Our vision is for the local government sector to be agile, smart and inclusive.
As part of the State Government’s reform agenda, a new Local Government Act will be drafted.
Our objective is to transform local government so that it is empowered to better deliver quality governance and services to their communities now and into the future.
We are looking at community engagement as an area of reform.
The current system
Local governments are required to consult with the community on:
- Developing their 10 year Strategic Community Plan.
- Changes to local laws such as laws around dog ownership or parking fees.
- Applying different rates according to zoning, land use or vacant land.
- Planning matters including development applications.
The department undertook consultation on the topic of community engagement during stage two of the Local Government Act review consultation.
Community engagement and integrated planning and reporting summary discussion paper
Community engagement discussion paper
The following sections outline what was heard during consultation and how feedback will inform a new Local Government Act.
What you’ve told us
- People think there is a perceived lack of transparency in decision making.
- There are inconsistent community engagement approaches across local government.
- Community expectations of engagement have changed.
- New technologies have changed the ways local governments can engage with their communities.
Ideas for change
- Better define the role of local government.
- Local governments to have a community engagement charter, which includes minimum standards for community engagement.
- Require councils to adopt social media policies, including appropriate use in community engagement.