Local government in limbo

Minister says delay will not affect start-up date
Minister says delay will not affect start-up date

Mr Pickard said he expected delays would further exacerbate the uncertainty for local government staff and members.

‘To ensure that councils remain engaged, there needs to be a more complete explanation and outline of how the delay will affect the process and the consequent expectations on local governments,’ Mr Pickard said.

‘Structural reform has been approaching for some time and, as with any prospect of change, there is anxiety from those who are likely to be affected.’

Local Government Minister Tony Simpson announced the delays last Monday, July 14, pushing the expected date to late August rather than July.

Mr Simpson said the delay would not affect the July 1, 2015, deadline for the start-up of new local government entities.

Despite Mr Pickard’s concerns, City of Stirling Mayor Giovanni Italiano said the delay would not affect City operations.

The Local Government Advisory Board is considering 38 proposals before announcing its recommendations for reform to the State Government next month.

Mr Pickard said local governments would request an explanation from the minister as to how councils would be expected to establish new identities when the recommended structure had not yet been defined and endorsed.