President’s Update – 10 April 2023

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 fantastic ALGA has a seat at this table to effectively advocate for your councils and communities across Australia.

Win! LRCI extension for council projects

In a win for local government, the Federal Government has extended the project deadlines for councils with community projects funded through the Local Roads and Community Infrastructure (LRCI) program.

This is a welcome announcement that will help us get back on our feet after flooding and supply chain issues have delayed many local projects.

We’re continuing to advocate to the Government to make the LRCI program permanent, with annual funding of $500 million per year.

Win! New regional bank closure protocols

We secured another win following my recent meeting with the Australian Banking Association (ABA).

As part of ALGA’s involvement in the regional banking taskforce, it was agreed there needs to be a stronger level of engagement from banks with local governments around branch closures.

The ABA has developed a new protocol around closures, which will be regulated and therefore enforceable, ensuring there’s more consultation with local government around future branch closures.