With the flurry of campaign material around at present, it seems timely to remind constituents of the oath each nominated councillor is required to take prior to entering into office. It is as follows:
“I will undertake the duties of the office of Councillor in the best interests of the people in the municipal district and faithfully and impartially carry out the functions, powers, authorities and discretions vested in me under the Local Government Act 1989 or any other Act to the best of my skill and judgment.” (Local Government Act 1989, Section 63)
The oath is very clear in mandating elected councillors to represent the ‘municipal district’ – not only their ward, and certainly not their immediate vested interests.
I wonder if those who seek to ‘stand alone’ or are ‘re-imagining’ the purpose of our Island have considered the direct conflict they will need to declare, should they be elected to office?
Presently there are certain social media pages and local press publications clearly showing support for councillors who are members of such groups.
The people behind these supporting campaigns should also point out the requirement for these candidates to act on behalf of all residents of Bass Coast Shire.
I humbly remind your readership that this election is not a vote to separate from Bass Coast Shire.
Nominees running for a position of councillor within the confines of Bass Coast Shire will swear to represent the best interests of all people in the municipal district.
They will be required to act wholly, impartially and adhere to the Councillor Code of Conduct.
Can all standing councillors provide this commitment when they are looking at disrupting the very organisation that they seek to represent?
Dear reader, before you vote for a councillor who promises you a swimming pool or a hospital, ask yourself: is this person acting in the best interests of all residents in Bass Coast Shire?
Remember, this individual will speak on behalf of 32,000 other people – not just you.
As goes the adage: “May the people get the government they deserve.”
Rob Easton, Cowes.
Stand alone or for everyone?