With the LGAQ”s 124th Annual Conference less than three weeks away, I thought it would be timely to share with you 10 things you may not know about your Association.
1. The LGAQ is mentioned in the Queensland Constitution, an Act of Parliament, with the Minister for Local Government required to consult the Association on any legislation they intend to introduce into Parliament before doing so (no timeline specified).
2. More than 14,100 jobs have been created through State and Federally funded apprenticeship and traineeship programs the LGAQ has been administering on behalf of its member councils since 1998, under a combined subsidy of about $217 million.
3. The Roads Transport Alliance has been awarded the highest honour in the roads sector in Australia (Roads Australia) and in the world (PIARC- World Road Association) for its now two-decade-old, ground-breaking model of cooperation between councils and the State Government to ensure the coordinated and efficient management of 38,513 kilometres of Local Roads of Regional Significance across Queensland. The benefits to the community have been independently estimated to be in excess of $1 billion.
4. The LGAQ has run legal matters on behalf of Queensland councils in both the High Court and Federal Court. This includes assisting in the Goondiwindi v Tait matter - which the LGM Board of Management determined to appeal - currently before the High Court. Senior Counsel for the LGAQ will shortly be providing oral submissions on why we should be granted a Special Leave Application to appeal the Queensland Court of Appeal’s decision in matter. Our track record is pretty good so far with two wins and a draw.
5. Since their inception over a quarter of a century ago, the LGMS mutual insurance schemes have on a marked-to-market basis saved councils - and through them ratepayers - a staggering $750 million. As of June 30 this year the schemes have also returned $35 million in surplus distributions and rebates to members, offsetting LGAQ membership subscriptions.
6. QCoast2100, an award-winning $13 million partnership between the State Government and the LGAQ, is unique in Australia. No other state has created a similarly holistic and comprehensive program supporting councils to identify and develop responses to climate change-related coastal hazards. The QCoast2100 Program was established in direct response to the LGAQ’s advocacy on behalf of coastal local governments and the resulting Coastal Hazard Adaptation Strategies will guide on-ground and policy responses, allowing councils and communities to confidently plan for the future.
7. The LGAQ staff share between them more than 250 years of in-council experience.
8. Award-winning initiative LG Sherlock is understood to be the only initiative of its kind developed for the local government sector. LG Sherlock uses intelligent data analytics tools to enable benchmarking so councils can be given unprecedented insights into their operations to find savings for their ratepayers.
9. Through the LGAQ’s partnership with UK website company Jadu, the Association is providing state-of-the-art websites to over 60 percent of Queensland’s councils. Today, the LGAQ manages the majority of the Qld local government sector’s websites, more than 100 local government websites and provider for over 60% of all councils.
10. Finally, the LGAQ was awarded official Queensland Great Status at the 2018 Queensland Day awards.
As you can see, there is plenty to be proud of. It was difficult to keep the list to just 10. We turn 125 next year and the LGAQ is showing no signs of slowing down. We will continue to push ourselves to be the best Association we can be for our members.The collective power of 77 councils is unbeatable. We thank all 77 councils for once again signing up to continue their membership.