Dubbo Regional Council acting mayor Stephen Lawrence agrees with the state MP's call for an independent investigator to conduct a review of the council's operations.
Member for Dubbo Dugald Saunders addressed his "serious concerns" in a letter sent to the council's interim CEO Dean Frost on Monday, after a turbulent week which left the council divided and members of the public concerned.
In his letter to Mr Frost, Mr Saunders said he wanted to meet to discuss his concerns about the operations of council and said they should be addressed "as quickly as possible".
"I realise the mayor is now on indefinite medical leave, but the questions surrounding behaviour and operations at the council remain, and I believe they should be addressed as quickly as possible," Mr Saunders' letter to the CEO read.
"There are now many questions around the processes within council, including the function of the internal ombudsman, [allegations of] bullying of staff, and complaints.
"Given the recent focus on improving workplaces, I would suggest council consider employing an independent investigator to conduct a full review of council's operations, including codes of conduct, and both internal and external complaints."
Last Wednesday, six councillors signed a public statement calling on mayor Ben Shields to resign and members of the community who had concerns about their interactions with any councillor to come forward.
The council later announced Cr Shields would take indefinite medical leave, effective immediately, with deputy mayor Stephen Lawrence to step into the mayoral role.
Before the announcement Cr Shields said on Facebook he "had only ever done what is right for Dubbo".
It was later revealed on Wednesday evening Cr Shields was in intensive care at Dubbo Hospital.
Mr Saunders told the Daily Liberal appointing an independent body to investigate the issues, would help restore the public's confidence.
"An independent investigation would take the weight from council staff, and mean an investigation could go on in the background while staff continue to actually do their job, and that's what we expect as ratepayers," he said.
"I don't work at council, so I'm not sure of what the culture is there. There certainly have been suggestions that there is a problem within certain areas of council and has been for a little while.
"That's not for me to decide, but I think an investigation would certainly either prove or disprove that, that's why I think its important it is an independent body or person that would be appointed to do that investigation, rather than council itself."
Dubbo Regional Council acting mayor Stephen Lawrence said he took the MP's letter "incredibly seriously", and had, along with the other councillors, met with the CEO to discuss the matter.
"The very fact that your state MP is calling for such an inquiry might well mean that there should be one," Cr Lawrence said.
"I am open to an independent investigator being retained by council and the CEO has been asked to provide advice on when and how it could occur.
"If bullying and harassment of staff or community members has occurred it will be exposed and dealt with.
"I will never protect the organisation at the expense of doing the right thing. That principle will guide all my actions on this issue and the community would expect no less."
An extraordinary meeting has been set for April 12, and Cr Lawrence said they were now in the process of completing and determining what motions would be put to that meeting.
"There has been no change of position in terms of the resolve of the councillors to proceed with the motions broadly speaking as filed. But we may need to tweak them in certain respects to make sure they're proper to go to council," Cr Lawrence said.
"Going forward I want staff and the community to be assured that the right thing will be done and there will be transparency."
"I again urge anyone who has [concerns about their] interactions with any councillor or staff member to come forward and contact the DRC internal ombudsman or any councillor they feel comfortable approaching."
Mr Saunders said the state government had a certain overview of local government, and the suggestion of an administrator might be an option, however that was not being looked to at this stage.