The Local Government Act creates councils as government bodies elected by their communities to make decisions about the services that need to be delivered for their local area. Councils have serious responsibilities. The services they provide—roads, footpaths, ovals, parks, sporting grounds, waste management, libraries, community centres and community support services to name just a few—are what makes our local communities work.

The State Government has a responsibility to ensure that the legislative framework around councils work to enable them to act, make decisions, and provide services in the way in which their communities expect. It ‘sets the rules’ for how councils are elected, what their roles and responsibilities are, how they can raise revenue, how they make decisions, and how they inform and engage their communities.

The four reform areas put forward by the Government recognise that there are areas in this legislative framework that currently aren’t working as well as they should, and need to be reviewed. In March 2019, a call for ideas was undertaken, seeking feedback and ideas to improve the way councils operate. Overall, 80 written submissions were received and 170 surveys were completed. This resulted in over 700 ideas to improve council operations. 

Download the Reform Consultation Summary Report to learn what the community had to say.