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The Decision Making Process

Find information below on the how decisions are made within Council.

Council's authority & functions

The decision-making powers and responsibilities of your local council are defined by:

  • The Local Government Act 1995
  • a range of other legislation
  • court decisions
  • compliance with Australian and international standards.

Councils have no authority in matters that fall outside the powers conferred by legislation.

If you have concerns about an issue outside Council’s authority, you may wish to contact your State or Federal government representative. Your local Councillor may also be able to direct your concerns about government issues.

Council resolutions

Council must exercise its powers by a decision made in a meeting of the full Council, unless it has delegated its powers to the Chief Executive Officer (CEO). These decisions are called resolutions.

The minutes of local government meetings are both a record of the business transacted at the meeting and the resolutions made during the meeting.

A copy of the agenda and the minutes for each meeting must be made available for public inspection at our Shire office’s and on our website.

For more information about Council resolutions see our Council meetings page. You can also find a schedule of all Council meetings and committee meetings.

Council policies

Our policies are statements, formally adopted by either Council or the CEO. They:

  • provide guidance on interpreting legislation
  • outline our responsibilities and
  • refer to the applicable standards and guidelines for decision-making under the policy.

For more information about Council policies see our Council information page.

Local laws

Council’s decision-making powers include the ability to control, regulate, license, prevent, and prohibit activity in the Shire. These powers are administered through local laws adopted by Council.

The Shire’s local laws aim to protect a range of environmental, social and health values in our Shire.

For more information about Local laws see our Council information page.


In order to assist with the administrative decisions necessary to run the Shire, the Council may delegate authority to the CEO to make decisions on behalf of Council.

The CEO in turn may choose to sub-delegate authority to Shire officers.

For more information or to view the delegation register please see our Registers page.

Public participation

The Shire encourages public participation in its decision-making processes, including the development of its local laws, policies and plans.

There are a number of ways you can communicate your views to a decision maker or discussion forum.

For example, you may choose to:

Write to the Shire about any policy, activity or service.

Submit a petition addressed to the Council about any issue within Council’s jurisdiction.

Make a submission. Sometimes Council decisions are open to the public. For example, in certain circumstances a member of the public may submit an objection to a development application. A second example is the local law-making process, which invites members of the public to make submissions. Matters which are open for submission are publicly notified in newspapers and on this website.

Complaints about a Council decision or action

The Shire invites both positive and negative feedback about our decisions. Should you wish to make a complaint about a Council decision, refer to Enquiries & Complaints.

Most decisions are open to review, however, please note resolutions of Council are not reviewable.

If you are not satisfied with our response to your complaint, you may wish to contact an external review body about your concerns or to obtain further advice.