How the Council works
South Northamptonshire Council provides a wide range of services for the public. It is also responsible for developing and promoting policies for the short, medium and long term, working with partners to deliver improvements for the community and for consulting with the public and responding to consultations from other bodies.
This mix of duties can make the Council look complex and difficult to understand and this can be particularly frustrating when you are trying to do something that seems like it should be simple and straightforward.
It can be even more frustrating when it's not clear whether it is South Northamptonshire Council, the County Council, or some other government organisation that is responsible for providing the service that you need.
Throughout this website, we've tried to point you to wherever you need to go. You may also find it helpful to think about the Council in two parts:
The Councillors Bit
The Councillors are your elected local representatives and it is their job to make sure that the services that the Council provides meet your needs and those of everybody else who lives, works and visits the district.
The Councillors do this by setting the overall policies and strategies for the Council and by monitoring the way in which these are implemented. You should talk to your councillor if:
- you want to influence the future development of the district
- you want to influence specific things going on in your area
- you have a problem that you cannot get solved by officers
The Councillors carry out their work through a Cabinet of senior Members and various committees and working groups as well as through Full Council. Some powers and responsibilities are reserved by law for Full Council or specifically established committees. Other than these, the Cabinet is responsible for the day to day running of the Council.
The work of the Councillors is governed by a Code of Conduct for Councillors.
The Officers Bit
The Officers are the people who work for the Council and who are paid to deliver the services agreed by Councillors.
Senior officers help Councillors to develop policies and objectives but their main role is to provide the public with the highest possible standards of service within the money that the Councillors make available.
You should talk to Council Officers if:
- you have a problem and need help
- you want to know what to do next
- nothing seems to be happening and you want to know why