In my experience, there will always be informal communication between department heads and elected officials. Understanding this, I have tried to avoid the perception that I'm trying to restrict or filter the flow of information. To that end, I have a simple rule for senior staff: When you talk to an elected official, let me know. I also encourage the governing body to adopt a simple rule: Information provided to one member is provided to every member, no matter the source.It's really up to the Council--as a body--to enforce rules of conduct among members. Rather than attack the specific DH and council member, I'd have a dialogue about the importance of every elected official having access to the same information. If they are willing to work as a group, it effectively cuts the wayward DH off from funneling information. As for the DH, I'd explain my expectations clearly and in writing... and see what happens. If you give clear direction about being informed about DH/elected conversations and it doesn't happen, handle it like you would any insubordination.This is an instance where you have two places you can fix the problem: the councilmember or the DH. That's better than many of the situations we face. Good luck.