< Model Code of Conduct

The Model Code of Conduct for Parish and Town Councils

General provisions

Introduction and interpretation
1 (1) This Code applies to you as a member of an authority.
(2) You should read this Code together with the general principles prescribed by the Secretary of State (see Annexure to this Code).
(3) It is your responsibility to comply with the provisions of this Code.
(4) In this Code, “meeting” means any meeting of:
(a) the authority;
(b) any of the authority’s committees or sub-committees, joint committees or joint sub-committees;
(c) ‘member’ includes a co-opted member and an appointed member.
(5) References to an authority’s monitoring officer and an authority’s standards committee shall be read, respectively, as references to the monitoring officer and the standards committee of the district council or unitary county council which has functions in relation to the parish council for which it is responsible under section 55(12) of the Local Government Act 2000.

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Scope
2 (1) Subject to sub-paragraphs (2) to (5), you must comply with this Code whenever you:
(a) conduct the business of your authority (which, in this Code, includes the business of the office to which you are elected or appointed); or
(b) act, claim to act or give the impression you are acting as a representative of your authority, and references to your official capacity are construed accordingly.
(2) Subject to sub-paragraphs (3) and (4), this Code does not have effect in relation to your conduct other than where it is in your official capacity.
(3) In addition to having effect in relation to conduct in your official capacity, paragraphs 3(2)(c), 5 and 6(a) also have effect, at any other time, where that conduct constitutes a criminal offence for which you have been convicted.
(4) Conduct to which this Code applies (whether that is conduct in your official capacity or conduct mentioned in sub-paragraph (3)) includes a criminal offence for which you are convicted (including an offence you committed before the date you took office, but for which you are convicted after that date).
(5) Where you act as a representative of your authority;
(a) on another relevant authority, you must, when acting for that other authority, comply with that other authority’s code of conduct; or
(b) on any other body, you must, when acting for that other body, comply with your authority’s code of conduct, except and insofar as it conflicts with any other lawful obligations to which that other body may be subject.

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General obligations
3 (1) You must treat others with respect.
(2) You must not:
(a) do anything which may cause your authority to breach any of the equality enactments (as defined in section 33 of the Equality Act 2006(a));
(b) bully any person;
(c) intimidate or attempt to intimidate any person who is or is likely to be:
(i) a complainant,
(ii) a witness, or
(iii) involved in the administration of any investigation or proceedings,
in relation to an allegation that a member (including yourself) has failed to comply with his or her authority’s code of conduct; or
(d) do anything which compromises or is likely to compromise the impartiality of those who work for, or on behalf of, your authority.
4 You must not:
(a) disclose information given to you in confidence by anyone, or information acquired by you which you believe, or ought reasonably to be aware, is of a confidential nature, except where:
(i) you have the consent of a person authorised to give it;
(ii) you are required by law to do so;
(iii) the disclosure is made to a third party for the purpose of obtaining professional advice provided that the third party agrees not to disclose the information to any other person; or
(iv) the disclosure is:
(aa) reasonable and in the public interest; and
(bb) made in good faith and in compliance with the reasonable requirements of the authority; or
(b) prevent another person from gaining access to information to which that person is entitled by law.
5 You must not conduct yourself in a manner which could reasonably be regarded as bringing your office or authority into disrepute.
6 You:
(a) must not use or attempt to use your position as a member improperly to confer on or secure for yourself or any other person, an advantage or disadvantage; and
(b) must, when using or authorising the use by others of the resources of your authority:
(i) act in accordance with your authority’s reasonable requirements; and
(ii) ensure that such resources are not used improperly for political purposes (including party political purposes).
(c) must have regard to any applicable Local Authority Code of Publicity made under the Local Government Act 1986.
7 Paragraph 7 does not apply to your authority.

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< Model Code of Conduct