Special Council (Statutory)Meeting Election of the Mayor

Held in the

Council Chamber

Whitehorse Civic Centre

379 Whitehorse Road Nunawading


Monday 28 October 2019

at 7:00pm

Members:      Cr Blair Barker, Cr Bill Bennett, Cr Raylene Carr,

                     Cr Prue Cutts, Cr Andrew Davenport, Cr Sharon Ellis

                     Cr Tina Liu, Cr Denise Massoud, Cr Andrew Munroe,

                     Cr Ben Stennett

Mr Simon McMillan

Chief Executive Officer

Recording of Meeting and Disclaimer

Please note every Ordinary Council Meeting (other than items deemed confidential under section 89(2) of the Local Government Act 1989) is being recorded and streamed live on Whitehorse City Council’s website in accordance with Council's Live Streaming and Recording of Meetings Policy. A copy of the policy can also be viewed on Council’s website.

The recording will be archived and made publicly available on Council's website within 48 hours after the meeting on www.whitehorse.vic.gov.au for a period of three years (or as otherwise agreed to by Council).

Live streaming allows everyone to watch and listen to the meeting in real time, giving you greater access to Council debate and decision making and encouraging openness and transparency.

All care is taken to maintain your privacy; however, as a visitor in the public gallery, your presence may be recorded. By remaining in the public gallery, it is understood your consent is given if your image is inadvertently broadcast.

Opinions expressed or statements made by individual persons during a meeting are not the opinions or statements of Whitehorse City Council. Council therefore accepts no liability for any defamatory remarks that are made during a meeting.


Whitehorse City Council

Special Council Minutes                                                                            28 October 2019


Meeting opened at 7:00pm


Present:   Cr Barker, Cr Bennett, Cr Carr, Cr Cutts, Cr Davenport

               Cr Ellis, Cr Liu, Cr Massoud, Cr Munroe, Cr Stennett



In accordance with Council’s Meeting Procedures and Common Seal Local Law 2013, the Chief Executive Officer will take the Chair up until the end of Item 7 when the election of Mayor has taken place.

1.         PRAYER 

             (Read by temporary Chairperson Chief Executive Officer Mr Simon McMillan)

1a      Prayer for Council


We give thanks, O God, for the Men and Women of the past whose generous devotion to the common good has been the making of our City.

Grant that our own generation may build worthily on the foundations they have laid.

Direct our minds that all we plan and determine, is for the wellbeing of our City.



1b      Aboriginal Reconciliation Statement


     “In the spirit of reconciliation, Whitehorse City Council acknowledges the Wurundjeri people as the traditional custodians of the land we are meeting on. We pay our respects to their Elders past and present.”



The temporary Chairperson Chief Executive Officer Mr Simon McMillan, introduced Councillors and members of staff and welcomed members of the public in attendance and those listening in via live streaming.

3.         APOLOGIES 





4.1     Immediate Past Mayor Councillor Bill Bennett addressed the meeting and gave an overview of his Mayoral term, saying it was an honour and a privilege to serve as Mayor. Councillor Bennett thanked fellow Councillors for their support during his Mayoral term, the Executive and staff for their advice and management expertise, and the Whitehorse community for their honest advice and passion to improve our great City.  Councillor Bennett thanked his wife Carol for her support all the way during his Mayoral term.

4.2     Councillors extended their congratulations and appreciation to the Immediate Past Mayor Councillor Bill Bennett.

4.3     The temporary Chairperson, Chief Executive Officer Mr Simon McMillan then made a presentation of a replica Mayoral medallion to Councillor Bennett, in recognition of his Mayoral term.



(Note: for Information only – No Council Resolution required.)

At the Ordinary Council Meeting held 20 March 2017, Council in accordance with the Local Government Act 1989, resolved to set the Mayoral and Councillor allowances for the period 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2021.

The Mayoral and Councillor allowances (subject to State Government adjustments) are set at $98,465 per annum, plus the equivalent of the superannuation guarantee contribution (currently 9.5%) for the Mayoral allowance and $30,827 per annum, plus the equivalent of the superannuation guarantee contribution (currently 9.5%) for the Councillor allowance.  The Mayor also receives a fully maintained motor vehicle.


6.         TERM OF THE MAYOR


Section 71(2) of the Local Government Act 1989 allows a Council to elect a Mayor for a term of two years.  However as a General election will be held in October 2020 and all Councillor positions become vacant, the 2020 Mayoral term will conclude at 6.00am on Saturday 24 October 2020.




7.1       The appointment of the Mayor took place in accordance with Section 90 of the Local Government Act 1989, which requires voting at a meeting that is open to the public to be conducted openly by a show of hands.

7.2       The temporary Chairperson, Chief Executive Officer Mr Simon McMillan outlined the important role of the Mayor as defined by the Local Government Act 1989 and the key responsibilities and duties of the Mayoral Role.

The Role of the Mayor


The Local Government Act 1989 defines the functions of Mayor.

The functions of the Mayor of a Council include:

-       Providing guidance to Councillors about what is expected of a Councillor;

-       Acting as a principal spokesperson for the Council;

-       Supporting good working relations between Councillors;

-       Carrying out the civic and ceremonial duties of the office of Mayor.

The role of Mayor as Chair of Council and community leader is crucial to effective relationships with the administration and to good governance.  The Mayor should ensure good governance within Council, providing the base for sound strategy for the City.

7.3     The temporary Chairperson, Chief Executive Officer Mr Simon McMillan, called for nominations for the position of Mayor for the Mayoral term 28 October 2019 to 24 October 2020.


There were two nominations for the position of the Mayor.


          Councillor Munroe nominated Councillor Ellis, seconded by Councillor Davenport.

          (Councillor Ellis accepted the nomination)


          Councillor Bennett nominated Councillor Cutts, seconded by Councillor Stennett.

          (Councillor Cutts accepted the nomination)

7.4     Each candidate for Mayor (in order of nomination) was allowed three minutes to address fellow Councillors.

7.5     In accordance with Council’s Meeting Procedure and Common Seal Law 2013, Mr Simon McMillan acting as the Returning Officer then conducted the vote for the election of the Mayor for the 2019 - 2020 Mayoral term.

Following the vote, Councillor Ellis having reached an absolute majority of votes was declared Mayor of the City of Whitehorse.


7.6     The Returning Officer congratulated Councillor Ellis on her election as Mayor.

          At this point, Councillor Ellis briefly left the Council Chamber to be fitted with the Mayoral robe and medallion and then returned and assumed the Chair.



8.1     Address and expression of appreciation by incoming Mayor.

Councillor Ellis thanked the Councillors for their support and trust in her, and stated it is an honour to be elected Mayor.  Councillor Ellis stated that Whitehorse is an incredible municipality, with the 10 Councillors together forming one very strong and powerful municipality which is highly regarded within the local government sector. Councillor Ellis further stated that the Whitehorse Council officers are highly regarded in the sector, Whitehorse has a strong and engaged community, and she is looking forward to a very productive year ahead. 

8.2     Councillors then congratulated Councillor Ellis on her election as Mayor.

9.         Close Meeting

Meeting closed at 8:07pm

Confirmed this 25th day of November 2019