Local Government should be governed by democratic principles to the highest standards of transparency, accountability and should respect, protect and fulfill human rights. Greens on Council will continue to push for open consultation processes to enable residents and ratepayers to influence the decisions and strategic direction of Council.
- The City should have strong democratic principles of proportional representation, based primarily on an electoral roll of residents.
- Melbourne City Council should be as accountable and transparent as practical.
- Residents and ratepayers can and should be more directly involved in the decisions of their Council, and it is incumbent upon Councillors to facilitate this.
- Election to council and the operations of council must be free from the influence of developer and gambling donations.
- Human rights, including the right to peaceful protest, should be protected by Council.
- Advocate for amendments to the Local Government Act 2020 to reinstate council autonomy to choose the method of election, thus allowing communities to choose methods that encourage civic participation and which maximise options and accessibility for voters.
- Advocate for a comprehensive and consultative review of the City of Melbourne’s electoral structure, whilst advocating for:
- Retention of the popular election for the position of Lord Mayor, but not Deputy Lord Mayor, while permitting Lord Mayoral candidates to also stand as Councillor candidates;
- The retention of an unsubdivided district, in the interests of fair proportionality, but requesting that the review explore the feasibility of future multi-member wards;
- Removal of the double vote for businesses, and the abolition of the automatic and compulsory enrolment provisions for non-residential voters; and
- The enfranchisement of all residents, irrespective of citizenship status.
- Introduce a new electoral representation structure before the 2024 election, after a full electoral representation review is conducted with maximum resident and ratepayer consultation.
- Advocate for amendments to the City of Melbourne Act to require Electoral Representation Reviews at least once every twelve years, in line with every other Victorian municipality.
- Improve awareness-raising measures for elections, particularly to young and non-English speaking voters.
- Advocate for recognition of Local Government in the Australian Constitution.
- Ensure the universal use of decision making processes that incorporate ratepayer and resident input and are not subject to disproportionate influence by interest groups.
- Engage with residents and ratepayers on decisions which impact them, in accordance with International Association for Public Participation principles, whilst being clear and genuine about the purpose of community forums.
- Expand Council’s program of deliberative democracy programs for long term strategies as well as important routine processes such as budget setting.
- Explore and implement methods to better engage with and increase participation of poorly engaged sections of community and business, including newly arrived residents, the elderly and disabled, tower dwellers and microbusinesses.
- Produce and promulgate simple information sheets on Council’s democratic processes and governance structures.
- Promote accessible and transparent processes of consultation with residents and ratepayers.
- Guarantee to everyone the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and association within the City.
Accountability, Transparency and Accessibility
- Improve online public access to Council documentation and data.
- Provide access to individual councillor performance data including attendance and participation rates.
- Require that Council information is translated and that interpreters are available during community consultations as required.
- Strengthen the measures of sustainability by which Council’s performance is monitored and publicly reported on to residents.
- Live stream Council and Committee meetings online.