Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Public right to film Council meetings will be law in August 6th

The right to for the public to film and record Council meetings will soon be enshrined in law. The Department for Communities and Local Government that Parliament has now approved the draft Openness of Local Government Bodies Regulations 2014. The Government intends to make the Regulations on 5 August and they will therefore come into force on 6 August.  The will give the public new rights to film and report council meetings, including meetings of committees and subcommittees, using digital and social media.  The Regulations will also require councils to publish a 'decision record' for certain significant decisions taken by officers acting under delegation from their councils.  

The Government has produced a draft plain English guide to the Regulations. Download the PDF here.

Brandon Lewis (The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Communities and Local Government; Great Yarmouth, Conservative) stated on June 26th:

"Most town halls in England are already embracing such transparency, and do not need to wait for permission from Whitehall to open their doors to the press and public. However, a small minority are dragging their feet; Ministers want to make it clear that there is absolutely no reason for the public not to be able to exercise their new rights once the secondary legislation has been approved by Parliament and made."

1 comment:

  1. Thankyou for your very interesting update Louise, for us as a family in particular the following:-
    "The regulations will also require councils to publish a "Decision Record" for certain significant decisions taken by officers acting under delegation from their councils".
    What I hope this means that if Thanet Council Officers decide to instigate court proceedings against my seventy year old mother and mentally disabled partner for not complying with TDC Enforcement Notices to vacate and demolish their home, then their reasoning for taking such action must be published?
    Given that complying with such a harsh notice will not only destroy the lives of those directly affected living under this threat, but also the lives of the extended family including me, I would hope that would be considered "significant"?