The Office of Local Government has suspended current Warrumbungle Shire councillor and former Coonabarabran Shire Council mayor, Fred Clancy, for misconduct.
Councillor Clancy has been suspended for one month over an incident in which he acted in an aggressive manner towards a female Council staff member.
Cr Clancy has also been ordered to apologise in writing to the staff member for his inappropriate behaviour and have the apology tabled at a Council meeting.
The Office of Local Government (OLG) found that Cr Clancy was in breach of the Council’s Code of Conduct in that he argued “with the Council employee in an aggressive manner which included pointing a finger at the face of the employee and speaking in a raised voice whilst in close proximity to the employee”.
Cr Clancy has also been ordered to cease engaging in misconduct as he previously received a warning and training for similar conduct.
“I note Cr Clancy has not demonstrated an acknowledgement that his conduct was unacceptable nor an understanding of the impact of his behaviour on the Council employee,” acting OLG chief executive, Tim Hurst, said in his Statement of Reasons for taking disciplinary action.
“I am also aware of the imbalance of power and authority between Cr Clancy and the Council employee which, in my opinion, exacerbates the breaches of the code of conduct.”
Cr Clancy’s one month suspension from civic office will take effect from Monday, 16 October.
Warrumbungle Shire Council referred the matter to OLG under the misconduct provisions of the Local Government Act after it formally censured Cr Clancy for breaching its Code of Conduct.
All councillors in NSW must comply with their council’s Code of Conduct, which sets appropriate standards of behaviour.
Councillors can be suspended for up to three months for misconduct. Councillors also have right of appeal to the NSW Civil and Administrative Tribunal.
Fred Clancy, Warrumbungle Shire councillor, will be suspended from council duties for one month, effective Monday, 16 October.