Councillor Expectations And Experience In Senior Officer Human Resource Matters: Local Government In Victoria

2017-06-06T02:27:07Z (GMT) by Pullin, Len Haidar, Ali
The Bains' Report (1979) provided the impetus for considerable change in local government across all Australian states. In the state of Victoria, this embraced the replacement of the Victorian Local Government Act 1958 with a new Act in 1989 (VLGA 1989). One of the key features of the new Act is a significant reduction in external influence on the nature of local government employment. Under VLGA 1989 local government units (LGU) gained virtual autonomy over staff matters, including senior positions. The Act also prescribed a clear division between political activities and administration functions (Self, 1997). In particular, the ability of councillors to influence senior officer human matters was restricted to only the CEO's position. While considerable research has occurred in local government since the implementation of the VLGA 1989 (Kloot, 1999; Van Gramberg and Teicher, 2000; Tucker, 1997; Self, 1997), little attention has been given to the perceptions of councillors on local government change. More specifically, little consideration is given to whether or not this aspect of the Act is being translated into practice and if their role in senior officer human resource matters achieves or exceeds their expectations. This study seeks to fill this gap by exploring this issue across all local government units in Victoria.