April 1998 Edition

  • Leader in bilateral housing agreements

    The 'Bilateral Agreement for the Provision and Management of Housing and Related Infrastructure for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People of the Northern Territory' was signed in June 1995. The Indigenous Housing Authority of Northern Territory (IHANT) was established and is the sole housing funding agency in the Territory.
  • First ROC for the Territory

    The first Regional Organisation of Councils to be formed in the Northern Territory the acronym TOPROC. It enables member Councils to deal with regional issues.
  • Promoting local democracy

    In September last year, Margaret was elected President of the Local Government Association of the Northern Territory (LGANT). She was also recently elected to the Northern Territory Constitutional Convention which will review and confirm the draft Constitution for Territory Statehood.
  • Rising above the floodwaters

    Devastating floods, engulfed the Katherine region in February. Cheques payable to the Katherine Town Council Flood Appeal can be forwarded to LGANT at GPO Box 4502, Darwin, NT 0801. All donations will assist restoration of Council facilities and community services.
  • Community spirit beats loudest in the heart of Australia

    The small community Aputula, will now represent the Northern Territory in the National Keep Australia Beautiful Awards in May.
  • Family history inspires first Aboriginal woman on Council

    The first Aboriginal woman to be elected to the Darwin City Council was inspired to stand when she began researching her family history.
  • Bridging two worlds

    Chairman of the Galiwin'ku Community Incorporated Association, Oscar Datjarranga manages to live in two quite different worlds. Born and bred on Elcho Island, he says he loves having the opportunity to live a traditional lifestyle, at the same time as having access to information and advantages that come from aspects of western life.
  • Mobile information

    The Northern Territory Library Service has the highest percentage of borrowings per head of population in Australia. The Service is dedicated to providing information to people wherever they live, and providing that information in the way that is most suitable for each community.
  • Catering for rapid growth

    The Town of Palmerston, some 20 kilometres from Darwin, remains one of the highest growth areas in the country. As a consequence, it has one of the youngest populations in Australia. Mayor Kevin Diflo identifies the principal needs of the community as new sporting and recreation facilities, the creation of employment opportunities through developing local business opportunities and the creation of a pleasant and safe environment.
  • Promoting best practice

    The Department of Housing and Local Government at Katherine has recently prepared a home video of several communities in the Katherine region. The video covers practices in relation to alternative housing construction and illustrates best practice by Aboriginal people.
  • Import replacement = big gains for Flinders Island

    A commitment to self sufficiency has led to innovative infrastructure provision and widespread benefits for the small community of Flinders Island in Bass Strait. While the Island has always aimed for self sufficiency, the absence of saw log timber, among other factors, meant many components for infrastructure and building had to be imported by air or sea, adding to costs.
  • Mapping system linked to customer service inquiries

    An updated version of Geomation's MapIt software system is set to make life easier for Council staff and ratepayers. Victoria's City of Kingston has recently implemented the latest version of the MapIt software.
  • Road upgrade improves safety for motorists

    Safety on the New England Highway, north of Crows Nest in Queensland, has been improved with the recent completion of the Emu Creek to Brooks Gully section. The $3 million project was completed by the Crows Nest Shire Council which won the contract in open competition with private enterprise and Main Roads' own construction arm, RTCS.
  • Marketable sewage treatment

    Redland believes its Cleveland Plant is the perfect education facility to show students Australian firsts in sewage treatment. It comprises a one hectare site where earth worms stabilise the biosolids produced during sewage treatment. The resultant worm castings are expected to be sold to orchards, vineyards and organic farmers.
  • SA engineers share ideas

    In March 140 delegates met for the biennial Conference and Expo held as part of South Australia's Local Government Week. Delegates to the Conference were treated to a broad range of discussion on issues including stormwater management, environmental issues and road safety.
  • When 'Fido' has to go

    Man's best friend has proven to be an ongoing problem for Councils responsible for dealing with the public nuisance dogs can create. Apart from their ability to inflict injury and even death, a major problem dogs create arises from their poor toilet training. However, a new concept involving a bin designed to provide a convenient, hygienic and attractive receptacle for dog litter has recently been launched.
  • Stormwater management for inner urban areas

