4.7 DELEGATIONS All major councils operate under a series of delegations so that various legal powers and decisions of council operations are exercised in practice by the CEO or specific council officers. It is impractical for the CEO to personally undertake or approve the multiple day-to-day actions and powers of a council. It is entirely reasonable for Ipswich residents and ratepayers to expect your council to have up-to-date and lawful delegations so that the correct balance is struck between operational efficiency and accountability.
WHAT WE DID A considerable amount of work has been done on the review of all existing delegations and sub- delegations along with their attached conditions, with the following outcomes: Identification of deficiencies in the delegations and process of creating/amending/adding/ repealing delegations and sub delegations; The sourcing of external providers to review approximately 63 pieces of legislation to compile a register of appropriate council to CEO delegations; The engagement of an external provider to assist in drafting more appropriate sub delegations and conditions to be given to council officers so a register of sub-delegations could be compiled; Removal of any delegation conditions relating to a divisional councillor’s approval where inappropriate; Completing a delegations register, which will be published on council’s website, which complies with the Local Government Act 2009 and offers an improved level of transparency; and The drafting of new procedures to ensure delegations are constantly updated to reflect changes in legislation and policy (work in progress). All existing powers delegated from council to the CEO have been repealed and replaced with a new suite (register) of delegations. Removal of redundant and erroneous delegations;
BEFORE ADMINISTRATION Your council had a process for managing
delegations. However, this process had degraded over time as various state legislative amendments and the repealing of some Acts were not actively monitored by council.
The following issues needed to be addressed:
Some delegations were not actually delegations under a legislative authority; they were administrative directives or policy decisions;
There were errors in many delegations;
Some required delegations were missing altogether;
There was limited control over who received sub-delegations and no system in place to determine the appropriateness of issuing sub- delegations to individual officers; Conditions were placed on many delegations requiring consultation or approval by councillors prior to exercising the delegated power; this was inappropriate because it effectively gave individual councillors the ability to make operational decisions; and Council did not have a published register of delegations as required under the Local Government Act 2009 .