A complaints procedure for community councils in Moray had been held up as an example of best practice by a Scottish Government minister.
Moray Council introduced the procedure last year to deal with complaints against and involving community councils and individual community councillors.
Prior to that there was no guidance of dealing with complaints, despite the fact community councils have been part of the local government scene in Scotland for more than 40 years.
Scottish minister Kevin Stewart, whose responsibilities include local government, has written to all local authorities urging them to implement their own complaints procedures.
Mr Stewart said the government was aware of concerns around provisions in schemes of establishment for complaints against community councils and community councillors and the sanctions that can be imposed.
“We know that some local authority schemes, for example in East Renfrewshire Council area, do contain comprehensive procedures covering this area, which include removal of community councillors if a complaint is upheld,” he wrote.
“Moray Council has also facilitated, along with the Joint Community Councils of Moray and individual community councils/councillors, a separate community council complaints procedure.
“We are, however, aware that many local authorities do not have such comprehensive complaints procedures and sanctions in place. With the increasing emphasis on community empowerment, it strikes me that it is important that community councils and community councillors should be accountable for their actions and that there is an appropriate system of redress for complaints.”
Moray Council’s community council complaints procedure can be viewed here: http://www.moray.gov.uk/moray_standard/page_105777.html
Moray Council area stretches from Tomintoul in the south to the shores of the Moray Firth, from Keith in the east to Forres in the west. The council and its 4,500 employees respond to the needs of 95,510 residents in this beautiful part of Scotland, which nestles between Aberdeenshire and the Highlands.
Famous for its colony of dolphins, fabulous beaches and more malt whisky distilleries than any where else in Scotland, Moray is a thriving area and a great place to live.
Headquartered in Elgin, the administrative capital of Moray.