Local Government Act 1989
Local Government in Victoria is administered under the Local Government Act 1989, which provides a framework for the establishment and operation of councils.
The Act is the main legislative instrument for Victoria's seventy-nine councils.
Part 1A of the Local Government Act contains the Local Government Charter, which describes the purpose, objectives and functions of council.
In addition to these matters, the Local Government Act also includes provisions for:
- entitlements for residents and ratepayers to vote in council elections
- the conduct of local council elections, nominations and vote counting
- independent Electoral Representation Reviews by an electoral commission
- council governance requirements, including codes of conduct and disclosure of conflicts of interest
- council decision making, including records of meetings, confidentiality and limits on decisions during election periods
- levying and payment of council rates and charges
- preparation of Council Plans, budgets and annual reports
- council's powers to make and enforce local laws
For more information:
The Whistleblowers Protection Act has been replaced by the Protected Disclosures Act 2012. Manningham City Council is a public body subject to the Act. The purpose of the Act is to encourage and facilitate the making of disclosures of improper conduct by public officers and public bodies including its employees, officers and Councillors.
The Act defines what constitutes improper conduct and detrimental action. It also requires a disclosure to satisfy Part 2 of the Act to be a protected disclosure. In essence, a person making a disclosure must believe, on reasonable grounds, that the Council, employee, officer or Councillor has engaged in, or proposes to engage in, improper conduct. The conduct must be serious enough to constitute a criminal offence or reasonable grounds for dismissal.
Manningham is committed to the aims and objectives of the Act and encourages and supports the making of disclosures about improper conduct. Council will not tolerate improper conduct by the organisation, its employees, officers or Councillors nor the taking of reprisals against anyone who discloses such conduct.
Provisions of the Protected Disclosure Act
Under the Act persons can make disclosures to the Council and to the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) about improper conduct and detrimental action in relation to the activities and functions of Council.
Essentially the Act provides certain protections for people who make disclosures and creates obligations of confidentiality preventing the disclosure of the identity of the person and the content of the disclosure.
Please note that disclosures in relation to Councillors cannot be made to the Council but must be made to the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) or the Ombudsman.
Anyone considering making a disclosure is encouraged to read the Council’s Protected Disclosure Procedures on this website. This will assist understanding of the protections available under the Act and how to activate them. Additional information is available on the IBAC website. Please contact the Council’s Protected Disclosure Coordinator on 9840 9201 for further information or a confidential discussion. Advice can also be received from IBAC on a confidential basis.
Protected Disclosure Procedures (200.04 KB)
Council recommends the discloser ensures that a written disclosure is sealed in an envelope and clearly marked:
- “Private and Confidential – Attention Mr Warwick Winn, Chief Executive Officer”
Freedom of Information
The Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) gives the public a legal right to access many documents in Council’s possession. However some documents cannot be accessed to protect the public interest and some private and business affairs. These exemptions and exceptions may include but are not limited to:
- Internal working documents;
- Documents relating to legal proceedings;
- Documents affecting the personal privacy of others;
- Documents containing information obtained in confidence;
- Documents relating to trades secrets;
- Documents already publicly available or available by paying a fee under an act other than the Freedom of Information Act;
- Documents created before 1 January 1989 that do not relate to the personal affairs of the applicant.
All FOI requests should be addressed to:
The Freedom of Information Officer
Manningham City Council
PO Box 1
DONCASTER VIC 3108
Access the Freedom of Information (FOI) Application Form (63.12 KB)
For a Freedom of Information request to be considered valid it must:
- Be in writing
- Provide sufficient information to identify the document(s)
- Be accompanied by an application fee of $28.90 (from 1 July 2018) (this fee is non-refundable).
An applicant may request to have the application fee waived or reduced on the basis of financial hardship. Such matters are handled on a case-by-case basis and may require evidence of hardship.
Please note that further access charges may be applied to cover the costs of locating and providing access to the documents being requested under the FOI Act.
A list of further costs that may be charged can be found by at the Freedom of Information website
On receipt of a valid FOI application, a decision must be made within thirty (30) days. Please note that this timeframe may be extended. This may include, but not limited to:
- An additional 15 days if third-party consultation is required to seek their views over the disclosure of documents; or,
- Up to an additional 30 day time extension by agreement with you;
You will be notified if there is any change to this timeframe for decision to be made.
When an application is refused or deferred, the applicant will be notified in writing of the reasons for denial/deferral. If the applicant is not satisfied they can seek a review by writing to the Freedom of Information Commissioner within 28 days.
Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner
PO Box 24274
Melbourne Victoria 3001
For more information on the FOI Act and procedures call Council's FOI Officer on 9840 9473, by mail at the address above or visit the Freedom Of Information website.
Manningham City Council and its service providers value the privacy of every individual's personal information.
Human Rights Charter
The Victorian Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006 is a law that protects the human rights of all people in Victoria.
The Charter requires all public authorities and their employees to act compatibly with human rights in the delivery of services and when making decisions.
Manningham City Council recognises and respects that everyone have the same human rights entitlement to allow them to participate in, and contribute to, society and our community. We recognise that all persons have equal rights in the provision of, and access to, Council services and facilities. We also recognise that, at times, such rights may be limited, insofar as to strike a balance between individual rights and the protection of public interest.
The Charter complements other laws such a Equal Opportunity legislation and protects rights such as freedom of speech, freedom from forced work and freedom from degrading treatment which previously had no legal protection. The Charter sets out a list of twenty rights that assist all people to live with freedom, respect, equality and dignity.
For more information:
Fraud and Corruption Control
Council is the custodian of significant public funds and assets therefore it is important that the community has assurance that these are adequately protected from fraud and corruption.
In December 2017, Council approved a Fraud & Corruption Policy (58.64 KB) and a Fraud & Corruption Control Plan (265.81 KB).
The Policy sets out specific guidelines and responsibilities regarding appropriate actions that must be followed for the investigation of fraud and corruption and other similar irregularities.
The Plan documents Council’s approach to controlling fraud and corruption at both strategic and operational levels.
Both the Policy and the Plan need to be read in conjunction with the Manningham Risk Management Strategy and relevant legislation.