Model Code of Conduct

Model Code of Conduct and Procedures 2018

        STATUS: CURRENT

The 2018 Model Code of Conduct for Local Councils in NSW and the associated Procedures for the Administration of the Model Code of Conduct for Local Councils in NSW were prescribed on 14 December 2018.

Adoption

Councils must adopt the new Model Code of Conduct and Procedures within 6 months of prescription, (14 December 2018 – 14 June 2019). Councils’ existing adopted codes of conduct and procedures will remain in force until councils adopt a new code of conduct and procedures, based on the Model Code of Conduct and Procedures prescribed under the Regulation.

Please note that the 2018 Model Code of Conduct and Procedures only apply from 14 June 2019 or the date they are adopted by each council (whichever is first). They are not retrospective. For any allegations that relate to behaviour or conduct that occurred prior to the new Model Code and Procedures being adopted by council, the previous versions of the Model Code and Procedures apply.

Councils may include supplementary provisions in their adopted codes of conduct and may also impose more onerous requirements than those prescribed under the Model Code of Conduct. However, councils must not dilute the standards prescribed in the Model Code of Conduct.

New Requirements

The new Model Code of Conduct applies to more than 45,000 staff and nearly 1,300 councillors at 128 councils across NSW.

Key changes include:

  • it incorporates the pecuniary interest provisions previously contained in the Local Government Act 1993 and Regulation
  • new standards relating to discrimination and harassment, bullying, work health and safety, behaviour at meetings, access to information and maintenance of council records
  • new rules governing the acceptance of gifts including mandatory reporting
  • a new ongoing disclosure requirement for councillors and designated persons requiring disclosure of new interests in returns of interests within three months of becoming aware of them
  • councillors will be required to disclose in their returns of interests whether they are a property developer or a close associate of a property developer.

Key Resources

For further information, contact OLG’s Council Governance Team on (02) 4428 4100 or via email olg@olg.nsw.gov.au.