Governance Manual

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9.2.3 Relationship of council staff with elected members


  1. A key part of the role of council staff is to provide elected members with comprehensive advice to enable informed and competent decision-making.

  2. Therefore, a high level of cooperation and mutual respect between elected members and staff is essential for the council’s effective performance. To ensure such cooperation and trust is maintained, elected members are expected to: [1]

    • recognise the chief executive’s role as the employer of council staff

    • make themselves aware of the obligations the council and chief executive have as the employer and observe those requirements at all times

    • treat all employees with courtesy and respect

    • observe any guidelines the chief executive puts in place regarding contact with employees

    • not do anything which compromises, or could be seen as compromising, an employee’s impartiality

    • avoid publicly criticising an employee, especially in ways that reflect on the staff member’s competence and integrity

    • raise concerns about employees only with the chief executive and concerns about the chief executive only with the mayor or the relevant committee

    • not seek to improperly influence staff in the normal undertaking of their duties.

  3. If an elected member (including the mayor) has an issue with a council employee, he/she should raise this with the chief executive and not with the staff member directly. This can be done by speaking with or writing to the chief executive.  Significant or on-going issues may also be raised with the chief executive through the CEO Review Committee.



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