Brington and Molesworth Parish Council
Code of Conduct
You are a Member or Co-opted Member of Brington and Molesworth Parish Council1 and as such are committed to behaving in a manner that is consistent with the following principles to achieve best value for our residents and maintain public confidence in this authority.
SELFLESSNESS: Holders of public office should act solely in terms of the public interest. They should not do so in order to gain financial or other material benefits for themselves, their family, or their friends.
INTEGRITY: Holders of public office should not place themselves under any financial or other obligation to outside individuals or organisations that might seek to influence them in the performance of their official duties.
OBJECTIVITY: In carrying out public business, including making public appointments, awarding contracts, or recommending individuals for rewards and benefits, holders of public office should make choices on merit.
ACCOUNTABILITY: Holders of public office are accountable for their decisions and actions to the public and must submit themselves to whatever scrutiny is appropriate to their office.
OPENNESS: Holders of public office should be as open as possible about all the decisions and actions that they take. They should give reasons for their decisions and restrict information only when the wider public interest clearly demands.
HONESTY: Holders of public office have a duty to declare any private interests relating to their public duties and to take steps to resolve any conflicts arising in a way that protects the public interest.
LEADERSHIP: Holders of public office should promote and support these principles by leadership and example.
Accordingly, when acting in your capacity as a Member or Co-opted Member:
- You must act solely in the public interest and should never improperly confer an advantage or disadvantage on any person or act to gain financial or other material benefits for yourself, your family, a friend or close associate
- You must not place yourself under a financial or other obligation to outside individuals or organisations that might seek to influence you in the performance of your official duties
- When carrying out your public duties you must make all choices, such as making public appointments, awarding contracts or recommending individuals for rewards or benefits, on merit
- You are accountable for your decisions to the public and you must co-operate fully with whatever scrutiny is appropriate to your office
- You must be as open as possible about your decisions and actions and the decisions and actions of your authority and should be prepared to give reasons for those decisions and actions
- You must declare any private interests, both pecuniary and non-pecuniary, including your membership of any Trade Union, that relate to your public duties and must take steps to resolve any conflicts arising in a way that protects the public interest, including registering and declaring interests in a manner conforming with the procedures set out in the box below
- You must, when using or authorising the use by others of the resources of your authority, ensure that such resources are not used improperly for political purposes (including party political purposes) and you must have regard to any applicable Local Authority Code of Publicity made under the Local Government Act 1986
- You must promote and support high standards of conduct when serving in your public post, in particular as characterised by the above requirements, by leadership and example
- You must have regard to any relevant advice provided to you by Huntingdonshire District Council’s Monitoring Officer, Section 151 Officer and Chief Executive where they are acting pursuant to his or her statutory duties
- You must not disclose information given to you in confidence by anyone, or information acquired by you which you believe, or ought reasonably to be aware, is of a confidential nature, except where:
- You have the consent of a person authorised to give it
- You are required by law to do so
- The disclosure is made to a third party for the purpose of obtaining professional advice provided that the third party agrees not to disclose the information to any other person; or
- The disclosure is:
- Reasonable and in the public interest and
- Made in good faith and in compliance with the reasonable requirements of your authority.
- Members must promote equality by not discriminating against any person, and by treating people with respect, regardless of their race, age, religion, gender, sexual orientation or disability
Registering and declaring pecuniary and non-pecuniary interests
You must, within 28 days of taking office as a Member or Co-opted Member, notify your authority’s Monitoring Officer2 of any disclosable pecuniary interest as defined by regulations made by the Secretary of State (see attached Schedule), where the pecuniary interest is yours, your spouse’s or civil partner’s, or is the pecuniary interest of somebody with whom you are living as a husband or wife, or as if you were civil partners.
In addition, you must, within 28 days of taking office as a Member or Co-opted Member, notify your authority’s Monitoring Officer of any disclosable pecuniary or non-pecuniary interest which your authority has decided should be included in the register or which you consider should be included if you are to fulfil your duty to act in conformity with the Seven Principles of Public Life. These non-pecuniary interests will necessarily include your membership of any Trade Union.
If an interest has not been entered onto the register maintained by the authority’s Monitoring Officer, then the Member must disclose the interest to any meeting of the authority at which they are present, where they have a disclosable interest in any matter being considered and where the matter is not a ‘sensitive interest’.3
Following any disclosure of an interest not on the register maintained by the authority’s Monitoring Officer or the subject of pending notification, you must notify the authority’s Monitoring Officer of the interest within 28 days beginning with the date of disclosure.
Unless dispensation has been granted, you may not participate in any discussion of, vote on, or discharge any function related to any matter in which you have a pecuniary interest as defined by regulations made by the Secretary of State. Additionally, you must observe the restrictions your authority places on your involvement in matters where you have a pecuniary or non-pecuniary interest as defined by your authority.
|Employment, office, trade, profession or vacation||Any employment, office, trade, profession or vocation carried on for profit or gain.|
|Sponsorship||Any payment or provision of any other financial benefit (other than from the relevant authority) made or provided within the relevant period in respect of any expenses incurred by the Member or Co-opted Member in carrying out duties as a Member, or towards the election expenses of the Member or Co-opted Member. This includes any payment or financial benefit from a trade union within the meaning of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992.|
|Contracts||Any contract which is made between the relevant person (or a body in which the relevant person has a beneficial interest) and the relevant authority:
(a) under which goods or services are to be provided or works are to be executed; and
(b) which has not been fully discharged.
|Land||Any beneficial interest in land which is within the area of the relevant authority.|
|Licences||Any licence (alone or jointly with others) to occupy land in the area of the relevant authority for a month or longer.|
|Corporate tenancies||Any tenancy where (to the Member or Co-opted Member’s knowledge):
(a) the landlord is the relevant authority; and
(b) the tenant is a body in which the relevant person has a beneficial interest.
|Securities||Any beneficial interest in securities of a body where:
(a) that body (to the Member or Co-opted Member’s knowledge) has a place of business or land in the area of the relevant authority; and
1 All references to ‘the authority’, ‘this authority’, ‘your authority’ or ‘the relevant authority’ relate to the Parish Council.
2 The Parish Council’s register of interests is maintained by Huntingdonshire District Council, and the Huntingdonshire District Council’s Monitoring Officer is accordingly the Parish Council’s (your authority’s) Monitoring Officer.
3 A ‘sensitive interest’ is described in the Localism Act 2011 as a Member or Co-opted Member of an authority having an interest, and the nature of the interest being such that the Member or Co-opted Member, and the authority’s Monitoring Officer, consider that disclosure of the details of the interest could lead to the Member or Co-opted Member, or a person connected with the Member or Co-opted Member, being subject to violence or intimidation.