How your council works
HOW YOUR COUNCIL WORKS
The responsibilities of the Council are varied and specified by Acts of Parliament. These powers include those relating to planning, recreational facilities, community transport, some footpaths, some street lighting, litter and open spaces.
The Parish Council employs three part-time members of staff to manage the day-to-day operations, and there are also ten unpaid councillors who are elected every four years by the electors of the parish.
The councillors are governed by a mandatory code of conduct which includes obligations to act in an appropriate way.
There are three main components to the councillors' work:
• Deciding the way money should be spent, services delivered and policies implemented
• Monitoring the efficiency and effectiveness of services
• Being involved locally both in meeting the wider community and engaging with local organisations
There are currently three committees: Planning and Highways, Open Spaces & Amenities, and Finance. Click here for more information about out committees.
Three councillors also sit on the West Hoe Cemetery Managememnt Committee, which administered jointly with Bishop’s Waltham Parish Council. All parish councillors are trustees of the Swanmore Recreation Ground Charity.
The Executive Officer (EO) is the council’s “proper officer”, appointed by the council to discharge its functions. The EO is supported by a Responsible Financial Officer and a Deputy Executive Officer. All three fulfil the roles traditionally taken by “parish clerk” or “assistant clerk”.
The officers work as part of a team with the councillors to serve the residents and businesses of Swanmore. They draw up and sign agendas for meetings, giving the appropriate notice, and ensure minutes of meetings are recorded accurately. They implement the decisions of the council, as well as provide independent, objective and professional advice, information and administrative support to the council. The Executive Officer also fulfils the role of office manager.
The Annual General Meeting of the Council is held each year in May, when elections for Chairman, Vice-Chairman and .Committee Chairmen are held.
The Annual Parish Meeting is held between March and May each year and is a meeting which all electors of the parish can attend. The purpose of this meeting is to allow the Parish Council to provide parishioners with an update on its activities during the previous year. It also enables electors to speak about anything they consider important.