    A stormwater management project carried out by South Australia's City of Charles Sturt could change the way stormwater is managed in older neighbourhoods. Scientific monitoring over several years will provide valuable data, available through a web site, for Councils and other bodies keen to introduce sustainable stormwater management practices into established urban areas.
  • Unique style of LG

    Local Government in the Northern Territory continues to grow in its capacity to provide the services required by residents. There are now 68 local governing bodies, 38 of these created under the Local Government Act. 30 Councils are Incorporated Associations with limited powers. The Northern Territory Government is committed to encouraging these bodies to change their status to full Local Government Councils.
  • Elcho Island welcomes the PM

    Elcho Island was pleased to host a visit by the Prime Minister John Howard in March. This was the first time John Howard had visited a traditional Aboriginal community.
  • Planning, training and communication the key

    With only five percent of the Territory's land area served by Local Government communication between the many remote and widely spread communities is a vital issue. Commonwealth Government Telecommunication Infrastructure funding to the tune of $16 million over the next five years will greatly assist to further upgrade communications.
  • Greater cooperation through MOU

    The historic signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the Northern Territory Government and the Local Government Association of the Northern Territory (LGANT) signifies the desire by both spheres of government to achieve a greater level of coordination and cooperation.
  • Lord Mayor of 'the best City in Australia'

    George Brown, Lord Mayor of 'the best City in Australia', believes having previously worked in Council is a big advantage. It leads to a good relationship between staff and elected members because there is generally better understanding.
  • Measuring performance

    Similar to all other areas in Australia, the Northern Territory is currently developing a set of performance indicators for Councils to measure against and report to their communities.
  • Tennant Creek celebrates 20 years

    To celebrate 20 years as a Town Council, Tennant Creek is inviting delegates from across Australia to attend a national conference scheduled for 16-17 September. Titled 'Economic Prospects for the Northern Territory Leading to the 21st Century', and using the theme, 'Positioning for a Prosperous Future', organisers are gathering together a high profile group of speakers and officials.

  • LG Week in South Australia

    South Australia's biennial Local Government Week was launched with the Local Government Association of South Australia's Conference. Local Government will work cooperatively with the State Government, in a partnership role, to revitalise the economy and make South Australia a great State. Ratecapping policy is to be reviewed by Cabinet in the near future. The current review of South Australia's Local Government Act will see the release of a consultation draft during April.
  • Community Involvement

    With the voice of youth a key focus of the LGASA Conference, a number of delegates took the opportunity to visit schools to hear what young people had to say about Councils and, at the same time, give students a chance to learn more about Local Government.
  • Editorial

    Facilitator of the Group Session that looked at the Role of Local Government at the recent Melbourne Convention, Peter McMullin, Deputy Lord Mayor of the City of Melbourne, asked delegates to consider where Local Government fits in our Federal system at present and where it might progress. During the ensuing discussion, consensus was readily reached that Local Government should have recognition in the Australian Constitution. However, the need for Local Government to have a higher profile and an improved image was also seen as a prerequisite for recognition.
  • President's comment

    Each edition we feature the views of a State Local Government Association President. The following is from Councillor Ken Pech JP - President, Western Australian Municipal Association.
  • Rethink on Tas restructure

    Referenda conducted by a number of Tasmanian Councils earlier this year have led to a rethink on the current restructure program. With most polls resulting in between 50 and 90 percent of voters saying 'no' to further Council amalgamations, the Minister for Local Government, Denise Swan, has requested the Local Government Board reconsider their recommendations.
  • 100 years on Local Government is finally on the agenda

    From 20 January to 17 March 1898, the Australasian Federal Convention met in Melbourne to finalise a draft constitution to be put to the Australian people via referendum. To mark the Convention's centenary, the Victorian State Government together with the Constitutional Centenary Foundation, invited Government, business and community leaders from around Australia to reenact the Melbourne event.
  • Smoke detector program offers independence

    In eight months Unley City Council in South Australia has installed over 180 smoke detectors in the homes of residents particularly vulnerable in the event of fire. Batteries must also be replaced at regular intervals. Battery installation is monitored and, for the price of the battery, replaced when it reaches the end of its lifespan.
  • Zapping the millennium bug

