LGiU has teamed up with ALGA to bring you a fortnightly edition of the Policy Roundup containing the local news, policy reports and LGiU briefings from the last week plus the latest updates from ALGA.
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  • Councils Leading in Emergency Management With 524 disaster support declarations over 316 local government areas in 2022, never before have local governments faced so many challenges. That’s why, on your behalf, I provided evidence to the Senate Select Committee on Australia’s Disaster Resilience, advocating on behalf of Australia’s 537 local governments for more support. Right across+

  • ALGA appeared before a Senate Select Committee on Australia’s Disaster Resilience on 13 April to highlight that local governments urgently need more support to rebuild their communities. While Australia’s 537 councils appreciate the significant investment they have received from federal and state/territory governments for disaster funding, ALGA’s submission to the Committee said there’s an urgent+

  • The 2023 Symposium, hosted in Melbourne from 9-11 May, will focus on Power of Place: exploring the critical role of local government and local communities in advancing social cohesion. Featuring keynotes from Prof Chelsea Watego, Prof Kate Reynolds and Prof Susanne Wessendorf, along with practical panel presentations and discussion on how to advance welcoming and+

  • JOINT MEDIA RELEASE                       Australia’s 537 local governments are critical to creating a more sustainable and clean energy future and helping the Federal Government deliver on its target of net zero by 2050. The Australian Local Government Association (ALGA), with support from the Cities Power Partnership and the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI),+

  • ALGA has asked the Federal Government to support a new program to enable councils to employ up to 5,600 additional apprentices, trainees, cadets and graduates over the next 10 years. Due to the current national skills shortage, Australian councils are facing significant jobs and skills challenges, and increased investment in training and upskilling the next+

  • Councils are reminded that the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has now included all government entities in their new agent nomination process. The process is a new requirement to help ensure only chosen authorised tax agents, BAS agents or payroll service providers can access your government entity’s accounts, and act on your behalf for tax and+

  • Cyber-attacks are one of the greatest threats to both Australia’s national security and our democracy, including at the local government level. To be properly prepared for cyber-attacks and defend against data breaches, Australian councils urgently need government support. Recent local government surveys in New South Wales and Western Australia found councils could significantly improve their+

  • Local Government Minister’s Forum I was delighted to represent Australia’s 537 councils at the Local Government Ministers’ Forum at Parliament House in Canberra on 31 March. With many communities still recovering from natural disasters and extreme weather, the forum focused on discussions around resilience and emergency management, as well as best-practice governance for councils. It’s+

  • ALGA News sat down in Canberra with former ALGA President David O’Loughlin, who was recently appointed to the Federal Government’s new National Housing Supply and Affordability Council.  As a former Mayor of Prospect in South Australia, Mr O’Loughlin is also a Director of the Urban Renewal Authority in SA. ALGA:  Tell us about your new+

  • AGLA has asked the Federal Government for $10 million to scope local government’s preparedness to deal with cyber-attacks and data breaches. In the lead-up to the Federal Budget, local government is seeking funding from the Government to improve councils’ readiness to deal with cyber-attacks and boost their defences against data breaches. Recent local government surveys+

  • AGLA has called on the Federal Government to provide $7 million over four years in the upcoming Budget for a new local government Indigenous Partnership Network. Local government associations across Australia need extra support to work closely with governments, councils and peak bodies to progress Closing the Gap, and new funding would enable councils to+

  • ALGA has welcomed Shadow Local Government Minister Darren Chester’s support for increasing Roads to Recovery funding to $800 million per year.  Speaking in Parliament on 27 March, Mr Chester said: “The Australian Local Government Association is asking this Labor government to continue to support the Roads to Recovery Program and give additional funding going forward,+

  • Local government has welcomed the Federal Government’s decision to extend project construction timelines for Phases 1–3 of the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure (LRCI) program. Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government Minister Catherine King said on 27 March councils now have until 30 June 2024 to complete works, providing an extra year on the+

  • Commonwealth, state and territory governments must develop a sustainable funding model for maintaining local road networks with upfront investment to ensure roads are more resilient to severe weather, according to ALGA.  This was a key recommendation outlined by ALGA to a parliamentary committee on 30 March, as part of a submission to the House of+

  • Shadow Local Government Minister Darren Chester’s support for increasing Roads to Recovery funding to $800 million per year has been welcomed by ALGA. Speaking in Parliament yesterday, Mr Chester said: “The Australian Local Government Association is asking this Labor government to continue to support the Roads to Recovery Program and give additional funding going forward,+

  • Thank you for NGA motions A sincere thank you to everyone who has submitted motions for our 2023 National General Assembly in June. We’ve had a tremendous response for both motions and registrations for this year’s Conference, which is shaping up to be the biggest on record.  So a reminder to get your early bird+

  • In the lead up to this year’s Budget, ALGA is calling for $300 million per year for councils to improve freight productivity and infrastructure on Australia’s local roads. Local governments manage around 77 percent of Australia’s roads by length and play an important role in authorising heavy vehicle access on local roads.  However councils only+

