 1 Delegation of Functions - Column 2
66 Policy. None
67 All other housing matters. Planning Committee

 

Emergency Planning
Function of Council - Column 1 Delegation of Functions - Column 2
68 To prepare an Emergency Plan for the Town which supports that of Cheshire East Council and the Cheshire Resilience Forum Approval by Council
Overview by Operations and Improvement Committee [See also Emergency powers, 23. above.]

 

NB. Any actions delegated to the Town Clerk/Proper Officer may in his/her absence be undertaken by the nominated deputy or deputies, if the matter cannot wait until the Town Clerk’s return.

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