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Local Government

Your local government could be called a City Council, Shire Council or Municipal Council. Local Government Councils are responsible for building regulations, roads, footpaths, parks and sporting grounds, libraries, waste disposal and local environmental issues etc.

Local Government Roles


The Mayor

  • Acts as a ceremonial figurehead at official functions and may wear robes, a mayoral chain and a mace.
  • Carries the authority of council between meetings, however decisions made by the Mayor between meetings may be confirmed or repealed if necessary.
  • May be elected directly by the voters at a local government election or from within the council by the other elected councillors.
  • Mayors have the title of ‘His/Her Worship’.
  • There are four Lord Mayors in NSW (Sydney, Parramatta, Newcastle and Wollongong).

The General Manager or CEO

  • The General Manager or CEO conducts the day to day management of the council in accordance with the policies and strategic plan of the Council.


  • Councillors serve their communities by listening to people in the local area and then representing those views at Council meetings.

Council Staff

  • Council staff are paid employees who carry out work within the local council area under the direction of the General Manager e.g. public areas and road maintenance, administration and approval of development applications and life guard duties.

For more information on how voting works in NSW click here.

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