The Property Council of Australia has congratulated the State Government for committing funds to local councils “wishing to explore amalgamation, joint delivery of Local Government services, or regional arrangements”.
As confirmed earlier this week in the 2005/06 Queensland budget, State Government announced it had allocated $25 million for councils wishing to explore reform.
Property Council Queensland executive director Robert Walker said that the committed funds come a week after the Local Government Association of Queensland’s conference on council structural reform.
Property Council Queensland executive director Robert Walker said that the discussion and debate was in part engendered by the Property Council’s 2004 Initiatives for the Sunshine Coast
document which called for a debate about council amalgamation in that region.
“The Property Council congratulates the participants in the conference for the maturity of their genuine consideration of reform of Council administration and systems,” he said.
“Finally they have decided to look seriously and realistically at boundary changes, amalgamations, regional arrangements and cost-sharing. As we have signalled from the beginning, there is no ‘one size fits all’ solution to the many challenges facing local councils and their communities.”
Mr Walker said that the Property Council’s Sunshine Coast committee was in full support of some level of reform, and was particularly interested in local councils debating the alignment of processes and resource sharing.
“The Property Council welcomes Local Government Minister Desley Boyle’s commitment to providing support and advice to councils exploring reforms. “
This funding under the Regional Collaboration and Capacity Building Program would be available to Councils from 1 July 2006.
Robert Walker, Executive Director, Property Council of Australia, 0417 072 197
Nikki Schultz, Communications Manager, Property Council of Australia, 07 3225 3000