Wigan Council's Cabinet is held accountable for the decisions it makes by four scrutiny committees. The scrutiny committees ensure that decisions adhere to the policy and budget framework set by the council. Scrutiny also has a strong role in the development and review of council policies and services and monitoring performance.

What is scrutiny?

Scrutiny is in place for the benefit of the community and is designed to support and enhance the council's decision making process. It is a councillor led, non-party political process, by which the council looks at its performance.

Topics for scrutiny committee fall into several main categories:

  • Policy review and development - a topic is identified for scrutiny because of changes to legislation/government guidance, or a policy is recognised as being in need of updating or reviewing locally
  • Holding the Executive to account - scrutinising decisions of the Executive before decisions are made; before they are implemented; and after they are implemented
  • Monitoring performance and progress - monitoring performance and progress in implementing previously agreed actions
  • External scrutiny - scrutinising the work and impact of external agencies on the council's community e.g. local NHS Trusts and other partners. 
  • Call in - six scrutiny committee Members can ‘call in’ decisions made by the Executive (if the decision has not already been implemented). The ‘call in’ process involves a full discussion and consideration of the decision and decision makers may be required to attend to explain their decisions. Call in is only be used in exceptional circumstances. On rare occasions the Mayor can give permission for decisions to be exempt from Call in

Resolving issues for residents

Councillor Call for Action (CCfA) helps our councillors to resolve issues and problems on behalf of our residents. A councillor can use a CCfA to formally request a scrutiny committee to consider further investigation and recommend a course of action. There are conditions placed on the kinds of issues that can be raised.

In all instances, however, the councillor will have tried all other means at their disposal to resolve an issue before raising a CCfA. It is a means of last resort to be used when all other avenues have been exhausted.

Attending meetings

You have the right to attend meetings of the scrutiny committees but you are unable to speak at these meetings. Members of the public or press must leave the meeting prior to any public and press excluded items being considered. Unless indicated on the agenda, all meetings take place in the town hall in Wigan.

© Wigan Council