To consider the report of the Statutory Scrutiny Officer.
The Overview and Scrutiny Committee considered the report of the Statutory Scrutiny Officer which provided information on arrangements for a working planning session scheduled for 29 July 2020 which would assist Committee Members in developing a work programme for 2020/21.
Trudy Bedford, Statutory Scrutiny Officer referred the Scrutiny Annual Report and reported that this would be presented to the meeting of the Committee in September 2020, which would allow the LCR LEP Board and Combined Authority to consider the recommendations of the LCR LEP Task and Finish Group prior to it being reflected within the Annual Report
Trudy Bedford, Statutory Scrutiny Officer also referred to section 6 of the report, and the two questions submitted to the LCR Combined Authority by ‘Unlock Democracy’ in relation to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee and the response from the Metro Mayor, Steve Rotheram detailed at Appendix 2 to the report. The questions related to 2 issues, firstly a request for members of the public to be able to submit questions to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee. Secondly an expression of concern regarding poor attendance by some Committee members and a request that the Committee be reminded of the importance of the Scrutiny function.
Members of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee were invited to raise questions or comments.
At this point, Jill Coule, the Monitoring Officer and Chief Legal Officer reported that a number of Committee members were having difficulty indicating via the chat facility that they wished to speak on this item. Members were advised that they could contact Jill Coule by mobile telephone, or verbally as an alternative to indicate that they wished to speak.
Councillor Dr John Pugh asked if it was common practice for public question and answer sessions to be facilitated at Scrutiny meetings as it was normally Executive Bodies who were quizzed by members of the public.
Trudy Bedford, Statutory Scrutiny Officer responded and stated that it was generally a practice at Executive meetings, but there was a recognition that more public engagement with the scrutiny function of the Combined Authority was needed and facilitating public questions was one of a number of ways to improve this.
The Vice-Chair, Councillor Andy Corkhill stated that Councillor Kevan Wainwright had sent an e-mail indicating that he wasn’t able to join the meeting due to technical issues. He added there were a few Members having difficulties getting online and asked Jill Coule if she could provide her telephone number to them as a point of contact for assistance.
The Monitoring Officer and Chief Legal Officer, Jill Coule responded and provided her mobile number via the chat facility. She added that she was currently assisting Councillor Marshall who had also been experiencing difficulty accessing the meeting.
(i) That the arrangements for the work planning session scheduled for 29
July 2020, be endorsed; and
(ii) That proposals for the 2020/21 Overview and Scrutiny Work Programme be presented to the meeting of the Committee on 5 September 2020, for approval.