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    Minister for Local Government, Community Recovery and Resilience
    The Honourable David Crisafulli

    Queensland councils descend on Townsville

    Minister for Local Government, Community Recovery and Resilience
    The Honourable David Crisafulli

    Thursday, August 15, 2013

    Queensland councils descend on Townsville

    Mayors and CEOs from Queensland councils have arrived in Townsville to attend the first ever Regional Round Table to tackle the financial challenges facing local governments.

    Local Government Minister David Crisafulli said today’s Local Government Financial Sustainability Round Table would harness knowledge and talent from councils, as well as the State Government.

    “This event brings together some of the best local government minds in Australia to help us find real solutions to the financial challenges facing our communities,” Mr Crisafulli said.

    “Councils are experiencing the ‘perfect storm’ as declining revenues, rising expenses and growing expectations place mounting pressure on their bottom line.

    “All councils, both large and small, are expected to do more with less and still provide the services and infrastructure ratepayers rightly deserve.

    “We’ve got to look at ways councils can remain viable and keep costs down for ratepayers.”

    The round table will include discussions with the CEO of Queensland Treasury Corporation Phillip Noble and the Queensland Auditor General Andrew Greaves.

    The Local Government Association of Queensland as well as the departments of Premier and Cabinet and Local Government, Community Recovery and Resilience will also be on hand to provide expert advice.

    Mr Crisafulli said the main aim will be to develop a sustainability reform agenda for councils which will cover suggestions about how the state can reduce regulation, shared services between councils, public/private partnerships, depreciation costs and funding allocations.

    “Councils need to balance the traditional expectations of the community with modern economic reality,” he said.

    “The State doesn’t have a big bucket of money to throw around but we can guide councils to do things more efficiently so the financial burden isn’t always passed on to ratepayers through rate rises.

    “That may mean selling surplus council land, or partnering with the private sector to build new infrastructure.

    “Councils are important to local communities and this is our chance to ensure they continue to serve locals well into the future.”

    [ENDS] 15 August 2013

    Media Contact: Monica Rostron 0409 126 332