Teignbridge District Council (21 004 645)

Category : Other Categories > Councillor conduct and standards

Decision : Upheld

Decision date : 21 Dec 2022



Councillor Daws says the Council was at fault as it failed to follow due process when investigating him for alleged breaches of its code of conduct for elected councillors.


Fault found causing injustice and recommendations made.


The Council must consider the report and confirm within three months the action it has taken or proposes to take. The Council should consider the report at its full Council, Cabinet or other appropriately delegated committee of elected members and we will require evidence of this. (Local Government Act 1974, section 31(2), as amended)

To remedy this complaint the Council should take the following action.

  • Apologise to Councillor Daws, accepting the findings of this investigation.

  • Rescind its decision notice of 22 July 2020 upholding the complaint Councillor Daws breached the Code of Conduct and ensure this is no longer available on its website. In its place it should provide a statement saying the notice has been withdrawn following this investigation and provide a link to this report.

The Council should also learn lessons from this complaint. It should ensure it has a written procedure for its officers and any independent investigators asked to consider standards complaints that should include:

  • ensuring the Council has a record of complaints being made in writing;

  • ensuring there is a clear written record of consultation with an Independent Person to include their response;

  • recording that the written complaint has been shared with the Councillor complained of, or a clear written record as to the reasons why not;

  • ensuring that where an investigation expands to consider further allegations arising during the investigation, it keeps a clear written record of that and a record that this has been explained to the Councillor complained about; and

  • that in all appropriate cases it considers the rights of the councillor complained about to free expression under Article 10 of the Human Rights Act, as part of any investigation report and subsequent committee decision making.

Ombudsman satisfied with Council's response: 20 December 2023.

Print this page

LGO logogram

Review your privacy settings

Required cookies

These cookies enable the website to function properly. You can only disable these by changing your browser preferences, but this will affect how the website performs.

View required cookies

Analytical cookies

Google Analytics cookies help us improve the performance of the website by understanding how visitors use the site.
We recommend you set these 'ON'.

View analytical cookies

In using Google Analytics, we do not collect or store personal information that could identify you (for example your name or address). We do not allow Google to use or share our analytics data. Google has developed a tool to help you opt out of Google Analytics cookies.

Privacy settings