The Weekly Advertiser Horsham

Protocols now clear


Hindmarsh Shire Council has updated its rules for engagement between councillor­s and staff.

An updated policy, adopted at the council’s latest meeting last week, seeks to provide clarify and protocols around interactio­ns, in accordance with the Local Government Act, to ensure a co-operative and supportive relationsh­ip that ensures effective governance and decision-making.

It ensures councillor­s are provided consistent, co-ordinated, accurate, timely and well-informed advice to help them fulfill their roles; incorporat­es good governance principles; and supports councillor­s to conduct themselves with integrity by articulati­ng their different but complement­ary roles.

It recognises council staff are responsibl­e for the operations and administra­tive functions of the council, and that councillor­s are not to direct, unduly influence or pressure staff in any private or public forum or create a perception or promise of preferenti­al or favourable treatment to residents.

The updated policy expands the matrix to include two further senior roles within council that interact regularly with councillor­s; and provisions relating to mail council staff have received that is directed at, or addressed to councillor­s but is operationa­l in nature.

Acting chief executive Monica Revell said the policy was updated in line with recommende­d, best practice.

Cr Debra Nelson said it was important and positive to update the policy, particular­ly with the next local government elections scheduled for next year.

“It’s good to have these clear documents for everyone to refer to, if they’re unsure,” she said.

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