Model Code of Conduct for local councils

Topic: Policy

The Office of Local Government is seeking feedback on the proposed tougher Code of Conduct requirements for local NSW councils.

office setting

What's this about?

The updated Model Code of Conduct and Procedures for Councils, which applies to 1500 councillors and almost 50,000 council staff, is now on public exhibition for comment.

The changes to the Model Code of Conduct and Procedures contain new provisions that are designed to effectively deter non-compliance and lead to improved transparency and accountability.

A range of new rules have been proposed for all councillors and staff, including:

  • banning accepting gifts or benefits greater than $50 and introducing mandatory reporting of all gifts or benefits regardless of value
  • declaring being a property developer or a close associate of a property developer more regularly in official returns of interest
  • tough new standards against bullying, discrimination and harassment, work health and safety, on behaviour at meetings and use of social media
  • clarifying that councillors must not use council information for personal purposes or undertake personal dealings with council during work time.

These reforms will consolidate the prescription of all ethical standards for council officials into a single statutory instrument.

Have your say

OLG is now seeking the views of councils and other stakeholders on draft documents before finalising the new Model Code of Conduct and Procedures.

Submissions can be made by email by 4 December 2017.

Topic: Policy