Councils key to stronger communities

With stronger funding partnerships, councils could help deliver more affordable housing, reduce cost-of-living pressures for families, provide safer local roads, and increase profits for Australian businesses.

ALGA President Linda Scott said sustained investment in local government infrastructure would unlock a wide range of benefits.

“Expanding the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program would support councils to build more libraries, playgrounds, skate parks and bike paths, reducing cost-of-living pressures for local families,” Cr Scott said

“A first and last-mile funding program would increase profits for primary producers and businesses by helping them get their products to market more effectively.”

“An affordable housing fund would help more Australians become homeowners and assist regional businesses to attract and retain skilled workers.”

“Increased investment in local road maintenance, and extra funding to address known safety hazards, would result in safer roads for all users and reduce serious injuries and deaths.”

“In the lead up to this year’s Federal Election we are asking all parties to commit to better funding partnerships that will create new jobs, and make our communities better places to live, work and visit,” Cr Scott said.

“This includes:

  • A four year $500 million per year extension of the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure Program;
  • A new $300 million per year funding program to address first and last-mile road transport issues;
  • An increase in Roads to Recovery Funding to $800 million per year, an increase in Black Spot Program funding to $200 million per year, and $20 million per year ongoing supplementary road funding for SA councils, and
  • $200 million over four years to support councils to invest in innovative affordable housing partnerships.”

“We also want increased investment in improving regional mobile coverage and internet access, and we are thrilled that both the Government and Opposition have responded to our advocacy with funding commitments in the past week.”

Cr Scott said investing in local government projects made economic sense and would ensure federal funding flowed into every corner of the nation.

“These priorities have been independently assessed, and if funded would create almost 10,000 new jobs and add $1.54 billion per year to Australia’s GDP.”

“Councils are ready to step up and play a bigger role in our nation’s recovery, and we look forward to working with the next Federal Government to deliver lasting benefits for all Australians and ensure no community is left behind,” Cr Scott said.