Australia: Local Government News – 23 April 2018

Last Updated: 30 April 2018
Article by Jenny Humphris, Joseph Monaghan and Peter Holt

Most Read Contributor in Australia, September 2018

In the media – National

New Federal taskforce to reduce impact of natural disasters
Following the recent floods, cyclones and fires that have greatly impacted communities across the country, the Federal Government has announced that it will establish a National Resilience Taskforce to reduce the impacts of natural disasters on the Australian community (13 April 2018). More...

'Crisis' at the kerbside: groups seek federal action on waste, recycling
Recycled content would be a mandated component of government infrastructure projects under a new national plan put forward by the waste and recycling sectors (10 April 2018). More...

Data shines light on workforce trends in local government
With 420 councils employing more than half their workforce locally, Australian local government makes a significant contributor to national productivity and quality of life, an analysis shows (06 April 2018). More...

$150 million needed to make Australia recycling industry self-reliant
The waste industry is calling for a national 'circular' approach to recycling, after China banned the import of 24 types of Australian waste and recyclable material (04 April 2018). More...

In the media – Queensland

Yamanto man charged with Misconduct in Public Office - 13 April 2018
A 54-year-old Yamanto man was today served with a Notice to Appear in Court to face one charge of Misconduct in Public Office following a CCC investigation. The former Ipswich City Council employee will face one charge of Misconduct in Public Office contrary to section 92A(1) of the Queensland Criminal Code and is expected to appear in the Brisbane Magistrates Court on 2 May 2018 (13 April 2018). More...

Palaszczuk Government praises Cairns Council for removing plastic straws
Minister for Environment Leeanne Enoch has praised Cairns Regional Council for taking steps to remove plastic straws and other single-use plastics from their venues and operations, and says the Council is setting a great example for the rest of Queensland (13 April 2018). More...

Collaborations key to regional water security
Water partnerships are springing up across Queensland, with councils proactively working towards their own water security solutions in collaboration with industry, neighbouring councils and the State Government (12 April 2018). More...

Ratepayers the winners as Council joins electricity trial
Toowoomba Regional Council (TRC) has become the first council in Queensland to join a trial to optimise electricity use and ultimately save money for ratepayers (12 April 2018). More...

Mining giant pays $3.8m in tax, payments to Gladstone council
Gladstone Regional Council received a $3.8 million slice of Rio Tinto's almost $5 billion paid in voluntary taxes and payments in Australia last year. The City of Karratha and Shire of Ashburton were the only two Aussie councils that received more than Gladstone (10 April 2018). More...

Waste safeguards now in place for Ipswich
Minister for State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning Cameron Dick has advised Ipswich City Council of his intention to use statutory powers under the Planning Act 2016 to make a TLPI in response to community and Council concerns over the impact that waste facilities can have on neighbouring residents (07 April 2018). More...

New protections for Ipswich residents regarding waste facilities
The Palaszczuk Government has acted to further regulate development applications in Ipswich for new or expanded waste facilities in the Swanbank and New Chum industrial area (05 April 2018). More...

In the media – Victoria

Mystery surrounds location of Victorian Mayor
A business owner calls for the Victorian Government to step in and appoint administrators to take over the Ararat Rural City Council in the state's west, as questions are raised about the Mayor's whereabouts (13 April 2018). More...

IBAC survey - Victorian community perceptions
According to a new report released by the Independent Broad-based Anti-Corruption Commission, two-thirds (or 65 per cent) of Victorian community respondents to their survey agreed they knew what behaviour constitutes corruption. The full report and its key findings can be accessed online (10 April 2018). More...

Regional partnerships for digital connectivity
Victoria's nine regional partnerships will share in $1 million State funding to develop comprehensive digital plans which address the needs and priorities of a specific region using new technologies and infrastructure. This funding comes as part of a $45 million boost in the Victorian Budget 2017/18 for digital initiatives that will boost digital connectivity across the state (11 April 2018). More...

In the media – New South Wales

Online tool to help governments plan solar use
A new platform that calculates the solar power potential of rooftops promises to help local councils and urban planners make decisions about investments in solar. The SunSPoT online tool has been developed by Australian PV Institute (APVI) and UNSW with technology partners Solar Analytics and Enosi (13 April 2018). More...

