Decision details

Motion by Councillor Richard Webber

Decision Maker: County Council

Decision status: Recommendations approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


With the consent of Council Councillor Webber moved his motion amended at the suggestion of Councillor David Bartholomew as shown below in strikethrough and bold italics:


The Council’s Procurement procedures have been the subject of concern for some time. At the latest Audit and Governance Committee meeting, the subject of a claim made over a breach of Procurement procedures by the Council was considered. This breach of procedure has cost the Council, and hence Oxfordshire taxpayers, £1.6 million in compensation and legal costs.


Council notes that the role of the Audit & Governance Committee is to ensure that the Council's procedures are robust, that taxpayer's money is controlled properly and that it is spent wisely.


The timeline provided to the Audit and Governance Committee meeting on this matter shows that the Portfolio Holder and the Chair of Audit and Governance were both aware of the breach and cost of out of court settlement in February 2020, but and as an independent report was in progress, the Audit Working Group Committee was only informed in December 2020. January 2021. Council believes that by withholding this information from the Audit and Governance Committee for 11 months, the Executive failed to act in the interest of Oxfordshire taxpayers.


Council commits to ensuring that, in future, in the interests of transparency and good governance, any breaches of procedure are made known to members of the Audit and Governance Committee as soon as they are known to the Executive, and that committee members are allowed to see any reports relating to such breaches of procedure (redacted as necessary), following any reasonable request from members of that committee and assuming there is no legal reason why such documents should be with-held.


Following a vote the Motion as amended was agreed unanimously.


(Recorded vote in the minutes)


Publication date: 14/04/2021

Date of decision: 07/04/2021

Decided at meeting: 07/04/2021 - County Council