In the media
Legacy mindset causing governments to lag on
Government technology trends have the potential to revolutionise services, but the public sector's legacy mindset and resistance to change means that opportunities are being missed, an expert says (10 October 2019). More...
High cost of recycling leads to more landfill
The high cost of recycling in Australia has seen many local councils abandoning recycling schemes and sending all their waste to landfill, an industry white paper says (10 October 2019). More...
Free fleet-management calculator for electric
Councils and other entities considering ways to transition their fleets to electric vehicles can now use a free calculator that its creators say is the first of its kind in Australia (11 October 2019). More...
Planning for Australia's Future Population
The Australian Government launched a new Centre for Population. It is intended that the research, analysis and forecasting undertaken by the centre will help all levels of government and the community better understand how states', cities' and regions' populations are changing and the challenges and opportunities this presents (10 October 2019). More....
Mayors fear entrenched homelessness across
Inaction on addressing homelessness and the lack of social and affordable housing risks entrenching disadvantage among Australians across our capital cities, the Council of Capital City Lord Mayors has warned (10 October 2019). More...
New quad bike standard to save lives
The Australian Government is improving the safety of quad bikes with the introduction of a new safety standard to protect the community, Minister for Housing and Assistant Treasurer Michael Sukkar said (10 October 2019). More...
Quad bike rebate extension: The Victorian Government has extended the quad bike rebate for a further nine months to help Victorian farmers to improve safety on their properties.
Undemocratic, un-Australian': Welcome to local
Voting rights based on owning property were last seen in many democracies in the late 19th century, but they live on in most Australian local government elections (05 October 2019). More...
Emphasise disaster mitigation, not recovery, ALGA &
insurance industry tell Parliament
The ALGA has told a Senate inquiry that new legislation to create a natural disasters emergency response fund ought to focus on mitigation measures before a calamity occurs, rather than only on recovery efforts. The Senate Finance and Public Administration Committee is examining the Emergency Response Fund Bill 2019 and Emergency Response Fund (04 October 2019). More...
Guidelines stress need to embed good AI procurement
Governments often lack experience in acquiring AI solutions, new guidelines say. There are also concerns about privacy, accountability and transparency – not to mention complexity. The guidelines also stress the need for Governments to understand negative outcomes of the technology, as well as benefits (04 October 2019). More...
Remote airstrip upgrades
The Commonwealth has announced $8m in the latest round of funding for eligible organisations to perform safety and access works at remote aerodromes and airstrips. Successful applicants can use money from the Remote Airstrip Upgrade Grants Round 7 for eligible projects including upgrading runway surfaces or stormwater drainage, installing or upgrading runway lighting and navigation (04 October 2019). More...
Don't underestimate the value of
right to know
Citizens highly value the right to find out government information, and government departments and agencies should make better use of technology to ensure they provide access to it (02 October 2019). More...
Special report on corruption risks associated with
procurement in local government
Allegations of corruption associated with procurement have been a recurring feature of complaints received and investigations conducted by the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC), as well as other Victorian and interstate integrity agencies (30 September 2019). More...
Local council corruption risk highlights need for
greater scrutiny, ratepayers group says
A ratepayers advocacy group says a damning report into the risk of corruption within local government in Victoria highlights the need for greater scrutiny of regional councils (02 October 2019). More...
Councils accuse Fines Victoria of 'dog ate my
homework' excuses over unrecovered debts
Claims of delays and a drop in the recovery of fines has led to 11 councils experiencing massive cash shortfalls, since Fines Victoria replaced Civil Compliance Victoria in 2017 (01 October 2019). More...
Small business owners claim 'widespread,
catastrophic' losses over $60m redevelopment
Small business owners in Melbourne's south-east mount a class action against their local council, claiming a carpark development has left them battling financial woes, marriage breakdowns and even mental health issues (01 October 2019). More...
When is a complaint to a council not considered a
complaint? Ombudsman releases enquiry findings
Many Victorian councils are understating the number of complaints they receive, raising concerns they are failing to deal with dissatisfaction from their communities, Victorian Ombudsman Deborah Glass has found in a survey of all 79 Victorian councils (08 October 2019). More...
