The Terms of Reference for this body are available to view in Part 3 of the Constitution.
A Guide to Public Questions at Council Meetings
Members of the public are able to ask the Council a question on a topic within the Council's control. A total of 30 minutes is allocated at the Council meeting for the public questions.
It is the intention of the Borough Council of King’s Lynn and West Norfolk to hold Council meetings for the foreseeable future as online meetings, using the Zoom video conferencing system. If you wish to view the meeting you can do so by accessing www.youtube.com/WestNorfolkBC.
Since the introduction of restrictions on gatherings of people by the Government in March 2020, it has not been possible to hold standard face to face public meetings at the Council offices. This led to a temporary suspension of meetings. The Coronavirus Act 2020 has now been implemented and in Regulations made under Section 78, it gives Local Authorities the power to hold meetings without it being necessary for any of the participants to be present together in the same room.
Questions to Council will be permitted if they meet the following criteria:
Questions must relate to:
· The Councils Policies;
The work of the Council in respect of any
matter or issue affecting the Borough.
Questions relating to the following will not be allowed:
· The questioner personally or their family;
· Any specific planning applications for planning permission or any licenses;
· Any Councillor or Officer of the Council or any member of the public;
· Any defamatory confidential or exempt information;
Once you have met the question criteria.
Submit the question in writing to the Chief Executive before 5pm 3 clear working days before the Council meeting. Questions can be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org
Your question and its content will be recorded in a register in the order they are received.
Once you have submitted a question, the Chief Executive will write to you and confirm:
1. Whether or not the question is valid and complies;
2. The date, time and place of the meeting at which the question can be asked;
3. The procedure for asking the question and receiving an answer;
4. Your position in a list of people who wish to ask a question
When submitting your question you will also need to provide the following information to email@example.com :
· Your name
· Email address
· Telephone number
This is to ensure that we know who you are and we can admit you to the meeting.
You will be asking your question remotely via the Zoom video conferencing system and will receive an email confirming that you are registered to speak along with the relevant details to access the meeting. Please ensure that you can access Zoom and have set up an account if necessary. You can choose to speak being either seen and heard, or just heard and we would also ask that you submit a written representation in case of any issues with the software. If you do not wish to speak via a remote link, please let us know, and you can submit a written representation, which will be read out at the meeting.
Information on how to set up and join a Zoom meeting is available here.
Join the meeting early, you will remain in the waiting room and will be let in once it is time for you to ask your question. Once you question has been dealt with you will be removed from the Zoom meeting, however you can continue to watch the Council meeting on the WestNorfolkBC You Tube channel.
If you submit a question, you may pose the question to the Council yourself or you can ask a friend to do so for you.
You may also ask a supplementary question after your original question has been answered but the response and the time taken to ask the supplementary question shall not exceed a total of 5 minutes.
The Council will not be able to debate the question or its answer at that meeting.
You should address your question to the Mayor and it will be answered by any Councillor or officer of the Council nominated by the Mayor.
A reply may be one of the following:
· A direct oral response;
· In exceptional circumstances, a written reply can be given. If this does happen then the Mayor will explain why an oral response is inconvenient and the reasons for this, which will be minuted. A written response shall be received within 7 days of the meeting;
· The Mayor will nominate which Councillor will respond to your question.
Where and when?
View details of Council meetings here
Support officer: Sam Winter, Democratic Services Manager 616327.