  • ALGA has partnered with the Australian Airports Association (AAA) to urge the Federal Government to provide $250 million per year over four years for a new Regional Infrastructure Recovery Program to protect regional infrastructure against future disasters. Unprecedented natural disasters in 2022 and 2023 have devastated regional communities and infrastructure, with the National Emergency Management+

  • Applications are now open for the latest round of Regional Connectivity and Mobile Black Spot grants. Under the Federal Government’s $1.1 billion Better Connectivity Plan for Regional and Rural Australia, councils can apply for round 7 of the Mobile Black Spots and round 3 of Regional Connectivity programs. The funding is available for under-served regions+

  • Australian councils are invited to support a national education campaign around the dangers of asbestos in the home and workplace. As part of the National Asbestos Awareness Campaign from 12 March – 10 April 2023, local government is urged to access and share a stakeholder pack containing a range of useful materials you may wish+

  • JOINT MEDIA RELEASE The Australian Local Government Association (ALGA), with support from the Australian Airports Association (AAA), is urging the Federal Government to provide $250 million per year over four years for a new Regional Infrastructure Recovery Program to protect regional infrastructure against future disasters. There were 46 disasters declared in 2022, with 524 disaster+

  • Councils are invited to make a submission to the Federal Government’s Review of the Disability Standards for Accessible Public Transport which is now open. The review – announced in December 2022 – is conducted every five years.   A discussion paper was also released as part of the consultation process. The consultation involves public transport users+

  • Working for councils: Pre-Budget advocacy campaign The 2023-24 Federal Budget is fast approaching. I spent time in our Federal Parliament this week, meeting with the Government and Opposition to highlight our Budget funding requests to deliver for our communities. We recently partnered with the Institute of Public Works Engineers Australasia (IPWEA) to call for permanent+

  • ALGA has urged the Federal Government to honour its pre-election commitment to provide “fair increases” in Financial Assistance Grants to local government. President Cr Linda Scott said many local governments heavily rely on FA Grants to remain sustainable and urgently need an increase in this untied funding. “Australian councils are facing significant financial challenges, especially+

  • ALGA has partnered with the Institute of Public Works Engineers Australasia (IPWEA) to call for the Federal Government to make the successful Local Roads and Community Infrastructure (LRCI) program permanent, with $500 million per year ongoing and funding indexed annually.  On behalf of Australia’s 537 councils, ALGA highlighted the importance of investing in local governments+

  • Australian councils are calling on the Federal Government to honour its pre-election commitment to “fair increases” in Financial Assistance Grants to local government. Before the May 2022 election, Federal Labor committed to the “long-term financial sustainability of local government” through increases to grant allocations, including “fair increases” to Financial Assistance Grants*. ALGA President Councillor Linda+

  • ALGA recently submitted its 2023-24 Pre-Budget submission to the Treasury outlining key national funding priorities for Australia’s 537 councils. These major priorities include: Restoring Financial Assistance Grants to at least one percent of Commonwealth taxation revenue; Making the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure (LRCI) Program permanent with ongoing funding of $500 million per year, with+

  • JOINT MEDIA RELEASE Councils and public works engineers are calling for permanent funding in the upcoming Federal Budget to improve the liveability and productivity of Australian communities. The Australian Local Government Association (ALGA), with support from the Institute of Public Works Engineers Australasia (IPWEA), is urging the Federal Government to make the highly successful Local+

  • Councils are encouraged to apply to the Black Spot Program to address known risks on their local roads. The Federal Government allocates $110 million per year to the Black Spot Program, which targets roads where crashes are occurring or are at a risk of occurring; and includes safety measures such as traffic signals and roundabouts.+

  • JOINT MEDIA RELEASE Local government and community housing leaders are calling for urgent funding in the upcoming Federal Budget to address Australia’s affordable and social housing crisis. The Australian Local Government Association (ALGA), with support from the Community Housing Industry Association (CHIA) and National Shelter, is seeking $100 million per year over four years that+

  • Win! ACLG set to run after NGA Conference In a historic win for local government, the Federal Government has announced the return of the Australian Council of Local Government (ACLG), which will meet in Canberra for the first time in more than a decade on 16 June. The ACLG will provide a valuable opportunity for+

  • Local government can access a new Recovery Exercising Toolkit developed by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) and the Australian Institute for Disaster Resilience (AIDR). The toolkit has been designed to be a user-friendly resource applicable across all state and territories, and can be used to support exercise management programs to include a recovery exercise+

  • ALGA has partnered with the Community Housing Industry Association (CHIA) and National Shelter to call for funding in the 2023-24 Federal Budget to help address Australia’s affordable and social housing crisis.  Local government is seeking $100 million per year over four years from the Federal Government to assist councils to facilitate more affordable and social+

  • This year’s National General Assembly (NGA) will mark the historic return of the Australian Council of Local Government (ACLG), which will meet for the first time in more than a decade.  The Federal Government announced today it will re-establish the ACLG – to be held on Friday 16 June 2023 in Canberra – as part+

