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When it's not a conflict

The Inspectorate recently received a complaint regarding a councillor participating in a matter before council relating to an entity in which they held a position.

The complaint alleged a conflict of interest but on review, the councillor had been appointed to the position by council as a nominee director, which is exempt under section 78B(3)(ba) of the Local Government Act 1989.

The current conflict of interest provisions in the Act often enable councillors to participate in matters, accepting that they have broad interests in the community and are able to participate in decisions where the aforementioned exemptions apply.