Transparency was high on the agenda during a discussion about councillor residential development applications and amendments.
Councillor Ian Scandrett put a notice of motion forward at the February 27 council meeting for 4.55 amendments to approved residential councillor's development applications to be determined by council staff, unless deemed significant by staff.
Cr Scandrett has a modification application before council for proposed residential alterations and additions on his property at Mt Broughton Road in Werai.
"I think to reduce time to council and to remove any conflict for council in this space, that we should contemplate this adjustment for councillors' residences, adjustments to existing DAs and unless deemed significant by staff and called up," Cr Scandrett said.
The motion was discussed by councillors and was lost, with several councillors citing concerns about public transparency.
Cr Gordon Markwart said while he agreed that major DAs by councillors should go before council, he believed minor adjustments shouldn't.
Cr Ken Halstead said he was comfortable with the current process as it ensured "probity and ethics" were maintained.
"The whole bit about public probity is to put it to council. Not to have it dealt by staff in a normal system, which could be seem by the public to be... lost in the system," Cr Halstead said.
"I feel very comfortable with either the original application or an amendment should come before the council.
"It’s all about getting to the crunch of the issue and probity is top of the list."
Cr Larry Whipper said he had concerns about public perception and he did not support the motion.
Mayor Duncan Gair said the notice of motion did not have his support.
"I agree totally that any DA involving a councillor should be put to the business paper," he said.
"It is perception as councillor Whipper has said and probity as councillor Halstead has said."
Cr Scandrett's modification application was deferred at the February 13 council meeting.
Following a peer review the matter will be reported back to council for consideration.
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