7.1 The Local Joint Panel is the joint union and employer negotiation and consultative body.
Membership and Meeting Arrangements
7.2 The Local Joint Panel will consist of four Members of the Council (‘the Employer’) to be appointed annually by the Council and four representatives of officers drawn from the constituent trade union (currently UNISON).
7.3 Named substitute members may be appointed by either side, to attend meetings of the Local Joint Panel in the absence of a member thereof, provided prior notice is given to the Head of Legal and Democratic Services.
7.4 In the event of any failure to appoint/elect the number of representatives provided for by this Constitution, such failure to appoint/elect shall not invalidate the decisions of the Panel.
7.5 If a member of the Local Joint Panel ceases to be a Member or officer of the council he or she shall cease to be a member of the Local Joint Panel; any vacancy shall be filled by the council, the constituent trade union or the combination of the two.
7.6 A Chairman and a Vice-Chairman shall be appointed by the Local Joint Panel at its first meeting in each year. If the Chairman appointed is a Member of the Council, the Vice-Chairman shall be appointed from the officer side, and vice versa. The appointment of the Chairman of the Panel shall be rotated on an annual basis between the Employer’s side and the Employees’ side. The Chairman of a meeting may vote as a Panel member but shall not have a casting vote.
7.7 The Head of Human Resources and Organisational Development or a senior Human Resources Officer shall act as secretary to the Employer’s Side.
7.8 The Local Joint Panel shall meet during office hours as and when required, but not less than quarterly. The Chairman or Vice-Chairman may direct the secretary to call a meeting at any time. A meeting shall be called within seven days of the receipt of a requisition signed by at least two members of either side. The matters to be discussed at any meeting of the Local Joint Panel shall be stated upon the notice summoning the meeting.
7.9 Agendas shall be prepared by the Democratic Services Team, after discussion with the Head of HR and OD (or a senior Human Resources Officer), the Chairman and the Vice-Chairman, and shall be circulated at least five clear days before the meeting.
7.10 Either side will have the right to co-opt, in a consultative capacity, representatives of particular interests affected by a question under discussion which are not directly represented on the Panel but only for the period during which the relevant question is under consideration.
7.11 Either side shall arrange for the attendance in an advisory capacity of an officer or trade union official at any Panel meeting where it would be helpful to the business under discussion.
7.12 Attendances at 7.10 and 7.11 above shall be notified in advance to the Head of Human Resources and Organisational Development in his or her capacity as secretary to the Employer’s Side.
7.13 No recommendation shall be regarded as carried unless it has been approved by a majority of the members present on each side of the Local Joint Panel, and in the event of either the Local Joint Panel being unable to arrive at an agreement or the relevant council body disagreeing with the Panel's recommendations, then the matter in dispute should be referred to the Executive by way of mediation.
7.14 The proceedings of any meeting of the Local Joint Panel shall be recorded and reported at the appropriate Council meeting, but before submission, the Minutes shall be approved by the Panel Chairman and Vice-Chairman.
Delegation of Functions
7.15 The functions of the Local Joint Panel shall be:
(a) To establish regular methods of consultation and negotiation between the council and its officers on matters of mutual concern with the intent of maintaining and developing an efficient service. This process will aim to address differences should they arise with a genuine commitment to seek consensus and enter into agreements, as appropriate. No question of any individual's discipline, promotion, efficiency or conditions of employment shall be within the scope of the Joint Panel;
(b) To consider any relevant matter referred to it by a committee of the council, or by any of the officer organisations;
(c) To make recommendations to Human Resources Committee and/or a suitable committee of the council as to the application of the terms and conditions of service and the education and training of officers of the council;
(d) To discharge such other functions specifically referred to the Local Joint Panel with the exception of staffing issues;
(e) To consider matters relating to Health and Safety at Work referred to the Local Joint Panel by an Employee Association or by a committee of the council; and
(f) the trade union(s) recognised by the council shall represent all council officers. This will include raising issues on behalf of non-trade union members, should they be requested.
Procedure at meetings
7.16 Procedure at meetings shallbeinaccordance withthe Council Procedure Rules, except as provided for in 7.17 below.
7.17 The quorum of the Local Joint Panel shall be two representatives of each side.
Support officer: Democratic Services. Email: Democratic.Services@eastherts.gov.uk