Local Government Minister Brandon Lewis said:
“This government has increased accountability and transparency over councillors’ interests, to accompany greater power and freedoms for local councils.
“Councils should adopt a Code of Conduct that reflects the Nolan principles on conduct in public life, with councillors declaring any private interest that relate to their public duties, and councillors must take steps to resolve any conflicts arising in a way that protects the public interest.
“In addition, it is now a criminal offence to fail to declare or register disclosable pecuniary interests - which includes any employment or trade carried out for profit or gain. The register of councillors’ interests must be published online by the council.
“Councillors should act in an open and transparent way, to avoid conflicts of interest on issues such as planning applications or benefiting financially from the issuing of council contracts.”