Victorian councillor Code of Conduct review

Disqualification of councillors avoided by legislative amendment to code of conduct provisions.

Monday, 15 August 2016 at 12:34 am

The Local Government Inspectorate, the integrity agency for local government in Victoria, has completed a review into Victorian councils compliance with Code of Conduct provisions in the amended Local Government Act 1989.

Since the report was released to the Minister for Local Government on Monday 15 August 2016, the Victorian Government introduced legislative amendments in Parliament to allow councils and councillors more time to complete the code of conduct acceptance process.

The Local Government Amendment Bill introduced into Parliament on 17 August repeals section 76C(1), removing the requirement for councils to amend their codes during the current council term.

This amendment follows errors made by councils that would have seen 107 councillors – including 13 entire councils – disqualified and then dismissed on 1 September for not agreeing to abide by their own code of conduct.

Councillors will still be required to review their code of conduct within four weeks of the October 22 council elections and agree to abide by it.

The Inspectorate has proactively worked with councils on compliance issues since its formation in 2009 and will continue to do so through the 2016 local government election process to ensure fair and transparent elections.