The new Municipal Conduct Act, which provides clear guidelines for municipal councils, requiring them to establish their own codes of conduct, will take effect on September 1.
The Act received royal assent on November 4, 2021, and its regulations were published in the Newfoundland and Labrador Gazette today. The new Act will govern conflict of interest, ethical behaviour and professional conduct for all municipalities throughout the province.
The Department of Municipal and Provincial Affairs is providing a circular to all municipalities about the regulations under the Act and timelines to follow. The Department will be providing information and training sessions with respect to code of conduct and mandatory training to municipalities. In accordance with the new legislation, a council is required to establish codes of conduct that apply to all councillors and municipal officials within six months (by March 1, 2023).
The new legislation follows considerable public consultations and ongoing discussions with Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador, the Professional Municipal Administrators and cities and towns.
“As the Municipal Conduct Act takes effect, it marks a significant step forward for municipal governance in our province. The Act provides clear guidelines for councils, requiring them to establish their own codes of conduct to effectively address issues such as conflicts of interest, and bullying and harassment in the workplace. I thank everyone for their input, guidance and opinions through the extensive consultation process on this important piece of legislation for our municipalities.”Honourable Krista Lynn Howell
Minister of Municipal and Provincial Affairs
“Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador is pleased to see this important piece of legislation come into effect. The Municipal Conduct Act will help to strengthen the municipal sector in Newfoundland and Labrador by clearly defining conflict of interest and requiring municipalities to implement a code of conduct for council and staff. We look forward to supporting our members as they implement this key aspect of good governance.”Amy Coady
President, Municipalities Newfoundland and Labrador
“PMA sees the Municipal Conduct Act as a step forward for professionalizing standards of conduct in the municipal sector and workplace. We hope the Act; the Regulations; and the mandatory training requirements leads to greater understanding and awareness that will reduce conflict and harassment in the workplace. All PMA members and municipal staff have a fundamental right to a safe and harassment free workplace. The Municipal Conduct Act is an important step in addressing some of the concerns our organization has been highlighting as we advocate for our members.”Brian Hudson
President, Professional Municipal Administrators
Municipal and Provincial Affairs