Mayor and Councillors

The Council is elected to provide leadership and good governance for the municipal district and the local community.

Swan Hill Rural City Council is not divided into Wards, with seven Councillors elected as representatives for all residents and ratepayers across the municipality.

They have responsibility for setting the strategic direction for the municipality, policy development, identifying service standards and monitoring performance across the organisation.

Roles of Mayor and Councillors

Councillors meet together regularly, attend strategy meetings, and Council and Committee meetings on a monthly basis as well as other committee and community meetings and activities, as required. These meetings and activities are held throughout the day, evenings and on weekends. Councillors are expected to read reports, research documents and then make hundreds of decisions at scheduled Council meetings on your behalf.


The Mayor is the leader of Swan Hill Rural City Council and as such is the leader of all Councillors. The Mayor has a key role to help all Councillors participate and work together in the interests of the Swan Hill Rural City Council’s community.

Deputy Mayor

Swan Hill Rural City Council may appoint a Deputy Mayor in order to enhance the leadership provided by the Mayor and also to ensure that Swan Hill Rural City Council can be represented by its political leadership wherever this is necessary or desirable. The Deputy Mayor also assists the Mayor to facilitate the spirit of co-operation and inclusion between elected representatives.


Councillors have important roles to play in helping to achieve good governance. At Swan Hill Rural City Council Councillors work together to achieve the best outcomes for the community. To work together effectively Councillors strive to find ways to meet the accountability they have to the constituents and their accountability to the municipality as a whole.

Allowances and reimbursements

There is a range of support for Councillors. This includes membership to organisations such as the Municipal Association of Victoria and administrative support from Council. Each Councillor is also supported financially including allowances and payment of expenses. 

Allowances for Mayor and Councillors

In accordance with the Local Government Act 2020, Councillors are eligible to receive remuneration for their duties as outlined in their role. 

Mayoral and Councillors allowances are heavily controlled in the Act including:

  • The Minister for Local Government sets out the scale of allowances. Council decides what it may be paid within this scale.
  • There is a separate scale for large, small and medium-sized Councils.
  • A separate scale of allowances is decided for Mayors on the same basis.
  • A Mayor can only receive the Mayoral allowance (not a Councillor allowance plus a Mayoral allowance).
  • After an election, Council must decide and set allowances for the term of Council.

The Victorian Independent Remuneration Tribunal is required to make an annual adjustment to the values of the allowances payable to Mayors, Deputy Mayors and Councillors set in a Determination under the Victorian Independent Remuneration Tribunal and Improving Parliamentary Standards Act 2019.

For the period 18 December 2023 to 17 December 2024, allowances payable to Councillors are as follows:
Mayor $105,424
Deputy Mayor $52,713
Councillors $32,877
The above amounts are inclusive of the Superannuation Guarantee.

Councillor expense reimbursement

Council has a Council Expense Policy that details:

  • What type of expenses will be reimbursed to Councillors
  • Under what circumstances Councillors can claim reimbursement

Council Expense Policy(PDF, 349KB)

Conflict of interest register

Councillors, members of Delegated Committees and Council staff are required to:

  • Avoid - all situations which may give rise to conflicts of interest;
  • Identify - any conflicts of interest; and
  • Disclose - or declare all conflicts of interest;

Swan Hill Rural City Council Governance Rules states under section 19.4. (4) : A Councillor or member of a delegated committee who discloses a conflict of interest and leaves a Council meeting must not communicate with any participants in the meeting while the decision is being made.

Councillor conflict of interest register (Term 2020-2024)(PDF, 466KB)

Councillor code of conduct

The Code of Conduct sets out the standards of conduct expected of Councillors when carrying out their roles, responsibilities and obligations as elected representatives for their communities.

Councillor Code of Conduct(PDF, 1MB)

Election campaign donation returns

This report is provided in accordance with section 308 of the Local Government Act 2020. It is a summary report on election campaign donations returns provided by candidates in the Swan Hill Rural City Council election.

Summary of election campaign donation returns (General election 23 October 2020)(PDF, 62KB)

Personal interest returns

The Local Government Act 2020 requires Councillors and Nominated Officers of Swan Hill Rural City Council to complete Personal Interest Returns.

A personal interest return must be completed within 30 days of the commencement in their role, and then biannually in March and September of each subsequent year.

The Victorian Government imposes penalties for false and incomplete information provided in any Personal Interest Return, and for failing to lodge the Personal Interest Return within the legislated timeframes.

Summary of personal interest returns  (March 2024)(PDF, 771KB)