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Contact: Charles Hungwe
Apologies for Absence
There were no apologies made at the meeting.
Post Meeting Note: Councillor Wright had advised Democratic Services before the start of the meeting about her apologies. Unfortunately the message was not sent through to the meeting clerk in time to advise the Chair about the apology.
To receive any declarations of interest. Members are advised to consider the advice contained within the Declaration of Interest advice attached to this Agenda. If a Member declares an interest, they should complete the Declaration of Interest Form
There were no declarations of interest.
To approve the Minutes of the meeting of the General Purposes Committee held on 24 October 2023, copy attached.
Councillor Albon proposed, Councillor Davis seconded and Members agreed the minutes as a correct record of the General Purposes Committee meeting that was held on 24 October 2023.
To approve the Minutes of the extraordinary meeting of the General Purposes Committee held on 12 December 2023, copy attached.
Councillor Huxley proposed, Councillor Austin seconded and Members agreed the minutes as a correct record of the extraordinary General Purposes Committee meeting that was held on 12 December 2023.
Sonia Godfrey, Head of Human Resources introduced the report and made the following comments:
· Phase 2 HR Policy Review - as General Purposes Committee you are being asked to review the proposed report and are asked to consider and adopt a new other types of leave policy and 2 revised policies of restructure and redundancy and recruitment policy and procedure with effect from 1 February 2024;
· Review of HR policies continues with a number of phases outlined and ensuring robust policies are in place is essential for providing clarity and consistency, thus ensuring legal compliance and best practice, establishing fair practices and promoting a positive work culture within our council;
· With regards to corporate implications from a financial and value for money perspective there are no financial implications arising directly from the refresh of the Restructure and Redundancy Policy or the Recruitment Policy and Procedure, however there is the potential for the new Other Types of Leave Policy to generate a small amount of additional costs. It is anticipated that any costs associated with the approval and implementation of this policy will be very low and therefore containable within existing resources.
· From a Legal perspective as indicated within the report, these policies have been developed to improve practices across the Council and they address issues of concern highlighted in the Independent Monitoring Officer Report;
· Risk management perspective HR policies serve to define behavioural expectations, promote fairness, compliance and efficiency within an organisation;
· The risks associated with failing to implement new or revised HR policies may potentially expose the council through out of date policies with changing laws, industry standards and organisational needs;
· From a corporate perspective it is important that the council’s HR policies are updated and reviewed and in supporting this review extensive research has been carried out to look at best practice, organisational needs as well as considering the policies and procedures in place at other comparable local authorities;
· The revised policies have been developed in line with ACAS and any relevant legislation and consideration also from a HR perspective around the practical issues that have emerged whilst operating within existing policies and procedures;
· A review of policies continues and the final versions of policies identified within Phase 2 are included within this report;
· The main change to the restructure and redundancy policy applies in the case where a position is being deleted and the employee affected is put at risk of redundancy and there is no suitable role identified. In the updated policy, the employee will receive the same status as if they were on notice of redundancy. This means that they will have priority for any suitable alternative roles and be given priority with any internal job applications;
· There are a few proposed changes to the recruitment policy and procedure:
§ One of the more significant changes is that managers will be able to advertise some job vacancies internally for a period of only one week;
§ The current policy requires all vacancies to be advertised ... view the full minutes text for item 46.
Changes to CEx Working Hours in November 2022 - A Verbal Update
Ingrid Brown, Head of Legal and Democracy & Monitoring Officer gave a verbal update and advised the committee that the decision made for changing the CEx working hours in November 2022 was due a misunderstanding of the process for making such changes. This had since been remedied.
Members thanked the Monitoring Officer for the update and were satisfied that the issue had been addressed.
Councillor Scobie proposed, Councillor Davis seconded and Members agreed to note the update.