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18-39 Debt Management and Hardship Guidelines

Date: Tuesday 27th November 2018
Category: Council Circular

Circular Details

Circular No 18-39 / 27 November 2018 / A620794

Who should read this

Councillors / General Managers / Financial teams


OLG Policy Team / (02) 4428 4100 /

Action required

Council to Implement

PDF Version of Circular

 18-39 Debt Management and Hardship Guidelines


What’s new or changing

  • The Office of Local Government has issued new Guidelines to ensure best practice debt management and hardship practices in all NSW councils.


What this will mean for your council

  • As the Guidelines have been issued under section 23A of the Local Government Act 1993, councils must take them into consideration before making any decisions relating to debt management and hardship.
  • All councils are encouraged to review their revenue management policies and procedures and give consideration to the best practice measures outlined in the Guidelines.


Key points

  • The Guidelines will ensure councils are responsive to individual and community circumstances, and are open, fair and equitable, and easy to do business with.
  • They provide best practice approaches that promote proactive measures to ensure prompt payment and minimise default, as well as how to follow up ratepayers and recover any debts incurred fairly and effectively.
  • The Guidelines outline contemporary, flexible practices that councils can implement now to collect revenue, better manage debt and help councils to understand and proactively respond to individuals and groups within their community experiencing hardship.


Where to go for further information

The Guidelines are available on the OLG website at: Please direct all enquiries to the OLG Policy Team on (02) 4428 4100 or at


Tim Hurst

Chief Executive


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