It has come to my attention through the Council Noticeboard published in The Beagle today that Council have resolved and that the "resolution made in the confidential sessions for this council term be included in the public minutes"
I clicked on the link to the Council website to see what else the Public Notice had to say and found that there wasn't any Noticeboard for the 2nd of August available and I was locked out by this screen.
Above: This image is time stamped at 1:03 Wednesday 2nd August and verified that the pdf link on Council's website is available only with username and password. Editor Not to worry - I will check out the Public Notices section of the Council website. Alas there isn't one so I am still none the wiser of what the Public Notice is about.
Above: a screen dump of Council's Noticeboard webpage timestamp 1:22pm 2nd Aug, 2017 Council have published a Public Notice. As per the LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT 1993 - SECT 705 Council - What is public notice? What are Council meant to do with Public Notices? (3) The notice is to be given in a manner determined by the council with the object of bringing the matter notified to the attention of as many people in its area as possible. OK. They seem to have failed so far in telling anyone anything....
Being curious I looked at the minutes of the last meeting that Council went into Confidential over. It was June 13th, 2017 and there I found that they had altered the minutes of that meeting. Being a keen Council observer I can advise that only the black text was in the original minutes and now they had added three new elements. CON17/003 PERSONNEL MATTER File Ref: E78.2585 17/198
MOTION Councillor Innes THAT: 1.Council renew the contract of the General Manager, Dr Catherine Dale, for a period of
five years commencing 1 July 2017.
2.Schedule A of the Contract to include:
(a)Provision of an executive car to be negotiated with full private use rights according to Council’s Vehicle Use Code of Practice. Vehicle value must be below the value that would attract luxury motor vehicle sales tax. An amount calculated by reference to the Local Government NSW scale shall be attribute to the package value each year. Council will consider an equivalent novated lease arrangement.
(b) Professional Development: Council will provide professional development expenses up to a maximum of $8,000 pa to allow for payment of professional memberships and for attendance at relevant professional associations and professional development events.
(c) Tools of the Trade: Council will provide a mobile telephone, laptop computer, ipad or similar equipment deemed by Council to be necessary for the fulfilment of the position. Home and mobile wireless broadband access will be provided.
3.Schedule B of the Contract, being the Key Performance Indicators, be developed by the
Council in consultation with the General Manger.
4. The Mayor, in consultation with the Councillors, be delegated to negotiate Schedule C
of the Contract, being the remuneration package of the General Manager and that the
benchmark for Group 4 councils be used as a basis.
5.The Common Seal of Council be affixed to the General Manager’s contract in
accordance with the Local Government Act 1993.
6. The Mayor be delegated to issue media releases in respect of the renewal of the
contract for the General Manager.
(The Motion on being put was declared CARRIED ) So, is that it? The Mayor delivers a Mayoral Minute with NO explanation at all of what it is and why she is doing it and then Council puts up a covering Public Notice with the least amount of explanation as possible in a local paper that requires the community to pay to read the notice. They then choose to disable public access to their own Noticeboard that has the Public Notice behind a username and password and they choose not to have a dedicated Public Notice section on their website where the public could read the Public Notice without having to pay do to so. And Council choose's not to tell the public that they have changed minutes that have already been adopted by Council with no mention of any of this in the upcoming agenda of their next meeting. If the Councillors find that acceptable then there is no hope for us at all. Is this as good as it gets? It is understood that this matter has a way to go. The direction to change the minutes and the direction to do the Mayoral Report along with the direction to revisit how Council deals with confidential matters and the finding that processes followed were in breach of the Local Government Act still requires a public apology and a formal and public correction to be made, most likely during a future Council meeting. There are now many in the community who are becoming aware that Council has in the past and quite possible continues to do things in "their own way" as was made in the dismissive statement of the Mayoral Report made, having been formally castigated by the Office of Local Government on their incorrect procedures, that said, "Notwithstanding it has been a practice in many local councils" And this is in addition to the equally dismissive statement emailed to a ratepayer by a current councillor and ex-mayor via a formal Councillors email address "Councillors and mayors operate as they see fit and have to answer to the community and The community will get to decide in 2020."