Thursday, May 30, 2024

Redland Mayor confidence vote struck from agenda on legal advice

Redland City Council says a confidence vote against Mayor, Karen Williams, who is facing a high-range drink driving charge after crashing her car following a post-Budget celebration last month, won’t be considered at this week’s Council meeting.

In a statement, the Council said a Notice of Motion (NOM) “cannot be accepted if it is unlawful or outside the scope of a local government to implement”.

“It is incorrect to suggest that a recent proposed NOM regarding confidence in the Mayor has been ‘blocked’ from the next General Meeting. A properly-made notice of motion was not received in this instance,” Council said.

“Each NOM Council receives is considered on its merits, for legality and if Council has the ability to make a decision on the matter that the NOM relates to.”

The Council rejected claims from within the community that the NOM had been “blocked” from the upcoming meeting.

“NOMs are not blocked – there is no scope for a NOM to go ahead if it is not within a Council’s legal power to implement it,” it said.

“Council’s General Counsel sought the opinion of the State Government’s Department of State Development, Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning, which agreed with the advice provided by the Local Government Association of Queensland’s King and Company Solicitors, that the proposed NOM should not be placed on Council’s General Meeting agenda.”

Meanwhile, two petitions calling for the Mayor to resign or be dismissed are on Wednesday’s meeting agenda.

A petition on the Queensland Parliament website – which has garnered more than 6,530 signatures so far – demanding Ms Williams’ removal will be accompanied by another calling for a ban on staff consuming alcohol in the Redland City Council workplace, and a third requesting an Administrator to be appointed to the Council.

Members of the community are also planning to gather outside the Council Offices in Bloomfield Street from 9am on Wednesday to voice their displeasure with the Mayor.

Ms Williams has taken leave from her Mayoral duties until the drink driving matter is finalised in court.

Facing the media in the days following the crash, she told reporters she had consumed “several” glasses of wine before getting behind the wheel.

Earlier in the evening she had hosted a Zoom call with the devastated families of drink driving victims.

She is due to face Cleveland Magistrates Court on August 1.

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