Whistleblower claims aired against council over alleged
Ratepayers Victoria has accused high-ranking council employees of silencing staff who tried to raise concerns about alleged fraudulent spending and cover-ups of financial impropriety (11 October 2019). More...
Bold transport vision to boost City's
An ambitious 10-year transport plan to respond to Melbourne's significant population growth by delivering more space for pedestrians, public transport users and cyclists, will return to City of Melbourne councillors for final consideration (11 October 2019). More...
EPA fines Council over Violet Town landfill
Strathbogie Shire Council has been fined more than $8,000 for breaching environmental licence conditions on the former Violet Town Landfill, in McDiarmids Road (10 October 2019). More...
The residents of Australia's booming suburbs say
they were sold a false dream
When the Bahadur family moved into their new home in Melbourne's booming outer west four months ago, they dreamed of suburban bliss. But it turned out to be a nightmare (09 October 2019). More...
Plan in place for Geelong City Deal rollout
A clear path toward economic diversification, tourism growth and a thriving city centre has been laid out with the launch of the Geelong City Deal Implementation Plan (08 October 2019). More...
Urgent reform required to meet residential demand
In a submission to Red Tape Commissioner Anna Cronin, the Property Council has urged the State Government to support additional funding for councils to improve planning and manage the backlog in planning applications (03 October 2019). More...
OIA: Statement from the Independent Assessor Kathleen
Florian regarding Noosa Shire councillor
The Office of the Independent Assessor has assessed complaints regarding Noosa Shire Councillor Jess Glasgow as misconduct and has commenced an investigation. The Office assessed the councillor's actions as misconduct rather than the lower level of inappropriate conduct (Breach of the Councillor Code of Conduct) (12 October 2019). More...
$6 million funding to increase recycling and support
regional jobs announced
Regional councils and business will have greater access to recycling following the Palaszczuk Government's $6 million investment through the Regional Recycling Transport Assistance Package (RRTAP), an example of waste levy revenue supporting regional Queensland (11 October 2019). More...
PCA: Councils set to increase transparency of
The Property Council has long advocated that the lack of transparency around the collection and spending of infrastructure charges has contributed to community concerns that development occurs without the necessary local infrastructure upgrades. These amendments will keep tabs on how these levies are contributing to local infrastructure upgrades (10 October 2019). More...
'We don't have a backyard': Urban squeeze
pushes great Australian dream to the fringes
The Australian dream of a house with a backyard is deeply ingrained and continues to drive urban spread, but that way of life is under pressure, with South East Queensland's population forecast to grow by 2 million people over the next two decades (06 October 2019). More...
Farmers furious as central Queensland weir becomes
Farmers and local politicians voice their objections to plans to reduce the size of a proposed central Queensland weir as state and federal governments argue over how to deal with a cost blowout (03 October 2019). More...
New Local Government Remuneration Commission chair
Former Sunshine Coast and Noosa mayor and widely respected local government identity Bob Abbot will chair the new Local Government Remuneration Commission. Local Government Minister Stirling Hinchliffe said the commission would establish categories for Queensland's 77 councils and the amount of remuneration payable to councillors and mayors in those categories (01 October 2019). More...
New push to increase council spending transparency
Queenslanders will soon have clear information about how councils are spending developer infrastructure charges, with amendments proposed for the state planning system, delivering on a 2017 state election commitment (28 September 2019). More...
In practice and courts
Free fleet-management calculator for electric
Charge Together Fleets – created by the Electric Vehicle Council and Evenergi and used by 90 fleets – combines data including the Total Cost of Ownership of electric versus fossil fuel engines, vehicle guides, and ways to collectively procure (October 2019).
National Airports Safeguarding Advisory Group
The NASAG is undertaking a review of implementation of the National Airports Safeguarding Framework (NASF). The review is intended to consider implementation of NASF across jurisdictions; and seeks submissions from all levels of government, industry and community stakeholders, submissions close on 22 November 2019. More....
Consultation: DR AS 1926.1:2019, Swimming pool safety,
Part 1: Safety barriers for swimming pools
The released draft Australian Standard is related to swimming pool safety barriers for public comment and local governments are invited to have their say. The draft proposes expanding elements of AS1926.1-2012 to give additional information to pool owners, pool users and certifiers so they have a better understanding of the design and construction of a child-resistant barrier. Responses are due by 31 December 2019. More...
