De-amalgamation bill delivers certainty for NSW councils
The NSW Government has introduced new legislation that will remove a major roadblock to council de-amalgamations and ensure local democracy is enshrined in the decision-making process. The amendments to the Local Government Act 1993, introduced to Parliament today, will provide a new legal pathway for NSW councils seeking to demerge, including those that already have de-amalgamation proposals under consideration.
NSW residents encouraged to adopt don’t shop for a purr-fect present this Christmas
NSW residents are being encouraged to adopt from their local council pound or animal shelter rather than shopping if they’re considering getting a pet this Christmas. The Christmas period is a prime time when many families welcome a new, furry family member into their homes.
Greater employment protections for council waste workers
he NSW Government has announced stronger employment protections are now in place for waste management workers employed by NSW councils and council contractors. Changes to the Local Government (General) Regulation 2021 have been gazetted to ensure greater protection for the employment of waste workers when council waste management contracts go to tender.
New measures to strengthen transparency and financial sustainability of councils
Elected councillors will be better informed about how their councils are performing and be in a stronger position to exercise more effective oversight of council operations under new regulations governing the operation of Audit, Risk and Improvement Committees (ARICs) and internal audit within NSW councils.
Statement on Operation Tolosa
Statement from the Minister for Local Government, Ron Hoenig: I have reviewed the report released today by the Independent Commission against Corruption (ICAC) in relation to Operation Tolosa. Having considered ICAC’s recommendation I have suspended Angelo Tsirekas from civic office with a view to his dismissal for serious corrupt conduct effective immediately.
New pathway to guide Cootamundra-Gundagai Regional Council de-amalgamation
The NSW Government has today salvaged the plan to de-amalgamate Cootamundra-Gundagai Regional Council (CGRC). Since coming to office, the Minister and Office of Local Government have explored the legal avenues available to achieve a successful demerger under the roadmap provided by the previous Liberal-National government. This roadmap has only succeeded in leading to a dead end, with no statutory mechanism under the legislation (section 218CC of the Local Government Act 1993) to create two independent and fully functioning councils.
Fairer democratic elections to return for City of Sydney
The NSW Government is returning democracy and fairness to the City of Sydney by removing rules that favour the votes of businesses over residents in local government elections. The City of Sydney Amendment Bill 2023 introduced by the Government seeks to reinstate the voting rules for non-residential electors that apply in all other LGAs across NSW. In 2014, the City of Sydney Act 1988 was amended to give eligible businesses two votes in council elections, compared to one each for residents.
Concessions now available to pensioners for council rates
Eligible pensioners across NSW can now apply for a rebate on their council rates to help with the rising cost of living. An annual concession of up to $250 per property is available to pensioners for ordinary rates and domestic waste charges.