Code of conduct for councillors
Amended code of conduct for councillors, setting out standards of behaviour to be followed by elected members of Scottish local authorities from 9 July 2018.
Section 4: Registration Of Interests
4.1 The following paragraphs set out the categories of interests, financial and otherwise, which you have to register. These are "Registrable Interests", and you must ensure that they are registered, when you are elected and whenever your circumstances change. The register should cover the period commencing from 12 months prior to and including your current term of office.
4.2 Regulations made by Scottish Ministers describe the detail and timescale for registering interests; including a requirement that a councillor must register their registerable interests within 1 month of becoming a councillor, and register any changes to those interests within 1 month of those changes having occurred. It is your personal responsibility to comply with these regulations, and you should review regularly and at least once a year your personal circumstances to ensure that your registration of interests is up to date.
4.3 Annex B contains key definitions and explanatory notes to help you decide what is required when registering your interests under any particular category. The interests which you are required to register are those set out in the following paragraphs and relate to you. It is not necessary to register the interests of your spouse, or cohabitee.
Category One: Remuneration
4.4 You have a registrable interest where you receive remuneration by virtue of being:
- the holder of an office;
- a director of an undertaking;
- a partner in a firm; or
- undertaking a trade, profession or vocation, or any other work.
4.5 You do not have a registrable interest simply because you are a member of a statutory joint board or joint committee that is composed exclusively of councillors.
4.6 If a position is not remunerated it does not need to be registered under this category. However, unremunerated directorships may need to be registered under category two "Related Undertakings".
4.7 If you receive any allowances in relation to membership of any organisation the fact that you receive such an allowance must be registered.
4.8 When registering employment, you must give the name of the employer, the nature of its business and the nature of the post held in the organisation.
4.9 When registering self-employment, you must provide the name and give details of the nature of the business. When registering an interest in a partnership, you must give the name of the partnership and the nature of its business.
4.10 Where you otherwise undertake a trade, profession or vocation, or any other work, the detail to be given is the nature of the work and its regularity. For example, if you write for a newspaper, you must give the name of the publication and the frequency of articles for which you are paid.
4.11 When registering a directorship, it is necessary to provide the registered name of the undertaking in which the directorship is held and detail the nature of its business.
4.12 Registration of a pension is not required as this falls outside the scope of the category.
Category Two: Related Undertakings
4.13 You must register any directorships held which are themselves not remunerated but where the company (or other undertaking) in question is a subsidiary of, or a parent of, a company (or other undertaking) in which you hold a remunerated directorship.
4.14 You must register the name of the subsidiary or parent company or other undertaking and the nature of its business, and its relationship to the company or other undertaking in which you are a director and from which you receive remuneration.
4.15 The situations to which the above paragraphs apply are as follows:
- you are a director of a board of an undertaking and receive remuneration - declared under Category One - and
- you are a director of a parent or subsidiary undertaking but do not receive remuneration in that capacity.
Category Three: Contracts
4.16 You have a registrable interest where you (or a firm in which you are a partner, or an undertaking in which you are a director or in which you have shares of a value as described in paragraph 4.21 below) have made a contract with the Council of which you are a member:
(i) under which goods or services are to be provided, or works are to be executed; and
(ii) which has not been fully discharged.
4.17 You must register a description of the contract, including its duration, but excluding the consideration.
Category Four: Election Expenses
4.18 You must register a statement of any assistance towards elections expenses received within the period commencing from 12 months prior to and including your current term of office, where the value of any single donation exceeds £50.
Category Five: Houses, Land and Buildings
4.19 You have a registrable interest where you own or have any other right or interest in houses, land and buildings, such as being an owner or a tenant, including council tenant.
4.20 You are required to give the address of the property, or otherwise give a description sufficient to identify it.
Category Six: Interest in Shares and Securities
4.21 You have a registrable interest where you have an interest in shares comprised in the share capital of a company or other body and the nominal value of the shares is:
(i) greater than 1% of the issued share capital of the company or other body;
(ii) greater than £25,000.
Category Seven: Gifts and Hospitality
4.22 You must register the details of any gifts or hospitality received within your current term of office. This record will be available for public inspection. It is not however necessary to record any gifts or hospitality as described in paragraph 3.11 (a) to (c) of this Code.
Category Eight: Non-Financial Interests
4.23 Councillors may also have significant non-financial interests and it is equally important that relevant interests such as membership or holding office in public bodies, companies, clubs, societies and organisations such as trades unions and voluntary organisations, are registered and described. In this context, non-financial interests are those which members of the public might reasonably think could influence your actions, speeches or votes in the Council which could include appointments to Committees or memberships of other organisations.
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