National Broadband update
Speaking at the recent National General Assembly of Local Government, Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy, said the National Broadband Network (NBN) will be the single largest nation building infrastructure project in Australian history and will transform our economy.
The global recession has had many impacts as governments have struggled to create confidence in the financial viability of their nations, their industries and the financial sector. Many companies have gone out of business and public sector organisations have seen greatly increased demand for their services.
Mayors for Peace at ALGA
An international network of over 3,000 councils, Mayors for Peace, hosted a colourful stall at the Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) National General Assembly this year, focusing on local initiatives around nuclear weapons abolition.
Cockburn gets quad bike boost
The City of Cockburn has been given a boost with the purchase of two new quad bikes, thanks to a $20,000 donation from land and property development agency LandCorp.
Community Conversations: Striving for More
Staged in Hobart from 10 to 12 June, the Local Government Association of Tasmania (LGAT) Annual Conference brought together a range of keynote speakers and workshops centred around the theme of ‘Community Conversations: Striving for More’.
IP surveillance solution for Griffith*
Eacom Technologies has installed a Bosch IP surveillance solution for Griffith Council. The solution stores all video streams at 4CIF and 25 images per second for 31 days and is used by NSW Police to ensure safety and security in the Griffith CBD.
Many Local Governments have employed staff and invested in capital works to reduce their energy use and carbon emissions. Hundreds of councils across Australia have formally adopted a greenhouse gas reduction target.
Recognising LG’s high achievers
At the 2009 Local Government Managers Australia National Congress in Darwin, Local Government FOCUS invited delegates to nominate individuals or teams from their councils who are improving operations or enhancing service delivery within their community. In this edition, we showcase the first two of our high achievers for 2009.
National parks and leisure conference
You are invited to attend the Parks and Leisure Australia (PLA) National Conference to be held in Darwin from 13 to 16 September 2009 at the Holiday Inn Esplanade.
Showcasing FOCUS winners
At the 2009 National General Assembly in Canberra, Local Government FOCUS invited delegates to showcase their council’s achievements by entering our competition to win a full page feature for their council in 2010.
It was 1995, and the Federal Member for Gippsland, Peter McGauran, had invited local leaders and a handful of Federal and State officials to a forum at Orbost Golf Club. The aim was to identify initiatives to turn the economy around.
1.5 million sporting passes towards good health
In August this year, children participating in the Australian Sports Commission’s Active After-School Communities (AASC) program will be raising awareness of diabetes while improving their own fitness levels. Diabetes is Australia’s fastest growing chronic disease.
In each edition we feature the views of a Local Government Association president. The following is from Alderman Kerry Moir, President of the Local Government Association of the Northern Territory.
Editorial: confidence vital to overcoming GFC
On 25 June some 400 Mayors and Shire Presidents accepted the Prime Minister’s invitation to meet at Parliament House for the second plenary meeting of the Australian Council of Local Government (ACLG).
Nation building investment in local communities now tops $1 billion
At the second meeting of the Australian Council of Local Government (ACLG) at Parliament House in Canberra on 25 June, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd announced that a further $220 million will become available by the end of this year for community infrastructure projects, such as libraries, community centres, sportsgrounds and environmental infrastructure.
Feature: Financial Sustainability and Asset Management
National General Assembly Communiqué
At the conclusion of this year’s National General Assembly delegates endorsed a Communiqué covering their key resolutions. The following is an abridged version.
Climate change – a risk management issue
With significantly more papers received on climate change than either of the two other key conference streams, ALGA President, Councillor Geoff Lake, said it was appropriate that this issue was afforded the most time.
Putting Local Government before the big polluters
In his address to the assembly, Leader of the Australian Greens, Senator Bob Brown, said councils must be consulted more on the implementation of the Rudd Government’s climate change legislation.
Infrastructure spending financed by debt
Leader of the National Party, Warren Truss, warned that while the Government’s infrastructure spending programs have boosted councils’ cash flow and enabled them to undertake some welcome community projects, it is one off funding financed by debt – all of which will have to be repaid by future governments.
Councils’ vital role along the road to recovery
Leader of the Opposition, Malcolm Turnbull, said that for all three spheres of government the motivation and objectives as elected officials is the same, “to serve the Australian public as best we can”.
Constitutional recognition update
“A key priority for Local Government is Constitutional recognition for Local Government,” said ALGA President Geoff Lake. “Such recognition would deliver pragmatic and effective change to how our three spheres of government can work together in the 21st century.”
Building a partnership based on respect
Federal Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government, Anthony Albanese, told delegates at the 15th National General Assembly of Local Government that governments are not judged on one off events but by the way they are able to change the social landscape that survives the electoral cycle.
Taking our place on the national stage
President of the Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) Councillor Geoff Lake welcomed some 700 delegates to the National General Assembly of Local Governmentstaged in Canberra from 21 to 24 June.
Road pavements quite often develop problems with depressions forming in the road surface either side of where culverts go under the roadway. In fact, big culvert areas can cause big problems for the road; sometimes known to locals as the ‘ski jump’!
Cover your assets*
Managing underground assets is a vital issue for Local Government, and trenchless technology is an important option for council engineers to have in their toolbox.
Stabilised roads at stabilised costs*
You told us you have high maintenance, unsealed roads that eat up money. Increased traffic and vehicle speeds are accelerating road degradation and increasing maintenance intervention.
Cost effective road maintenance using local crews*
Councils are making roads safer, saving money and protecting local jobs with a new contracting arrangement that enables them to bring in the most effective road repair technology, and a number of highly trained specialists, to work as part of a united team with their own staff.
A holistic approach to asset management
In upgrading, repairing and reassessing the need for some of its community halls over the last few years, George Town Council overhauled its entire asset management approach.
Cartels, deterrence and detection
Public sector procurement relies on vigorous competition to ensure that taxpayers and ratepayers get the best value for their money. A competitive market also encourages businesses to innovate, improve their efficiency and meet consumer needs.
New building asset management guidelines
A new Practice Note for Condition Assessment and Performance Rating of Buildings has been launched by the National Asset Management Strategy Group (NAMS.AU) of the Institute of Public Works Engineering Australia (IPWEA).
Hume wins gold at annual reporting awards
In June, Hume City Council’s 2007/08 annual report took home a Gold Award in the Local Government category of the 2009 Australasian Reporting Association (ARA) Awards. This is the third consecutive year that Council has received this award.
SA councils maintaining financial discipline
While other governments are slipping into deficit for the first time in a number of years, South Australian councils, in aggregate, achieved an operating surplus in 2007/08 according to State Budget Papers.