IPART Local Government Reports Consultation 2019

To support the NSW Government’s long-term commitment to a fair and equitable rating system for ratepayers, as well as ensuring local councils have a stable and reliable revenue base so they can continue to independently plan and deliver improved services for their communities into the future, the Government asked the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) to undertake several independent reviews.

The purpose of these reviews was to identify ways to strengthen councils by improving their ability to serve the needs of their communities into the future.

These reviews focus on areas of government regulation that required detailed consideration, consultation and review. The final reports for these are:

  1. a review of the local government rating system,
  2. a review of reporting and compliance burdens on local government*, and
  3. a review of local government compliance and enforcement*.

* Note: The second review focuses on reducing burdens placed on local government by the State. The third review focuses on reducing costs imposed by local government on business and the community.

IPART’s three reports are nearly 1,000 pages long and contain 135 detailed recommendations, covering some of the most significant issues facing local councils and their communities.

The Government has been carefully considering each and every recommendation and has ruled out some recommendations because they would impact on vulnerable members of the community, affect regional jobs and economies, and substantially increase costs for taxpayers and the broader community.

In addition, a number of recommendations have already been implemented though other reform programs. See the Government’s Interim Response for further detail.

The Government is seeking to carry out widespread consultation with residents, council staff, councillors, peak bodies and other key stakeholders as the Government finalises its response to these complex reports.

Thank you to those who took the time to provide feedback on IPART’s reports.  Feedback will be used to inform the development of the Government’s responses.


IPART rating review

The Government has released its response to IPART’s Review of the Local Government Rating System, and a summary analysis of the 110 submissions received.

The Government response includes the following key elements:

  • Within the context of the broader rating framework there are limited benefits for the implementation of a Capital Improved Value (CIV) method of calculating rates at this time.
  • The Government does not support the recommended changes to the local government rates pensioner concessions framework and does not support significant changes to the existing rating exemptions framework. The Government is committed to not disadvantaging vulnerable communities.
  • Providing support for greater flexibility in the current rating system through the creation of additional rating categories and sub-categories, and facilitating councils’ ability to align income growth with population growth.


IPART undertook these reviews. Further information about those review processes is available on IPART’s local government webpage:

Any questions about the current consultation process may be sent to the above email address for each report.

Consultation on Local Government Rating Reform

Following extensive consultation with the local government sector and the community, the NSW Government has today released for further comment an Exposure Draft of the Local Government Amendment (Rates) Bill 2021 to implement the NSW Government Response to IPART’s review of the local government rating system.

The Exposure Draft Bill, and other key rating reforms, if implemented, will help to improve the equity and efficiency of the rating system and enhance councils’ ability to implement sustainable fiscal policies over the long term.

A consultation guide, Towards a Fairer Rating System, has been released to explain the proposed changes in the Exposure Draft Bill and to assist councils and others to provide feedback on this and other rating reforms.


Towards A Fairer Rating System Consultation – A consultation guide to local government rating reform – Feedback form