16-50 – Integrated Planning and Reporting requirements for councils with deferred elections

What’s new or changing

  • This Circular provides advice to those councils with deferred elections (see list below) in relation to their Integrated Planning and Reporting requirements until their next local government elections occur.

What this will mean for your council

This Circular applies only to the 25 councils listed below whose ordinary elections have been deferred by Ministerial order (and not including the Hills Council, for which the advice provided in Council Circular 16-28 remains current):

  • Bathurst
  • Blayney
  • Burwood
  • Cabonne
  • Canada Bay
  • Dungog
  • Hornsby
  • Hunter’s Hill
  • Ku-Ring-Gai
  • Lane Cove
  • Maitland
  • Mosman
  • Newcastle
  • North Sydney
  • Oberon
  • Orange
  • Port Stephens
  • Randwick
  • Ryde
  • Shellharbour
  • Strathfield
  • Waverley
  • Willoughby
  • Wollongong
  • Woollahra.

The cycle of Integrated Planning and Reporting

  • Councils with deferred elections will by now have adopted their 2016-17 Operational Plan and should continue to operate under this plan until 30 June 2017.
  • In preparation for the next annual Operational Plan (for the 2017-18 period), councils should take the following approach:
    • The existing Community Strategic Plan remains in place as a valid reference document.
    • The existing Resourcing Strategy remains in place, with the long-term financial plan being annually reviewed, as usual.
  • The existing Delivery Program will apply for a further 12 months, maintaining the key themes and any activities not yet completed. In the event that additional or different activities are proposed that are significantly different to those identified in the existing Delivery Program, the usual public exhibition requirements will apply.
  • A new Operational Plan (2017-18) must be developed for adoption by 30 June 2017, reflecting the Delivery Program. Standard exhibition periods, including the requirements relating to the Statement of Revenue Policy, apply.
  • Once the deferred election is conducted, the council will commence its next cycle of Integrated Planning and Reporting.
  • Where a merger occurs, the abovementioned documents will be used to inform the new entity’s first suite of Integrated Panning and Reporting documents.
  • Any planned measurement and recording of progress towards the achievement of the objectives of the Community Strategic Plan can proceed, and be used to inform the next Integrated Planning and Reporting cycle.

Annual reports

  • Councils must ensure that they continue to comply with annual reporting requirements set out in Council Circular 16-28.
  • While Circular 16-28 highlights some reporting exemptions for councils with deferred elections, there are no exceptions to reporting requirements under other Acts, nor to the data provision requirements of other Agencies. Councils with pending merger proposals should continue to meet these obligations (e.g. Best Practice Management of Water Supply and Sewerage Guidelines) where applicable.

End of term reporting

  • Further advice regarding end of term reporting requirements will be issued in due course.

Where to go for further information

  • More information about the Integrated Planning and Reporting framework can be found on the Office of Local Government’s website:

Tim Hurst

Acting Chief Executive