New Greenfield Code welcomed
The Property Council today welcomed the State Government's new Greenfield Housing Code that allows one and two storey homes, renovations and extensions to be carried out under a fast-track complying development approval. The changes start on 6 July 2018 and will save councils, industry and homeowners time without compromising on outcome (11 April 2018). More...

Councils encouraged to apply for funds as new NSW coastal legislation commences
NSW Environment Minister Gabrielle Upton and Planning Minister Anthony Roberts have welcomed the commencement of the NSW Coastal Management Act. The NSW Government worked with councils to deliver the new legislative and regulatory framework to support the coordinated planning and management of the State's coastal areas (03 April 2018). More...

In Practice and Courts

Austroads calling for council comments on Temporary Traffic Management Practice guide
Austroads is continuing to develop the guide series for Temporary Traffic Management Practice in consultation with ALGA and various other industry stakeholders. This guide will sit alongside the Australian Standard AS1742.3 and provide comprehensive national guidance for all practitioners operating in Temporary Traffic Management. Interested council officers should contribute technical comments towards the drafts as they are published. The industry comment period closes on Monday 30 April 2018. More...

Website provides guidelines on PFAS contamination response
The Australian Government has published a PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) website to serve as a central portal of authoritative information on PFAS. The PFAS website provides a range of guidance material that describes how government bodies and other responsible entities should respond to PFAS contamination (13 April 2018). More...

From around the coasts: annual Australian Coastal Councils Conference.
Mr Wynne's presentation on the Great Ocean Road follows the release of an issues paper by a Victorian Planning Ministry taskforce charged with the job of protecting and enhancing the Great Ocean Road. Its issues paper Governance of the Great Ocean Road Region identifies proposals for better coordination between the key agencies responsible for the road and the tourist destination. Submissions can be lodged before the end of April. More...

ABS Census 2021
The ABS will open public consultation on the review of 2021 Census topics on Tuesday, 3 April 2018. This will provide you and your organisation with an opportunity to identify your data needs and share your views on the most useful information to collect in the 2021 Census. Learn more about the public consultation and the Review of 2021 Census topics here.

Recall of G8Safe pool fence latches
SafeTech Hardware Australia has recalled a number of products (non-compliant latches). The non-compliant latches do not comply with AS 1926.1-2012

What should A1, A2, A3 and E1 certifiers and councils do?

When certifiers and councils inspect swimming pool barriers they should check if the non-compliant latches are fitted. If the barrier has a non-compliant latch, the lock on the latch should be disabled immediately in accordance with the consumer advice given by the ACCC. More...

Fire Australia 2018, 1-3 May, Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre
Local Government representatives involved in facility management, building compliance including building inspectors, building surveyors and building certifiers, would find Fire Australia 2018 of interest, particularly the presentations on the NFPA cladding risk assessment tool, fire system maintenance and baseline data. Fire Australia is run by FPA Australia, the peak industry body for fire safety and protection. See here to learn more or contact FPA Australia's events team.

National General Assembly (NGA) of Local Government 2018
The National General Assembly (NGA) of Local Government is the peak annual event for local government, attracting in excess of 800 mayors and councillors each year. This year's event takes place at the National Convention Centre in Canberra from 17 – 20 June. Registrations are available online. A discussion paper is available to provide guidance to councils for the development of Motions for debate.

LG Professionals Australia's National Congress and Business Expo 2018
The LG Professionals Australia National Congress 2018 will be held in Canberra, 22-24 August, at the Canberra Rex Hotel. More...


LGAQ: Natural Disaster Resilience Program 2017-18
The 2017-18 Natural Disaster Resilience Program (NDRP) is now open for funding until 27 April 2018. More...

LGAQ: Tell us what you think: Office of the Ombudsman
A strategic review of the Office of the Queensland Ombudsman will give councils their say in its effectiveness and operation. Councils are invited to contact the LGAQ and provide input into our submission by 16 April 2018 (06 April 2018). More...

Draft Kangaroo Point Peninsula neighbourhood plan
A second period of public consultation is expected in mid-2018, with the adoption and gazette of the final neighbourhood plan expected in early 2019. Further information on the Kangaroo Point neighbourhood plan process can be found on Brisbane City Council's website (05 April 2018).

