Local Government

449322-65d453be-189b-11e5-8706-97259cdfe878The Coalition swept to power promising to return local decision-making to local communities, but the reality has been very different.

From entrenching business voting to forced amalgamations to opening up local tendering to corruption and now legislation that that would see council elections on the chopping block, local government has faced sustained attacks from the Coalition including:

  • Introduced changes to the Local Government Act making it easy for councillors to vote on developments in which they have a direct financial interest.
  • Failed to democratise local government elections by continuing to allow two and one-member wards, particularly in the Botany Local Government Area.
  • Pushed through legislation barring State MPs from running in local government elections – a blatant attack on Sydney Lord Mayor and member for Sydney Clover Moore – denying local communities the ability to choose their representative.
  • Effectively given money a vote in the City of Sydney by automatically giving corporations in local government elections

The latest move to undermine local democracy is the government’s  ‘Fit For the Future’ package which seeks to amalgamate councils across the state. The package is essentially using financial blackmail to push for forced amalgamations.

Read more about what David has said on the issue.


The Greens and Local Government

The Greens NSW are committed to grassroots democracy. This means we support local councils being active, vibrant and genuinely local.

The Greens believe that local government is an essential part of our democracy because it is closest to the community and is in the best position to identify and respond to the needs of the community. Decisions should be made at the level closest to the people they affect.

Recognition for the central role local government plays in our democracy is a campaign that Senator Lee Rhiannon is focussing on at the federal level. Read more about her work on the issue here.

Petition to keep local government local

Sign the petition to keep local government local

Get Involved

One of the four pillars of The Greens NSW is grassroots democracy. There are autonomous Greens local groups all across NSW working hard and campaigning on local issues in their local areas. You can find the Greens NSW local group in your area here.

Local government gives a crucial voice to local communities, particularly in rural and regional areas. Greens councillors promote heritage preservation, sustainable development, local employment and community service delivery.

There are over seventy Greens Councillors in NSW, including mayors and deputy mayors. Find out if your local area has a Greens councillor here.

Read the NSW Greens’ Local Government policy.

Read David’s recent work on issues relating to local government.

Read the Greens NSW Submissions to the Independent Local Government Review.

Key issues for David in the Local Government portfolio:

MEDIA RELEASE: Greens vote grows with successful council elections

The Greens are certain to increase their local government representation after yesterday’s successful council elections. With many votes still to be counted, the Greens already look likely to win 29 council positions this election and are in a strong position to win an additional 5 positions. Out of the councils that voted, the Greens had […]

Save Bondi Pavilion

Bondi Pavilion is an iconic arts, community and cultural facility serving the community of Bondi and Sydney. Bondi Pavilion’s facilities include the Bondi Theatre, exhibition spaces, meeting rooms and more. Bondi Pavilion currently plays host to many activities with a strong community focus, including art exhibitions, community education classes, workshops, screenings and more. It is […]

Grill the Ministers at Budget Estimates

It has been a busy year in NSW Parliament, and once again budget estimates are almost upon us. Hearings will be from Thursday 31 August to Friday 8 September 2017. We’d love to hear your thoughts about issues to raise and potential questions to ask. Budget Estimates happen once a year and are one of […]

The Sydenham to Bankstown Priority precincts

Between 100,000 – 200,000 new residents Not a single new school site identified Not a single new hospital site Not a single new park Not a single new community centre Download in PDF:  170731 Canterbury Overdevelopment Download in PowerPoint: 170731 Canterbury Overdevelopment          

Community Wins Liberal National Government Attack on Councils Collapses

The Community has struck back and the Liberal National Party’s forced amalgamation mess is collapsing as the government backs down on forced mergers today. While today’s announcement is a terrific victory for all those councils who have taken the government to Court, the campaign to restore local democracy will not end until every forced amalgamation […]

Local Government ready to lead on climate change: if we let them

Today’s Climate Council report shows Local Government leading the charge on climate change, despite repeated attacks from the Coalition Government. This report is proof that Local Government is uniquely placed to understand the threat climate change poses to their area. An effective local response to greenhouse gas emissions, coastal retreat and energy policy is essential […]

Coalition’s last council ally turns on them, as Hornsby wants amalgamation unwound

Media Release 13 July 2017 Coalition’s last council ally turns on them, as Hornsby wants amalgamation unwound The Coalition has lost its last ally in local government, as Hornsby Council delivers a stinging rebuke to the Berejiklian forced amalgamation mess.  Liberal-dominated Hornsby Council, the last remaining elected council that supported the Coalition’s forced amalgamations, is […]

Unprecedented political interference into Waverley Mayor’s code of conduct breach

The Office of Local Government has inappropriately intervened in Waverley Mayor Sally Betts code of conduct breach, with the secret letter confirming that Acting Chief Executive Tim Hurst has gone to extraordinary measures to protect Mayor Betts. 9.6 the model code of conduct specifies Office of Local Government’s role is to review whether the investigation […]

Local Government Amendment (Amalgamation Referendums) Bill 2017

Mr DAVID SHOEBRIDGE ( 11:25 ): I give The Greens’ strong endorsement to the Local Government Amendment (Amalgamation Referendums) Bill 2017. If the Government had any sense it would endorse and embrace this bill with open arms, because it gets them out of a terrible mess when it comes to their so-called reform process in […]

Local Government Amendment (Rates – Merged Council Areas) Bill 2017

Mr DAVID SHOEBRIDGE ( 19:55 ): On behalf of The Greens, I indicate our strong opposition to the Local Government Amendment (Rates—Merged Council Areas) Bill 2017, which I think is effectively—if anyone can understand the drafting of the bill—the Government’s plan to apply rate pegging, as determined by the Minister for Local Government, to all […]