Local Government NSW (LGNSW) has released its Election Priorities for the 2023 NSW State Election, which detail the commitments it says are required at State level to ensure councils can continue to provide the services their community deserve.
The priorities centre on 10 key themes that LGNSW is calling on all parties and candidates to commit to in the lead-up to the election. They are:
- Financial sustainability
- Resilience to natural disasters
- Roads and infrastructure
- Housing and homelessness
- Environment and the circular economy
- Intergovernmental agreement
- Stronger communities
- Rural, regional and community health
- Skills and labour shortages
LGNSW President, Darriea Turley AM said the NSW State Election was taking place at a critical juncture for local government.
“Local government is a key economic driver for NSW. Councils across NSW employ 55,000 people, look after $177 billion of community assets and most importantly are the beating heart of the communities they represent,” said President Turley.
“But despite the sector’s vital importance, councils are at breaking point due to a myriad of challenges that need urgent attention.
“Our financial model is not fit-for-purpose with a rate cap methodology that is detached from the economic reality. Meanwhile, years of disastrous weather events have caused extreme damage to our road network and infrastructure.
“In addition, a challenging economic outlook is causing tremendous stress on the communities we serve, leading to cost-of-living pressures and an affordable housing crisis.
“This is all occurring as the ability of councils and communities to determine what development occurs in their own area continues to diminish.”
She said the Election Priorities provided a golden opportunity for all sides of politics to partner with local government to deliver the outcomes communities expect and deserve.
“Crucially, the priorities include measures that are not just critical to our short-term future, but also for the benefit of future generations as we face shifting demographics and a changing climate.”
“We look forward to working with all parties and candidates in the lead-up to the March election to ensure these priorities come to fruition,” said President Turley.