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Making your case for membership

We understand that your council may not realise the benefit of your professional membership and, furthermore, appreciate why they should subsidise the cost of the subscription. The following information can be used in helping your council to understand the value of SLCC membership:

Under what power may councils pay the subscriptions of their clerk to the Society of Local Council Clerks (SLCC)?

The Local Government Act 1972 s 143 (1) (b) states that, 'a local Authority may pay reasonable subscriptions, whether annually or otherwise, to the funds of any association of officers or members of local authorities which was so formed.'

Do many councils pay the SLCC subscriptions of their clerk under these powers?
The majority of SLCC members have their subscriptions paid by their council under this power.

Well that’s all very well but you would say that wouldn’t you. Who else agrees with you?
National Association of Local Council (NALC), Local Government Association (LGA) and Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) now known as the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG).

'Your clerk (and the council) benefit if the clerk is a member of the SLCC. The SLCC provides legal, financial and other advice, a useful training pack and considerable support and guidance from the clerks’ network. Your council may wish to pay the clerk’s subscription to the SLCC. There is also information available on the SLCC website www.slcc.co.uk.' As stated in the Good Councillors Guide 2018.

Alright I accept that it’s perfectly proper and legal for councils to pay their clerk’s subscription but why have so many councils wanted to do so?
The SLCC is the professional body for local council clerks and senior council employees in England and Wales.

The benefits of membership include:
  1. A team of experienced advisors contactable by telephone or email for answers to professional queries.
  2. A bi-weekly news bulletin containing the latest sector news and information.
  3. A new online, professional Forum which provides unique, best practice sharing and networking with local council colleagues.
  4. Access to best practice advice on a range of topics in the members’ area of the website.
  5. A bi-monthly magazine called ‘The Clerk’ packed with advice, information and case studies from fellow members.
  6. An update on the latest legislation and regulation at conferences and events at a discounted rate.
  7. Save on a range of council products and services, including office stationery, books and energy supplies.
  8. Advertise your councils' job on the SLCC website and take advantage of member discount.
  9. Maintain good practice by studying for a sector qualification or attending a continuous professional development course at a discounted rate
  10. Network with fellow clerks and discuss current issues at regular county-based branch meetings.
  11. Representation with Government, sector partners and stakeholders in respect of practical issues in your day to day work.
  12. Access the free confidential 24hr counselling service for any personal issues.
  13. Full members of the Society will also benefit from being members of the International Institute of Municipal Clerks (IIMC). This is the international professional body for clerks with members based in a number of countries worldwide, particularly in The USA and Canada.
Clerks work in small organisations or often completely alone. The SLCC provides an important lifeline and support network for clerks in carrying out their day to day tasks. The SLCC advocate best practice and the efficient and effective work of councils. Both clerks and their councils benefit greatly from the clerks’ membership of the SLCC.
Okay but isn’t the SLCC in competition with NALC and the County Associations which represents councils?
No. The Society and NALC (on behalf of itself and County Associations) signed a Strategic Partnership statement in 2017 which established, among other things, that:
'NALC and SLCC are clear in their support for councils to be members of their county associations and NALC and for clerks to be members of the SLCC and active in their county branches.  In that way councils get the best possible support for the professional development of clerks; and training and advice for councils and councillors.

NALC and SLCC will work together to raise the sector's reputation with the public, with Government, and with other national and local stakeholders and to ensure that government and other policies support local councils to help local communities.'  

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