Julie Matheson

Subiaco Councillor | Certified Financial Planner | DAP Expert

Monitoring your local government

The Local Government (Administration) Regulations 1996 has been amended to require each local government to adopt a Strategic Community Plan and a Corporate Business Plan.

Section 5.56(1) and (2) of the Act requires that each local government is ‘to plan for the future of the district’, by developing plans in accordance with the regulations.

These are useful documents to monitor your Council’s performance and where they plan to spend your ratepayers money.

Background

In August 2011, the then Department of Local Government introduced the Integrated Planning and Reporting Framework which requires all local governments across Western Australia to undertake community engagement to inform a Strategic Community Plan. The community priorities identified and documented in this plan then provided input to the development of the Corporate Business Plan which was endorsed by Subiaco Council in June 2012.  The Corporate Business Plan is the link between the Strategic Community Plan and its incorporation into the city’s operations.

The Corporate Business Plan identifies the services and projects the city will undertake over a four year period in response to the aspirations and objectives stated in the Strategic Community Plan.

Of necessity, the Corporate Business Plan references resourcing considerations such as financial, asset management and workforce plans. The Corporate Business Plan is reviewed annually and is the main driver for the annual budget.

There is also an expectation that staff will report on the implementation of the Corporate Business Plan to serve the purpose of being a working document that responds to a changing environment and changing priorities within the context of the over-arching Strategic Community Plan.

So if you are wondering when the Council hands down a budget, whether you are getting the community you wanted check the Corporate Business Plan for implementation time frames and costings.

References:

Legislation: http://integratedplanning.dlg.wa.gov.au/Page.aspx?PID=6

Integrated Planning:  http://integratedplanning.dlg.wa.gov.au/

Regulations: http://www.slp.wa.gov.au/gazette/gazette.nsf/gazlist/AAFED685C48125FB482578F70011BAF5/$file/gg164.pdf

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