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The Commonwealth Government to establish an office of local government



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' ' 7KH . MEDIA STATEMENT BY THE HON WAL. FIFE, M.P., MINISTER FOR BUSINESS AND CONSUMER AFFAIRS AND MINISTER ASSISTING THE PRIME MINISTER IN • FEDERAL AFFAIRS The Commonwealth Government is to establish and office

of Local Government to co-ordinate Commonwealth programs affecting

Local Government. *

. This was announced in Perth today by the. Minister for

Business and Consumer Affairs and Minister Assisting the Prime .

Minister in Federal Affairs, .the Hon. Wal. Fife, M.P., at a meeting

of Local Government Ministers and delegates of the Australian Council

of Local Government Associations.

Mr Fife said that the office which will be within the

administration of the Minister for National Development, the Hon.

K.E.. Newman, M.P., will provide the focal point at Federal level,

;to which Local Government can relate, for the many areas of

Commonwealth responsibility affecting Local Government. . .

He said that this initiative will further improve the

channel of communications between the Commonwealth Government and

Local Government.

"There are a large range·of Commonwealth programs which ,

benefit Local Government or over-lap with its activities. ·

"Most important is the revenue sharing arrangements

for which the policy responsibility rests with the Treasurer", Mr Fife said. .

"Associated with this is the Commonwealth Grants

Commission for which the Minister for Administrative Services is responsible. .

"There is also a general responsibility for Local

Government assigned to-the Minister for National Development and

associated responsibilities he has in relation to decentralisation

and urban planning and development" he said.

2

. Mr Fife said that there are many other Ministers

whose programs relate in some way to Local Government including

the Home Affairs and Transport portfolios. '

"The office of Local Government will provide an ·

important facility for Local Government and although details

of the office have yet to be finally determined, I anticipate

that no substantial bureaucratic structure will be involved.

Rather> the initiative will result in a rationalisation of existing facilities". '

Z

PERTH, W .A . 25 May 1979