Overview and scrutiny commission

Overview and scrutiny aims to improve the services that you use by reviewing the work of the council.

It plays a role in the policy development process, reviews issues of local concern and makes recommendations on the way services are provided.

The overview and scrutiny commission holds the executive (the cabinet) to public account for its actions. Collectively, and individually, the cabinet members make executive decisions on behalf of the council at cabinet and cabinet member meetings.

The commission is made up of 12 non-executive councillors and is the main arena for scrutiny.

There is also the councillor call for action panel.

Overview and scrutiny can:

  • scrutinise and review the work and policies of the cabinet
  • hold cabinet members and chief officers to account for their actions
  • call-in cabinet key decisions before they're implemented
  • initiate their own reviews of a council service, function or policy
  • be consulted by the cabinet or the council on the development of draft policies, action plans and best value reviews
  • scrutinise partner and other prominent local organisations and encourage good performance and regularly report in public on how they meet the promises of the local people
  • encourage openness and accountability about the way decisions are made
  • involve local people
  • improve policies and services for the people of Harrogate

Overview and scrutiny can't:

  • handle individual complaints
  • intervene in planning applications
  • act as an appeals mechanism

Get involved in overview and scrutiny

As a resident of the district, you are welcome to take part in the overview and scrutiny process by attending commission and panel meetings or submitting requests for review.

Annual reports

Overview and scrutiny produce annual reports to reflect the scrutiny work that has taken place in the last year and to highlight issues to be scrutinised in the year ahead.

Annual reports

Task and finish groups

The Commission can also establish task and finish groups reviews that focus on a particular issue and consider it in greater detail than is possible at Committee. These reviews culminate in a final report with recommendations which are then presented to a meeting of the council's Executive.

Final reports

Enquiries and requests form