(a) Initial Tests
Before any other assessment of the complaint begins, the Audit Committee will need to be satisfied that the complaint meets ALL of the following tests:
- it is a complaint against one or more named Members of the Authority;
- the named Member was in office at the time of the alleged conduct and the Code of Conduct was in force at the time;
- the complaint, if proven, would be a breach of the Code under which the Member was operating at the time of the alleged misconduct.
If the complaint fails one or more of these tests it cannot be investigated as a breach of the Code and you will be informed either that more information is needed (in which case someone will call contract you about theis) or that no further action will be taken in respect of your complaint.
(b) Other Criteria
If your complaint meets the above tests, it may be that the Audit Committee may still decide to take no further action in respect of your complaint if one or more of the following criteria apply:
- your complaint falls within any of the areas that CANNOT be dealt with under this procedure, as set out in Section 4 of this guide;
- your complaint is about someone who is no longer a Member of this Authority But is a Member of another Authority. In this case, the Audit Committee may decide to refer your complaint to the monitoring Officer of the other authority concerned;
- your complaint has been the subject of an investigation or other action relating to the Code of Conduct, or by other regulatory authorities, and there is nothing to be gained by further action being taken;
- your complaint is about something that happened so long ago that there would be little or no benefit in taking action now;
- your complaint is considered to be not sufficiently serious to warrant further action;
- your complaint appears to be simply malicious, politically motivated or “tit-for-tat”.