Eight key facts about Scrutiny in Swansea

Scrutiny can make a difference by ensuring that local decision making is better, that local services are improved and that local democracy is strengthened.

What are some of the key facts about scrutiny?

  1. Main aim of scrutiny is to act as a ‘critical friend’ to the Cabinet and other decision makers in order to promote better services, policies and decisions
  2. Scrutiny is a cross party activity
  3. Scrutiny works in a similar way to select committees and involves Councillors that are not in Cabinet
  4. Scrutiny is a key way that councillors and communities can put forward their views and shape council policies
  5. Scrutiny Councillors can consider wider issues facing the area, including the role played by other public service partners
  6. Scrutiny does not make decisions on behalf of council but can investigate an issue, make recommendations to Cabinet and also monitor performance of the Council
  7. Scrutiny has a specific duty to scrutinise the joint work of the Public Service Boards and also to scrutinise crime and disorder matters
  8. Scrutiny can review decisions of Cabinet before they are made and this is called pre-decision scrutiny

What are the benefits of being a Scrutiny Councillor?

  • Being at the forefront of influencing positive change for the council and public services
  • Being involved in and learning about areas of particular interest
  • Being able to propose issues which they feel could benefit from scrutiny including community concerns
  • Asking questions, getting information, and raising concerns about a particular issue
  • Tackling a particular problem, considering a range of evidence and proposing solutions

What is the role of a scrutiny councillor?

A scrutiny councillor will be expected to research and review information, listen to evidence and help formulate findings/recommendations.  It is important that scrutiny councillors have good listening and questioning skills so that they can gather all the information they need.

How can I learn more about the role of a Scrutiny Councillor?

If you are a Councillor you can attend the Scrutiny Induction Training which will be held in the Lord Mayors reception room in the Guildhall on one of the following dates:

  • Monday 12 June 2017 at 4.30pm to 6.30pm; or
  • Thursday 15 June 2017 at 10.00am to 12.00noon

A Work Planning Conference for Councillors will also be arranged soon after the induction session in June to provide Councillors with an opportunity to share ideas about what should be included in the scrutiny work programme for the coming year, taking into account council priorities and public concerns.

You can also find more information about scrutiny in Swansea at our website www.swansea.gov.uk/scrutiny or you can email us at scrutiny@swansea.gov.uk


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