Local Government Political Restrictions Exemptions Adjudicator for Scotland

Directions To Impose Restrictions

The Adjudicator may issue a direction to a local authority requiring it to specify a post as politically restricted in terms of section 2(2) of the Local Government and Housing Act 1989 if that post is not already so specified and the Adjudicator considers that it should now be so specified.

Posts politically restricted in terms of LGHA 1989 Section 2(2) are those deemed to be restricted because the holder, on a regular basis, either:

  • gives policy advice to the authority; or
  • deals with the media on behalf of the authority.

Further clarification of these descriptions is given in the 'Guidance' paragraphs 33 to 36 (see Publications).

Application for Direction

Any person, whether the holder of a post under a local authority, member of an authority or member of the general public, may apply to the Adjudicator to have any post under a local authority politically restricted in terms of LGHA 1989 section 2(2) if that post is not already so specified. The Adjudicator may also act without application.

How to Apply

The application should be sent direct to the Adjudicator by post or email at the address given on the home page. It should include:

  • name and address of the applicant;
  • title and job description of the post for which political restriction is sought;
  • reasons why the applicant considers the post should be restricted;
  • declaration by the applicant of interest, if any, in the post concerned.

Adjudicator's Response

The Adjudicator will acknowledge the application on receipt. He will give his adjudication as soon as possible but, at any event, no later than one calendar month from the date of receipt of the application. If the adjudication is in favour of the applicant, the Adjudicator will issue a direction to the authority concerned to specify the relevant post as politically restricted.


The legislation gives no right of appeal against the Adjudicator's findings. Post-holders or authorities may, if they feel that proper procedures have not been followed, query the process by which he reached his findings through the office of the Scottish Public Service Ombudsman.