Improvement and Intervention
The Office is active in providing a range of improvement information and advice to guide local councils. However, there are circumstances where the Office may need to intervene where councils are experiencing difficulties in meeting their legislated obligations or otherwise experiencing a breakdown in performing their functions efficiently and effectively that requires outside assistance to remedy.
The Office aims to intervene early when councils are experiencing problems and, in the first instance, will encourage councils to meet their obligations. Any intervention or improvement response will be proportionate to the circumstances. For example, an improvement strategy may be appropriate where the target is all councils in NSW; an intervention strategy may be appropriate where an individual council is experiencing severe difficulties such as a breakdown in relationships.
“Improvement and intervention” is defined in broad terms to include:
- strategies that assist councils to meet good practice,
- strategies to ensure councils comply with relevant legislation and standards, and
- strategies that use available sanctions that force councils to comply with relevant legislation and standards.
“Improvement and intervention” is also defined in broad terms to include strategies with an impact on the local government sector, to strategies with an impact on individuals within the sector.
The Improvement and Intervention Framework supports the Office’s goals of being a leader on Local Government matters for New South Wales; continuous improvement in council governance practices; all councils manage their finances responsibly; and Office resources are optimised.