Invercargill Metropolis Council introduces new media protocols

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2021-02-23 00:24:52

The Invercargill Metropolis Council is cracking down on councillors commenting on the actions and selections of their colleagues and employees underneath new media protocols.

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Photograph: 123RF

The council has come underneath elevated authorities and public scrutiny following stories of in-fighting and a sequence of Code of Conduct complaints final 12 months.

That sparked an unbiased evaluate into the council’s governance means and the event of a Venture Governance Group.

Councillors will likely be requested to conform to the brand new media protocols throughout at present’s assembly as a part of the group’s first report back to the council.

A report back to council confirms the protocols supply a information for councillors to assist the council’s good fame when talking with the media.

They embody taking a ‘no surprises’ strategy to media, and employees providing official speaking factors or background data to help councillors.

“Elected members acknowledge that typically the council makes unpopular selections for the proper causes (e.g. authorized necessities, well being and security and so forth). When this occurs, they comply with acknowledge background points publicly even once they have disagreed with a choice,” the report says.

“Elected members conform to deal with council points and actions when chatting with the media, somewhat than the actions or selections of different elected members or employees.

“The media has the power to form and affect group views of the organisation and due to this fact elected members agree the necessity to take care when sharing views about council selections or actions.”

The Venture Governance Group was appointed to supervise the council’s motion plan to handle the findings of the Unbiased Governance Evaluate, the plan’s supply, and measure progress whereas conserving stakeholders knowledgeable.

The group’s replace report confirmed it is shifting its focus in direction of monitoring, measuring and reporting.

“The governance framework for the supply of council’s motion plan in response to the Thomson Report is now established and offering good oversight of the Working Teams. A media technique is in place and key stakeholders are being stored knowledgeable of its work. Its subsequent precedence is to ascertain an evaluation programme to observe outcomes,” the report mentioned.

The council has pushed again the timing of its report aimed to make clear the deputy mayor’s function and obligations – the deputy mayor will even be added to the governance group.

“Whereas good progress has been made gathering data, discussions have been held with the mayor, the deputy mayor and the chief government to discover a method ahead. The PGG due to this fact request that this report be introduced to the March Council assembly.”

In November, the council signed off on a price range of $310,000 for this monetary 12 months to handle the issues raised. The unique estimate given in September was for $70,000 of unbudgeted spending.

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