Hon Colin Barnett MEc MLA

Hon Colin Barnett MEc MLA

Former Premier; Minister for Tourism; Science

Hon Tony Simpson MLA

Hon Tony Simpson MLA

Former Minister for Local Government; Community Services; Seniors and Volunteering; Youth

    Future of LG reform now rests with councils

    17/02/2015 12:00 AM
     
    • Local government reform on hold
    • City of Perth Act progressing as a priority
    • Claims for further expenses will not be considered

    The State Government has put its local government reform agenda on hold, with Governor's orders for boundary adjustments that are not supported by the councils involved to be revoked.

     

    Premier Colin Barnett said boundary adjustments for 15 metropolitan councils would only proceed if affected councils provided a council resolution in support of it.

     

    "The onus of achieving the many benefits of a modern, streamlined and efficient system of local government now rests with the councils themselves," Mr Barnett said.

     

    "We will work with each council on a case-by-case basis. This is about achieving value for  money for ratepayers.

     

    "We will work with those councils that wish to continue on the reform path, or who have proposals for alternative mergers they wish to consider.

     

    "Any financial contribution to this process will only be considered in the case of a merger."

     

    The Premier said he appreciated the work undertaken by the City of Vincent and the City of Perth on the proposed City of Perth Act and this legislation remained a Government priority and was due to be introduced in this session of State Parliament.

     

    "We will proceed with the City of Perth Act, whether Vincent is included or not," he said.

     

    Local Government Minister Tony Simpson said the State Government started down the path of local government reform at the request of the local government sector after successive reports questioned the financial sustainability of many small councils.

     

    "They asked us to show leadership on this issue; we've done that but accept that some councils refuse to move forward. The ball is now in their court," Mr Simpson said.

     

    The Minister will invite mayors from adjoining local governments to discuss with him the proposed mergers and signify their council's intent.   

     

    "Governor's orders will be revoked for mergers that aren't supported by the councils," he said.

     

          Fact File

    • The State Government has provided grants between $50,000 and $200,000 totalling $1.7 million to local governments to prepare for reform and no further claims of expenses will be considered
    • The proposed amalgamations of South Perth/Victoria Park, East Fremantle and Fremantle, and Kwinana and Cockburn will not proceed
    • For more information, visit http://metroreform.dlg.wa.gov.au  

    Premier's office - 6552 5000

    Local Government Minister's office - 6552 6600