As government looks to 'three-sector solutions' to tackle wicked problems in public policy, two of those sectors know well the need for change. Not-fo
We recently moved our readers to a new system. You may need to reset your password here to login.
Not a member ? Join here for free.
Forgot your password?
Home News The local government reform Sydney needs to beat out Melbourne
Text size :
TAGS local government, New South Wales, Sydney
Sydney’s poor metropolitan governance has seen Melbourne edge ahead on competitiveness. Are amalgamations the answer? Planners are looking at lessons from Victoria and Queensland.
As New South Wales begins the agonising task of redrawing the local government map, a warning that Sydney needs to improve its metropolitan governance to avoid falling behind Melbourne.
Roberta Ryan, director of the Australian Centre of Excellence for Local Government and UTS Centre for Local Government, says the Harbour City has been losing global competitiveness to its better-run southern rival. “Local and state governments in Victoria have historically been better at working together than those in New South Wales on service delivery and infrastructure,” she told The Mandarin.
The NSW government will provide financial incentives and practical support to rural or city councils that opt to amalgamate, under its Fit for the Future deal. The offer follows a review led by Graham Sansom into the sustainability of the state’s local government sector, which argued that in Sydney, “the structure of local government has been largely ‘snap frozen’ for more than half a century”.
Premier Mike Baird says the changes are aimed at addressing the sector’s $280 million deficit. “These councils are losing $1 million a day. That’s unacceptable, it can’t go on,” she said.
Receive unlimited access, get all the latest public sector news and features, plus The Juice, our daily news update sent direct to your inbox.
The Mandarin is where Australia's public sector leaders discuss their work and the issues faced within modern bureaucracy. Join today to discover the latest in public administration thinking and news from our dedicated reporters, current and former agency heads and senior executives.
David Donaldson is a journalist at The Mandarin based in Melbourne. He's previously written for The Guardian and Crikey and holds a masters in international relations.
Read Related Content
The New South Wales government has moved to limit the Independent Commission Against Corruption's public inquiries by requiring a majority vote of a new triumvirate that it will appoint. Early bipartisan support has collapsed.