Emergency powers for mayor

"Council is now facing increased risks around civic governance and resource decision making that are essential to ensuring delivery of core services,: Georges River Council mayor Kevin Greene said.
"Council is now facing increased risks around civic governance and resource decision making that are essential to ensuring delivery of core services,: Georges River Council mayor Kevin Greene said.

Emergency powers have been granted to Georges River Council mayor Kevin Greene to cover critical contingencies that may arise affecting council operations during the coronavirus pandemic.

The powers were outlined in a Mayoral Minute at last night's extraordinary council meeting.

The contingency arrangement for decision making outside of council meetings would be in place until the pandemic has ended, unless terminated by the council before.

This would allow the mayor to make decisions of council in emergency situations after consultation with the council's general manager Gail Connolly.

The general manager would provide a report to the councillors once a month specifying any action aken under this delegation.

"Contingent administrative arrangements need to be strengthened in order to protect the interests of Georges River Council and the community as best as reasonably possible under the circumstances," Councillor Greene said.

"Council is now facing increased risks around civic governance and resource decision making that are essential to ensuring delivery of core services without seriously compromising the health and wellbeing of the community and staff.

"The business as usual approach to civic governance may quickly fail if iti is not safe enough or otherwise impractical for council to convene ordinary or extraordinary meetings in the coming months as a result of COVID-19.

"Immediate contingency arrangements should be put in place or strengthened to protect the interests of the council and the community as best as reasonably possible under the circumstances.

"While the council awaits a response from the State Government on a range of administrative and legislative barriers to this that are under its control, it is prudent to grant emergency powers to the Mayor for a limited duration to cover critical contingencies that may arise."

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