Australia’s best local councils recognised

By Ju Yeon Jung

Local Government Minister Anthony Albanese announced the winners of this year’s National Awards for Local Government at the inaugural meeting of the Australian Council of Local Government in Canberra

Mr Albanese said the winners have set the benchmark for innovation and excellence in the delivery of public services, overarching areas of environmental management, youth services, local action on climate change and support for the tourism industry.

“The Awards have helped drive improvements and resourcefulness among the nation’s 565 councils and shires, with the winners becoming important examples to those aspiring to change.

“Strong communities need good local government and the projects recognised tonight are models which other councils and shires should consider adapting to their local circumstances,” he said.

This year’s program received over 114 entries.

For more information on the Awards click here.

2008 National Award Winners

National Award for Outstanding Achievement:
The Cities of Armadale and Gosnells and Serpentine-Jarrahdale Shire, WA
Project: Switch Your Thinking!
The councils have formed the South East Regional Energy Group and rolled out the program to encourage energy-efficient and waste- and water-wise behaviour with the goal of cutting regional carbon emissions by 15 per cent by the year 2010. The program so far has helped to cut carbon emissions by over 250,000 tonnes, the equivalent of taking some 50,000 cars off the road for an entire year.

National Award for Excellence:
Clarence Valley Council, NSW
Project: The Clarence Floodplain project  
This program was developed to mitigate or reverse environmental impacts of the region’s drainage systems on watercourses and wetlands. Under the project, more than 70 floodplain watercourses and wetlands have been revived.

National Award for Excellence (for a small council with fewer than 15,000 ratepayers):
Murray Shire Council, NSW
Project: The Long Paddock Cobb Highway touring route
With the region facing challenges such as drought, economic hardship and a decline in population, the council established the touring route that covers 610km of the Cobb Highway, incorporating elements of tourism, culture and heritage.

National Award for Innovation:
Brisbane City Council, QLD
Project: Stylin’ Up
The council’s youth project, Stylin’ Up, provides young Indigenous Australians with creative arts development programs, supported by elders, community leaders and government representatives.

National Award for Innovation (for a small council with fewer than 15,000 ratepayers):
The Rural City of Murray Bridge, SA
Projects: Youth Led Rescue, Murraylands Community of Youth Services (joint winners)
The Youth Led Rescue program encouraged active participation of the youth in the restoration of the heritage-listed Murray Bridge Railway Station, while the Murraylands Community of Youth Services provided centralised health and drug-related services to the youth in the community.

National Award for Merit:
Clarence Valley Council, NSW
Project: Clarence Valley Youth Summer Events
The program was designed by young people to provide low-cost or no-cost activities over the summer school holiday period, adopting the principles of social inclusion and accessibility.

Comment below to have your say on this story.

If you have a news story or tip-off, get in touch at  

Sign up to the Government News newsletter


Leave a comment:

Your email address will not be published. All fields are required