Governance Rules changes adopted
Published on 21 September 2023
New guidelines relating to how Gannawarra Shire Council manages Question Time and the handling of petitions have been adopted.
Councillors approved the latest version of the Gannawarra Shire Council Governance Rules, which outlines how Council Meetings and delegated committee meetings are conducted, at its September 2023 meeting.
“Our Governance Rules are an important document, as it outlines how our meetings are run, how the Mayor and Deputy Mayor are elected, how Council handles Questions from the Public and petitions, and how Council operates during a local government election period,” Mayor Charlie Gillingham said.
“In the 12 months of operation under the previous version of the Governance Rules, additional improvements have been identified, providing for good governance practices in order to achieve the best outcomes for the community via the operation of Council meetings.”
Nine changes have been made compared to the previous version of the rules, with the key alterations being:
- New guidelines for Question Time, which stipulate that questions must be submitted by 5pm the day prior to a Council meeting. All Councillors will receive submitted questions and responses to these questions prior to the meeting, with the person submitting the question now able to ask their question verbally, if they wish; and
- Altered arrangements for the processing a petition, which now need to be forwarded to the Chief Executive Officer no later than 12 noon, 10 business days before the meeting at which it is to be intended to be considered. A copy of the petition will also be provided to all Councillors.
“These two changes will allow for improved community engagement and provide sufficient time for a response to a question from the public or a report regarding a petition to be produced,” Mayor Gillingham said.
Other changes to the Governance Rules include clearer guidelines regarding calling Unscheduled Meetings, tabling Arbiters decisions and ensuring references to the Mayor or Chairperson align with the Gender Equality Act 2020.
To read the latest version of Council’s Governance Rules, click on the Strategic Documents tab at www.gsc.vic.gov.au/documents