Feedback and Complaints
Your feedback is very important in helping the City of Greater Bendigo to deliver a quality experience for our customers.
We welcome both positive and constructive feedback as this helps us to improve services for the future.
If you have received excellent service, please take the time to lodge a feedback form so we can pass it onto the relevant staff member.
If you are dissatisfied with a decision made by us, the quality of our services or the behaviour of a council employee or contractor, it’s important we hear about it. We take all complaints seriously and will work with you to address your complaint in a fair and transparent way.
We will engage with you in a meaningful and respectful way and ask that you do the same. We will not engage or respond to feedback or complaints containing abusive, demeaning or inappropriate language or remarks that are discriminatory.
A complaint is an expression of dissatisfaction with:
- the quality of an action taken, decision made, or service provided by Council or its contractors
- a delay or failure in providing a service, taking an action, or making a decision by a council or its contractor (decision does not include a policy or decision made by the Council or a member of Council staff or a contractor engaged by the Council that is otherwise subject to statutory review).
Complaints may be about:
- Council staff behaviour
- Council policies, procedures, practices or service levels
- Inadequate response to request for service or information
- Work quality or service standard not meet
- Matters relating to crimes
- Matters involving disputes between individuals or groups
- Councillor behaviour
- Matters relating to claims of a financial nature made against the Council
- Standard requests for Council services or information
- Complaints about the Chief Executive Officer (CEO)
- Matters subject to statutory review
For some issues, complaints and appeals are governed by other processes outside the jurisdiction of Council. Where this is the case, you will be referred to the appropriate process or authority. This includes decisions and processes relating to:
- Privacy and health records
- Freedom of Information
- Protected disclosures
- Decisions made under legislation which provides for separate avenues of appeal (e.g. decisions made under the Building Act, Planning Environment Act, Infringement Act and Valuation Land Act).
- Decisions made at Council and Special Committee meetings
- Complaints against Councillors
Whilst anonymous complaints will be accepted, they may limit Council’s ability to fully investigate the problem depending on the amount of information supplied.
If the complaint/request appears to relate to public safety, then an investigation will be undertaken and rectification undertaken if found necessary.
Due to the anonymity, Council will be unable to provide reasons for any decisions or actions taken. If insufficient information is deemed to have been supplied, no further action will be taken.
We have implemented a four tier model for complaint management (see page 4 of the policy and procedure below), we will attempt to achieve first contact complaint resolution, if this is not possible your complaint will be assigned directly to a nominated officer who will undertake an investigation into your complaint.
The nominated officer will acknowledge the complaint within 5 working days and will resolve the complaint within 30 working days. Where it is not possible to meet this target, the officer will inform you of the reasons for the delay and the estimated time it may take to resolve your complaint. During the investigation period, the officer responsible for investigating your complaint may contact you for additional information to assist with their investigation and response.
Further information can be found in our Complaints Handling Policy.
It is important that all complainants be treated with fairness and respect. Whilst most customers have legitimate concerns and genuinely seek resolution, a small number of complainants demonstrate unreasonable concerns and unreasonable and uncooperative behaviour.
Council may set limits or conditions on the handling of complaints particularly if there is any abuse, harassment or threats to the safety or welfare of Council staff. This may result in the immediate end to the complaint investigation and contact with the complainant.
If you are not happy with our response to your complaint – or do not agree with the outcome – you can request an internal review. A reviewing officer will then review the complaint and notify you of the findings once the review is completed. We aim to complete the review within 30 working days.
If you are still not satisfied with the outcome of a complaint or review – or if the complaint remains unresolved – you can seek assistance from the Victorian Ombudsman or other relevant agencies as listed below.
Where required, assistance will be made available in completing an online complaints registration form. This may include a City of Greater Bendigo officer hearing the complaint from you verbally and registering the complaint on your behalf.
People who are deaf or have communication difficulties can contact the City of Greater Bendigo through the National Relay Service (NRS) and ask for 1300 002 642.
If you need an interpreter, please call the Translating and Interpreting Service (TIS National) on 131 450 and ask them to telephone the City of Greater Bendigo on 1300 002 642. Our business hours are Monday to Friday 8:30am to 5:00pm.