What is not a complaint?

In many cases, customers contact Council to report a problem, e.g. a pothole that needs patching, a stray dog, or a broken water meter.  These contacts are recorded in our Customer Request Management (CRM) System as “service requests”.  Each service request is:

  • given a unique identifier – a “CRM number”,
  • allocated a priority based on the type of request and the information provided by the customer, and
  • referred to the appropriate Council department for action

What is a complaint?

Burdekin Shire Council views complaints as an expression of dissatisfaction about decisions we have made or actions we have taken or not taken.  We welcome all feedback, which is used to continually improve our processes and service delivery.

More information is provided in Council’s Complaints Management Policy.

You can download a copy of our Complaints Management Policy using the following link:

Other types of complaints / disclosures

In accordance with legislation, the council must deal with the following types of complaints in different ways.

Public Interest Disclosures (PIDs)

A PID is disclosure of information by any person about:

  • a substantial and specific danger to the health or safety of a person with a disability; or
  • specific offences or contraventions of conditions provided in certain legislation that  could be a substantial and specific danger to the environment; or
  • a reprisal

Public officers, e.g. Council officers, may also make PIDs about:

  • official misconduct;
  • maladministration;
  • a substantial misuse of public resources;
  • a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety;
  • a substantial and specific danger to the environment;
  • a substantial and specific danger to the health or safety of a person with a disability; or
  • reprisal action

Under the Public Interest Disclosure Act 2010, a person making a PID is provided with certain protections, e.g. protection against reprisal.  Information sheets providing further information are available from the Queensland Ethics website – http://www.ethics.qld.gov.au/Resources/PIDs.aspx

If you believe that you have information that could be a PID, please use our Complaints process or contact Council and ask to speak to one of our Complaints Group members.  We will deal with any PID in accordance with the Act and our PID Policy.

You can download a copy of our Public Interest Disclosure Policy using the following link:

Competitive Neutrality Complaints

As stated in Section 48 of the Local Government Act 2009, a competitive neutrality complaint is a complaint that relates to the failure of a local government to conduct a business activity in accordance with the competitive neutrality principle and is made by an affected person.

An affected person is—

(a)   a person who—

(i)     competes with the local government in relation to the business activity; and

(ii)    claims to be adversely affected by a competitive advantage that the person alleges is enjoyed by the local government; or

(b)   a person who—

(i)     wants to compete with the local government in relation to the business activity; and

(ii)    claims to be hindered from doing so by a competitive advantage that the person alleges is enjoyed by the local government.

Competitive neutrality complaints should be directed to the chief executive officer.

Complaints about the conduct and performance of councillors

Complaints about councillors are dealt with in accordance with the Local Government Act 2009.

All complaints about councillors should be directed to the chief executive officer.

How do I make a complaint?

To ensure we gather sufficient information to investigate your complaint, please complete our Complaint Form.

We encourage complainants to provide contact details so that we can contact them for further information and to provide feedback regarding the outcome of their complaint.  However, complaints may be made anonymously and are treated in the same way as any other complaint.

Complaints can be lodged in the following ways:

In person145 Young Street, Ayr
By phone(07) 4783 9800
By mailPO Box 974, Ayr  QLD  4807
Via fax(07) 4783 9999
Via e-mail
OnlineOnline Contact Form

Privacy

Your personal information is handled in accordance with the Information Privacy Act 2009 and will only be accessed by persons who have been authorised to do so.  Your information will not be given to any other person or agency unless you have given us permission or the disclosure is required by law.

How the Burdekin Shire Council deals with a complaint

We take complaints seriously.

When you lodge a complaint – if you have provided contact details – we will acknowledge receipt of your complaint within five (5) working days.

When we receive a complaint – regardless of how we receive it – the details of the complaint are entered into our Customer Request Management (CRM) System.  Each entry into the CRM System is given a unique identifier, a “CRM number” and is sent to our Complaints Group for review.

A member of the Complaints Group will then determine the type of complaint and will investigate the complaint or, if appropriate, refer the complaint to the relevant director or manager for further action.

In certain circumstances, the council can decide not to deal with a complaint.  Complaints may not be investigated if:

a)      the complaint is trivial;

b)      the complaint concerns a frivolous matter or was made vexatiously;

c)       the complainant does not have a sufficient direct interest in the administrative action that is the subject of the complaint; or

d)      in the circumstances, investigating the complaint is unnecessary or unjustifiable.

If the council decides not to investigate your complaint, we will provide notice to you together with reasons for this decision.

How long will this take?

We aim to respond to complaints as swiftly as possible and, if possible, we will stay in contact with each complainant until their complaint is finalised.

All complaints entered into the CRM System are assigned a priority.  In most cases, complaints have a high priority and the complainant will receive feedback within five (5) working days.

If the complaint is about a health or safety matter, it will be dealt with immediately and feedback will be provided as soon as an investigation has been conducted – normally within 24 hours.

What if I am still unhappy?

If, at any stage in the complaint handling process, you are not happy with the council’s response, your complaint may be referred to an external mediator who will try to settle any differences in a fair and equitable manner.

If you are still not happy with the council’s response to your complaint, you can request that the issue be reviewed by one of the following organisations:

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