Council gets down to business

By John Maslin

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A review of its code of conduct along with standing orders are two of the first issues being tackled by Whanganui District Council.

The council held its first full meeting yesterday with Mayor Hamish McDouall appointing a number of councillors to review both activities and report back with recommendations.

The code of conduct sets out the standard of behaviour expected of individual councillors.
Paul Drake, council's legal officer, said the review would be useful and would use a Local Government NZ template as a guide.

It's expected to give more clarity to the code itself and focuses on building supportive and inclusive culture at council to avert potential breaches of conduct.

Mr Drake said the review could have been left to council chief executive officer Kym Fell but said that "would not capture the nuances" that elected councillors would be able to bring to the discussion.

Council last revised its code of conduct in 2014.

The Mayor will be joined on that review committee by deputy-mayor Jenny Duncan and councillors Helen Craig, Philippa Baker-Hogan and Josh Chandulal-Mackay.

And both the mayor and his deputy will be joined by councillors Kate Joblin, Rob Vinsen and Alan Taylor to review council's standing orders.

Mr McDouall said he expected the review to be ready for the council's first meeting in the New Year.

- Wanganui Chronicle

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