Feedback flies into constitutional committee

By Julian Bajkowski and Paul Hemsley Local governments keen to persuade a parliamentary committee of the merits of holding a referendum on Constitutional recognition of local government alongside the 2013 federal election have set at a cracking pace, with more than 33 documents lodged as the deadline for submissions looms. The slew of input comes […]

Bell tilts for ALGA presidency

By Paul Hemsley Outgoing Local Government Association of Queensland (LGAQ) President Paul Bell has reversed his decision to downsize to a smaller role in local politics, revealing instead he will run for the presidency of the Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) for a second time. The ALGA presidency has been open since the departure of […]

State, local government strike new agreement

By Angela Dorizas Local government’s campaign for constitutional recognition has gained momentum, with the signing of an intergovernmental agreement between the NSW State Government and the Local Government and Shires Associations (LGSA) on Monday. The formal signing of the agreement took place at the annual conference of the Local Government Association in Albury. It establishes […]

Voters ready to debate constitutional change

By Angela Dorizas Australians are a ready to consider changes to the Constitution, but support for local government recognition is not strong enough for a successful referendum campaign. The second phase of results from the Australian Constitutional Values Survey found strong support for referenda on Indigenous recognition and changing Australia’s federal system. Conducted by Professor […]

Agreement puts councils, Indigenous up for constitutional recognition

By Rob O'Brien A referendum on the constitutional recognition of local government and Indigenous Australians could take place in the next Parliament following an agreement signed by the Labor Party and the Greens. The formal agreement signed today by Prime Minsiter Julia Gillard, Treasurer Wayne Swan, and Greens leader Senator Bob Brown, Christine Milne and Adam […]

ELECTION 2010: Local government funding must be examined

South Australian councils have called for both parties to support a Parliamentary inquiry into local government revenue. In a direct appeal ahead of next week’s federal election, the Local Government Association of South Australia (LGA) said that ongoing concern regarding federal powers to fund community initiatives via local government made Constitutional reform vital to communities […]

A vote for local government

By Angela Dorizas It has been a long battle for local government in its quest to be included in the Australian Constitution. But at last the campaign has gained momentum, with the Federal Government and Coalition publicly backing the drive for reform. In June, the Federal Government reaffirmed its support for constitutional change, with the […]

Local government requires financial recognition

COMMENT By George Williams There is currently no mention of local government – the third tier of government – in the Australian Constitution. There should be. In 1974 and 1988, proposals were put to the Australian people at referendums to fix this. Both were unsuccessful. In December 2008, the Australian Local Government Association held a […]

Rudd offers assurance on constitutional reform

By Angela Dorizas The Federal Government has thrown its weight behind local government’s campaign for constitutional recognition.   In an address to the Australian Council of Local Government (ACLG) on Friday, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said he was committed to pursuing a referendum on formal recognition of local government in the Australian Constitution. “Before we took […]

Federal funding for constitutional reform

Federal Minister for Local Government, Anthony Albanese.  Image: Eddie Misic. By Angela Dorizas The Federal Government has reaffirmed its support for constitutional recognition of local government, announcing a funding commitment of $250,000 towards the campaign. Speaking at the Australian Local Government Association National General Assembly in Canberra today, Minister for Local Government, Anthony Albanese, said the […]

Perpetuating the Canberra reflex

COMMENT By Oliver Marc Hartwich  In terms of its land mass, Australia is the sixth largest country on earth. The distances between the state capitals are enormous and travelling between places within the states by means other than air transport can take many hours. Given these spatial characteristics, perhaps the most surprising feature of Australia’s […]

Lake issues stern warning to ‘checklist’ planners

By Rob O'Brien The president of the Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) has issued a terse warning to developers and state planning officials in a speech to the National Press Club in Canberra. In his address ALGA president Geoff Lake warned governments to expect a 'Your Rights at Home' campaign at the ballot box if […]

Lake to push constitutional reform at NPC

By Rob O'Brien The case for local government to be enshrined in the Australian constitution will be made when the president of the Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) addresses the National Press Club (NPC) next month. ALGA President Cr Geoff Lake will give his nationally televised address at the NPC in Canberra on March 31. […]


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