Monday, 26 November 2012

QLD Acts will change the way councils do business.

New Act reforms Councils

The biggest reform of Local Government in a generation will become law after a new Act was passed in Parliament late last night.
Local Government Minister David Crisafulli said amendments to the Local Government and City of Brisbane Acts will change the way councils do business.

The previous Act made councils less responsive to their communities because they were too busy reporting to George Street in Brisbane.

Changes include:
·         Mayors back in control of councils, so they are truly accountable to their ratepayers

·         Red tape cuts by dispensing with annual community and financial plans

·         Residential occupiers are now responsible for complying with local laws, as well as owners

·         Councils can again hold referendums on issues of significant local interest

Compulsory acquisition of land for private infrastructure facilities
In addition, for the compulsory acquisition of land, the application for a PIF must state:
  • that the proponent has negotiated, in accordance with the guidelines, for at least four months with each registered owner of the land and has taken reasonable steps to purchase the land by agreement;
  • if native title exists in relation to the land, that the proponent has taken reasonable steps to enter into an indigenous land use agreement for the land.
After a PIF is declared, but before land for the PIF is compulsorily acquired, the proponent must negotiate one final time with the registered owner and make a final unconditional offer to purchase in accordance with the guidelines, giving required information about the project. The Coordinator-General must be given evidence of compliance with this requirement.
Clayton Utz communications are intended to provide commentary and general information. They should not be relied upon as legal advice. Formal legal advice should be sought in particular transactions or on matters of interest arising from this bulletin. Persons listed may not be admitted in all states and territories.