Agenda item

Independent Person Recruitment

To receive a report on the recruitment to the Council’s vacant “Independent Person” post. 


To confirm the arrangements for the “Independent Person” interviews. 



The Committee received a report from the Monitoring Officer on Independent Person Recruitment.




1.    Sarah Jewell’s term of office as one of the Independent persons of the committee had come to an end.

2.    The committee are required to have at least one independent person under the Localism Act.

3.    The committee has two Independent persons: Sarah Jewell and Christine Chamberlain. The time for Sarah Jewell had come to an end in October 2020 having already been extended.

4.    The Monitoring Officer was seeking permission from the committee to agree to fill the Independent Person vacancy. The month to do so would be with effect from the Council AGM in May 2021.

In order to do this a recruitment process needs to be followed including a public advert. For the interim, Sarah Jewell would be asked to continue in her role. The Monitoring Officer had spoken with Sarah Jewell and she was happy to do so if decision of the committee is to agree to extend her role to May 2021 and the Council AGM.

5.    The reason for extending to the Council AGM, as well as to give time to go through the recruitment process, was that officers could then do the recruitment process for both independent persons, as Christine Chamberlain’s time as an independent person would be coming to an end in June 2021.

If members were minded to agree, Sarah Jewell’s replacement would start the day after the Council AGM in May 2021 or be appointed effective from this date. Christine Chamberlain’s replacement would start with effect from June 2021 when her current extension from office comes to an end.

6.    In terms of process previously, whilst the actual appointment is a Council appointment, the process of recommending the Independent Persons is something that has been done via the Councillor Conduct Committee. The Monitoring Officer sees no reason to move away from this protocol. Therefore, members of the committee would be involved in the actual selection of the two Independent Persons recommended to full council in the AGM in May 2021.

7.    Attached to the report is a form of job description and a form of advert. If the committee agree then the monitoring officer would provide a timetable for the recruitment in detail and circulate this to members by e-mail including dates that members can attend for virtual or face to face meetings.

ACTION: Jeremy Chambers (Director of Law & Governance)

8.    The Committee extended their thanks to both Christine Chamberlain and Sarah Jewell and commented on how wonderful it had been to have such support on the committee from them both.

9.    The Chair concluded that it made sense to run the two recruitment processes at the same time and was content with everything the Monitoring Officer had laid out in the report.




·         To fill the Independent Person vacancy due for renewal with effect from the date of the Council AGM in 2021 and to ask the current holder of the role to continue until that date.

·         The job advert and job description for the appointment of an Independent Person.

·         To instruct the Monitoring Officer to make arrangements for advertising and interviewing of suitable candidates by the Committee for onward recommendation to Council at its AGM in May 2021.


Supporting documents: