Transparency and independence
Working in part with the company yet needing to remain at arms-length is part of the CCG process. It is particularly important that we remain independent and ward against company ‘capture’.
Independence and accountability
The Group has taken/is taking a number of steps to ensure and strengthen our own independence and accountability:
These include but are not limited to:
- Holding private sessions when company representatives are not present – every meeting has a private session and in addition we held full day private sessions when assessing the company’s quality of engagement and business plan proposals
- Keeping up to date Terms of Reference for both the main CCG meetings, but also our two subgroups (Research and Vulnerability) which contain clear codes of conduct
- Having a Declaration of Interests Policy, a set part of the agenda to declare any conflicts and a Register of Interests
- Publishing members’ remuneration and expenses
- We developed this independent website separate from South East Water’s. This is with the intention of going forward having a more public facing role and to help demonstrate our independence– we understand we are the first CCG to do this
- Keeping an Engagement Log of key meetings and an Action Log, here is the log of challenges and actions.
- Reviewing CCG member recruitment processes and members’ tenure to ensure the right balance between continuity of expertise and fresh independent perspectives. This includes ensuring a maximum tenure of members of two price controls (unless they are a statutory member).
The processes we adopt are in our Terms of References. Going forward we’ve also agreed to develop some ‘Principals of Engagement’ between the CCG and South East Water given an emerging need to clarify when information, ‘good and bad’ should be shared with the Group.