AFTER hearing how well Thurrock Council scrutinises its own decision making process, Solihull Council – near Birmingham – travelled down to Thurrock to see how it works in action.
Solihull councillors, Cllr Mackiewicz, Rolf, Nash, Hamilton and Slater along with their own Scrutiny Officer, Mala Mistry all made the 200 mile round trip to hear how Thurrock Council’s Children’s Overview and Scrutiny committee worked.
Solihull met with Thurrock Council democratic services officers, Committee Chair Cllr Bukky Okunade and Health and Education Portfolio Holder, Cllr James Halden last week (Wednesday 19 October).
Discussing work plans, year objectives and outcomes the visit was hailed an “interesting and important opportunity to share working experience and best practice.” by Cllr Okunade.
Cllr Okunade spoke after the event, she said: “I was very pleased to speak to Solihull Council – we discussed the relationship between officers and members, how we use the work programme to forward plan discussions on important issues as well as how we are linked into Open Door, Children in Care Council and the Thurrock Youth Cabinet.
“They asked us very important questions as well as requesting additional information, like the terms of reference for this Overview and Scrutiny and the Corporate Parenting committee.”
She added: “It was good to hear our guests liked that we record all of our Overview and Scrutiny meetings for public use – we will be sending them links so they can listen online.”
Solihull Officer, Mala Mistry said: “Our members found it invaluable to have the opportunity to meet with us to understand how scrutiny works in Thurrock.
“Members have learnt such a lot with everybody who attended saying they felt it was a worthwhile visit.”