BENDIGO'S council is lobbying for a change to legislation that forces it to conduct meetings in person as the coronavirus lockdown continues.
On Monday, the City of Greater Bendigo postponed its April meeting in the light of advice against leaving the house. The meeting was due to take place on Wednesday April 15.
Stage 3 restrictions mean Victorians are only allowed to be out of the house to shop for essential supplies, for medical, care or compassionate needs, exercise, and work or study.
The restrictions aim to slow the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in Victoria.
Mayor Margaret O'Rourke said council did not feel it could meet until changes in the Local Government Act allowed it to use video conferencing.
Cr O'Rourke said council had written to the Victorian government to call for changes to the Act, to allow them to conduct meetings virtually.
The Local Government Act requires council meetings take place in person.
Cr O'Rourke said public involvement in meetings could be managed with live-streaming technology, allowing for questions.
She said decision making would be difficult for councils if movement restrictions continued and the act remained unchanged.
"We're hopeful that sooner rather than later the government can come together and be able to pass for councils to still meet at times such as this," Cr O'Rourke said.
A spokesperson said the Victorian government was working with councils to consider the implications of coronavirus on their operations, including welfare of staff, compliance with the act, elections and meetings.
BENDIGO'S council has postponed its April meeting, citing current health advice over COVID-19.
City of Greater Bendigo announced on Monday that it had put off its April meeting, due to take place on Wednesday April 15.
Mayor Margaret O'Rourke said council did not feel comfortable meeting in a group given the current advice to stay home as much as possible.
The Local Government Act requires councils to meet in person.
Cr O'Rourke said the decision was made in the best interests of councillors, staff and residents who attended meetings.
"We wanted to protect the wellbeing of everyone who would usually attend the meeting as well as the broader community, particularly those who are in essential service roles, so we felt this was the right thing to do at this point in time," she said.
"All agenda items will be held over for a future Council meeting and it is hoped we will have a solution in place soon.
"All Councils in Victoria are advocating to the State Government to make some temporary changes to meeting procedure to allow Councils to meet using technology."
The City of Greater Bendigo's March meeting took place with scaled back accommodations for public seating.
The March meeting took place before government regulations against limiting movement outside the home.
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