Social Media for Government Summit, Melbourne: 4 to 6
This event will address the most significant challenges being faced and uncover the knowledge, strategies and technology to improve the impact and value of social media efforts. More...
National Local Government Workforce Summit: Tweed Heads,
13-14 November 2019
Featuring expert speakers, interactive workshops, case studies. More...
National Local Roads and Transport Congress, 18-20
This year's theme is 'breaking through for modern transport'. Topics to be covered include the future of transport and how local government can benefit, and an update on the state of the country's infrastructure by Infrastructure Australia CEO, Romily Madew More...
North Queensland Regional Plan
The draft NQ Regional Plan is a 25 year strategic, statutory planning document for the local government areas of Burdekin, Charter Towers, Hinchinbrook, Palm Island and Townsville. Consultation on the draft document closes on 22 November 2019. More...
DNMRE Current Consultations
Cairns South SDA – potential expansion and draft development scheme
Local Government Borrowings and Working Capital Facilities 2018–19
This Bulletin is to advise Local Governments of the procedure for submitting borrowing and/or Working Capital Facility (WCF) applications for the 2019-20 financial year.
11 October 2019 – First Submission Date | Assessment Commences: The Department will commence assessment of completed borrowing / WCF applications and supporting documentation in order of receipt of the applications.
PCA: Reef regulations amendment Bill passed by
The Environmental Protection (Great Barrier Reef Protection Measures) and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2019 was passed on 19 September 2019 with the new Reef protection regulations proposed to come into effect on 1 December 2019. More...
LGAQ: Container Refund Scheme (CRS) – Revenue
Transitional arrangement provisions in the Waste Reduction and Recycling (Container Refund Scheme – Material Recovery Agreements) Amendment Regulation 2019 have been extended to 31 December 2019, allowing more time to find a sustainable (default) arrangement. More...
Waste tyre receivers in Queensland now need an
An environmental authority (EA) is now required for activities that involve receiving and sorting, dismantling, baling or storing greater than 4t or 4m3 of end-of-life tyres at any one time. This activity is regulated under Environmentally Relevant Activity (ERA) 62 –Resource recovery and transfer facility operation in accordance with the Environmental Protection Regulation 2019. Current operators have until 23 November 2019 to hold an EA. More...
Stage 2 changes
The information sheet Fees for new waste environmentally relevant activities (ERAs) (PDF, 73K) details the new fees that apply for waste-related ERAs from the first anniversary day after 15 November 2019 or the next anniversary day if the environmental authority is amended before 15 November 2019.
DNMRE Current Consultations
Cairns South SDA – potential expansion and draft development scheme
LGAQ: Migration in regional Australia – have your
The LGAQ will be preparing a submission to the Inquiry on Migration in Regional Australia. The Inquiry will give particular consideration to how communities and settlement services can best assist migrants to gain successful employment. Members of the public can view the plans in full detail and make a submission here from 30 August to 11 October.
Central Coast Council v Armstrong
 FCA 1613
Pursuant to s 133(9) of the Bankruptcy Act 1966 (Cth), the property at 4 Turners Beach Road, Turners Beach in Tasmania as is more particularly described in Certificate of Title Volume 8179 Folio 1 vest in the Central Coast Council for the purposes of sale by the Central Coast Council of the property for unpaid rates and otherwise in accordance with the provisions of s 137 of the Local Government Act 1993 (Tas).
The Applicant's cost of this application have been incurred by it in proceeding under Division 11 of the Local Government Act 1993 (Tas).
