What is the cabinet?
The cabinet consists of eight councillors from the biggest political group on the council. The leader of the council chairs it. The leader of the council appoints cabinet members.
The public are welcome to attend cabinet meetings that take place throughout the year at 4pm.
Cabinet members are all from the majority group on the council. Under an informal arrangement, opposition councillors attend meetings. The leader encourages them to put questions on agenda items. The council sees opposition involvement as a key part of its modernisation, making sure that it represents all communities.
Collectively, the cabinet:
- provides political and community leadership
- considers matters relating to the council's major plans, strategies and policies
- recommends the budgetary framework and processes that support the council's priorities, plans, strategies and policies
- receives and acts upon the recommendations of the council's scrutiny panels
The council publishes the agenda and reports to be considered at cabinet meetings (except those containing exempt or confidential information). These are available five or more working days before meetings. Anyone can see copies of these documents. They are available in main council offices, local links and on the council's website.
Other councillors act as 'lead members' on specific issues and support cabinet members. Lead members cannot make decisions, even if a cabinet member is not available.
The cabinet is made up of the leader of the council and seven other councillors appointed by the leader.
Each member of the cabinet has a particular portfolio, covering service and councilwide responsibilities:
Individual councillors may make decisions (if the Constitution of the council allows it). In North Lincolnshire Council, individual members can make decisions within their specific areas of responsibility (which are set out in the Constitution). The council has safeguards which protect the individual member and make sure that decisions are open, honest and accountable.
The council has created mechanisms to ensure that it gives councillors the necessary advice, including legal and financial, before they take any decision.
Decisions must be based on written reports containing all relevant information, including legal and financial advice. These reports have to be published five clear working days before a decision is made, in the same way as described for cabinet above.
The council has to record and publish all decisions by individual cabinet members and the cabinet as soon as possible. It does so in the form of minutes, which it publishes widely, and puts on the council’s website.