Checklist for council amalgamations

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Council general managers have a wide list of issues to consider when looking to merge with another council.

Council amalgamations and sharing of resources are on the agenda in West Australia, South Australia and New South Wales, and local council administrators and managers have a wide catalogue of issues they need to consider, according to Maddock’s local government partner, Prue Burns.

The most active amalgamation program is in NSW where an independent review identified that a third of NSW councils are at risk, either because of inadequate revenue or declining population or both.

Burns says the most obvious matter is to have a plan around the needs of ratepayers, community, and other stakeholders, including a well-constructed communications proposal.

“Developing an overall strategic plan is also vital to help direct the amalgamation,” according to Burns.

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