Speaking at the Institute of Public Works Engineering Australia’s biennial conference, President of the Institute Engineers Australia - WA Division, Professor Peter Lee said that there is an urgent need to grow Australia’s science and technology. He told the 400 delegates from across Australia and overseas that without greater commitment to research and development we will become increasingly reliant on imported technology.
Mayor Peter Black was first elected to Dalrymple Shire Council in 1961. In 1973, he became Mayor and still holds this position. At the Local Government Association of Queensland’s Annual Conference in Townsville earlier this month, Mayor Black was recognised for this milestone of 40 years service. It is believed he is the longest serving Australian Councillor currently in office.
Local Government has been criticised for its inability or reluctance to carry out structural reform. As a result, many State Governments, past and present, have often taken it upon themselves to use legislative powers to force through change. A point conveniently overlooked by State Governments is that structural reform for any sphere of government is rarely an easy process. Recent examples spring to mind such as Northern Territory’s failed attempt to achieve Statehood. Similarly, proposed reforms to the Victorian Upper House is not likely to be an easy road.
Hornsby is a green and beautiful Shire located approximately 25 kilometres north east of Sydney. It has vast areas of outstanding bushland, accounting for almost 70 per cent of the Shire. Maintaining and enhancing the Shire’s many waterways and natural heritage sites is seen as vital to local and regional amenity.
Local Governments in Southern and Central Queensland will participate in the first Council Olympic Games on Saturday 13 October 2001, hosted by Murgon Shire Council.
Picking winners – beats the other option - The Good Oil by Rod Brown * The market is not the exclusive preserve of the private sector – governments are, and always will be, a part of the ‘market’. The question that naturally follows is, ‘In what circumstances should governments intervene in the market more than their regulatory functions?’
Surrounding the New South Wales City of Griffith, Carrathool Shire covers nearly 19,000 square kilometres, which includes the Demographic Centre of Australia near Hillston. The Shire has experienced considerable development and growth in horticulture and viticulture production.
The Centenary of Federation is an appropriate time to acknowledge the ‘First Federation’ of Indigenous nations and to help mark the achievements of Indigenous Australians and their contribution to Australia during the past 100 years. In this issue, Local Government FOCUS profiles the Shire President of Broome and proud Indigenous multicultural Australian, Kevin Fong.
According to the Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV), waiting lists and refusal of service will be the norm across the State if funding for home and community care is not improved. Launching a campaign to highlight the plight of home care in Victoria, the MAV President, Councillor Brad Matheson, said home care services for the aged and those with a disability was in crisis.
The underlying principle of Best Value is to seek the best service delivery in all aspects of Councils’ operations, considering quality, responsiveness, cost and effectiveness. The Bracks Government’s objectives for Best Value in Victoria is to achieve local accountability, whole of organisation response, community consultation on performance, best value outcomes, benefits not just lowest costs and the encouragement of innovation.
The Commonwealth Local Government Forum conference, supported by the Australian Local Government Association and the National Office of Local Government, will be held on the 3-5 October 2001 at the Holiday Inn, Brisbane. The Commonwealth Local Government Forum (CLGF) was founded in 1995, as a focus for action on local democracy in the Commonwealth and was endorsed by Commonwealth Heads of Government at their meeting in New Zealand that year.
Kerry Dobinson, Pine Rivers Shire Council’s Chief Financial Officer, will hone his skills as a company director after winning a prestigious Company Directors Course Scholarship from the nation’s largest finance, accounting and business advisory body, Certified Practising Accountants (CPA) Australia.
As part of the 10th anniversary celebrations the Centre for Adolescent Health Education and Training Unit is launching its 2001 workshop series. The Education Unit has focused on meeting the needs of both community members and professionals who wish to further their knowledge and experience.
The City of Playford’s Rewards and Recognition for Staff Program has improved job satisfaction, productivity and morale. The Program’s Recognition Awards acknowledge staff for their achievements and accomplishments throughout the year, as well as their loyalty to Council, demonstrated through years of service.
IT professionals who currently hold MCSE certification in NT4 are running out of time to update their certification to Windows 2000. The deadline to fast track this upgrade is 31 December, 2001. After this time, anyone who seeks MCSE certification will need to pass the complete path of windows 2000 exams. The Windows 2000 certification has seven exams.
The Australian Rural Leadership Program is a world class program that aims to encourage rural and regional leaders to advance their knowledge and leadership skills. Each year, 30 people with a diverse range of interests begin the Australian Rural Leadership Program, which includes attendance at seven sessions, of one to two weeks’ duration.
The City of Rockingham in Western Australia has embarked on a process of workplace change that has achieved improved effectiveness and efficiencies in the delivery of services to the community. Council’s process of change has empowered employees to control and manage service delivery by utilising integrated Best Practice principles.
There has been a great deal of debate in recent years about the best ways of managing the performance of an organisation’s human resources. Even within the HR industry, terms such as performance reviews, appraisals, feedback, and assessment are used interchangeably and to add to the equation, these terms are often confused with performance development.
The Stronger Regions, A Stronger Australia statement announced on 29 August is the Federal Government’s practical and affordable initiative developed in response to listening to the needs of rural and regional Australia. We have already provided some $28 billion for specific measures over the last five years, however there is still more to do.
Ntaria (Hermannsburg), an Aboriginal Council 130 kilometres west of Alice Springs, has made rapid progress on its Local Government Incentive Programme (LGIP) project which received $84,300 of Federal funding earlier this year to develop a suite of tourism enterprises in the Western Macdonnell Region.
Federal Government funding provided under the popular $1.2 billion Roads to Recovery Programme is being spent largely on the basic transport needs of local communities, an examination of Council spending patterns has shown.
Mentoring has always been seen as a strategic way to enhance skills, raise profiles and progress careers. Members of the Australian Local Government Women’s Association (ALGWA) in Queensland feel that these mutually beneficial relationships have particular relevance to women in Local Government.
For the first time in Australia, practical information on every key topic relevant to environmentally sustainable housing design is available at one convenient source. Your Home is a Federal whole of government initiative giving building professionals and the public access to the most comprehensive package of home design material ever produced.
The Federal Government has assisted over 200 communities to find solutions to their local problems through the Regional Solutions Programme and has committed over $20 million to regional communities since the programme began in October 2000.
Funding will be available under the Commonwealth Government’s Rural Transaction Centre (RTC) Programme to more than 100 postal outlets to help install Electronic Point of Sale (EPOS) equipment for banking and bill paying services in small rural communities.
On 9-10 August, the National Local Leaders in Sustainability Forum was held at Parliament House in Canberra. The proceedings were positive and dynamic with topics of discussion including a wide range of environmental, planning and natural resource management issues.
The Federal Government’s whole of government response to the issues raised at the Northern Australia Forum is to be delivered by Minister for Regional Services, Territories and Local Government, Senator Ian Macdonald towards the end of the year.
In August, Alice Springs Town Council Mayor, Fran Erlich presented Special Achievement awards to three Council staff who excelled in their Local Government studies through Centralian College. Council, in conjunction with the College, introduced the awards for students who display outstanding initiative, attitude, participation and self motivation.
A skilled and committed workforce is key to the success of the 800 Councils and Shires across the nation. High quality and relevant training and access to trainees are important components of this success. The Australian Local Government Training (ALGT) is the industry owned Industry Training Advisory Board set up to work with Local Government to identify training needs.