Public attendance and conduct

Public Gallery.png Members of the public are invited to attend Council meetings as observers. 

If you're coming along to one of our Council meetings, the following standards of conduct must be followed when in the Public Gallery:

  • You must not interrupt meeting procedures or engage in any disorderly conduct.
  • You may not address or approach the Councillors during the meeting.
  • Any items that are considered by Council staff to potentially cause discomfort or a safety risk to anyone else in the Chamber will not be permitted.
  • Mobile phones and other electronic devices must be switched off or set to silent during the meeting.
  • No food or drink is allowed in the Chamber.
  • You cannot film, photograph or record the meeting (even in part) without prior written permission from Council.

Exclusion from Public Gallery

If a member of the public gallery in attendance interjects or behaves offensively during the Council Meeting, the chairperson may direct the person to stop interjecting or behaving offensively and if the person continues to interject or behave offensively, request the removal of the person from the Council meeting

This may include eviction by Victoria Police where necessary.

Further information is available in Council's Governance Rules.

Offensive or defamatory comments

Council meetings are an open forum of statements, questions and answers. Occasionally, comments could be made which may be regarded as offensive, defamatory or contrary to law. 

No protection will be afforded to member of the public gallery for comments made during meetings which are subsequently challenged in a court of law and determined to be slanderous.

Questions of Council

Members of the public can submit questions ahead of a Council Meeting.

Questions may be read by the submitter where they are present at the meeting. Where the submitter is not present they shall be read by the Chief Executive Officer or a delegate of the Chief Executive Officer and may be abridged to remove unnecessary commentary and only state the question.

For further information or to submit questions for a Council Meeting visit Questions of Council.

Live Streaming

All Council meetings are livestreamed on the Moira Shire Facebook page to enhance public access to the deliberations of Council.

The audio-visual recording equipment will be configured in a way which avoids coverage of the public gallery area and Council will endeavour to ensure images in this area are not streamed and recorded. However, Council expressly provides no assurances to this effect and in the event a person’s image is webcast, by remaining in the public gallery area it is implied that consent has been given to the Council to broadcast a person’s image.

Any members of the public who address Council will be heard on the livestream, and the audio of them speaking will be recorded.  

For further information, please read Council's Livestreaming and Publishing Recordings of Council Meetings Policy.

Confidential items

Sometimes Council may discuss items that are confidential, and the meeting moves into 'closed session' mode.

When this happens, the reasons for the discussion to be confidential will be explained before the discussion begins and all members of the public gallery, including media, will be asked to leave the chamber in accordance with section 66(2)(a) of the Local Government Act 2020.

COVID Safety

All public gallery attendees must follow any State Government directions  that apply at the time of the meeting, as well as any other requirements put in place by Council. These rules may change at short notice.

Council asks you to please stay home if you are feeling unwell.