THREE Manningham councillors have called on the local government watchdog to investigate allegations of "possibly illegal and certainly repeated, disruptive, bullying" by fellow councillor Stephen Mayne.
Councillor Mayne has denied the allegations contained in a 37-page document submitted by the councillors to the council's governance officer last week.
But councillors Ivan Reid, Meg Downie and Graeme Macmillan have asked that the document be forwarded to the local government inspectorate, and have called for a conduct panel to review Mayne's behaviour.
They also asked for any mediation to be skipped because Cr Mayne intends to run for the Melbourne City Council in the October elections.
In the submission obtained by MW, Cr Mayne is accused of eight criminal breaches of the Local Government Act and 13 breaches of the council's code of conduct. The maximum penalty for some of the alleged breaches is a $6000 fine or a jail term.
The alleged breaches were said to have occurred over three years and include exerting improper influence on council staff and councillors, and misuse of a council position. The document also claims Cr Mayne brought the council into disrepute and ignored internal reprimands.
In response, Cr Mayne said the allegations were "completely lacking in substance" and he would try to get the case struck out after the submission was leaked to the media.
"It's a media-driven political smear going into an election," Cr Mayne said.
He said his detractors were trying to use his plans to resign from Manningham and run for Melbourne City Council against him. "They're going to make it look like I'm attempting to run from the allegations," he said.
Three Manningham councillors have quit since December 2010.Council elections will be held on October 27.