Agenda and draft minutes

Governance Committee - Thursday, 14th November, 2019 7.30 pm

Venue: Town Hall, Main Road, Romford

Contact: Debra Marlow tel: 01708 433091  e-mail:

No. Item



Members are invited to disclose any interest in any of the items on the agenda at this point of the meeting. 


Members may still disclose any interest in any item at any time prior to the consideration of the matter.


There were no disclosures of interest.


MINUTES pdf icon PDF 281 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the Committee held on 28 August 2019, and to authorise the Chairman to sign them.


The minutes of the meeting of the committee held on 28 August 2019 were agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.


Change of Council date : September 2019 pdf icon PDF 277 KB


It was reported that at the Annual meeting of the Council held on 15 May 2019, Council approved a schedule of Council meetings for the municipal year 2019/20. In order to give Members additional time to consider the report of the Chief Executive on Stage 1 of the Boundary Commission’s Review of the Borough, the date of the September meeting of Council was changed from 11 September to 25 September 2019.


Some Members of the committee expressed concern that scheduled meetings agreed by Full Council could be changed in anything other than emergency circumstances. Despite suggestions to the contrary it was confirmed that members of the Executive had not been consulted on the change of date and that the Mayor alone had been consulted.


There was consensus that it in the event that a future meeting was to be changed that Group Leader should be consulted in the first instance before a decision to change is made by the Mayor.


It was therefore RESOLVED that:


1.    The reasons for the change of the date of the 11 September 2019 Council meeting be noted and that in future, when Council is asked to agree the calendar of meetings, it also be asked to give authority to the Mayor to change the date of an agreed meeting if required but only following prior consultation with Group Leaders.


Review of Members' Code of Conduct pdf icon PDF 356 KB

Additional documents:


The report before Members set out the findings of a review of the Members’ Code of Conduct as assessed against the Committee on Standards in Public Life’s (CSPL) best practice recommendations published in January 2019.


The CSPL’s key findings and recommendations were reported to the Governance Committee on 7 March 2019 and the Committee noted that officers would report back on the 15 best practice recommendations which the CSPL expects all local authorities to implement.


Attached at Appendix 1 to the report was a review of Havering’s Member Code of Conduct, as assessed against the relevant best practice recommendations, to inform discussion on what changes, if any, should be implemented. Both the code and the Council’s arrangements for dealing with complaints (i.e. the complaints procedure) are set out in Part 5 of the Council’s Constitution and published on the Council’s website.


A number of Members commented that there needed to be a project plan for the implementation of best practice in havering involving Group Leaders.


It was noted that a full review of the Members’ Code of Conduct and complaints procedure would be undertaken and reported back to the Committee, along with a project plan for the consideration and implementation of the CSPL’s best practice recommendations.




The report explained that the Council makes appointments to a large number of other organisations, some statutory, others voluntary. There were vacancies to two organisations which the Council was required to appoint to.


In the case of the Romford Combined Charity, the Council appoints four  nominative trustees for four year terms of office expiring in sequence over each four year period. It was reported that Councillor Melvin Wallace’s four term of office had expired on 4 November 2019. Councillor Wallace had expressed a desire to be re-appointed to a further 4 year term of office.


Following a vote (7 votes to nil with 5 abstentions), Councillor Wallace was re-appointed to the Romford Combined Charity as a nominative trustee. Councillors Michael White, Robert Benham, Joshua Chapman, Viddy Persaud, Roger Ramsey, Damian White and Darren Wise voted for the resolution).


In respect of the Lucas Children’s Play Charity, the Council appoints two nominative Trustees. The terms of office for Councillors Robert Benham and Gillian Ford were due to expire on 30 November 2019.  It should be noted that Councillor Benham’s appointment is by office, as Cabinet Member for Education, Children and Families. Both Members had expressed their desire to re-appointed.


Councillor Benham was re-appointed by 7 votes to 5. Councillors Michael White, Robert Benham, Joshua Chapman, Viddy Persaud, Roger Ramsey, Damian White and Darren Wise voted for the resolution.


Councillor Benham then moved an amendment, seconded by Councillor Damian White that Councillor Dervish be the Council’s second appointee in place of Councillor Ford. Following a vote, Councillor Dervish was appointed by 7 votes to 5. Councillors Michael White, Robert Benham, Joshua Chapman, Viddy Persaud, Roger Ramsey, Damian White and Darren Wise voted for the resolution