Local government

Introduction

Local Government Victoria supports and provides advice to councils to ensure that Victorians enjoy a responsive, accountable and efficient system of local government. Through a sustainable and effective local government program we support new infrastructure to provide vital community infrastructure and services and create new jobs.

Websites

Strategies and initiatives

Know Your Council

The Know Your Council website provides access to the public to information on council performance. Know Your Council allows you to:

Local Government Act 2020

The Local Government Act 2020 is the most ambitious reform to the local government sector in over 30 years. The Act improves local government democracy, accountability and service delivery for all Victorians.

Find out more: Local Government Act 2020 Governance Resources.

Gender equity in local government

Gender equality and diversity benefits all of us. It makes communities, councils and our State stronger. The 2020 local government elections saw more women than ever before elected to represent their communities with 43.8 per cent women councillors elected.

In its gender equality strategy, Safe and Strong, the Victorian Government has committed to achieving 50 per cent female councillors and mayors at the October 2024 local government elections.

Local Government Victoria helps to fund several programmes to promote and support gender equality in local government, including Women Leading Locally which will deliver a community leadership program to provide 120 women the inspiration, knowledge, skills and connections to campaign as candidates in the 2024 local government elections.

Victorian Aboriginal and Local Government Strategy

The Victorian Aboriginal and Local Government Strategy is an important resource for Victorian councils. It serves as a practical guide for councils across Victoria and will help embed the voices and priorities of Aboriginal communities at a local government level.

The strategy includes a clear framework for shared decision-making processes and actions for Aboriginal Victorians working together with local government based on mutual control, shared power and decision-making, fairness, respect, and trust.

COVID-19 Response and Recovery

The government has been supporting Victorian councils to maintain their support for local communities through a range of COVID-19 response and recovery programs.

For more information, visit Council COVID-19 Grants.

Projects

Rating Reform

An independent panel was appointed in 2019 to review all aspects of Victoria’s local government rating system. Their final report was completed in 2020. The government is now implementing a reform program of the local government rating system. For more information, visit: Council rates and charges.

Local Government Act 2020 Implementation

Local Government Victoria has worked with the local government sector to deliver key requirements of the Local Government Act 2020. These requirements include the creation of policies and documents that support council governance and service delivery, such the development of an Asset Plan, a Recruitment Policy and a Conflict of Interest Policy.

Local Government Culture Project

The Local Government Culture Project provides a platform for the local government sector to identify and take ownership of a positive and inclusive culture that will improve governance and build public trust.

For more information on this project, visit Council governance and integrity.

Grants, awards and scholarships

Growing Suburbs Fund

The Growing Suburbs Fund is a $425 million investment over 8 years to support the investment in critical local infrastructure in Melbourne's diverse and fast-growing outer suburbs.

Since its establishment in 2015, the Growing Suburbs Fund has supported approximately 300 community infrastructure projects creating more than 10,200 jobs and representing a total infrastructure investment of $1.078 billion.

Living Libraries Infrastructure Program

The Living Libraries Infrastructure Program helps Victorian councils and regional library corporations to provide high-quality and accessible library infrastructure to meet their communities’ changing needs.

Since it was established in 2015, the Living Libraries Infrastructure Program has invested nearly $45 million dollars into 109 library infrastructure projects.

Funding is provided to support projects that deliver and demonstrate benefits for the community and/or aim to improve engagement and access to learning opportunities.

Public Libraries Funding Program

The Public Libraries Funding Program provides annual funding to councils, regional library corporations, and Vision Australia for the purchase of collection items, information technology, library and outreach programs, and other services provided by Victorian public libraries.

Women’s Building Surveyors Program

The Women’s Building Surveyors Program is a $6.3 million program over two years to support 40 women to become building surveyors with councils across Victoria.

Launched in 2020-21, 40 successful councils have received $75,000 a year for their candidates to begin their professional qualifications, attend development opportunities, and to gain work experience in their field.

Municipal Emergency Resourcing Program

The Municipal Emergency Resourcing Program's (MERP) ongoing annual funding of $4.6 million supports strategic emergency management work undertaken by rural, regional and interface councils.

Roadside Weeds and Pest Program

The Roadside Weeds and Pests Program (RWPP) provides funding support to councils to manage ‘regionally prohibited’ and ‘regionally controlled’ weeds and pests on rural roadsides.

Divisional owners and entities

Local Government Victoria

Contact details

For general or first point of contact local government enquiries, please contact the Local Government Switchboard on 03 9208 3333 or email Local Government Victoria.