The VLGA acknowledges and appreciates the work undertaken by the government and Local Government Victoria in engaging and consulting with peak bodies and councils in the development of the new Act.
The new Act will transform the local government sector in the coming years, with councils given greater autonomy and focus on good governance for the benefit of their community.
However, the Act does prescribe councils to develop and implement certain policies, such as those relating to deliberative community engagement and a council workforce plan. These policies will add to the operational costs to councils, particularly those in rural areas and in the rate capping environment.
The VLGA calls for greater support and resources for councils as part of the implementation of the new Local Government Act.
There are questions regarding the logistics of the mandated candidate training for candidates for the upcoming council elections in October. In addition to the requirement for councils to conduct such training, the requirement for candidates to attend training face to face has the potential to disadvantage members of the community who may not be available at the scheduled time of such training or travel to the trainings’ venues.
We will continue to work with the government and LGV in implementing the new Act, including delivering the VLGA’s recognized candidate information and training sessions in local communities in partnership with councils. This training will complement the mandatory candidate training and equip participants with the skills and know how in campaigning as well as the attributes and knowledge required to be a successful councillor.
Please attribute to Cr Lambros Tapinos VLGA President
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Victorian Local Governance Association