On 21 September 2010 a complaint by the Mayor and Acting Chief Executive Officer of the Fraser Coast Regional Council was referred to the Tribunal under section 171(3) of the Local Government Act 2009.
The complaint alleged that a person or persons unknown had released confidential information discussed in closed sessions of the Council to the Fraser Coast Chronicle.
In the course of its consideration of the material made available to it, the Tribunal came to the conclusion that some Councillors of the Fraser Coast Regional Council remain confused about their obligations under section 171 of the Act governing the use of information, particularly confidential information.
In these circumstances, the Tribunal strongly recommended to the Mayor and the CEO of the Council that they arrange further, and additional, training for all Councillors of the Council in relation to the whole topic of the use of information obtained by them during the course of performing their role as a Councillor, especially information obtained during the course of closed meetings of Council.
The release of confidential information by Councillors is viewed as serious misconduct by the Tribunal. This view is enshrined in the Act where any contravention is mandated for Tribunal action.
|Complaint No.||Date received||Complaint against||Nature of allegation||Outcome|
|DEPC11/70||17/12/10||Cr Sue Brooks||Alleged misconduct due a Councillor releasing confidential information|
No further action required.
| ||19/03/12||Cr David Dalgleish||False public statements made relating to the health of a candidate running for Division 6.|
In accordance with the Local Government Act 2009 Chapter 6, Administration, Part 2, Councillors, Council’s Chief Executive Officer, determined that the complaint lodged would be dealt with as “inappropriate conduct” by a councillor and the matter was referred to the Mayor for action.
In accordance with Section 181(1)(a)&(b), the Mayor took the following actions:-
1. The Councillor was reprimanded for the inappropriate conduct and made an apology to the complainant.
2. The Councillor was advised that any repeat of the inappropriate conduct will be referred to the Department’s Chief Executive as misconduct.