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Local Government is a National Issue

Media Release
Lee Rhiannon 18 May 2016

No nation can achieve its potential if it fails to respect, and properly resource, the level of government closest to the people. The Greens understand this. That’s why we are releasing a package to strengthen local government in the regions.

When: 10:30am Wednesday 18 May 2016.

Where: Maitland, The Levee, (High Street near corner of Bulwer Street).

Why: Launch of Greens Regional Local Government Package for Federal election.

Who: Greens NSW Senator and Spokesperson for Local Government Lee Rhiannon, Greens Candidate for Lynne Julie Lyford, Greens NSW MP David Shoebridge, Greens Councillors, Greens candidate for Paterson, John Brown.

 

Greens NSW Senator and Local Government Spokesperson, Lee Rhiannon said:

"The Greens believe with Federal leadership we can respect local government, deliver constitutional recognition and give residents the power they need to stand up to Mike Baird's attempts to force council amalgamations.

"This package shows that the Greens have been listening to the needs of regional councils, and we are promising to deliver fairer funding and respect the rights of local communities to control their own futures."

Greens NSW MP and Local Government Spokesperson David Shoebridge said:

"With the Liberal and National Parties tearing up local councils, forcing amalgamations and ignoring residents, the fact is local government hasn’t had a lot of respect of late. It’s time that changed.

"Regional councils in NSW need a fairer share of the $700 million in federal road funding grants, this has been a crying need for decades that requires some political will to resolve," Mr Shoebridge said.

Summary of the Greens regional Council package

1. Respect. This means saying no to forced amalgamations and supporting legislation that gives residents, not politicians, the final say on any proposed amalgamations.

2. Resources. Commonwealth financial assistance grants deliver more than $700 million in roads finding to local councils. The Greens believe that regional councils need a fairer share of this funding to deal with their extensive road network.

3. Recognition. It’s well past time Local Government was recognised in the Australian Constitution. The Greens support meaningful constitutional recognition that gives legal protection to local democracy.

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