Councils welcome consultation

Local government has welcomed the State Government’s agreement to consult with the sector on key recommendations from three key reports by the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal, released today.

The reports – one which reviews the local government rating system and two which relate to reporting and compliance functions– have been gathering dust for up to five years, amid political sensitivities over rates, levies and other local government costs.

Local Government NSW (LGNSW) President Linda Scott said it was a relief that the Government had finally released the reports and agreed to further discussions with the sector on how all levels of Government can best meet growing community needs.

“It’s gratifying that IPART confirms what we’ve been saying for a long, long time: if we’re going to meet the needs of our growing communities, there needs to be more flexibility for councils and less cost shifting from the State Government.

“We are also strongly supportive of IPART’s finding that the State Government should work as a partner with our sector in considering the impact and cost of their regulatory requirements, and should remove restrictions on fees for statutory approvals and inspections to allow for the recovery of efficient costs.

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