The council is made up of 33 elected members. Those members meet periodically at meetings of full council, and these take place approximately every six weeks. Below the council there is a structure of other bodies which are designed to make decisions and set council policy in an efficient and transparent way.
The membership of each part of the structure is set at the first meeting of the full council after the local government election, but can be reviewed and altered from time to time.
The council has a set of Standing Orders which regulate the way it goes about its business. Standing Orders comprise various elements which apply to different areas of the council's decision-making.
- The council's Scheme of Administration sets out the membership, powers and responsibilities for full council, all its committees, sub-committees, working groups, Policy Development and Scrutiny Panels and Local Area Committees.
- The Scheme of Administration is part of the councils Standing Orders for the Regulation of Meetings which contains the rules and regulations for the way council and committee meetings are organised and run
- The Scheme of Delegations to Officers lists the decisions which the council has decided to leave to employees of the council to make
- The Standing Orders for the Regulation of Contracts set out the rules which apply to the contracts the council enters into
- The Procurement Procedures set out the way the council must go about setting up contracts for the supply of goods and services
- The Financial Regulations contain the council's arrangements for the proper administration of its financial affairs.
Most of the council's important decisions and policies are made by the Council Executive or the Education Executive, although some items of business are kept for decisions by full council. The Council Executive meets twice between meetings of full council, and the Education Executive once.
There are seven Executive Councillors who have responsibility for designated areas of the council functions and services. They are chairs of working groups called Policy Development & Scrutiny Panels (PDSPs). These are small groups of councillors and representatives of other organisations who consider new or revised policies to see if changes are needed. They also monitor financial and service performance. They do not have the power to actually make decisions, but they make recommendations to the main decision-making committees (Council or Education Executive).
The Executive Councillors are:-
- Lawrence Fitzpatrick (Leader of the Council) - Corporate Policy & Resources
- Kirsteen Sullivan (Depute Leader of the Council) - Economy, Community Empowerment & Wealth Building
- Andrew McGuire - Education
- Tom Conn - Environment & Sustainability
- George Paul - Housing Services
- Craig Meek - Public & Community Safety
- Anne McMillan - Social Work & Health