Barnet Council confirms new system of governance at Annual General Meeting


Hendon Town Hall

Hendon Town Hall

Barnet councillors agreed to change the council’s constitution and formally move from a committee system of governance to a cabinet and scrutiny system at the Annual General Meeting last night, Tuesday 23 May.

The move is integral to the Council administration’s commitment to ensure decision-making is more transparent, efficient, and accountable. It is also part of a package of new constitutional measures to help increase public participation in local democracy.

These new measures include Public Question Time at Full Council meetings, introducing deputations from residents on matters of local concern at Cabinet meetings, and engaging residents in the scrutiny of local services.

The new cabinet portfolios include Family Friendly Barnet, Community Wealth Building, Equalities and Diversity, Environment & Climate Change and Culture, Leisure, Arts & Sport.

The portfolios each provide specific focus on key priorities including ensuring Barnet is the best place in London to raise children, on reducing poverty, on tackling inequalities and climate change and creating a Borough of Fun.

Barnet Council Leader, Cllr Barry Rawlings, said: "The decision to adopt a cabinet and scrutiny system of governance marks an important shift in the way the council operates.

“It will mean more regular decision-making to ensure we are delivering our huge transformation agenda, and more opportunities for public participation when policy is being developed, when decisions are being made and when services are being scrutinised.

“It will also ensure all the decision-makers are around one table which will allow us to focus on key cross-cutting priorities such as reducing inequalities and promoting sustainability.

“This move demonstrates our commitment to being a more efficient and effective council that can better serve the needs of Barnet residents."

As well as changes to a cabinet system, three new scrutiny committees have been created to help ensure transparency across the council, these are: Overview and Scrutiny Committee, Adults and Health Overview and Scrutiny sub-committee and Children and Education Overview and Scrutiny sub-committee.


Cabinet Member Appointments (as appointed by the Leader of the Council):

Resources & Effective Council - Leader of the Council, Councillor Barry Rawlings

Homes & Regeneration - Councillor Ross Houston

Equalities & the Voluntary & Community Sector - Councillor Zahra Beg

Adults & Social Care - Councillor Paul Edwards

Environment & Climate Change - Councillor Alan Schneiderman

Culture, Leisure, Arts & Sports - Councillor Ammar Naqvi

Community Wealth Building - Councillor Anne Clarke

Community Safety & Resident Participation - Councillor Sara Conway

Family Friendly Barnet – Councillor Pauline Coakley Webb

Health & Wellbeing - Councillor Alison Moore


And committees, chairs and vice chairs:


Appeals Committee

Chair - Cllr Edith David

Vice-Chair - Cllr Ross Houston

Governance, Audit, Risk Management and Standards Committee

Chair - Cllr Arjun Mittra

Vice-Chair - Cllr Giulia Monasterio

Licensing & General Purposes Committee

Chair - Cllr Emma Whysall

Vice-Chair - Cllr Claire Farrier

Employment Sub Committee

Chair - Cllr Emma Whysall

Vice-Chair - Cllr Barry Rawlings

Overview & Scrutiny Committee

Chair - Cllr Danny Rich

Vice-Chair - Cllr Daniel Thomas

Children & Education Overview & Scrutiny Sub-Committee

Chair - Cllr Giulia Monasterio

Vice-Chair - Cllr Lucy Wakeley

Adults & Health Overview & Scrutiny Sub- Committee

Chair - Cllr Phil Cohen

Vice-Chair - Cllr Caroline Stock

Pension Fund Committee

Chair - Cllr Simon Radford

Vice-Chair - Cllr Anne Hutton

Strategic Planning Committee

Chair - Cllr Nigel Young

Vice-Chair - Cllr Richard Barnes

Planning Committee A

Chair - Cllr Tim Roberts

Vice-Chair - Cllr Richard Barnes

Planning Committee B

Chair - Cllr Claire Farrier

Vice-Chair - Cllr Arjun Mittra

North Area Committee  

Chair Cllr Ella Rose

Vice-Chair Cllr Tim Roberts

East Area Committee

 Chair - Cllr Paul Lemon

 Vice-Chair - Cllr Geof Cooke

West Area Committee  

Chair Cllr - Nagus Narenthira

Vice-Chair - Cllr Ernest Ambe

Cllr Alison Moore will be Chair of the Health & Well-being Board

Cllr Sara Conway will be Chair of the Safer Communities Partnership Board