This Procedure will apply to the decision-making which was to have been dealt with via the meeting of the Combined Authority Board arranged for Wednesday 25 March 2020. Due to Government guidance on social distancing and the Covid-19 virus it will not be possible to hold a physical meeting of the Combined Authority Board as intended and until there is a change in the law to allow local government formal meetings to take place on-line without a physical meeting an alternative decisionmaking process is required. Any virtual meeting of the Combined Authority Board which was held at the present time would not be a lawful meeting of the Board and any decisions made on that basis would not be valid.
It is important that the Combined Authority does not cease to function during this difficult period, and it would not be right to delay indefinitely decisions on the items which were on the agenda for this meeting of the Combined Authority Board.
The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority Order 2017 granted the Mayor a general power of competence and the Mayor will use that power, in consultation with the Members of the Combined Authority, to make decisions on the items which were on the agenda for this meeting of the Combined Authority Board. This is subject to items which the officers of the Combined Authority have identified as not requiring an urgent decision being deferred to a future meeting of the Combined Authority Board [given Government’s stated intention to legislate for virtual local government meetings shortly] and to the exclusion of matters which would not fall within the Mayor’s general power of competence. The latter would include decisions on the allocation of transport spending.
In practical terms this means that:
• The Mayor will hold a virtual meeting on Wednesday 25 March 2020 at 10.30am with the members of the Combined Authority Board or their substitutes.
• Officers will present their reports on each item to the virtual meeting.
• Combined Authority Board Members will have the opportunity to debate each item.
• The Mayor will consult Members on the decision to be made.
• The Mayor will then take the decision on each item using his General Power.
Members of the public and press can observe the meeting in real-time by following this link: https://zoom.us/j/313655748?pwd=MFMwdWs2WHRJRU5oeUxjaEM0Vld6dz09
Please note: When you join the meeting you will be prompted to enter a name. This will be visible to others so you may want to use a first name only or other signifier.
These are temporary arrangements pending a change in the law on virtual local government meetings.