NSW Budget boosts capacity of OLG

The NSW government will bolster the capacity of the Office of Local Government to the tune of $37.4 million, saying this will fix decades of under-resourcing.

Ron Hoenig

Funding announced in Tuesday’s state budget will enable the OLG to enact better regulation and help it step in more quickly when governance and financial issues arise at councils, local government minister Ron Hoenig said.

“It will also support reform delivery, namely, to the councillor code of conduct and to increase transparency and accountability across local government,” he said.

The state’s peak body LGNSW welcomed the funding measure as one of a number of ‘positive announcements’ in what it described as a no-frills budget.

“LGNSW has repeatedly advocated for better resourcing of the OLG so that it can better support the local government sector,’ President Darriea Turley said.

Cr Turley also said commitments for housing, roads, disaster recovery and prevention of domestic and family violence aligned with LGNSW priorities and would benefit the sector.

Funding gaps

Darriea Turley

However, councils have been let down by some disappointing funding gaps,  LGNSW says.

 These include a shortfall of funding for water infrastructure, leak reduction, water efficiency and drought resilience.

 The lack of significant new funding to support the necessary infrastructure to enable the foreshadowed uplift in housing density was also a missed opportunity, Cr Turley said.

“Overall, the sector would welcome the increased funding measures announced today but none of them will alleviate the overall concerns about the financial sustainability for our sector” she said.

What’s in the state budget for NSW councils


  • $5.1 billion over four years to build 8,400 social housing dwellings, with 6,200 of these to be new builds (and the remainder rebuilds). At least half will be prioritised for victim survivors of family and domestic violence.   
  • $200.1 million to increase accommodation for rural and regional health workers.


  • $3.3 billion to repair local and state roads in areas impacted by natural disasters across NSW, as part of the $5.7 billion total investment in disaster relief and recovery over four years.  


  • $253.7 million over four years to 2027-28 to pay for NSW Government planners and technology to speed up the assessment of development applications, including $20.4 million to upgrade the NSW Planning Portal.
  • $200.0 million for financial incentives for councils that meet housing targets, for infrastructure, roads, open space and community facilities.

Domestic and family violence

  • $38.3 million over four years for the implementation of “Pathways to Prevention” which is NSW’s first dedicated strategy for the Prevention of Domestic, Family and Sexual Violence. 

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