Local Government Services
Deloitte Access Economics is available to provide expert economic, financial and policy advice to local government.
Local governments across Australia are facing increasingly complex economic and financial challenges from:
• national climate change and other environmental improvement (eg waste and recycling) policies which will impact differentially across local and regional Australia
• increasing infrastructure renewal and expansion demands, which will be increasingly more difficult to finance just from annual rates and charges
• demographic change (the greying of the population) and internal population shifts (such as 'seachange')
• ratepayers (and best practice within local government), with increased emphasis on financial sustainability
• state governments, with increased financial accountability requirements and the need for long-term financial plans and associated budgetary projections.
Building on its involvement with local government in recent years, and the range of hands-on experience of its team of consultants, Deloitte Access Economics is well placed to assist individual councils and state departments/offices of local government in scoping out and meeting these challenges - and at a realistic cost.
• Impact of prospective internally or externally developed policy proposals, economic development activity or climate change impacts on councils and local and regional economies.
Independent financial assessments
• Arms' length assessments of current and future financial performance and sustainability for individual councils
• Prudential review and cost benefit analyses of specific policy and spending proposals including asset renewal/economic life decisions and joint venture opportunities.
Public finance policy advice
• Optimal and equitable determination of user charges, rating, developer contribution and other revenue raising arrangements.
Financial performance improvement
• Development and review of long-term financial plans
• Advice on financial policies and strategies, including how to deal with deficits and consideration of inter-generational equity
• Rating and other revenue raising reviews
• Debt, leasing and investment management policies
• Evaluation of resource sharing, contracting out and other alternative means of service delivery.
Financial governance advice
• Financial governance policy and process improvement design specific to a council's circumstances
• Training programs for council members and staff.
Examples of our work
Significant work recently undertaken across the local government sector and with individual councils includes:
• reviewing rating structure to ensure it effectively takes account of ratepayer capacity to pay and service level profiles, particularly following significant changing pattern of development
• analysing councils' financial positions and performance relative to key financial indicators and benchmarks and modelling future projections under various scenarios
• evaluating alternative revenue-raising tools (e.g. various forms of user charges) with respect to the principals of optimal taxation and cost recovery
• reviewing council financial governance policies and processes against good practice and suggesting improvements
• analysing the scope for, and impact of, local government structural reform and advising with respect to design and process
• examining the equity and efficiency of funding arrangements with federal and state governments
• assessing proposals to reform local/federal financial relations.
An example of some local government reports from the team at Deloitte Access Economics follows:
• Local Government Structural Reform - August 2011
• Valuation and local government rating in Tasmania - October 2010
• KI Traveller's Levy Economic Impact Assessment - July 2009
• Local Government Finances in Tasmania - March 2007
• Financial Governance Questionnaire - December 2006
• Local Government Finances in WA - July 2006
• Local Government Finances in NSW - January 2006
• Local Government Funding Reforms - August 2004