Code of conduct

The Local Government Act requires every council adopt a code of conduct that incorporates the provisions of the model code of conduct.



  • Our code of conduct provides guidance to staff and councillors about the standards of behaviour expected of them.
  • The code is supported by procedures that outline how reports of breaches of the code will be handled.
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Conduct standards

The code informs the public of the standards of conduct they can expect when dealing with the City of Sydney.

Conduct standards cover ethical behaviour in the public sector and include:

  • integrity and impartiality 
  • promoting the public good
  • accountability and transparency.

The code guides councillors and staff in the following:

  • workplace relationships
  • conflicts of interests
  • relationships with suppliers
  • the offer of gifts and benefits 
  • secondary employment
  • use of resources and assets
  • confidentiality of information.

The procedures for administering the code includes information on how to report a potential breach of the code and how the report will be handled.

Business ethics

Councillors and staff must meet high standards of integrity and accountability when doing business with and delivering services to the community.

Businesses and members of the public can help us maintain these high standards by:

  • respecting the ethical principles that we work by
  • not pressuring councillors and employees to overlook their ethical obligations
  • disclosing likely conflicts of interest
  • preventing the disclosure of confidential information
  • providing accurate information
  • helping deter fraud and corruption by reporting concerns.

Further information about doing business with us can be found on our business ethics statement page.

Gifts and benefits

Councillors and staff should not accept gifts or benefits unless this is allowed in the code of conduct and within the council's policies and procedures.

Councillors and staff must refuse gifts, benefits or offers of hospitality where there is a perceived, or actual, conflict of interests. Rather than offering a gift, a job well done can be recognised by contacting us using the details below to provide your feedback.

Responsible reporting

Corrupt conduct by councillors or staff is not acceptable and should be reported to the Chief Executive Officer. Reports, based on honest beliefs and reasonable grounds, will be investigated promptly, professionally and in confidence.

The City is committed to upholding the principles of transparency and accountability in our operations.