Barngarla Determination Aboriginal Corporation RNTBC v
District Council of Kimba  FCA
PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE – application for an interlocutory injunction to restrain the respondent council from conducting a community ballot – where injunction sought pending the outcome of the appeal – where respondent council proposed to conduct a community ballot for the purposes of a process conducted by the Commonwealth Minister responsible for selecting a site for the National Radioactive Waste Management Facility – where ballot proposed to be conducted prior to the hearing of the appeal – where ballot proposed to be conducted in accordance with the franchise expressed in the Local Government (Elections) Act 1999 (SA) – where appellant claimed its members who held native title rights to the land in question were excluded from the ballot in contravention of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth) – where primary judge did not accept those claims – whether the appeal would be rendered nugatory if the injunction was not granted – whether there was a strong prima facie case on appeal – whether the balance of convenience favoured the grant of an injunction – application dismissed
Federal Court of Australia Act 1976 (Cth) s 25; National Radioactive Waste Management Act 2012 (Cth) ss 7, 10, 18, 19, 22, 23, Part 2; Native Title Act 1993 (Cth); Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth) ss 8, 9; Local Government (Elections) Act 1999 (SA) s 14
Isaac Regional Council v Warner
 QDC 196
LOCAL GOVERNMENT POWERS, FUNCTIONS AND DUTIES OF COUNCILS GENERALLY – POWERS GENERALLY – EXERCISE OF POWERS – GENERALLY – where the council obtained an enforcement order against the respondent due to her failure to comply with public health orders – where the appellant was found to have trespassed by entering the respondent's property at a time earlier than that specified in the enforcement order – where the magistrate awarded a global amount for both compensation and damages for trespass – where the magistrate failed to indicate the amount attributed under each heading – whether the magistrate's failure to give reasons identifying the amount allowed under each heading constitutes an error of law
LOCAL GOVERNMENT – POWERS, FUNCTIONS AND DUTIES OF COUNCILS GENERALLY – POWERS GENERALLY – EXERCISE OF POWERS – GENERALLY – where the respondent claimed compensation for items of value unnecessarily disposed of from the property – whether the power to claim compensation under s 422 of the Public Health Act was engaged
Gold Coast City Council v Anderson
 QMC 8
SUSTAINABLE PLANNING ACT – CARRYING OUT ASSESSABLE DEVELOPMENT WITHOUT A PERMIT – TREE CLEARING – FACT FINDING ON SENTENCE – PURPOSE OF CLEARING – COSTS – RECOVERY COSTS. Evidence Act 1977 (Qld) s132C; Justices Act 1886 (Qld); Sustainable Planning Act 2009 (Qld) s614
Goodsell Earthmoving Pty Ltd v
Coordinator-General  QSC 243
ADMINISTRATIVE LAW – JUDICIAL REVIEW – POWERS OF COURTS UNDER JUDICIAL REVIEW LEGISLATION – STAY OF PROCEEDINGS AND INTERLOCUTORY RELIEF – where the applicant seeks judicial review of a decision to impose two conditions on an approval for a material change of use – where the applicant operates a high impact industry in a low impact precinct in the Townsville State Development area and applied to the respondent for approval of its activities – where the respondent granted an approval for two years subject to conditions – where the applicant challenges only the condition limiting the approval to a two year period and a condition limiting vehicle movements to 80 heavy vehicle movements per day – where the respondent cross-applies for a stay or dismissal of the application on the grounds that such relief is inappropriate because the impugned conditions are integral and not severable from the approval as a whole – whether the proceeding should be stayed or dismissed
Acts Interpretation Act 1901 Cth s 15A; Acts Interpretation Act 1954 (Qld) s 9; Judicial Review Act 1991 (Qld) ss 5, 20(2), 23(g), 30(1), 48; State Development and Public Works Organisation Act 1971 (Qld) s 84E(3)
Goods (Quad Bikes) Safety Standard 2019
10/10/2019 – This safety standard prescribes requirements for quad bikes under the Australian Consumer Law
Subordinate legislation as made – 04 October
No 196 Planning (Infrastructure Charges Register and Other Matters) Amendment Regulation 2019
The Amendment Regulation will provide improved transparency in the infrastructure charging and planning framework by requiring local governments to provide additional information in the infrastructure charges register.
Environmental Protection (Rehabilitation Reform) Amendment
This Regulation amends the Environmental Protection Regulation 2019 to implement the rehabilitation reforms under the Environmental Protection Act 1994 (EP Act) to: support decisions under the EP Act in relation to Progressive Rehabilitation and Closure Plan (PRCP) schedules; support the implementation of Public Interest Evaluations; and set the date for commencement of the PRCP framework as 1 November 2019.
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.