The Director of Legal and Democratic Services presented a report that outlined matters relating to the Constitution raised by Members for consideration:
(a) Use of mobile devices during council meetings - Referral from Council
At a meeting of Council held on 11 January 2012, Members recommended that consideration be given to the use of mobile devices (mobile phones, iPads, laptops etc) to record proceedings and engage with external social media sources (eg twitter) during meetings.
Attention had been drawn to the increasing numbers of Members who were using mobile devices for texting and tweeting during meetings. The Councils IT Protocol required Members to be mindful as to whether the Code of Conduct applied when using social media.
The Council did not currently have a policy on the matter.
RECOMMENDED as follows: -
1. During Council meetings all mobile devices should be switched to silent mode.
2. No video, voice calls, recordings or photographs to be made or taken without the agreement of the Chair.
3. Texting and tweeting would be permitted, providing it did not interfere with the conduct of the business.
4. The use of all mobile devices would be prohibited during all Council meetings when the public were excluded.
(b) Council Meeting Agenda
Members were asked to give consideration to amending the order of the agenda for Council meetings. Specific reference was made to amount of time taken in consideration of the Executive Reports, and a suggestion was made that this item could be moved to the end of the agenda. However, it was highlighted that intention of allowing questions and comments to Executive Members was an opportunity for Members to hold the Executive to account.
Members were reminded that the content of the Council agenda had been consulted on previously and there was a natural progression to the items.
RECOMMENDED that no further action be taken in respect of this item.