State government pushes for mandatory code of conduct and training for local councillors

Local Government Minister David Templeman. Picture: Jessica Warriner
Local Government Minister David Templeman. Picture: Jessica Warriner

FORMAL training for all councillors, a mandatory code of conduct and increased transparency around gifts are just some of the changes coming under local government reform.

The review of the Local Government Act 1995 is being undertaken in two phases, with the first batch of changes given the green light following four months of consultation.

Local Government minister David Templeman announced the reforms today.

“We have listened to the community and we know that their expectations of local governments have changes and the legislative framework under which they operate needs to reflect this,” he said.

“These reforms will build council member capacity, strengthen governance, improve efficiency and provide greater flexibility for local governments in determining the best ways to communicate with their communities.”

Mr Templeman said local government in WA employed more than 20,000 people and managed more than $40b of assets.

The key changes coming to the sector span gifts, universal training, standards of behaviour, improved access to information, and new standards for chief executive recruitment and performance review.

An amendment bill is now being drafted containing the various reforms.

To find out more on the reforms or take part in phase two of the review, visit dlgsc.wa.gov.au/LGAReview.