Councils in New South Wales can soon expect new rules for the conduct of their council meetings.
The NSW Office of Local Government has prepared a consultation draft of a proposed Model Meeting Code and is inviting feedback from councils and individuals.
Once finalised, councils will have six months to adopt a code of meeting practice based on the OLG’s Model Meeting Code.
Mayor Liz Innes said Eurobodalla Council will be ready, having reviewed its code of meeting practice last year.
“We decided to defer a decision on a new code for Eurobodalla last year to await the NSW government’s review,” Clr Innes said.
“Now it’s here, Council will be making a submission and I encourage interested individuals to make one, too.”
“Every council has its council-watchers, the residents who follow meetings carefully and regularly have useful input to debate. I hope they take the time to make a submission to the OLG.”
The new model code aims to simplify the language used to make meeting rules easier to understand, and to modernise the rules to accommodate technologies like webcasting and electronic voting systems.
Based on feedback from councils, the code’s new mandatory and non-mandatory provisions better reflect modern meeting practice and address areas of confusion.
After the OLG adopts a final model, Eurobodalla Council will review and make necessary amendments to its Code of Meeting Practice and place it on public exhibition for community feedback.
The consultation draft of the Model Meeting Code is available on the Office of Local Government’s website at www.olg.nsw.gov.au, as well as Eurobodalla Council’s website at www.esc.nsw.gov.au and Council libraries in Narooma, Batemans Bay and Narooma.
To make a submission, email to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject “Model Meeting Code Consultation” and marked to the attention of OLG’s Council Governance Team. Submissions should be made by Friday 16 March 2018. https://www.olg.nsw.gov.au/content/consultation-draft-new-model-code-meeting-practice-local-councils-nsw