ALBURY Council meetings should be held on weekends to attract a wider group of representatives.
That's the opinion of councillor Darren Cameron, who believes limiting official gatherings to Monday nights restricts the pool of those able to serve the city.
"We have to be prepared to meet on weekends," Cr Cameron said.
"If we're going to get more diversity then we're going to have to do that."
Cr Cameron was commenting on Tuesday after his job as a union organiser resulted in him being unable to attend Monday night's meeting.
He said those that were independently wealthy, retired, self-employed or unemployed had an advantage over wage earners, mothers, young working fathers and students in being able to act as councillors.
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Cr Cameron also wants greater support for councillors, pointing to Sydney local government areas where staff are employed to be research assistants for elected representatives.
"Leichhardt has one for every three councillors," he said.
"People might think that's an extravagance but when it comes to dealing with residents' matters and regulatory changes I believe councillors need that support."
Cr Cameron wanted debate on a draft policy on councillor resources deferred for two weeks, but it was approved on Monday.
Councillor John Stuchbery sought the delay and argued councillors "were undervalued and have insufficient infrastructure to do our job".
"We need a bit more than an old out-of-whack iPad and an old iPhone and no research support," he said.
Councillor Murray King echoed Cr Stuchbery's view.
"I too feel very undervalued by the whole organisation and it's not just an iPad, it's not just a phone, it's probably more the issue of the resources available for research," Cr King said.
"Some of us here are full-time workers and need that back-up and need that support," Cr King said.
After Cr Stuchbery raised concerns about iPad damage, councillor Graham Docksey said in more than four years he had not damaged his tablet and former mayor Alice Glachan said when the cover of her iPad broke she was issued with a replacement.
Following that point, mayor Kevin Mack warned Cr Stuchbery to "maintain your vitriol to the issues at hand not towards individuals".
The councillor then said the broken iPad was a "minor facet" and the big issue was councillor support.
However, councillor David Thurley was unimpressed and suggested the public would also be disappointed by the discussion.
"What the hell do they think we do in here, if they're watching this debate - it's appalling," Cr Thurley said.
He noted it was a draft policy and councillors would have the opportunity for further input before it is ratified.
Councillor Graham Docksey reflected Cr Thurley's sentiment, saying he was "over the debate".
On Tuesday, council chief executive Frank Zaknich declined to answer a question from The Border Mail about whether the city would consider employing research assistants for councillors.
"Councillors will have a further opportunity for input and consideration when the revised policy returns to Council with any community submissions during the March-April meeting cycle," Mr Zaknich said.
Cr Cameron said a position involving providing help to councillors was vacant and now under review.
He would like three people hired to assist councillors.
"The fact I have to research this myself before I raise it (in council) gives you an indication there's no-one in that role," Cr Cameron said.
Cr King said help was needed so councillors could provide "lucid and accurate" information to council as part of motions.