As of 1st April 2015 the Transparency Code was introduced. The Transparency Code for smaller councils requires a range of different publications on both an annual and more frequent basis to be available to the public on-line. This new legislation means that whilst parishes may previously have had a simple landing page or basic, informational website, they now need to ensure a fully functioning and easily updatable site is in place.
Vision ICT is now working with many councils in developing websites that fulfil their obligations under the Transparency Code and have and can offer complete specialised website package. Download our 2 page information sheet detailing what's included in our £500 Transparency Code package.
We have been working with several County Associations in support of their members and are now delighted to be assisting the Berkshire County Association of Local Councils. Please download this information sheet for more details.
IMPORTANT: NALC grants are available http://www.nalc.gov.uk/our-work/the-transparency-fund to fully fund these developments for councils with a precept of less than £25,000.
Burlescombe Parish Council
Swinefleet Parish Council
Winsham Parish Council
West Bretton Parish Council
The Transparency Code for Smaller Authorities requires councillors or members to publish the following information annually:
The code also requires all small councils and parishes to publish all minutes, agendas and papers of formal meetings more frequently. These publications must be produced no later than one month after the meeting has taken place or in the case of agendas and papers issued before a meeting, no later than three full days before said meeting is taking place.
The modern design and development of websites means they can be as easily accessible as required and uploading or inputting the information required need not be a laborious or difficult task. As it is an absolute requirement that the above documents and information is published online, it is essential that every small parish or council has a functioning website where this information can be accessed.
As the guidelines state the information needs to be easily accessible and it needs to be free. Using your standard council website means you can communicate with your community with ease and it’s an address which is easy to access and one that many of your local community will already know.
The Transparency Code for Local Authorities has set out deadlines for much of the documentation to ensure that councillors and those administrating the website can publish things in a timely fashion. From April it has been a requirement to ensure publication of draft minutes from all formal meetings are published and live, no later than one month on from the meetings and equally that the agendas and meeting papers should be published in advance. The second deadline is in July 2015 when councils need to have their first annual set of data completed.
With these deadlines so nearby it is completely essential that your website is ready and functioning properly, to allow for the easy uploading and content management of your necessary publications.
The web site was easy to master, even for me!
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