How to get involved
All of the council's Overview and Scrutiny Committees (OSC) meet in public unless there is a very good reason why they must be private. Other than attending meetings as an observer, there are a number of other ways that you can get involved.
Asking a question, making a statement or making a deputation
The Council's Constitution allows any member of the public to speak at a meeting of an Overview and Scrutiny Committee (OSC) on any issue relevant to the OSC or on any specific agenda item. You will usually have 3 minutes to speak and a response is usually provided at the meeting or in writing afterwards. If you would like to speak at an OSC meeting no notice is required although there is a short form to complete at least 15 minutes before the start. If notice is given however, it will be easier to give a more detailed reply at the meeting.
Submitting a petition or e-petition
A petition or e-petition can be submitted to the Monitoring Officer of the council at any time subject to the principles contained in the Council's Constitution. If the petition is accepted and there is at least 7 days notice then it will be submitted to the next relevant decision-making body (i.e. the Council, Executive or other Committee). If an organiser feels that there has been an inadequate response to their petition then a relevant OSC can review that response.
Suggest an item for the work programme
The work programmes of the OSCs are flexible and are considered at each OSC meeting. You can suggest an item to be added to the work programme of an OSC at any time by contacting the Overview and Scrutiny team. The OSC does not however consider individual complaints, it focuses on strategic issues.
Procedures covering each of these are contained in the Council's Constitution.
Overview and Scrutiny toolkit
The Overview and Scrutiny toolkit (PDF 381.1KB) is a useful resource for those involved with or interested in the Overview and Scrutiny Committees. The toolkit provides details on the process as well as practical advice for witnesses, officers and Members.