How the council works
This page is designed to introduce you to and to inform you of, the council's democratic and governance arrangements. Much of this is set out in the council's constitution, which was adopted in April 2002.
The aim of the constitution is to enable anyone who has dealings with the council to find out who is responsible for the issue they are interested in and how they can make representations to the council on that issue. It sets out the way in which the council will conduct its business, the rights of the citizens of North Devon to participate in local governance and the roles and responsibilities of the various 'arms' of the council.
The council is composed of 43 councillors elected every four years and are democratically accountable to the residents they represent in their ward including those who did not vote for them.
Councillors have agreed to follow a members' code of conduct (pdf) to ensure high standards in the way they undertake their duties and the council's Standards committee has a responsibility to train and advise councillors on the code of conduct.
All councillors meet together as the council and meetings are normally open to the public. Here councillors decide the council's overall policies and set the budget each year. The council also appoints the Leader of the council and members of the cabinet (together known as the Executive). The council receives quarterly reports on the work of the Executive and can debate its performance over that period. The council will also receive reports of its own committees such as area committees, the Planning committee and the Overview and Scrutiny committee.
How decisions are made
The Executive is responsible for most of the day to day decisions of the council. When major decisions are to be made these will be published in a Forward Plan (pdf 176KB) so far as they can be anticipated, which is open for public inspection.
Citizens have a number of rights in their dealings with the council and these are set out in article 3 of the constitution
This local democracy site also gives you information regarding your local district councillor , details of how to contact your parish council and how you can participate in meetings of the council and its committees.
Under the election pages you can find guidance if you wish to stand as a councillor, election results and a diary showing any forthcoming elections for the area complete with their current status. These pages also contain information on the election process and details about how you may vote if unable to visit a polling station.
The electoral registration pages tell you about what the electoral register is compiled for, how to get on it, what it is used for and how you can check that your names is on it.
Remember if your name is not on the electoral register you will not be able to vote.