Committee on Standards in Public Life
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Committee on Standards in Public Life announces new inquiry into 'local leadership and public trust'

Committee on Standards in Public Life announces new inquiry into 'local leadership and public trust'

COMMITTEE ON STANDARDS IN PUBLIC LIFE News Release (PN218) issued by COI News Distribution Service. 10 November 2008

The Committee on Standards in Public Life today announced that the subject of its twelfth inquiry is to be 'Local Leadership and Public Trust: Accountability and Transparency in London and Local Government'.

The inquiry will look at structures and models within local government across the UK, and in London, to examine the way in which decisions are made and scrutinised, how office holders are held to account and whether the different models of local government command public trust.

Announcing the inquiry, Sir Christopher Kelly, Chair of the Committee, said:

"We are keen to look at the new structures put in place at the start of the decade to see whether they have achieved their goals of promoting better leadership, greater accountability, raising standards and improving public trust. As well as looking at the Mayoral system in London, we will be looking at the other twelve directly elected Mayor models, the Cabinet system within some local councils, and the Committee structure found in others, to see how they work within the constitutional and ethical landscape.

"It seems to us that this is the right time to take a look after eight years to see how decisions are made, scrutinised and explained to people. We will want to assess how well local government structures reflect, both in theory and in practice, the Seven Principles of Public Life.

"Local government matters - it spends billions of pounds and is responsible for so many of the local services required by all of us. The Committee will want to explore whether the structures are as good as they might be to ensure robust decision-making that commands public confidence and trust."

The Committee will be publishing an issues and questions paper in the next few weeks and will call for written evidence from interested parties before holding a series of hearings across the UK in the New Year. The Committee intend to publish their report in Autumn 2009.


Notes to Editors

2. Information about the Committee and its work is available on its website at http://www.public-standards.org.uk

3. The Committee on Standards in Public Life is an Advisory Non-Departmental Public Body (NDPB) sponsored by the Cabinet Office. The Chair and Members are appointed by the Prime Minister. The Committee was established in October 1994 with the following terms of reference: "To examine current concerns about standards of conduct of all holders of public office, including arrangements relating to financial and commercial activities, and make recommendations as to any changes in present arrangements which might be required to ensure the highest standards of propriety in public life. Additional terms of reference were announced on 12 November 1997: "To review issues in relation to the funding of political parties, and to make recommendations as to any changes in present arrangements."

4. The Committee believes that the Seven principles of Public Life should apply to all in public service. The Seven Principles are: selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership.
5. The current members of the Committee are: Sir Christopher Kelly KCB, (Chair), Lloyd Clarke QPM, Oliver Heald MP, Baroness Maddock, Rt Hon Alun Michael JP MP, Sir Derek Morris MA DPhil, Dr Elizabeth Vallance JP and Dr Brian Woods-Scawen DL CBE.

Issued by:

The Committee on Standards in Public Life
35 Great Smith Street
London
SW1P 3BQ
http://www.public-standards.gov.uk
Committee on Standards in Public Life
35 Great Smith Street
London SW1P 3BQ





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