To present the report of the Head of Audit and Risk.
The report of the Head of Audit and Risk on the outcome of the process for recruiting additional lay members to the Governance and Audit Committee in accordance with the requirements of the Local Government and Elections (Wales) Act 2021 was presented for the Committee’s consideration.
Having declared a personal and prejudicial interest in this matter, Mr Dilwyn Evans withdrew from the meeting during the discussion and determination thereof. Councillor Alun Roberts was elected to chair the item (which was taken last in the order of business).
The Head of Audit and Risk reported that the Local Government and Elections (Wales) Act 2021 introduces reforms of the performance and governance regime, including changes to the composition and proceedings of the Governance and Audit Committee which require that one third of the Committee’s membership are lay members and two thirds are members of the Council. For the Isle of Anglesey County Council, this means there will be a requirement for four lay members to serve on the Committee. Mr Dilwyn Evans, current lay member has indicated that he is willing to serve a second five year term which is provided for in the Committee’s Terms of Reference and the Council’s Constitution.
The Head of Audit and Risk referred to the recruitment process which was held in collaboration with the Welsh Local Government Association and involved a national programme of promotion as previously reported to the Committee. The process resulted in the Council receiving 13 applications. These were the subject of a shortlisting exercise on 19 January, 2022 conducted by a panel consisting of the Chair and Vice-Chair of the Committee and the Director of Function (Resources)/Section 151 Officer which identified four candidates for interview. The interviews were subsequently carried out in February, 2022 by a panel of the Chair of the Committee, the Director of Function (Resources)/Section 151 Officer and the now Chief Executive. The interview panel selected the following three candidates to be considered for appointment - Mr Michael Wilson, Llangefni, Anglesey Sharon Warnes, Pwllheli, Gwynedd and Mr William Parry, Rhosneigr, Anglesey.
In response to a question about why the shortlisting exercise only produced four candidates for interview from an applicant pool of thirteen, the Director of Function (Resources)/Section 151 Officer clarified that there were several reasons why a number of applicants were eliminated at the shortlisting stage including incomplete application forms and no connection or familiarity with the authority or authority area. Some applicants had also applied to every council in Wales. The panel was satisfied that the shortlisting process had produced four strong candidates from whom three could be considered for appointment to serve as lay members on the Governance and Audit Committee having met the criteria for the position.
It was resolved –
· To approve the selection and appointment of Michael Wilson, Sharon Warnes and William Parry as lay members to the Governance and Audit Committee and to recommend their appointment to the Council.
· To recommend to the Council that Mr Dilwyn Evans continues as lay member for a second five year term.