U-turn over scrutiny

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THERE has been a rethink by East Lindsey councillors on moves that could have restricted public and press access to scrutiny meetings.

In last week’s Standard it was reported that a proposed revision to the district council’s constitution would have stated that the authority’s scrutiny and policy panels “shall not be public meetings and shall not be minuted except where witnesses are invited to provide evidence”.

However, following a debate at the overview committee, members agreed that scrutiny meetings should not be held behind closed doors.

Said Coun Tony Howard: “We should make it clear that the public and press are welcome to attend.”

Coun Ed Mossop said it was important for the authority to be “open and transparent” in how it conducted its affairs.

Officers were asked to amend the wording prior to the next full meeting of the council on November 23 when the revised constitution is due to be rubber-stamped.