What is the role of a Councillor?
Councillors represent their community to ensure the good rule and governance of their electoral area. In summary, councillors are responsible for:
- A councillor must represent the current and future interests of the residents of the local government area.
- All councillors of a local government have the same responsibilities, but the mayor has some extra responsibilities.
- All councillors have the following responsibilities—
- ensuring the local government -
- discharges its responsibilities under this Act; and
- achieves its corporate plan; and
- complies with all laws that apply to local governments;
- providing high quality leadership to the local government and the community;
- participating in council meetings, policy development, and decision-making, for the benefit of the local government area;
- being accountable to the community for the local government’s performance.
- ensuring the local government -
What is the role of the Mayor?
- The mayor has the following extra responsibilities -
- leading and managing meetings of the local government at which the mayor is the chairperson, including managing the conduct of the participants at the meetings;
- preparing a budget to present to the local government;
- leading, managing, and providing strategic direction to, the chief executive officer in order to achieve the high quality administration of the local government;
- directing the chief executive officer and senior executive employees, in accordance with the local government’s policies;
- conducting a performance appraisal of the chief executive officer, at least annually, in the way that is decided by the local government (including as a member of a committee, for example);
- ensuring that the local government promptly provides the Minister with the information about the local government area, or the local government, that is requested by the Minister;
- being a member of each standing committee of the local government;
- representing the local government at ceremonial or civic functions.
- A councillor who is not the mayor may perform the mayor’s extra responsibilities only if the mayor delegates the responsibility to the councillor.
- When performing a responsibility, a councillor must serve the overall public interest of the whole local government area.
Councillors have regular meetings to make decisions and to discuss local issues. Councillors focus on the policy directions of the local government, not the internal day-to-day administration of the local government. The role of councillors is to make decisions, which council officers can then implement on their behalf.
The South Burnett Regional Council has a strong commitment to open, accountable and ethical government. The Councillor Code of Conduct Policy (the code) sets out behaviours and responsibilities for Councillors as required under the Local Government Act 2009.
The code demonstrates Council's commitment to the following local government principles contained in the Act:
- transparent and effective processes, and decision-making in the public interest;
- sustainable development and management of assets and infrastructure, and delivery of effective services;
- democratic representation, social inclusion and meaningful community engagement;
- good governance of, and by, local government; and
- ethical and legal behaviour of Councillors and local government employees.
The code sets out the statutory, ethical and behavioural obligations of Councillors and outlines the types of breaches and penalties under the Local Government Act 2009.
Remuneration levels for councillors are set by an independent state government convened Tribunal: the Local Government Remuneration and Discipline Tribunal. Each year the Tribunal undertakes a review of the remuneration levels and publishes a report with their recommendations. For further information on the remuneration of councillors contact the Department of Local Government or download the most recent Local Government Remuneration Tribunal Report. Past reports are also available via this link.