Administrative efficiencies — local laws

Local Government Act Review

As part of the McGowan Government’s reform agenda, a new Local Government Act will be drafted.

Our vision is for the local government sector to be agile, smart and inclusive.

Our objective is to transform local government so that it is empowered to better deliver quality governance and services to their communities now and into the future.

We are looking at local laws as an area of reform.​

The current system

  • Local governments make local laws that govern activities within their districts such as parking, dog/cat management and public places.
  • Local laws are a type of legislation and must be approved by Parliament.
  • DLGSC monitors and provides advice to help local governments with this process.
  • Parts of legislation are very outdated, including dealing with impounding of straying farm animals.

What you’ve told us

  • Local laws vary from one local government district to another, which can be both confusing and onerous for people and businesses that operate in different districts.
  • Creating a good local law is complex and requires legal skills.
  • Some parts of the legislation are no longer needed.

Ideas for change

  • Provide more consistency in local laws between districts.
  • Require local governments to have their local laws certified by a legal practitioner.
  • Combine the functions of the Local Government Grants Commission which provides financial assistance grants to local governments across Australia, and the Advisory Board, which makes recommendations to the Minister for Local Government on proposals to change local government boundaries, wards and councillor numbers.
  • Remove outdated sections of the Act.

What do you think?

This is just a snapshot of the reforms being considered on this topic.

We want to hear your ideas.

You can learn more or have your say.​

Download documents

Page reviewed 03 May 2019