Rochford District Council set to move to committee system of governance next year

At the annual full council meeting of Rochford District Council on Tuesday May 23, councillors agreed to change the way the council makes decisions by moving to a committee style of governance system.

It was agreed that the council’s current leader-and-executive led structure, where most decisions are taken by an appointed councillor or by the executive team, will be replaced with a committee system, which will come into effect at the annual council meeting in May 2024.

Following the approval of the four recommendations in the report, a working group will be set up to consider all of the various models of committee systems, and members will be able to vote next year on which version they would like to see implemented.

The council will keep to the current leader-and-executive led structure until the official implementation of the committee system next year.

It was also confirmed that a joint administration, made up of four political groups: Independent and Green, Liberal Democrats, Rochford District Independents and Rochford District Residents has been formed that will lead the council.

The groups in the joint administration have agreed to a Memorandum of Understanding which states:

“Democracy sits at the heart of this working together arrangement, with politically representative decision-making and meaningful public engagement. Openness and transparency will be a priority of the joint administration.

“This working arrangement will avoid creating unnecessary bureaucracy and enable the engagement of all councillors, allowing for proper debate on issues where there is genuine disagreement whilst facilitating the rapid progress of Council business where consensus exists.”

Mick Ferris

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