  • ALGA has joined forces with GrainGrowers, the National Farmers Federation and Australian Livestock and Rural Transporters Association to call for emergency funding of nearly $5.5 billion in the upcoming Federal Budget. Representing stakeholders from across regional Australia including farmers, transporters and local councils, the Rural Road Alliance was formed in response to the critical challenges+

  • A series of new fact sheets has been developed to support councils under a partnership between Our Watch and ALGA. The 12 fact sheets provide an overview and introduction of the role local government can play in the prevention of violence against women.  The tools are relevant for councils and council staff at various stages+

  • The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) has released new details about foreign arrangements as part of the Foreign Arrangements Scheme. Since the inception of the scheme, DFAT has received notification of 13,000 arrangements, including by local governments.  See the public register. So far, more than 8,000 arrangements have been identified as in-scope of+

  • The Australian Local Government Association (ALGA) has welcomed the fourth round of federal Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program (LRCI) funding, which will provide $500 million to Australian councils for community infrastructure and roads projects. “These funding allocations will be welcomed by councils right across the nation and help them build and revitalise playgrounds, community+

  • JOINT MEDIA RELEASE The newly-formed Rural Road Alliance is calling for an emergency funding package totalling nearly $5.5 billion in the upcoming Federal Budget. The alliance – which represents diverse stakeholders from across regional Australia including farmers, transporters and local councils – has been formed in response to the critical challenges facing Australia’s rural road+

  • Win! Local government at National Cabinet As outlined in National Cabinet’s recent Communique, I was honoured to note that National Cabinet values the contribution of ALGA and looks forward to continuing to work in partnership with local government after I represented councils in Canberra last week. ALGA looks forward to continuing to work in partnership+

  • Delegate registrations for the 2023 National General Assembly of Local Government (NGA) – incorporating the Regional Cooperation and Development Forum – are now open. ALGA welcomes early bird registrations for this year’s NGA, which will be held from 13-16 June in Canberra. ALGA is continuing to work with the Federal Government towards incorporating the return+

  • The 2023 National Awards for Local Government are now open for applications. These national awards celebrate outstanding local government achievements across Australia, including recognising local governments that are innovative, make a difference to their local communities, display excellence and deliver outcomes that are replicable across the country. All elected local government organisations, local government associations+

  • Councils are encouraged to register their interest to have a say on the Federal Government’s new National Housing and Homelessness Plan. ALGA looks forward to working with the Government on the development of this plan, and highlighting the vital role local governments can play in addressing the national housing crisis. The National Plan will be+

  • Councils are invited to make a submission on updates to the National Light Pollution Guideline. The Federal Government has developed a draft Ecological Communities Appendix and Terrestrial Mammal Appendix to the Light Pollution Guidelines.  As these guidelines are national, the Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water is seeking feedback on the development+

  • Local government is being urged to participate in a Federal Government survey to outline a vision for the future of Australia’s children and their families. The Department of Education has released the Early Years Strategy survey to support the development of the plan and seek a wide range of views on development of the Strategy.+

  • Councils are reminded that applications for the first round of funding through the Federal Government’s Disaster Ready Fund (DRF) close next month. While only states and territories are eligible to apply, councils with shovel-ready projects are urged to work with state or territory governments to apply for the $200 million in funding available. The National+

  • New dates for 2023 ALGA Annual Conference I’m delighted to announce our 2023 National General Assembly (NGA), incorporating the Regional Cooperation and Development Forum, will be held in Canberra from 13-15 June. The NGA is the biggest annual local government gathering in the country, and this year’s event is shaping up to be the best+

  • The Australian Road Research Board (ARRB) is offering a range of new courses for 2023 including on road safety, sustainability and pavement. ARRB collaborates with all levels of government – including councils and transport agencies – consultants and contractors, and private sector organisations on any aspect of transport and mobility.  They deliver innovative transport solutions that+

  • Local government is being encouraged to support and promote the Federal Government’s new Multicultural Health Connect helpline among multicultural communities.  The helpline 1800 186 815 offers people from multicultural backgrounds free health advice in their own language, including: expert health advice from a nurse  finding doctors, hospitals, and community health centres  finding nearby support services  +

  • The 2023 National General Assembly of Local Government (NGA) – incorporating the Regional Cooperation and Development Forum – will be held from 13-15 June in Canberra.  This year’s NGA at the National Convention Centre is expected to be the biggest yet and the program is being developed to feature a wide range of high profile+

  • Australian councils are invited to support and partner with DV Safe Phone to enable victims of domestic violence to have access to a mobile phone.   Founded in March 2020, DV Safe Phone works with the community, business and local government to source old working mobile phones to help provide a lifeline to victims of+

  • ALGA has provided a submission to the Federal Government’s Housing Legislative Package.  Across Australia, the supply and availability of affordable housing is a critical issue facing most local governments and their communities.  The lack of suitable housing impacts the well-being and economic productivity of local communities.  Councils can play a key role in facilitating and+