Council roles

Local government has a significant impact on the lives of all Victorians. The decisions of councils affect the lives of everyone living in the community.

Councils spend over $8 billion annually to provide more than 100 different services to communities, and are responsible for more than 85 per cent of Victoria’s road network, and other community facilities.

The roles and obligations of councils have expanded over many decades. Their responsibilities extend well beyond roads, rates and rubbish to matters as diverse as environmental protection and emergency management.

Victorian councils have roles and responsibilities under more than 100 Victorian Acts and regulations.

Councils are also responsible for complying with many Commonwealth Acts and regulations, Ministerial Directions, Codes of Practice, Australian Standards and other guidelines to discharge their legal duties under state and federal laws.

Local laws

Local laws can be developed by councils to deal with important community safety, peace and order issues such as public health, management of council property, environment and amenity.

Local laws often apply to noise, fire hazards, abandoned vehicles, parking permits, disabled parking, furniture on footpaths, graffiti, burning off, animals in public spaces and nuisance pets.

A local law cannot contradict or duplicate an existing state or federal law, and it usually responds to a local issue or community need.

Councils are also required to have a local law that governs their meeting procedures. You can find copies of local laws published on each council’s website.

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