Open and accountable local government

A (draft) guide for the press and public on attending and reporting meetings of local government.

This publication was withdrawn on

This draft guide has now been replaced by the Open and accountable local government: plain English guide following approval in Parliament of the Openness of Local Government Bodies Regulations 2014.


Open and accountable local government

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This draft plain English guide provides useful information about the press and public attending and reporting on the meetings of a council or local government body. If the draft Openness of Local Government Bodies Regulations 2014 is approved by Parliament, the guide will be issued to help the public and practitioners understand their new rights and duties.

These regulations, if approved by Parliament, will enhance people’s rights to report council meetings in digital and social media. Any member of the press or public will have the right to film, blog, tweet or use any other type of social media to report any public meeting of their local government bodies including committees, sub-committees and joint committees. Also, councils and other local government bodies will be required to publish a ‘decision record’ for any significant decisions taken by officers acting under delegation from the local government body.

The draft guide is issued in accordance with the government commitment in the Written Ministerial Statement laid in Parliament on 26 June 2014.

Published 30 June 2014