Overview and Scrutiny in Cheshire East

Whilst our 82 Councillors are committed to improving the well-being of the people of Cheshire East, decisions about how we operate and how the money is spent is largely decided by a group of ten Councillors, known as the Cabinet or Executive.

Councillors who are not members of the Cabinet (known as non-executive members) act as watchdogs through four overview and scrutiny committees by examining Cabinet decisions, and the policies and performance of the Council and commissioned service providers, or they can make recommendations to the Cabinet where they think things could be improved for residents. This function is called 'Overview and Scrutiny' or sometimes 'Scrutiny' for short.

How Scrutiny works

There is no single definition of Overview and Scrutiny. It is generally viewed as an umbrella term covering a wide range of possible roles.

Scrutiny has the following principles:

  • to provide a 'critical friend' challenge to the Cabinet
  • to reflect the voices and concerns of the public
  • to be led and owned by Councillors
  • to make an impact on service delivery

At Cheshire East there are four Overview and Scrutiny Committees which have specific themes to consider. Each Committee also carries out the call-in function and considers any Councillor Call for Action requests.

The Committees can carry out an in-depth review of Council service areas and policy, this is done by a 'task and finish group'.

How you can you get involved in Scrutiny

You can get involved by:

  • attending meetings of the Scrutiny Committees
  • Contributing evidence to a scrutiny review
  • suggesting topics to be considered for scrutiny