About scrutiny committees

What they are and an overview of what they do.

Scrutiny committees complement the work of the Cabinet and Cabinet Members, acting as a democratic check and balance to executive decision-making.

Scrutiny is the means by which proposed decisions are scrutinised, the effectiveness of existing policy is reviewed and the budget and performance monitoring of service delivery is undertaken.

The purpose of scrutiny is to improve outcomes for West Sussex by providing:

  • robust challenge to the Cabinet
  • input into the annual cycle of budget setting and planning corporate priorities
  • quarterly budget and performance monitoring of each portfolio area
  • constructive joint scrutiny of partnerships and other services which have an impact on the local community, including the examination of decisions taken by some external organisations
  • the review and scrutiny of planning, provision and operation of health services in West Sussex.

This 'scrutiny' role is carried out by county councillors on scrutiny committees, which meet regularly to review key decisions and service performance. Scrutiny committees scrutinise strategic issues affecting the whole of West Sussex.

The Health and Adult Social Care Scrutiny Committee has additional responsibilities for the review and scrutiny of the planning, provision and operation of health services in West Sussex.

There are five scrutiny committees listed below which typically meet in public. Items considered to be of significant public interest are webcast live and archived after the meeting.

Details of recent scrutiny committee work can also be found in the Scrutiny annual report and the committees’ terms of reference are set out in the Constitution (Part 3, Scheme of Delegation: Responsibility for Functions, Appendix 8).

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