New Queensland councils after residents’ requests to de-amalgamate

Queensland is now home to four new councils in Noosa, Livingstone, Douglas and Mareeba, with Acting Local Government Minister Jarrod Bleijie announcing the changes to the 2008 amalgamations.

Bleijie noted that residents had been fighting for these changes for a number of years, with a 2013 petition seeing the majority of residents asking to de-amalgamate. As of January 1 their fight is won.

“It’s now up to the new Mayors and Councillors to work together with each other and their neighbouring councils to get the best results for their communities,” he said.

How this may affect and shape the areas is yet unclear, however the first order of business was noted to be the new councils’ consideration of the interim budgets.

“While there’s no doubt the new councils have some big decisions to make in the coming months, I’m confident we have the right mix of fresh ideas and experience to set the new councils on the right course,” he said.

In March 2013, 80% of Noosa's ratepayers reportedly voted for the de-amalgamation. Similar numbers were seen from the other areas.

Noosa was amalgamated previously into the Sunshine Coast Region. Livingstone had become part of the Rockhampton Region. Douglas had been part of Cairns Regional Council. Mareeba had been made part of the Tablelands Region. All four councils have now been re-established.

Councils can be contacted for specific information. Property owners who applied previously for building permits and are awaiting assessment will find that it is now covered by the new Council, however those previously granted will remain in effect.

Douglas Shire Council is geared up for a meeting expected later today, meanwhile Livingstone Shire Council is looking for residents to have a say tomorrow.

For the full legislation of the de-amalgamation, see this online document.

Jennifer Duke

Jennifer Duke

Jennifer Duke was a property writer at Property Observer

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