Constitution - Part 5B - Cabinet procedure rules

These rules of procedure are to be read in conjunction with Part 5J: Annex to the Constitution dated 7 August 2020 Remote Meetings

Making Cabinet Decisions

1.1 The Leader of the Council ('the Leader') may undertake any of the functions of the Cabinet himself/herself or may arrange for cabinet functions to be carried out by:

(a) The Cabinet as a whole;
(b) A committee of the Cabinet;
(c) An individual member of the Cabinet;
(d) An officer of the County Council;
(e) A Local Committee;
(f) Joint arrangements; or
(g) Another local authority.

1.2 The Leader may assign specific portfolio responsibilities to any member of the Cabinet with or without authority to exercise Cabinet functions in relation to those responsibilities. 

(NB: No Cabinet functions are currently delegated to individual Cabinet members)

Delegation by the Leader

1.3 The Leader will present to the Annual Meeting of the Council his/her proposals for delegations to be made for inclusion in the Council's Scheme of Delegation.

The document presented by the Leader will contain the following information about cabinet functions in relation to the coming year:

(a) The names, addresses, and electoral divisions of those councillors appointed to the Cabinet;
(b) The extent of any authority to be delegated to Cabinet members individually, including details of any limitation on their authority;
(c) The terms of reference, constitution and membership of any Cabinet committees established by  the Cabinet;
(d) The nature and extent of any delegation of cabinet functions to Local Committees, any other local authority or any joint arrangements, and the names of any Cabinet members appointed to any joint committee for the coming year;  and
(e) The nature and extent of any delegation to officers of the County Council, with details of any limitation on that delegation, and the title of the officer to whom the delegation is made.

Sub-delegation of Cabinet Functions

1.4 Where the Cabinet, a committee of the Cabinet, or an individual Cabinet member is responsible for a cabinet function, they may delegate further to a Local Committee, joint arrangements, or an officer of the County Council.

1.5 If the Leader delegates functions to the Cabinet, then the Cabinet may delegate further to a committee of the Cabinet or to an officer of the County Council.

1.6 A committee of the Cabinet to whom functions have been delegated by the Leader may delegate further to an officer of the County Council unless the Leader has advised that this may not happen.

1.7 Even where Cabinet functions have been delegated, this does not prevent the taking of decisions by the person or body who delegated those functions.

Schemes of Delegation and Cabinet Functions

1.8 The extent of any delegation by the Leader in accordance with the provisions set out above must be recorded in a Scheme of Delegation ('the Scheme').  Any amendments to the Scheme must be reported to the Council at its next scheduled meeting.  Any delegation to any committees of the Cabinet must be similarly reported.
1.9 The Leader may make an amendment to the Scheme relating to Cabinet functions at any time during the year by giving written notice to the Head of Paid Service clearly setting out the extent of any amendment to the Scheme.
1.10 The Head of Paid Service will then include the Leader's proposals in the Scheme and amend the Constitution accordingly.

1.11 The Head of Paid Service must present a report to the next Ordinary Meeting of the Council setting out the changes proposed by the Leader.

(NB the Council's scheme of delegation for non-executive functions must be adopted by the Council and may only be amended by the Council)

Transitional Provisions

1.12 The arrangements for the discharge of Cabinet functions set out in these Rules take effect from the election of a new Leader of the Council at the County Council's annual meeting.  Until the new Leader notifies the Chief Executive of any proposals for changing the arrangements for making Cabinet decisions, the arrangements set out in the Constitution in force at the date of the County Council annual meeting shall continue to apply.

Cabinet Meetings

1.13 The Cabinet will meet at times as agreed by the Leader.  The Cabinet meets at the County Council's main offices, or at other locations to be agreed by the Cabinet.

Minimum Attendance/ Quorum

1.14 The minimum attendance for a meeting of the Cabinet is 40% of all members of the Cabinet (with the number being rounded up to the nearest whole number).  The minimum attendance must include either the Leader or Deputy Leader, or if both are absent then a specified Cabinet Member designated by the Leader or Deputy Leader.

How Decisions are to be taken by the Cabinet

1.15 Voting at meetings of the Cabinet and its committees will be by a simple majority of those members voting and present in the room at the time the question is put; in the event of equality, the Leader or in his/her absence the Chair, will have a second or casting vote.


2.1 The Leader, or in his/her absence the Deputy Leader, will chair any meeting of the Cabinet or its committees at which he/she is present.  In the absence of both, a member of the Cabinet designated by the Leader or Deputy Leader will chair the meeting.


2.2 At each meeting of the Cabinet, the following business will be considered:

(a) Declarations of interest, if any;
(b) The minutes of the last meeting (unless the next meeting is a special meeting);
(c) Matters referred to the Cabinet (whether by Scrutiny Board or by the Council) for reconsideration by the Cabinet.
(d) Consideration of reports from Scrutiny Boards;
(e) Matters referred to the Cabinet by a Local Committee; and
(f) Matters set out in the agenda for the meeting (any key decisions should be noted on the agenda) 


2.3 All reports to the Cabinet on proposals relating to the Budget and Policy Framework must contain details of the nature and extent of consultation with stakeholders and relevant Scrutiny Boards, and the outcome of that consultation.  Reports about other matters will set out the details and outcome of consultation as appropriate.  The level of consultation required will be appropriate to the nature of the matter under consideration.

Putting items on the Cabinet Agenda

2.4 The Leader will decide upon the schedule for the meetings of the Cabinet.  He/she may put on the agenda of any Cabinet meeting any matter which he/she wishes, whether or not authority has been delegated to the Cabinet, a committee of it, or any member or officer of the County Council in respect of that matter.  The Head of Paid Service will comply with the Leader's requests in this respect.

2.5 With the agreement of the Leader any member of the Cabinet may require the Head of Paid Service to make sure that an item is placed on the agenda of the next available meeting of the Cabinet for consideration.  If he/she receives such a request, the Head of Paid Service will comply.

2.6 The Head of Paid Service will make sure that an item is placed on the agenda of the next available meeting of the Cabinet where a relevant Scrutiny Board or Local Committee or the full Council have resolved that an item be considered by the Cabinet.

2.7 The Monitoring Officer and/or the Section 151 Officer may in exercise of their statutory duties include an item for consideration on the agenda of a Cabinet meeting and if necessary may require the Head of Paid Service to call such a meeting. 

2.8 In other circumstances, where any two of the Head of Paid Service, Section 151 Officer, and Monitoring Officer are of the opinion that a meeting of the Cabinet needs to be called to consider a matter that requires a decision, they may jointly include an item on the agenda of a Cabinet meeting.  If there is no meeting of the Cabinet soon enough to deal with the issue in question, then they may require that a meeting be convened for the matter to be considered.

Please see also:

Cabinet Terms of Reference

Local Committees Terms of Reference