Attending Meetings at County Hall Worcestershire County
Everyone who lives or works in Worcestershire may be affected by
decisions made by the County Council.
Many important decisions are made by your elected Councillors at
various meetings, nearly all of which are open to the public.
Meetings usually take place at County Hall, Worcester, and
most begin at 10a.m.
At Worcestershire County Council we believe in open and accountable
government. Members of the public are very welcome to attend
these meetings, whether to hear what is being said, or to
participate and ask a question, present a petition or make their
own views known.
There are different meetings dealing with different topics, for
example Council decides the policy framework and budget, Cabinet
makes wide-ranging executive decisions and Planning and Regulatory
Committee decides county planning applications.
You can also get involved in the Council's Overview and Scrutiny
process, which is a key part of the checks and balances necessary
to hold the Cabinet to account and review the services provided by
More information on how to get involved in the work of
We publish agendas five working days in advance of the meeting.
Agendas, minutes and reports can be viewed and downloaded
from the Council's website.
Our "Forward Plan" also gives an
indication of what is intended to be considered by Cabinet over the
next 4 or so months.
If you need any guidance, don't hesitate to ask officers in the
Legal and Democratic Services Division using the contact details
set out below.
Members of the public can participate at meetings, including
Council, Cabinet and Committees, in any of the following ways:-
- presenting a relevant petition to the meeting and explaining
its contents or purpose;
- asking a question at the meeting; or
- making a comment on any matter on the agenda of the
The provisions are set out in full in the Council's Constitution
– see paragraph 15 at page B9.
Separate arrangements have been made for participation at Planning
and Regulatory Committee:-
If your subject is due to be discussed at a forthcoming meeting, we
will tell you when that meeting is taking place. If you want
to raise a general matter for which the County Council has
responsibility, we will advise you which is the most appropriate
meeting to attend.
If several people want to put the same case forward, we may decide
to only hear from one spokesperson. In these cases, we can put you
in touch with the first person who registered to speak. If that
person would prefer you to speak instead of them, then it is
possible for the registered speaker to nominate you as the speaker
Speaking is usually limited to 3 minutes per person, and any
member of the public wishing to participate should notify the
Council in writing, or by fax or e-mail, by no later than 9a.m. on
the working day before the meeting at which he/she wishes to
participate and indicate the nature and content of the proposed
participation. Contact details are shown below.
You will need to tell us:-
- your name and contact details; and
- what you wish to speak about.
If you are asking a question, we will need to receive the full text
of your question by no later than 9a.m. on the working day before
If you want to submit a petition, we need to receive the full text
of the proposition contained in the petition by no later than 9a.m.
on the working day before the meeting. You can present the petition
at the meeting. However, if your petition is seeking to
influence a decision that is to be taken at a meeting, it is
advisable to make it available well before the date of the meeting
so that officers and members have an opportunity to see it.
If you wish to make a comment about a matter on the agenda, we do
not require the full text of what you wish to say, but we will need
a list of main points to be put forward. Again, this must be
received by no later than 9a.m. on the working day before the
Please note that a request to speak at meetings may sometimes have
to be rejected, for example, if it is not about a matter for which
the County Council has responsibility, or if the content is
defamatory, frivolous or offensive. You cannot ask a question
if it is substantially the same as a question that has been put to
a meeting in the past six months. Requests to speak cannot be
accepted if they require the disclosure of confidential
information. Participation is to allow members of the public
to engage with decision-making and speakers should avoid making
party political points.
Certain categories of people are prevented from speaking, for
example employees of the Council cannot speak on matters that
relate to their employment.
In any event, public participation remains at the discretion of the
Chairman of the meeting in question.
We will give you advice on whether your request meets the Council's
The slot for public speakers is at the start of every meeting,
although sometimes the Chairman may ask a speaker to wait until
just before the Councillors discuss the item to which the speaker's
comments relate. This is particularly the case at the Planning
& Regulatory Committee, which has its own scheme for allowing
applicants, objectors and supporters to comment on planning
applications submitted to the County Council for determination.
Sometimes we alter the agenda order to bring forward matters
we know to be of public interest.
Personal details, such as your address or telephone number, are not
disclosed without your consent, although your name and general
details about you will be made public at the meeting (for example,
"Mr. John Smith, who is a speaking as a governor of the local
If you ask a question, efforts will be made to provide an
answer at the meeting, but this may not always be possible,
particularly with short notice, when a written answer will
generally be given . Questions should be directed to the
Chairman, who may do one of several things:-
- reply to you at the meeting;
- reply to you in writing following the meeting;
- decline to reply;
- ask another Councillor, or an officer, to reply on his/her
- refer the question to another Committee or Panel.
A petition can be presented at a meeting, with or without
comment, by the person submitting it, and will be received by the
Chairman, who will not normally respond, other than to acknowledge
receipt. The petition will then either be taken into consideration
before any decision on the matter in question is taken or a
response provided as appropriate.
You may want to make a comment on an agenda item at a meeting,
without expecting a response. Normally no response is made to
comments at the time they are given, but Councillors may have
regard to them and may refer to them in the course of the
consideration of the relevant item.
Legal & Democratic Services Unit
Worcestershire County Council
By e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
By telephone: (01905) 728713
By fax: (01905) 728747
Alternatively you can contact the Committee Officer named on the
contents page of the agenda for a particular meeting.
Agenda can be found at:
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This page was last reviewed 16 July 2013 at 15:37.
The page is next due for review 12 January 2015.