Council Task force calls for reform fund

By Staff Writer

The Strengthening Local Government Task Force is calling on the NSW State Government to provide a reform implementation fund to enable councils to long term strategic plan and develop asset management systems.

An initiative of the Local Government and Shires Association of NSW (LGSA), The Strengthening Local Government Task Force was established to respond to the Independent Inquiry into the Financial Sustainability of NSW Local Government.

The task force has reviewed the inquiry supported the majority of its findings and recommendations.
“Councils need a boost in revenue through increased grants from other levels of government, and more flexibility to raise their own revenue,” said co-chair of the Strengthening Local Government Task Force and president of the LGSA, Cr Genia McCaffery.

“Crucial to this will be a community infrastructure fund, as proposed by ALGA, the abolition of rate pegging, and a fairer share of taxation revenue,” she said.

The Task Force recognised the importance of an Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA) between the State Government and Local Government and rejected the proposal to cut back on social services until the infrastructure back log is addressed.

“Services like libraries are crucial to communities, and rate payers should not be forced to choose between having a library or a road,” she said.

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