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Local Government candidates - mandatory training

News Article Date: 
Wednesday, 19 August 2020

This year, for the first time, local government candidates are required to complete mandatory training to be eligible to nominate.

Below are frequently asked questions with answers for prospective Council election candidates.

Why do I need to do the training?

The course is about building confidence for both candidates and communities. You must complete the course to nominate for council.

The training covers vital information you need to know about being a councillor, including understanding a conflict of interest, a code of conduct, and what support is available to help you do the role.

The mandatory course was introduced in the Local Government Act 2020 to ensure candidates understand the role of councillor and the standards they are expected to uphold if elected.

 

If I do the training, do I have to nominate? I’m not sure right now I want to put my hand up.

No, you don’t have to nominate if you complete the course. However, you must complete this training if you wish to nominate in the future.

We encourage you to do the training even if you haven’t decided to nominate yet or if you think you’d like to nominate at some point in the future.

 

How can I access the training?

Training is available online; you can access it from a home computer or tablet with an internet connection. Please note that training is not optimised for mobile phones.

You can complete training at your own pace, any time, 24 hours a day seven days a week. You must finish the training before you nominate.

 

I have already completed training similar to this; do I need to do this?

Yes. You must complete this training, provided by the Victorian Government, if you wish run for election to council in 2020.

Some councils and other organisations are offering information sessions and campaign training. While those courses are useful and worthwhile if you have the chance, they are not the training required to nominate under the Local Government Act 2020.

 

How long will it take to complete the training?

It should take about an hour to complete the training.

 

Can someone else complete the training for me?

No. Under the Local Government Act 2020 all candidates must complete this training. If you need help to complete the training, please see the question below: What if I need help?

When you nominate as a candidate with the Victorian Electoral Commission (VEC) you must make a statutory declaration that you have completed the training.

A statutory declaration is a written statement that you sign and declare to be true and correct, in the presence of an authorised witness (the VEC will provide you with information about this if you decide to nominate).

By signing the statutory declaration, you agree that the information in it is true. You can be charged with a criminal offence if the information is false.

For further information on statutory declarations see the Department of Justice and Community Safety website.

 

When will the training be available?

The training is available now, via your council or the Local Government Victoria website.

 

What if I need help?

If you need help accessing the training or have any circumstances that make it difficult for you to complete, please contact your local council.

Find your council contact details at the Know Your Council website.

If you don’t have a home internet connection, or it is unreliable, consider using a local library or other public computer access (depending on local public health restrictions).

If you use a screen reader, the training is compatible with JAWS readers. The content has also been designed to meet WCAG 2.0.

We are not able to provide the training in languages other than English.

 

What if I get interrupted and have to reconnect later?

If you can’t complete the training in one session, don’t worry. The module will remember where you got to and save your progress. All you need to do is click on the link you received via email when you registered.

 

My council isn’t having elections this year but is next year. Can I do the training now?

Yes training is valid for four years, so you can do it now.

If you do choose to do the training now you will need to keep your completion certificate. When you nominate you will need to provide the Victorian Electoral Commission with the date you completed the training - this is on the certificate.

 

Do I have to ‘pass’ to nominate?

No. The training is not graded - you must simply complete the training.

Does the training cost anything?

The State Government is providing the training free of charge to any Victorian interested in running as a candidate in the local government elections. There is no cost to you or your council.

 

Won’t training be a barrier to participation for some people?

The course is designed to be easy to understand and will provide you with the essential knowledge you need to be a councillor.

It’s really important to understand these things before you run for council.

If you have any questions that are not answered here, or you require support to complete the training, please contact your local council.

 

Who developed the training?

Local Government Victoria, part of the Victorian Government’s Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions, has developed the training.

I am (or have been) a councillor, do I have to do the training?

Yes, both serving councillors and people who have been councillors in the past must complete this training to stand in the 2020 elections. The training remains valid for four years.

 

What does the course cover?

Councillor responsibilities:

·         Who is eligible to run for council

·         What councils are responsible for

·         The role and obligations of being a councillor

·         The role of the CEO and council staff

·         The time commitment involved

Governance and Decision Making:

·         The Councillor Code of Conduct and the Oath of Office

·         Confidentiality requirements

·         Conflicts of interest

·         Electoral campaign donation laws

·         Local Government legislation and council policies

·         Support and Entitlements

Councillor allowances and support available.

 

How will you keep track of those who have completed the course?

You will need to register before you can begin the training. To do this, you must provide:

·         Your first and last name

·         A current driver’s licence or passport number

·         Your date of birth

·         An email address

This information will be included in a register of people who have completed the training.

The register may be accessed by the Chief Municipal Inspector, or the Victorian Electoral Commission to verify that you have completed the training.

There are a few other, optional, questions that we also ask you to complete to help us improve our services. Your answers to these will not be included in the register.

See full privacy and data collection statement.

 

What do I do if I don’t have a driver’s licence or passport?

Please call Local Government Victoria between 9am and 5pm weekdays on
03 9948 8592, or
email LGAct [at] delwp [dot] vic [dot] gov [dot] au

.

 

Having technical issues?

The training will run on most home computers or tablets with an internet connection. If you’re having problems, we recommend you first check that your browser is up to date.

Note that the training is not designed to be used on mobile phones.

The training is designed for use on:

·         Windows: Internet Explorer 11, Microsoft Edge (latest version), Google Chrome (latest version), Firefox  (latest version)

·         Mac: Safari (latest version), Google Chrome (latest version), Firefox (latest version)

·         Tablets: Safari in Apple iOS 10 or later, Google Chrome in Apple iOS 10 or later, Google Chrome in Android OS 4.4 or later.

If you’ve checked the information above and training is still not displaying properly, you might consider using another computer. There may be a computer available for use at your local library or council offices. Call first to check.

Further information

Questions?

Contact your local council. Find council contact details at the Know your council website
https://knowyourcouncil.vic.gov.au/#

Access the training

Via any Victorian council website, or Local Government Victoria:
https://www.localgovernment.vic.gov.au/council-governance/candidate-training

Further information on nomination with the Victorian Electoral Commission

https://www.vec.vic.gov.au/

Privacy statement

https://www.localgovernment.vic.gov.au/council-governance/candidate-training/mandatory-candidate-training-privacy-statement

Contact Local Government Victoria

https://www.localgovernment.vic.gov.au/
Email: LGAct [at] delwp [dot] vic [dot] gov [dot] au


Phone: 136 186

Deaf, hearing or speech impaired?

Please contact the National Relay Service on 133 677 or www.relayservice.gov.au

 

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