Attending Council and Standing Committee meetings | Brisbane City Council

Attending Council and Standing Committee meetings

You are welcome to attend all Brisbane City Council ordinary meetings and most Standing Committee meetings. For Council meetings, seating is provided at the back of the Council Chamber in the Public Gallery. City Hall staff will direct you to the designated visitor seating area.

The media regularly attends Council meetings and reports proceedings from special seating allocated in the Chamber.

The Council Chamber and Committee rooms can accommodate people with disability. For facilitation of accessible access to City Hall please find further information available here, or contact City Hall Operations on 07 3403 8888. 

Rules of attending ordinary Council meetings

Visitors are bound by the Meetings Local Law 2001 and conditions of entry to the Public Gallery area. Visitors must not interrupt the conduct of business, and therefore strict silence must be maintained. Tape recording or photography from the Public Gallery is prohibited, unless first approved by the Chairman of Council.

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Speaking at ordinary Council meetings

You can apply for approval to speak at ordinary Council meetings. Approval to address Council lies with the Chairman of Council.

The Council Chamber can accommodate people with disability. On the application to address Council, complete the sections on Auslan, mobility aids and/or special needs so that suitable arrangements can be made if necessary. Further information on facilitating accessible access to the Council Chamber is available here or contact City Hall Operations on 07 3403 8888.

Download an application form to speak at an ordinary Council meeting:

You can also collect an application:

Submit the form by:

  • fax to 07 3334 0067
  • mail to Council

Your topic must be on a matter of public interest. It is up to the Chairman of Council whether the matter is relevant or not.

If you are given approval to address an ordinary Council meeting, the following rules apply:

  • you have a maximum of five minutes to speak
  • no one in the meeting is allowed to interrupt you
  • Council cannot debate any issue you raise
  • the Lord Mayor or a Standing Committee Chairman, may respond on Council's behalf and you must not interrupt or debate any of the issues; otherwise you'll be given a written response as soon as possible.

If you have any questions on the process or structure of public participant speeches please contact the Council and Committee Liaison Office on 07 3403 8888. 

Rules of attending Standing Committee meetings

If you attend a Standing Committee meeting, you must not:

  • interrupt the meeting
  • talk, even in whispers
  • enter or leave the Committee room after the meeting has started
  • argue with the Chairman, if they ask you to leave for any reason.

Rules of procedure

Council operates under the conventions and practices of the Westminster system of government, similar to those of the Australian Parliament. The following rules apply to Council meetings:

  • Councillors must stand in their places to speak, unless unable to do so due to a disability
  • Councillors may speak once only to a motion for a maximum of 10 minutes (unless an extension of time is granted)
  • motions must be seconded
  • the mover of a motion has the right of reply before the vote is taken
  • votes are decided on the strength of voices and if a division is required, the Councillor's votes are recorded individually and if the votes are equal, the motion is lost
  • a point of order may be raised for alleged breaches of the Rules of Procedure
  • it is customary that all persons acknowledge the Chairman of Council when entering and leaving the Chamber.
30 June 2017