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Kingdom of Sierra
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This article is part of the series:
Politics and government of the
Kingdom of Sierra


Her Royal Highness' Privy Council (referred simply as the Privy Council) is a committee in the Kingdom of Sierra composed of the monarch's closest personal advisers. The Council is composed of the top-ranking officials of Parliament including the Prime Minister.

The Privy Council is responsible for advising the exercise of the monarch's royal prerogative, the management of the purse including assets and properties owned by the royal family, and forwarding all of the monarch's decisions and concerns to the civil government. Other roles of the council include coordinating, recognizing, and bestowing individuals or entities with heraldic honors, decorations, and letters patent. It is often viewed as the royal counterpart to the Cabinet which serves as the civil advisory body to the Prime Minister. Unlike the Cabinet however, the Privy Council itself has no legally defined responsibilities nor powers. Much of its functions rely solely on precedent and tradition whereas the Cabinet is legally sanctioned and officially carries out the monarch's duties through its ministries.

By tradition, the Privy Council possesses the power of authority and therefore represents the monarchy whenever a tort or a grievance is filed against the Crown. Likewise, the Privy Council represents the Crown should the monarch be tried in an impeachment trial.

Membership

The Privy Council consists of the monarch's closest confidants including the Prime Minister (who is a member by ex officio), the Deputy Prime Minister, Cabinet ministers, senior members of the Executive Council (selected governors), prominent members in Parliament, and other politicians. The monarch may appoint or dismiss any privy councilor at any time with the expressed permission of the Senate. Members serve at Her Majesty's pleasure and do not receive any payment for his/her services to the Crown as a privy councilor (this due to the fact that the Privy Council itself is not an official legal body) although state-coordinated arrangements can be made to secure a stable financial revenue for members (this circumstance is rare given that privy councilors are officials in other government bodies that to have substantial yearly salaries).

Prior to assuming membership into the Privy Council, individuals must recite the following oath to be confirmed and inducted:

I, [name], do solemnly and sincerely swear [declare/affirm] that I shall be a most loyal and truthful servant to Her Majesty Queen Angelina the Second, as a member of Her Majesty's Privy Council of Sierra. I vow to ensure that everything considered, raised, debated, and decided upon in the Privy Council shall be done with the utmost sincerity, understanding, and earnestness. I shall defend Her Majesty's honor and swear [declare/affirm] to keep all matters revealed to me within the Council secret. Long may Her Majesty reign, a thousand years. So help me God.

Functions

The primary functions of the Privy Council is to assist and advise the monarch on daily decisions in governing and implementing effective strategies, which for all intents and purposes, legally binding. Through this capacity, the Council is also responsible for managing the monarch's personal finances, estates, assets, and properties, although the Council relegates direct responsibilities and oversight to a responsible office or official (e.g., the Royal Household or the Keeper of the Privy Purse). Any concerns and desires of the monarch are forwarded to the civil government by the Privy Council at the monarch's behalf and in the case of the Prime Minister, may be legally acted upon and executed.

The Privy Council also plays a role in the Sierran peerage system wherein with the monarch as the fount of honor, the Privy Council ensures that any honors or decorations are successfully conferred unto an individual and is recognized by the civil government. Similarly, the Privy Council may advise the monarch on decisions regarding letters patent and may grant such documents on the monarch's behalf. If the monarch is ever legally challenged or indicted, the Privy Council will serve as the monarch's attorney as opposed to the civil Attorney General.

Term

With the exception of members who sit in the Council by ex officio (most notably the Prime Minister), all members serve for life. Permanent members however, may be removed in the case of retirement, death, by request, or impeachment. In addition, the Monarch has the power to expel any Privy Council member (with the exception of ex officio members).

Meetings

Meetings are generally held once or twice every month at the site of the Monarch's residence. The quorum of the meeting is three which includes the Monarch or his/her substitute. Generally, the substitute may be the Monarch's spouse, sibling, adult child, or other relative. Usually, most meetings take place without the Monarch being present and only satisfies the meeting's required quorum (three persons). Full meetings rarely occur and only do so following a new monarch's ascension, engagement, marriage, or announcement for abdication. In addition, the Monarch may request for all members of the Council to attend a meeting at any time although this act is generally reserved during times of duress or utmost urgency.

Rights, privileges, and compensation

Privy councilors who do not otherwise have a title are (e.g., they are a civilian and not a peer), by default, entitled to the style "The Right Honorable". This title also supersedes any preexisting titles a civilian is entitled to on a case-to-case basis. Members of the Council by ex officio generally continue to be referred to by their preexisting title. Hence, the Prime Minister, who is a Privy Councilor by ex officio, is styled by his/her normal title, "His/Her Excellency" rather than the "The Right Honorable". The Monarch may modify specific members' titles and regulate naming conventions within the Council at his/her discretion and the consent of the privy councilor of interest. Privy councilors are also entitled to the post-nominal letters, PC.

If they do not have a higher rank, peers have a set position within the Sierran noble order of precedence (below members of the Cabinet but above members of the Celebrated Order of the Golden Poppy/Royal Order of the Rose of Sharon.

Peers have the privilege to sit at the steps of the Monarch's throne at parliamentary sessions and the individual right to meet the Monarch personally. They also enjoy free franking and officially curated heraldic coat of arms or banners. Members of the Council may receive financial compensation for their contributions upon request but such payment is not obligatory and such compensation must first receive approval by Parliament. Such compensation may not be used for partisan purposes however, and misuse of the payment may be grounds for removal from the Council and other disciplinary measures.

See also

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