President’s Update – 24 April 2023

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 our nation councils continue to go above and beyond preparing for, responding to and recovering from natural disasters; but we need more support from all levels of government.

In the lead up to this year’s Federal Budget, based on your feedback, we are seeking funding for each state and territory peak local government body to have resources to support councils to prepare emergency plans, apply for government support, and to assist councils to better collaborate.

Importantly, we’re also seeking a new $250 million per year fund that would help disaster declared regional councils to build back better, more resilient infrastructure.

Federal Budget Climate Action

Another of our Budget priorities is a $50 million per year fund that would support us to reduce emissions at a local level, and help the Australian Government deliver on its net zero commitments.

This funding could help us to transition our fleets to electric vehicles, undertake carbon accounting, increase tree canopy cover and biodiversity, retrofit council buildings to increase energy efficiency, deliver bulk street lighting upgrades, and house community batteries.

Many councils have already set ambitious emissions reduction targets and developed plans – we just need funding to turn these plans into reality.

Thankyou Alice Springs!

 It is always an honour speaking at state and territory association conferences, and meeting all of you in your communities.

Last week I travelled to Alice Springs to present to LGANT’s Conference and General Meeting, and it was great to talk with mayors and councillors and hear about the challenges and opportunities in the NT.

I’m hoping to see many of you again in Canberra for our NGA and the ACLG in June. Registrations are now open, and you can find out more on our website.