Council provides policies for a range of activities and issues. Please review below.
Council Policy Manual
Golden Plains Shire Council's current policies can be found below. Council regularly refer, update and renew Council policies to guide the governance of its decision making processes.
Council Procurement Policy
As per section 186A of the Local Government Act 1989, please find below a copy of Council's current Procurement Policy available for public inspection.
A copy of the policy is also available for public inspection at Council's Customer Service Offices located in Bannockburn and Linton.
Gifts, Benefits and Hospitality Policy
The Gifts, Benefits and Hospitality Policy outlines the processes and principles that all workplace participants including the Mayor, Councillors, executives, employees, contractors, consultants and any individuals or groups undertaking activity for or on behalf of Golden Plains Shire Council must follow when responding to offers of gifts, benefits and hospitality and when providing gifts, benefits and hospitality.
As part of the policy, a public Gifts, Benefits and Hospitality Register will be maintained and made available for public inspection on Council's website. This register will be updated on a quarterly basis and is available to view below:
Council Complaints Handling Policy
Council has a confidential and non-discriminatory complaints handling procedure. The attached document provides the procedure in detail. (Click here to view the full document) The procedure can be summarised as:
If you have a complaint about a service which has not been delivered, contact our customer service officers on 5220 7111.This is a service request.
If after doing this, the problem hasn’t been fixed or you are unhappy with what we are going to do, you will need to contact us again and let us know exactly what still needs to be sorted out.This is a complaint and will be handled under our Complaint Handling Procedure.
You can make a complaint by sending us an email, writing to us or calling one of our customer service officers.
Your complaint will be investigated by staff who have experience in the area of the problem.
You should expect to hear back from us about your complaint within fifteen working days.
If after we investigate your complaint you are still not satisfied, you need to advise us and a more senior member of staff will review all the information that we have and work with you to mediate the complaint. The senior staff member will act as a mediator.
Asking the staff responsible to send all information associated with the complaint to the mediator;
Reading any other background information;
Reviewing all the material, then talk to you and the staff involved; and
Attempting to create a solution which meets your needs and which Council is able to put in place..
If the mediation still does not satisfy you, at that stage you should contact Council and ask for an appointment with the Chief Executive Officer to discuss the matter further. It is important that when you contact us in this case, that you tell us that you want to meet with the Chief Executive Officer to talk about resolving a complaint which has not been sorted out by mediation.
Finally, if after your discussion with the Chief Executive Officer you are still unhappy with the way the complaint has been handled, you should contact the State Ombudsman’s Office on 1800 806 314.
Public Interest Disclosures (Whistleblower)
Golden Plains Shire Council is a public body subject to the Public Interest Disclosures Act 2012 (“Act”). The purpose of the Act is to encourage and facilitate the making of disclosures of improper conduct by public officers and public bodies, including Golden Plains Shire Council, its staff, employees and Councillors.
Golden Plains Shire Council is committed to the aims and objectives of the Act. It recognises the value of transparency and accountability in its administrative and management practices, and supports the making of disclosures that reveal improper conduct. It does not tolerate improper conduct by the organisation, its employees, officers, or Councillors, nor the taking of reprisals against those who come forward to disclose such conduct.
What can disclosures be made about?
Disclosures may be made about “improper conduct” on the part of a public body or its staff, employees and members, including Councillors where the public body is a Council. Disclosures may also be made about “detrimental action” taken (or suspected may be taken) in reprisal against a person in connection with a disclosure made about improper conduct.
The conduct or action being disclosed may have taken place, still be occurring, or is believed will occur or be engaged in.
The Act provides definitions about improper conduct and detrimental action. For more information about what those terms mean, see the Council’s Public Interest Disclosures Procedures (see further below about “how to make a disclosure” about how to access or obtain a copy of those procedures). You may also find more information about protected disclosures from the website of the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (“IBAC”), at: http://www.ibac.vic.gov.au/reporting-corruption/what-is-a-protected-disclosure
If the Council believes a disclosure may be a protected disclosure made in accordance with the Act, it will notify the disclosure to the IBAC for assessment. The IBAC will then deal with the disclosure.
Who can make a disclosure?
Any individual natural person (e.g., not an organisation or company) may make a disclosure under the Act. The individual could be a person within the organisation, or any member of the public externally. Individuals may also make a joint disclosure.
Disclosures may be made in a number of ways set out in the Act, including anonymously, in writing or orally. You need not identify the person or body about whom the disclosure is made in order to make a disclosure under the Act.
How to make a disclosure
As required under the Act, Golden Plains Shire Council has established procedures to facilitate and encourage the making of disclosures under the Act and how the Council handles any such disclosures received.(“Public Interest Disclosures Procedures”). The Council’s Public Interest Disclosures Procedures are available here or by inspection during normal office hours of Golden Plains Shire Council at Customer Service Centre at 2 Pope Street, Bannockburn or 68 Sussex Street, Linton. The Council’s Public Interest Disclosures Procedures contain detailed information about who can receive disclosures, for example, the Council, the IBAC and the Ombudsman, and how you can go about making such disclosures to us or to those bodies.
If you are not able to access an online copy or would like a copy sent to you, please contact Candice Holloway, Corporate Governance Coordinator at Golden Plains Shire Council so we can provide you a copy of our Public Interest Disclosures Procedures.
Golden Plains Shire Council takes its obligations under the Act seriously. This includes the requirement to protect the identity of the discloser and the matters disclosed by a discloser. Maintaining confidentiality in relation to protected disclosure matters is crucial, among other things, in ensuring reprisals are not made against a discloser. It is a criminal offence under the Act to disclose information connected with a disclosure made in accordance with the Act, including the identity of the discloser. The penalties for breaching confidentiality obligations include financial penalties and imprisonment.
For more information
The Council has appointed Candice Holloway, Corporate Governance Coordinator to handle enquiries about its obligations under the Act. Candice Holloway may be contacted on 5220 7111 or by email [email protected] if you wish to obtain further information about the Council’s public interest disclosures policy or procedures, or if you wish to arrange a confidential meeting to discuss any matters of concern.
You can also find out more information about our general complaints handling process by accessing the Public Interes Disclosures Procedures on Golden Plains Shire Council website http://www.goldenplains.vic.gov.au/.
You can find a copy of Council's Public Interest Disclosures Procedures here.