The Standards Commission is an independent body whose purpose is to encourage high ethical standards in public life through the promotion and enforcement of Codes of Conduct for councillors and those appointed to the boards of devolved public bodies.
Consultation on draft Advice Note for Councillors on Distinguishing Between Strategic and Operational Management
7th February 2018
The Councillors’ Code of Conduct provides that a councillor's role is to determine policy and to participate in decisions on matters placed before them and not to engage in direct operational management of the Council’s services (as this is the responsibility of Council officers). The Standards Commission considered, therefore, that it might be helpful to produce an Advice Note for councillors on the topic.A draft Advice Note, which is intended to assist councill...
January 2018 Professional Briefing
12th January 2018
Our latest quarterly professional briefing note can be found here.
22nd December 2017
The Standards Commission for Scotland will close for the festive break at 3pm on Friday 22 December 2017 and reopen at 9am on Wednesday 3 January 2018.
Advice Note for Councillors on the Application of Article 10 of the ECHR
4th October 2017
The issue of how to apply Article 10 of the ECHR concerning freedom of expression in light of the provisions in the Codes of Conduct has arisen in a number of recent Hearings before the Standards Commission. The Standards Commission considered, therefore, that it would be helpful to issue advice on how it will deal with such cases and to also suggest issues councillors and members of devolved public bodies may wish to consider to help them comply with the courtesy and respect provisions...
Revised Guidance on the Councillors' Code of Conduct
1st September 2017
The Standards Commission recently reviewed and updated the revised Guidance on the Councillors' Code of Conduct to ensure it remains fit for purpose. The latest version, which incorporates the Code, comes into effect from 1 September 2017. The changes have also been made to the standalone version and both can be found on the Standards Commission’s website at http://www.standardscommissionscot...
Standards Commission's Regional Roadshows
16th August 2017
The Standards Commission for Scotland is planning to host 4 events across Scotland later in the year. All Councillors, whether newly elected or experienced, are invited to attend one of these free events. The sessions will be taking place as follows: 5 October 2017 – INVERNESS Council Chambers, The Highland Council Headquarters, Glenurquhart Road, Inverness, IV3 5NX 9 November 2017 – AYR County Hall, South Ayrshir...
A Councillor's Responsibilities to the Council as a Member of the Public
16th August 2017
A councillor has responsibilities to his or her Council both as a elected member and as a member of the public. The Councillors' Code of Conduct notes, at paragraph 3.20, that if a councillor is in two months' arrears with payment of Council tax that councillor may not participate in certain decisions concerning Council tax issues, in order to preserve public confide...
Advice for Councillors on How to Declare Interests
8th August 2017
The Standards Commission has produced an Advice Note, which aims to provide advice to councillors on how and when to declare an interest at meetings. The Councillors’ Code of Conduct identifies and outlines the types of interest that must be declared and the Standards Commission has produced Guidance on how the provisions in the Councillors’ Code of Conduct should be interpreted. The Advice Note does not, therefore, repeat advice about what interests require to be declared a...
Consultation on Draft Advice Note on Application of Article 10
2nd August 2017
The issue of how to apply Article 10 of the ECHR concerning freedom of expression in light of the provisions in the Councillors’ Code of Conduct has arisen in a number of recent Hearings before the Standards Commission. The Standards Commission considers it would be helpful, therefore, to produce an Advice Note on how it will deal with such cases and to also suggest issues councillors and members of devolved public bodies may wish to consider to help them comply with the cou...
Application of Article 10 of ECHR at Hearings of the Standards Commission
30th June 2017
The Standards Commission, at a recent hearing, determined that two councillors of Edinburgh City Council who had publicly identified staff in public, in the context of Council failings of project management, had not breached the Councillors’ Code of Conduct. This was because of the enhanced protection afforded by the European Convention on Human Rights. The case is considered to be of particular significance as the Standards Commission outlined the approach its Hearing Panels will...