ALGA in Canberra
Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) President Mayor Troy Pickard has presented Assistant Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Jamie Briggs with a copy of the 2014 State of the Local Road Assets Report during a meeting at Parliament House.
The Report, which was released at the 2014 National Local Roads and Transport Congress in Tamworth, has found that 11 percent of local roads and that one in five local bridges are in a poor to very poor condition.
The importance of the first and last mile network featured in the discussions, along with the issue of regional road funds and examples of the co-operation underway amongst a group of councils in WA and SA.
Mayor Pickard flagged the possibility of a state based pilot in each jurisdiction to further develop the issue.
The meeting also addressed the issue of procurement policies amongst councils, while the ALGA President also outlined the work being undertaken by local government in the area of asset management.
Mayor Pickard also met with Finance Minister Senator Mathias Cormann, where The Reform of the Federation and Taxation White Papers and local government finances were among the key areas of discussion.
Minister for the Environment Greg Hunt also met with Mayor Pickard, and outlined what he saw as opportunities for local government under the government's current environmental policies.
Minister Hunt said the Green Army program and the Emissions Reduction Fund both provided opportunities for councils that needed to be explored with the local government sector.
Minister Hunt highlighted the possibility of local government initiatives under the Emissions Reduction Fund, particularly in the area of energy efficiency.
The Minister also noted that a number of councils had signed up to take part in Green Army projects under Round 1 of the program and there were further opportunities for council to participate in the scheme with Round 2 funding applications currently open.
The Minister's Department will also pursue developing material specifically for the local government sector in relation to the opportunities.