Any member of the public can ask questions at meetings of the Council, its Boards, Sub-Boards or the Standards and Governance Committee? These are known as Public Questions.
What sort of question can I ask?
- Your question would have to be in connection with a matter relating to the functions of the Council or Terms of Reference of the Board, Sub-Board or Standards and Governance Committee
- A question would not be allowed if it were considered to be vexatiousor frivolous, of a confidential nature or relates totally or mainly to the interests of an individual e.g. a housing benefit application
How do I go about asking a question?
- You will need to sbmit the question in writing, to the Borough Solicitor by noon, two working days before the meeting is due to take place i.e. if the meeting is on a Thursday you would have to give notice by noon on the Tuesday before. If the meeting were on a Tuesday you would have to give notice by noon on the previous Friday. If there is a bank holiday in between you will have to allow an extra day (or two at Easter)
- You will have to address your question orally to the Chairman and in turn the Chairman, or person nominated by him or her, will provide a response
Are there any restrictions in place when I actually ask my question?
There are some. These are in place to make sure the process is manageable.
- A total of fifteen minutes is allowed at each meeting for Public Questions. This means that, if there are other people asking questions, you may not get the full fifteen minutes. However, if at the end of that time your question has still not been answered, you will get a written response from the Borough Solicitor as soon as is practicable
- Questions are asked in the order in which the Borough Solicitor has received notification
- You can only ask one question and once you have received an answer, you are not allowed to ask any further questions at the meeting.