There are three levels of government in Australia - federal, state and local - that's us!
Local government in NSW is made up of 152 councils, each represented by popularly elected councillors and led by a mayor.
Councils are primarily concerned with matters that affect the local area, such as roads, recycling, libraries and parks, but we also work closely with other government bodies such as Roads and Maritime Services and the Department of Planning and Infrastructure on important matters, from transport planning to town planning.
Our powers and responsibilities are detailed in the Local Government Act 1993. While all local councils have the same basic powers and responsibilities, the structure and services of each council vary according to local needs. In Ku-ring-gai, we have ten councillors – two from each of the five wards – and six departments that look after all services and facilities.
Council elections are held every four years in September. If you are 18 or over, an Australian resident, and have lived in Ku-ring-gai for over three months or own property in the area, you are entitled to vote.
We employ about 500 staff to carry out all Council business, including urban planners, accountants, youth workers, librarians, gardeners, engineers and plumbers. The General Manager is responsible for day-to-day operations.