Brentwood Borough Council

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Brentwood Borough Council

FOI 5932

Brentwood Borough Council structure, contacts & amp; communication links

Request

Is there a diagrammatic representation(s), description or list relating to all committees, internal meetings, & how these operate and relate; contacts with outside organisations, bodies or individuals (including politicians and companies) also with the public, which show the related communications, and describe the rules and codes governing any communications?

 E.g.: Contacts / meetings with local MP, or contacts /meetings with local firms. Are there rules regarding communications and behaviour around such contacts, where they are allowed? 

What safeguards are supposed to be in place to prevent Central government, a local MP, or a firm or company or other body from having too much influence on the local council?

What committees / meetings are open, or closed?

 

Response

Further to your FOI enquiry 'Brentwood Borough Council structure, contacts & communication links' I would advise as follows:

Relevant information on the Council's Committees, and some internal meetings, eg the Brentwood Town Centre Renaissance Group, can be found on the Council's website (www.brentwood.gov.uk) . Further information is available in Council meeting agendas – eg details of the proposed new governance structure are included in the agendas of Ordinary Council meetings on 19.12.12 and 20.3.13. Other internal meetings are arranged on an ad hoc basis.

There is a diagrammatic representation of the Council's Committee Structure included on Page 6 of the Constitution – click here

Members' representation on outside organisations is updated at Annual Council each year – this year's agenda containing relevant proposed representation will be published on 7th May.

In relation to information regarding contacts with individuals (including politicians and companies) also with the public which show the related communications and describe the rules and codes governing any communications , FOI requests made to the Council are available to view on the website and a facility to make an enquiry , report an incident , make a complaint or pay a compliment can be undertaken via the website to which a response will be sent by a relevant officer.

Regarding contacts / meetings with local MP, or contacts /meetings with local firms, there are no rules regarding communications and behaviour around such contacts, where they are allowed.

Regarding safeguards which are supposed to be in place to prevent Central government, a local MP, or a firm or company or other body from having too much influence on the local council, the democratic process and the Code of Conduct which Members sign to accept when elected provide such safeguards.

All Council Committee/Panel/Board meetings are open to the public unless there is a statutory reason for the public to be excluded for certain items. Internal meetings are not generally open to the public.

If you are unhappy with the handling of your request, please inform us in writing. You should supply details that you feel are relevant to your complaint. This should be addressed to “The Complaints Coordinator, Town Hall, Ingrave Road, Brentwood, Essex CM15 8AY.

If the Complaints Coordinator is unable to resolve your problem to your satisfaction, you may apply to the Information Commissioner for a decision as to whether, in any specified respect, your request for Information made to us has been dealt with in accordance with the requirements of Part 1 of the Act.

You can contact the information commissioner at:

The Information Commissioner’s Office, Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire,
SK9 5AF

Telephone: 0303 123 1113

Website: www.ico.gov.uk