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Council bullying allegations to be investigated

Meeting pays off: the front page of this week’s Star, which led to the Victorian Local Government Minister Adem Somyurek asking for the Local Government Inspectorate to investigate allegations of bullying at South Gippsland Shire Council.

Victorian Local Government Minister Adem Somyurek has asked the Local Government Inspectorate to investigate allegations of bullying within South Gippsland Shire Council, as a result of reporting in The Great Southern Starthis week. 
The reporting included an account by former councillor Meg Edwards at the councillor crisis meeting in Leongatha last Thursday evening.
The minister said this afternoon, “I am deeply concerned with the public allegations made about the behaviour of some councillors at the South Gippsland Shire Council.
“I have referred the public allegations to the Local Government Inspectorate for consideration and investigation as appropriate.
“It would be inappropriate to make any further comment about the allegations at this stage.”
Under the councillor conduct framework in the Local Government Act, the Chief Municipal Inspector can investigate and initiate an application for a councillor conduct panel to make a finding of serious misconduct against a councillor. The inspector can also investigate and bring an application for VCAT to make a finding of gross misconduct against a councillor. 
Under the act, serious misconduct includes bullying of another councillor or member of council staff by a councillor. If a finding of serious misconduct is made against a councillor, the councillor can be suspended for up to six months. 
Gross misconduct is defined as behaviour that demonstrates that a councillor is not of good character or is otherwise not a fit and proper person to hold the office of councillor. If a finding of gross misconduct is made against a councillor, the councillor can be disqualified and ineligible to be a candidate for up to eight years.

Short URL: http://thestar.com.au/?p=27985

Posted by on Mar 20 2019. Filed under Featured, News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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