Terms and Conditions as per Clause 3.3.7 of the Code of Meeting Practice
Hawkesbury City Council actively encourages participation of residents in the decision making process and is happy to hear from people regarding matters raised in the Business Paper.
Members of the public may address Council on any items in the business paper other than the Confirmation of Minutes; Responses to Questions from Previous Meeting; Mayoral Elections; Deputy Mayoral Elections and Committee Elections.
The procedure for addressing Council is as follows:
- All persons wishing to speak on an item in the business paper must make an application to do so. Each speaker is required to complete an application form indicating whether they are speaking 'for' or 'against' a recommendation on the business paper.The application form will include an undertaking, signed by the person wishing to speak, to comply with their stated intention, i.e. to speak either 'for' or 'against a recommendation in the business paper' and to refrain from any insult, allegation or personal reflection against any person, present or not, during the course of their address to Council and any answers they give to questions from Councillors.Persons intending to apply for approval to address Council must lodge the application form online/email, in person, or by facsimile, by 3pm on the day of the meeting to enable scheduling of items. Persons without access to online or facsimile facilities may contact Council by telephone to discuss their application to speak at the meeting.Notwithstanding the above, the applicant/owner or nominated representative is entitled to speak if an application is made in accordance with this Code and will be granted permission as one of the three positions allocated either 'for' or 'against' depending upon the terms of the recommendation.
- A maximum of three speakers 'for' and three speakers 'against' a recommendation may address Council to support their position. The proponent or applicant, supporters or other interested parties to a maximum of three are given five minutes each to address Council.
- All speakers must state their name, organisation if applicable and their interest in the matter before speaking.
- Items subject to public address will be heard in the order as outlined in Clause 2.3.6.
- In relation to Planning Decisions, the applicant or proponent shall speak first followed by persons in favour of the proposal and thence those opposed to the proposal. An applicant to a Planning Decision Item shall be given the right to respond to any new material raised only, for a period of two minutes.
- At meetings where applications for more than 20 speakers to Council have been received, a person should speak only on one item unless granted permission by the Chairperson who will have regard to the circumstances of each case taking into account such factors as the nature of the interest in the matter e.g. applicant, neighbour, and the number of speakers on the item or collectively on the agenda.
- At the conclusion of an address by a member or members of the public on an item on the agenda, the Council will then proceed to discuss and determine that item and this procedure shall be repeated for each of these items that are subject to an address by a member or members of the public, unless determined otherwise by Council
- In the case of Extraordinary Meetings (but for the exceptions outlined previously in this Clause), Council may resolve to increase the number of speakers permitted to address Council and to amend the normal five minute maximum speaking time, provided that the total amount of time allocated for speakers does not exceed 60 minutes for each item, in addition to no more than 20 minutes provided for speakers, to answer questions from Councillors and no more than ten minutes for a right of reply.
- The Chairperson may deal with issues concerning the relevance of the address to the matter being considered in accordance with 4.3.2.
- Councillors may ask questions of members of the public who address Council in order to clarify their understanding of the speaker’s view or to seek specific additional information. All Councillor questions to, and answers from, speakers are limited to a total time of two minutes per speaker.
Similar to 3.2.7, Councillors should have the same regard for members of the public and put all such questions to speakers directly, succinctly and without argument.