Local Government Governance Panel
In 2009 the LGA President launched the independent Local Government Governance Panel (the Panel). The Panel is an independent resource for Councils to use to assist them address complaints about the conduct of Council Members.
The Panel is chaired by Marjorie Schulze. Marjorie is an experienced consultant specialising in Local Government matters and has provided training for many years to Council Members on topics including meeting procedures, governance and code of conduct issues. Other Panel members are: Sue Vardon AO, Bruce Linn, Stephen Hains, Fiona Stevens and Beth Dunning. Click here for Panel Members biographies.
Complaints to the Panel may be made under Part 2 of the Code of Conduct. A complaint will initially be considered by the Chairperson who will decide which Panel member or members would be best suited to investigate and assess each individual complaint. Please note: The Panel will not act upon any complaints received during the Caretaker Period under the Local Government (Elections) Act. If, in the opinion of the Chair the matter should be investigated, the investigation will occur after the Caretaker Period.
A copy of the Local Government Code of Conduct is available here.
Referrals to the Panel are made by Councils, in accordance with a Council's Complaint Handling Procedure under the Members' Code of Conduct. The Panel does not receive complaints directly from the public nor will it investigate allegations of misconduct under Part 3 of the Code of Conduct or fraud or corruption. The Governance Panel has an advisory role only and will prepare a report and recommendations in response to the complaint, for the Council's consideration.
Councils should also note that the Independent Commissioner Against Corruption has issued Directions and Guidelines for mandatory reports to be made under the ICAC Act. In some cases, such as allegations of corruption, or serious or systemic misconduct in public administration, a report or complaint should be made directly to the Office of Public Integrity. A copy of the Directions and Guidelines is available here.
Referrals from Councils should be marked Confidential and be emailed to:
Local Government Governance Panel
Referrals must include the Code of Conduct Complaint Referral Form and any relevant information. The matter will be initially assessed by the Panel Chairperson who will determine the process to be followed and the person/s to be involved in dealing with the matter. A cost estimate will be discussed with the Council contact person before proceeding with any investigation etc.
The Governance Panel also has a specific monitoring role in relation to conduct of Council Members across the Local Government sector and will advise the LGA and the sector on specific education and training requirements arising from its experience.
To view the LGA's media release on the launch of the Governance Panel click here.
To view the Rules of Engagement for the Panel click here.
To view the Code of Conduct Complaint Referral Form click here.
To view the Governance Panel Annual Report (2015/16) click here.
To view the Governance Panel Annual Report (2014/15) click here.
Further enquiries about the operations of the Panel should, in the first instance, be referred to Astrid Crago on 8224 2031 or email email@example.com.