Independent Person vacancy

An independent role in our Audit and Governance Committee promoting standards in public life.

Are you interested in local government administration and democracy? Do you remain impartial in a contentious situation, have excellent arbitration skills, and be able to provide considered and balanced responses to dilemmas? Then we would like to hear from you.

The Oxfordshire County Council promotes and maintains high standards of conduct through its Monitoring Officer and Audit & Governance Committee.

The council has a Members’ Code of Conduct, which reflects the Nolan Principles of Public Life. The Code was adopted pursuant to the council’s duty to promote and maintain the high standards of conduct expected of members and co-opted members. All members are expected to abide by it.

If a complaint is received about a member, the council’s Monitoring Officer seeks, and the member complained about can seek the views of a duly appointed Independent Person, which the council is required to appoint under the Localism Act 2011. 

About the role

The role of an Independent Person is to:

  1. To offer opinion when consulted by the Council’s Monitoring Officer or Audit & Governance Committee, to help inform decisions about the promotion of high standards of Member conduct in future. 
  2. To help guide a Member on process and practice when allegations or a complaint has been made about an elected Member.

An Independent Person also has a further role and is involved if the authority is considering dismissing one of its statutory officers: 

  • the Chief Executive
  • Chief Finance Officer or
  • Monitoring Officer

We currently have one Independent Person, but we are looking to recruit at least two more individuals. These individuals' views may be sought occasionally in connection with matters similar to those outlined above.

Independent Persons can act objectively, impartially and in confidence, making reasoned judgements based on evidence. They have a demonstrable interest in local democracy and local government, with enthusiasm to develop a sound understanding of the ethical and regulatory framework relating to member standards. They may have experience of local government elsewhere or in the past or have been involved in large organisations.

The position attracts a payment of £50 for up to 4 hours of work; £100 for 4 hours or over to a max of £500 per year will be paid in recognition of the role undertaken, in addition to travelling and subsistence expenses. The term of the appointment is for a period of 2 years, which is renewable once.

People cannot be appointed as an independent person if they are:

  • an elected member, co-opted member or an officer of the council, or any other council within the area, or have been so within the past 5 years
  • the relative or close friend of a member, co-opted member or office of the council, or any other council within its district, and
  • they must not be a member of a political party or be politically active

How to apply

If you are interested and would like an application pack for this post with more information, please email Simon Harper, the head of Governance, at 

Applications should be received by noon on 29 July 2024.