Executive Council of Sierra
|Kingdom of Sierra|
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The Executive Council of Sierra is the constitutionally-mandated body that runs and leads the executive branch of the government of the Kingdom of Sierra. Chaired by the Prime Minister, the highest-ranking official, the Executive Council consists of the Deputy Prime Minister, governors from each province in Sierra, each state from Hawaii, and each area from the Deseret, and high-ranking members of the Executive Office of the Prime Minister including the Chief of Staff.
The Executive Council is responsible for the implementation and execution of laws passed by the Parliament, and do so accordingly to the policies and decisions set down by the Cabinet. The Cabinet, while serves a vital and important role in Sierran bureaucracy and governance, has no constitutional basis. As a consequence, the Cabinet exercises no de jure political power, and requires the Executive Council to legally enact its decisions. The purpose of the Executive Council is to allow the federal government to work closely with the provinces, states, and areas, and to ensure that the law is being applied effectively and efficiently throughout the Kingdom. Together with the Privy Council, both bodies form the leadership of the executive government and assists the Prime Minister in exercising the royal prerogative of the Monarch.
The Executive Council consists of the Prime Minister (as its chair), the Deputy Prime Minister, the 37 governors from each of Sierra's provinces, Hawaii's states, and the Deseret's areas, and high-ranking members of the Executive Office of the Prime Minister. Ministers of the Cabinet, although not members of the Executive Council, are often present or summoned to the Council on decision-making and policy-related strategy. In addition, there are several private consultants and representatives from Sierra's territories within the Council that do not hold official status, but nonetheless have access and right to speak in Council meetings. Membership in the Executive Council is not mentioned in the Constitution, and is instead, outlined in Title 3, Chapter 5 of the Sierra Federal Code. Aside from the Prime Minister and their deputy, the law statutorily declares that any head of government elected at the second administrative level (a province, a state, or an area) that is not a territory or a crown dependency, shall also be a member of the Executive Council by ex officio. Membership is terminated upon a member's leave of office from the position that qualified them to be on Council.
As a member of the Executive Council, no additional salary or benefit is provided but each are entitled to the style, "The Honorable". The Chairman has the power to eject members of the Council, although this power has never been invoked. In the event of a member's absence, there is an official, permanent communicant who represents the member in the Council. Historically, Executive Councils have rarely held full house meetings (with all statutory members present) due to both practical and logistical reasons, although in recent years, the Council has begun conducting online video calls over a stable, secure connection, allowing more frequent and accessible meetings. The Chairman may also appoint individuals into the Council as a member, but the member loses membership as soon as the Chairman leaves office.
The Executive Council's primary role is to enforce the law at all levels: federal, provincial, state, areal, territorial, and local, and to enact the decisions of the Cabinet and the Prime Minister. It serves as the collective head of government of the Kingdom, by which, through its power, leads, commands, and controls the Sierran national bureaucracy and civil service system. While the Prime Minister sets the agenda, the Cabinet develops and provides the policies and strategies, and the Executive Council translates these decisions into actual, binding orders. The Executive Council also oversees all independent federal agencies and public corporations, and reviews, and legitimizes decisions made by these executive bodies.
The governors who serve on the Council are tasked with the duty of reporting the decisions and policies of the Council to their respective governments and legislatures, and guaranteeing that federal law will be enforced at the provincial, state, or areal level. On matters of defense and national security, the governors work closely with the Prime Minister in the Council with the Joint Chiefs of Staff in coordinating and synchronizing defensive responses, measures, and plans during an attack or crisis.
The Executive Council normally convenes every week on Wednesday mornings in the North Wing of the Getty House, the official residence of the Prime Minister. Unlike the Privy Council, there is no fixed quorum and meetings can be held as long as the Prime Minister or an officially designated official is present. In the contemporary age, most governors who would otherwise be unable to attend, are present via live video feeds to communicate directly with the Council. Meetings generally last 1–3 hours and are always kept confidential. A historian and their secretaries record all minutes and discussion held during the Council, which may be released to the Parliament or the Supreme Court for review. In the meetings, following a report on the state of the Kingdom by the Prime Minister, a discussion is held before a pending list of major Cabinet decisions are reviewed and ratified. Generally, Cabinet ministers of interests or their deputies are present and may clarify or defend their decisions before the Council. In recent years, there has been a reversal in information flow to streamline the process and to ensure crucial decisions are passed out as quickly and efficiently as possible. Instead of Cabinet ministers suggesting policy for the Council to enforce, the Council suggests an outline of plans to be done within a given time period (often as long as 6 months), and empowers the minister with the authority of issuing the order on the behalf of the Council.