Public participation at Council meetings
Public participation at Council meetings is available if you wish to ask a brief question or make a statement relating to Council’s role, functions or business.
The following guidelines are prepared under Section 230(1) of the Local Law 2009 and provide the public with a means of participating in Council meetings in addition to the submission of public questions under section 232 of the Local Law.
This process provides the community with an informal forum to ask brief questions or make statements relating to Council’s role, functions or business.
If the question or statement you are asking is not suitable for this format, please contact Council by telephone on 9524 3333 or email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Alternatively, you are invited to submit a public question under section 232 of the Local Law or contact Council’s Customer Service Centre on email@example.com or by telephone 9524 3333.
Process to participate in a Council meeting
1. Participants should register by completing the form provided in the Council Chamber and submitting the form prior to commencement of the Council Meeting or as soon as possible thereafter. Forms will be available from 7pm on the day of the Council Meeting.
2. The forms will be numbered and speakers will be taken in order of registration (first come, first served).
3. There will be a limit of one speaker per registration.
4. The Mayor, Delegate or Chief Executive Officer is authorised by the Council to read all proposed questions/statements in advance to ensure they are not deemed inappropriate as set out under the dot point (a) to (d) in the section below.
B. Meeting Process
1. The Chairperson will manage the public participation process at their discretion and in accordance with these guidelines where applicable.
2. At a convenient point in the meeting proceedings the Chairperson will announce the commencement of public participation under clause 230(1) of the Glen Eira Local Law and in accordance with these Guidelines.
3. A period will be allowed where the Chairperson will invite the participants to speak in order of registration.
4. Conduct in the Chamber must be professional and courteous at all times. Local Laws 244 and 246 apply to improper or disorderly conduct during Council meetings.
5. The Council will not accept or respond to questions or statements that:
(a) relate to matters that are outside the role, functions or business of the Council
(b) relate to a Councillor or staff member other than in their Council capacity;
(c) are considered to be defamatory, indecent, inappropriate or may constitute discrimination, vilification, harassment, or may place Council or the participant at risk of legal action;
(d) if answered could constitute a breach of the Information Privacy and Data Protection Act 2014 or the confidentiality provisions or any other provision of the Local Government Act 1989 or any other relevant legislation.
6. The Chairperson will not allow a participant to speak on or continue to speak on any topic which the Chairperson believes to fall into (a) to (d) above.
7. Participants must comply with the directions of the Chairperson.
8. The Chairperson requests participants to ask one question or make one statement. If time permits, and at the discretion of the Chairperson, further questions may be asked or statements made in the same order of registration. If there are any questions remaining unanswered at the conclusion of the allotted time, the Coordinator Councillor Business will respond on behalf of the Council at a later date by telephone or email.
9. The Chairperson will refer each question to the most appropriate person to respond. Responses may be provided by the Mayor, a Councillor, the CEO or a Council officer. The Chairperson may advise that a response to a question may be provided at a later time.
C. Minutes of the Council Meeting
1. Council meetings may be recorded (audio and/or visual recording) and the recording made available publicly and otherwise managed in accordance with Council record keeping policies. Participants in the Council meeting under the section 230(1) process will be included in such recordings.
2. Records of the public participation under these guidelines will not be included in the minutes of the meeting.