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Local government reform

Over the last few years, South Australia’s system of local government has been under review.

Statutes Amendment (Local Government Review) Act 2021

The Statutes Amendment (Local Government Review) Act passed Parliament and received the Governor's assent on 17 June 2021. 

When commenced, the Act will amend a range of other laws related to local government in South Australia including:

Key reforms

The major reforms contained in the Amendment Act are based on ideas submitted during the Local Government Reform Program consultation that was held in early 2019. 

Some of the key reforms include:

  • a new conduct management framework for council members
  • an expansion of expert, independent advice to councils on a range of critical financial and governance matters
  • a modern approach to public consultation
  • a range of improvements to regulation to reduce councils’ costs.
Reform areas
More information

About the consultation process

The reforms are based on ideas received during a consultation process in 2019, and discussions with councils and other bodies.

What ideas did we hear?
Ideas for local government reform were submitted to the Office of Local Government through direct channels and YourSAy discussions and surveys after a public call for ideas in early 2019.

In total, over 80 submissions with more than 700 ideas were received directly.

Approximately 170 surveys were completed, along with the discussion on the YourSAy local government reform page.

All of the ideas received through submissions have been summarised and compiled below:

Local Government Reform ideas submitted (PPT  947 MB)

Surveys completed via YourSAy (XLS 175)

Summary of reform submissions and ideas (PDF 267 KB)

Ideas for Reform Consultation Summary (PDF 78 KB)

A number of the ideas put forward reference material submitted by the Local Government Association (LGA). Visit the LGA website.
Discussion paper proposals for reform

South Australian Productivity Commission report

The South Australian Government directed the South Australian Productivity Commission (SAPC) to undertake an inquiry into local government costs to identify options to improve efficiency and financial accountability and reduce costs for ratepayers.

On 30 August 2019, the SAPC released its draft report.

The final report was delivered to the Premier on 22 November 2019 and published on the SAPC website on 5 February 2020.

The government's response to the inquiry is available to download.