The commencement of the Local Government Act 2020 has introduced a requirement for council to adopt Governance Rules for the conduct of its meetings.
With the adoption of Governance Rules the existing Meeting Procedure Local Law (no.1 of 2019) is largely superseded. However, one part of the local law that cannot be included in the Governance Rules is the use of the common seal.
Section 14(1)(b) of the Act requires that a council have a common seal. Further section 14(2)(c) requires that the common seal be used in accordance with any applicable local law.
The council is proposing to adopt a new local law to:
- Revoke the Meeting Procedure Local Law (no. 1 of 2019);
- Regulate and control the use of the common seal;
- Prohibit unauthorised use of the common seal or any device resembling the common seal; and,
- Provide penalties for non-observance of the provisions of this Local Law.
The proposed local law replicates most of the common seal clauses in the Meeting Procedure Local Law but with the addition of clauses to authorise the use of the common seal where the council has delegated it to the CEO or other officer. At present section 173 agreements under the Planning and Environment Act are delegated to the CEO and to the Director Planning and Infrastructure.
A copy of the draft Common Seal Local Law together with a Community Impact Statement has been prepared and is available for viewing in the document library and for inspection at the customer service centre, 104 Hovell St, Wodonga.