Members of the public may address a council meeting on any subject of concern or interest to the city. The number of people who may address each meeting is limited. Council has established the following procedures for deputations.
Public participation segment of council meetings (Deputations by members of the public)
As a standing practice the council provides an opportunity for members of the public to request the opportunity to make a statement at council meetings.
- Council meetings, not including closed meeting, are audio-visually recorded and published to council’s website.
- Members of the public are, at the invitation of the chairperson of the meeting, permitted to make a statement at any ordinary meeting of council provided the statement does not relate to a topic which is the subject of a motion of revocation which is to be discussed at the meeting which they address.
- A maximum of fifteen minutes is to be set aside for public participation at ordinary council meetings.
- Not more than five members of the public are to be permitted to address the council at any one meeting.
- The duration of any statement is not to exceed three minutes.
- Any member of the public wishing to make a statement shall indicate his/her desire and subject matter, in writing, to the general manager by lunch-time (12 noon) on the Friday preceding the meeting.
- The subject of any statement can relate to a matter currently before, or at some future stage to come before the council, or any other matter of general relevance to the interests of the city.
- The speaker is required to follow the direction of the chairperson in relation to how and when they may make the statement.
- When the speaker has been invited forward by the chairperson they are to introduce themselves to the meeting, stating where they are from (town or suburb) before commencing their statement.
- The speaker is reminded that council meetings are open forums and unlike state and commonwealth parliaments these meetings do not have protection from parliamentary privilege. This means any statement made will need to take into account the rights of other persons.
- At the meeting the speaker is fully responsible to ensure that the statement is accurate and that the statement is not defamatory, does not disclose any confidential information or personal information and does not disclose any commercial-in-confidence information.
- Should the statement be defamatory or disclose confidential information or personal information, or disclose commercial-in-confidence information then the speaker agrees that they will be fully responsible for any issues which follow from the statement.
A formal deputation may be received by council or any committee of the council upon invitation of the chairperson. The procedures and conditions in relation to formal deputation requests are as follows:
- A written request may be submitted to the chairperson:
- From the persons who intend to comprise the deputation; and
- Setting out the recommendation, request, or other matter which, it seeks to be placed before the council or committee.
- The chairperson is to decide whether or not the deputation requested will be invited.
- If the chairperson decides that a deputation will be invited, the chairperson is to indicate to the general manager the meeting at which the deputation will be received.
- The chairperson is to allow deputations as requested by council.
- The general manager, upon being informed of the matters referred to above is to:
- Include in the notice of meeting advice of the proposed deputation and its purpose; and
- Notify the persons that the request has been granted, and the meeting at which the deputation will be received.
- A recommendation, request or other matter placed before a closed meeting of the council or committee, is not to be considered until the deputation has withdrawn from the meeting unless the chairperson has invited them to remain in the meeting room.
- A deputation is:
- Not to exceed three persons; and
- Not to address the meeting for a period longer than fifteen minutes.
An application form must be lodged at the Council Offices by midday on the Friday prior to the meeting.