With increasing rates of Covid-19 in the city and concerns about the Omicron variant, Councillor Alan Robins, the Mayor of Brighton & Hove, having taken advice from the Director of Public Health and having consulted Group Leaders and Whips, has decided that today’s Full Council meeting will no longer take place.
Discussion and votes on council business that were due to take place today will now happen at a future session of Full Council in the new year. By law all decision making meetings of local councils must be held in person.
During the early phase of the Covid-19 pandemic the UK Government introduced temporary legislation that allowed decision making meetings to be held virtually, but this expired in May 2021 and no renewed legislation has been introduced.
A virtual public engagement session will take place today starting at 4.30pm where lead councillors will hear and respond to public questions, petitions, deputations and oral questions from councillors.
The Review of School Allocations petitions for debate which was due to be considered at Full Council, will be presented and debated instead at the public engagement session this afternoon and there will no restrictions on the number of councillors wishing to speak or the length of time.
The public engagement session will not have a formal status as a Full Council meeting, but will be able to debate the item and refer the petition to the Children, Young People and Skills Committee in the same way as a formal Full Council would have done..
The Review of School Allocations petition will then also be debated at the next meeting of the Children, Young People & Skills Committee on 10 January 2022.
The public engagement session will be opened virtually by the Mayor of Brighton & Hove at 4.30pm. All councillors will be able to participate in the public engagement session online.
The public engagement session will be available to watch live on the council’s democracy webcast.
• Public engagement session