    With just over 600 days to go before we reach the Year 2000, organisations everywhere must assess the effect on their operations and systems of the 'millennium bug'. Brisbane City Council is tackling the problem by establishing the Year 2000 Compliance Plan Project.
  • Regional infrastructure - linking local champions with institutional investors

    Funding for regional infrastructure - ports, airports, roads, water treatment, pipelines, transport terminals, tourism facilities, hospitals, schools - is a recurring issue in the run up to virtually every Federal and State election. The debate inevitably focuses on whether there really is a shortage of capital for infrastructure projects, and buck-passing as to whose responsibility it is to fund them. The end result is continued disillusionment among project champions at the Local Government level - and a lament for the days of the Snowy Mountains Hydro Scheme.

  • Greening Moreland

    Moreland has just completed a landmark Street Landscape Strategy which will transform the urban image of the city.
  • Import replacement = big gains for Flinders Island

    A commitment to self sufficiency has led to innovative infrastructure provision and widespread benefits for the small community of Flinders Island in Bass Strait. While the Island has always aimed for self sufficiency, the absence of saw log timber, among other factors, meant many components for infrastructure and building had to be imported by air or sea, adding to costs.
  • Mapping system linked to customer service inquiries

    An updated version of Geomation's MapIt software system is set to make life easier for Council staff and ratepayers. Victoria's City of Kingston has recently implemented the latest version of the MapIt software.
  • Litter controls bring results

    A concerted anti litter campaign combining education, guidance and enforcement, has won high praise for the City of Whittlesea from the Victorian Environment Protection Authority.
  • Revamp for industrial heritage site

    Some of Australia's earliest industrial history has been recaptured in an engineering project that combines heritage values, engineering skills and environmental management. Involving the City of Yarra and Melbourne Parks and Waterways, the project has restored Australia's first 'hydro-electric' power source in an old flour mill established in 1838.
  • Forward thinking asset management

    Devonport, with assets valued at $200 million, has taken a concerted approach to managing these assets to minimise costs and maximise value in the long term. Based on the recommendations in the National Asset Management Manual, Council first divested itself of surplus assets. Secondly, it concentrates its management efforts at the concept or planning stage to minimise life cycle costs.
  • Canterbury using grants to 'trap' key waterways

    Having won two major grants from the NSW State Government, Canterbury City Council is going to be able to better protect two key Sydney waterways with the installation of cutting edge Gross Pollutant Traps.
  • A model for infrastructure planning

    Wollongong Council has embarked upon an extensive planning process involving a multi million dollar development. Ultimately intended to house up to 60,000 people, it will provide an environmentally sustainable, high quality of life for residents.
  • When 'Fido' has to go

    Man's best friend has proven to be an ongoing problem for Councils responsible for dealing with the public nuisance dogs can create. Apart from their ability to inflict injury and even death, a major problem dogs create arises from their poor toilet training. However, a new concept involving a bin designed to provide a convenient, hygienic and attractive receptacle for dog litter has recently been launched.
  • Moreland leads on governance

    Councillors elected in 1996 came to office with a formidable policy platform that had been developed and debated in the community over the 12 months prior to the election. The platform, called Bringing Moreland Together, was endorsed as official policy through the Mayor's Speech given at new Council's first ceremonial meeting. According to the City's first Mayor, Mike Hill, the newly elected Councillors were determined to take control of the Council's agenda.
  • Language Link

    In a city where almost one third of the population has a first language other than English, for local governments to be fully inclusive, communicating in people's languages is essential. Moreland's Language Link ensures residents can access Council services, using their own language.
  • Fighting for local amenity - the Moonee Ponds Creek

    When Laurie Cox, Chairman of Transurban, the contractor responsible for constructing the Victorian Government's City Link project, spoke at a luncheon in February last year, he indicated that the Moonee Ponds Creek would be restored to its natural state. However, Moreland Councillors and residents fear these improvements now may not happen.
  • Local constitutional convention a winner

