Introduction. This Chapter states the Parliament’s purposes in enacting this Act.
Section 51 of the Constitution Act 1902 provides:(1) There shall continue to be a system of local government for the State under which duly elected or duly appointed local government bodies are constituted with responsibilities for acting for the better government of those parts of the State that are from time to time subject to that system of local government.(2) The manner in which local government bodies are constituted and the nature and extent of their powers, authorities, duties and functions shall be as determined by or in accordance with laws of the Legislature.(3) The reference in subsection (2) to laws of the Legislature shall be read as a reference to laws that have been enacted by the Legislature, whether before or after the commencement of this section, and that are for the time being in force.(4) For the purposes of this section, the Western Lands Commissioner, the Lord Howe Island Board, and an administrator with all or any of the functions of a local government body, shall be deemed to be local government bodies.
The Chapter also aims to give an overview of the major elements in the system of local government in this State. It contains a diagram showing the way in which these elements relate to one another.
The purposes of this Act are as follows:(a) to provide the legal framework for an effective, efficient, environmentally responsible and open system of local government in New South Wales,(b) to regulate the relationships between the people and bodies comprising the system of local government in New South Wales,(c) to encourage and assist the effective participation of local communities in the affairs of local government,(d) to give councils:• the ability to provide goods, services and facilities, and to carry out activities, appropriate to the current and future needs of local communities and of the wider public• the responsibility for administering some regulatory systems under this Act• a role in the management, improvement and development of the resources of their areas,(e) to require councils, councillors and council employees to have regard to the principles of ecologically sustainable development in carrying out their responsibilities.