Local Government Act 2009
Gazettal of Goondiwindi Regional Council (Making of Local Law) Notice (No 1) 2018. Goondiwindi Regional Council has, by resolution dated the 28 March 2018, made Animal Management (Amendment) Subordinate Local Law (No 1) 2018 amending the Subordinate Local Law No. 2 (Animal Management) 2011 [gazettal 06 April].

Local Government Act 2009
Gazettal of Moreton Bay Regional Council Interim Local Law No. 2 (Advertising Devices) 2018. The Moreton Bay Regional Council has, by resolution dated the 27 May 2018, made the interim local law amending the Moreton Bay Regional Council Subordinate Local Law No. 1 (Administration) 2011 [gazettal 06 April].

Local Government Regulation 2012
Gazettal of the notice by Barcaldine Regional Council that, unless overdue rates and expenses of sale owing in relation to the land mentioned in the Schedule are sooner paid, the land will be sold by public auction on 13 April 2018. Gazettal of the notice by Central Highlands Regional Council that, unless overdue rates and expenses of sale owing in relation to the land mentioned in the Schedule are sooner paid, the land will be sold by public auction on 18 April 2018.

Round 4 Building our Regions (BoR): Round 4
The closing date for expressions of interest is 27 April 2018. Councils who have had Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements (NDRRA) activated due to the March 2018 flood events will have an additional four weeks to submit their applications. For more information visit here.

LGAQ: Have your say on two proposed Qld solar farm guidelines
Developed to support and inform understanding, decision making and community engagement regarding solar farm developments. Written submissions can be made on either or both guidelines by no later than 11 May 2018. More...

Land Valuations Online
The new land valuation data for 2018 can be accessed online at
Hard copies of the valuation list can be viewed at Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy business centres and local government offices during normal business hours until close of business on 5 June 2018.


VPA: Call for Strategic Sites
In the coming weeks, the Victorian Planning Authority (VPA) will be considering strategic sites that the Minister for Planning Richard Wynne MP can incorporate into VPA's 2018/19 work program or beyond (05 April 2018). More...

New South Wales

Code of Conduct for Councillors
Sydney, 27 April 2018 - for venue details contact LGNSW Learning Solutions. More...


Ku-ring-gai Council v Chia [2018] NSWLEC 40
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE - notices to produce – objection to access to documents on ground that documents subject to legal professional privilege – whether legitimate forensic purpose.

Erector Group Pty Ltd v Burwood Council; Liverpool Developing Pty Ltd v Burwood Council [2018] NSWCCA 56
SENTENCING – aggravating factors – substantial harm, injury, loss or damage – offenders carried out development without appointing a principal certifying authority or obtaining a construction certificate contrary to legislation – adjoining building collapsed after excavation occurred – whether damage to adjoining building was caused by contravention of legislation.
SENTENCING – relevant factors on sentence – De Simoni double counting – offenders carried out development without appointing a principal certifying authority or obtaining a construction certificate contrary to legislation – adjoining building collapsed after excavation occurred – failing to protect and support or underpin adjoining buildings was also an offence under the legislation – whether taking into account damage caused was contrary to De Simoni.
Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act 1999 (NSW); Criminal Appeal Act 1912 (NSW); Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (NSW); Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000 (NSW).

TC (Tallwoods) Pty Ltd v Liverpool City Council [2018] NSWLEC 48
PROCEDURE – application for expedition – failure of Council to accept development application potentially in breach of statutory duty – relevance of Applicant being prevented from exercising put and call options – relevance of consequential financial hardship – expedition granted.



Bills Updated

Local Government (Councillor Complaints) and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2018
Stage reached: 2nd reading to be moved on 9/04/2018.


No 38 Building Regulations 2018
Commencement: 02/06/2018: reg. 3 Not yet in operation: Regs 1-286: on 02/06/2018: reg. 3.
Division 6 —Duties of council
49 Period that documents must be kept
50 Relevant council to make documents available on request
51 Requests for information from relevant council
52 Fees for requests for information

The Victorian Commencement Book is available on the Office of the Chief Parliamentary Counsel website.

This publication does not deal with every important topic or change in law and is not intended to be relied upon as a substitute for legal or other advice that may be relevant to the reader's specific circumstances. If you have found this publication of interest and would like to know more or wish to obtain legal advice relevant to your circumstances please contact one of the named individuals listed.

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