Cowra Mayor responds to Nobes' decision

Cowra Mayor, Councillor Bill West has responded to a ruling made by Cowra Local Court last week that cleared fellow Councillor, Michael Nobes, of common assault and intimidation.

Cr Nobes was given a 12-month conditional release order with no conviction recorded after assaulting a female taxi driver earlier this year.

He was also ordered to abstain from drinking alcohol for the duration of the order.

In a statement, Cr West said Cowra Council contacted the NSW Office of Local Government after they were made aware of the incident.

"When Cr Nobes first notified Council of the incident in May, we immediately made contact with the NSW Office of Local Government to seek advice," Cr West said.

"The Office advised Council that the Code of Conduct that applies to councillors in NSW only applies when they are performing their civic duties.

"As this incident occurred when Cr Nobes was acting in a private capacity, Council had no grounds to take action under the Code of Conduct.

"This is an important point that the community should be aware of."

Cr West said Cr Nobes is still eligible to serve as a councillor.

"I made it clear to Cr Nobes at the time the incident came to light that his actions were unacceptable and reflects poorly on the Council however the legal system was the appropriate place for the matter to be dealt with," Cr West said.

"Following the court handing down its decision last week, Council made further contact with the NSW Office of Local Government and Local Government NSW.

"The legal advice from Local Government NSW clarified that under the terms of the Local Government Act provisions Cr Nobes is still eligible to serve as a Councillor."

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