Overview and Scrutiny

Cumbria County Council's Cabinet makes decisions and policies that lead the Council.  The Cabinet consists of elected Councillors that take on the role of Leader and Cabinet members.  To support this structure Cumbria County Council has an Overview and Scrutiny committee system.

Overview and Scrutiny is the process through which non-cabinet elected Councillors review the decisions of Cabinet, other committees and officers to ensure accountability for decisions made and policies implemented. Scrutiny also plays a part in the policy development process. 

Cumbria County Council has three Scrutiny Advisory Boards overseen by the Scrutiny Management Board. The Boards make recommendations on policy and hold the Leader and Cabinet, as well as Officers, to account for decisions they have made. They scrutinise the Council's performance in relation to policy objectives, performance targets, service areas and the work of external partners such as health bodies.  

Cumbria County Council also has responsibility for the Health Scrutiny Committee and hosts the Local Enterprise Partnership Scrutiny Board and the Cumbria Police and Crime Panel.  

Details of each board can be found below, including a link to meeting dates, agendas and papers. The County Council's constitution also provides the full terms of reference for each board.  

All Scrutiny Board meetings are open to the public, anyone may attend the meetings and will be welcomed as an observer.

Overview and Scrutiny is an essential part of ensuring that Cumbria County Council and its partners are transparent, accountable and open, resulting in better outcomes for Cumbria and its communities.

Has overall responsibility for the Overview and Scrutiny function of the Council. It is their responsibility to ensure that non-executive members make an effective contribution to the improvement and development of Council services. 

Chair: Cllr Bill Wearing

Membership, agendas, and papers from meetings

The board brings together County Councillors to overview and scrutinise the powers and duties, decisions and policies relating to Cumbria County Council services delivered to support Adults. 

Chair: Cllr Mark Wilson

Membership, agendas, and papers from meetings

The board brings together County Councillors to overview and scrutinise the powers and duties, decisions and policies relating to Cumbria County Council services delivered to support children and young people.

Chair: Cllr Phil Dew

Membership, agendas, and papers from meetings

The board brings together County Councillors to overview and scrutinise the powers and duties, decisions and policies relating to Cumbria County Council services delivered under the themes: 

  • Safer/stronger and inclusive communities
  • Planning
  • Highways
  • The environment
  • Economic regeneration

Chair: Cllr Stan Collins 

Membership, agendas, and papers from meetings

The committee brings together County and District Councillors to overview and scrutinise matters relating to the planning provision and operation of health services in Cumbria.

Chair: Carni McCarron-Holmes

Membership, agendas, and papers from meetings

Cumbria County Council hosts the PCP, bringing tother County and District Councillors to overview and scrutinise the work of the Police Commissioner.  This is one of the key checks and balances in relation to monitoring performance. The Police Commissioner is required to consult with the PCP on plans and budgets for policing, as well as the council tax precept and certain key appointments.

Chair: Mike Johnson 

Membership, agendas, and papers from meetings

Cumbria Police and Crime Panel (cumbriapcp.org.uk)

Cumbria County Council hosts the LEP scrutiny board, bringing together County and District Councillors to overview and scrutinise the strategic decisions of the LEP, progress and performance in delivery programmes and the delivery of LEP strategies. 

Chair: Cllr Bill Wearing

Membership, agendas, and papers from meetings

Scrutiny Reviews

Scrutiny Management Board can also commission scrutiny reviews via Task and Finish Groups.  These informal groups bring tother Councillors and participants, invited for their specific skills and experience, to take an in depth look at a specific topic area that is of particular interest or is providing particular concern to the Council and/or the community. 

Task and Finish Groups produce a report of findings and recommendations that is presented to the Cabinet for consideration to which a formal response is required, with an aim to improving outcomes for the communities of Cumbria.

Scrutiny Annual Report

Scrutiny Management Board creates a report annually detailing the work of the boards and can be found below.

Scrutiny Annual Report 2021 (PDF 10MB)

Scrutiny Annual Report 2019/20 (PDF 5MB)