Council praised over Act
GLADSTONE Regional Council deserves kudos for taking the new Local Government Act 2009 seriously.
However, there was still some lack of clarity about Material Personal Interests (MPIs) and Conflicts of Interest (COIs) and even the Minister for Local Government, Desley Boyle, and the council’s chief executive, Graeme Kanofski, are at odds over some interpretations.
Ms Boyle said the council should be congratulated for taking the matter seriously and for being the first Queensland council as far as she knew that had delivered its Community Engagement Policy.
“It is a new world,” she said.
Ms Boyle said, after reading in The Observer that Gladstone had handed down its policy, she put in a request for a copy of the policy.
In relation to the articles about the council’s dealings with agenda items and MPIs and COIs at last week’s meeting, Ms Boyle said the brother-in-law matter was correctly dealt with.
However, she said community organisations were not classified as MPIs, just COIs, despite a councillor being a president of a show committee receiving funds.
Ms Boyle said because of this, the council would be able to pass an agenda item that granted multiple organisations funds.
Mr Kanofski said it was stated in the Local Government Act that membership of a community organisation was not an MPI.
However, if a councillor was a patron on the management committee, it was an MPI, he said.