    As the debate about an Australian republic builds a head of steam, local governments are staging their own conventions enabling local people to come together to discuss our nation's future. In Moreland over 120 residents turned out to discuss the topics, 'An Australian Republic' and 'Citizens Rights'.
  • Politics eclipsed as reps work for Moreland

    Over the past year Councillors at Moreland have worked closely with the Municipality's 16 State and Federal Members of Parliament to develop a stronger bond between all the community's representatives in Moreland. Quarterly Elected Representatives Forums have been the vehicle to achieve improved cooperation and understanding of the issues facing Moreland people.
  • Faith leaders work together

    Moreland's culturally rich community includes devout members of many religions. Their presence provides a supportive focal point for people from many different ethnic backgrounds. In Moreland there are regular faith leaders gatherings. Not only do the meetings serve to bring about better communication between the various religions, they also allow the church representatives, as community leaders, to discuss the various issues and problems which their communities face, many of which they share in common.
  • A rich cultural mix

    Having the second highest level of ethnic diversity in Melbourne, Moreland's Multicultural Strategy is of key importance in embracing its non English speaking peoples. This means a commitment to a high level of access and communication with Council and helping ethnic groups take part in community life.
  • Promoting a thriving arts community

    At the southern end of Sydney Road Brunswick is a flourishing arts community. Council supports the arts throughout Moreland, and now has a major role to play to build on existing assets by creating an arts precinct at the southern end of the City.
  • Park provides an environmental experience

    One of Moreland's truly wonderful assets is its alternative energy park, CERES (the Centre for Education and Research in Environmental Strategies). The Centre, also named after the ancient goddess of the harvest, was originally set up to provide examples of a variety of alternative energy sources and energy conservation practices.
  • Energy to save

    Creation of a Moreland Energy Fund will promote energy conservation practices and products and reduce overall levels of Greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Successful waste reduction

    A strategy to reduce the amount of waste generated in the Moreland community, and the costs associated with it, is proving highly successful. The results have been outstanding, with a 25 percent reduction in waste already.

  • 100 years on Local Government is finally on the agenda

    From 20 January to 17 March 1898, the Australasian Federal Convention met in Melbourne to finalise a draft constitution to be put to the Australian people via referendum. To mark the Convention's centenary, the Victorian State Government together with the Constitutional Centenary Foundation, invited Government, business and community leaders from around Australia to reenact the Melbourne event.
  • Editorial

    Facilitator of the Group Session that looked at the Role of Local Government at the recent Melbourne Convention, Peter McMullin, Deputy Lord Mayor of the City of Melbourne, asked delegates to consider where Local Government fits in our Federal system at present and where it might progress. During the ensuing discussion, consensus was readily reached that Local Government should have recognition in the Australian Constitution. However, the need for Local Government to have a higher profile and an improved image was also seen as a prerequisite for recognition.
  • President's comment

    Each edition we feature the views of a State Local Government Association President. The following is from Mayor Sue Smith, President Local Government Association of Tasmania.
  • Sell out seminar on managing Council planning disputes

    Recently, over 170 delegates from across NSW attended a major Interactive Seminar in Sydney. It was designed to assist Councils, and those who deal with them, to better manage planning and building disputes, with a consequent reduction in costly litigation.
  • Schools production promotes reconciliation

    Gosford City Council's support for a school project which took a radical approach to Australian history has resulted in a significant step towards reconciliation.
  • Rethink on Tas restructure

    Referenda conducted by a number of Tasmanian Councils earlier this year have led to a rethink on the current restructure program. With most polls resulting in between 50 and 90 percent of voters saying 'no' to further Council amalgamations, the Minister for Local Government, Denise Swan, has requested the Local Government Board reconsider their recommendations.
  • Regional infrastructure - linking local champions with institutional investors

    Funding for regional infrastructure - ports, airports, roads, water treatment, pipelines, transport terminals, tourism facilities, hospitals, schools - is a recurring issue in the run up to virtually every Federal and State election. The debate inevitably focuses on whether there really is a shortage of capital for infrastructure projects, and buck-passing as to whose responsibility it is to fund them. The end result is continued disillusionment among project champions at the Local Government level - and a lament for the days of the Snowy Mountains Hydro Scheme.