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1376.0 - Local Government and ABS, March 2011  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 07/03/2011   
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WHAT'S HAPPENING IN LOCAL GOVERNMENT FINANCE?


Collections

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) collects and publishes annual Local Government Finance data, including the amount and purpose of local government expenditure. These annual financial data are collected from the Department of Local Government or Grants Commission in each state or territory. The ABS also undertakes a quarterly sample survey of councils.


Annual


The Local Government Statistical Unit (LGSU) of the ABS is currently processing the Annual Data returns supplied by the Department of Local Government/Grants Commission of each state or territory. The financial and function data on these forms are edited and the output used by the ABS to compile Government Finance Statistics (GFS).

Total General Government expenses for the local government sector in Australia were $26.2 billion in 2008-09. The major contributors were expenditure on Housing and community amenities (24.2%), Transport and communications (22.2%), General public services (19%) and Recreation and culture (14.7%).

GENERAL GOVERNMENT EXPENSES BY PURPOSE, Local 2008-09

$m

General public services
4 963
Public order and safety
575
Education
120
Health
307
Social security and welfare
1 500
Housing and community amenities
6 319
Recreation and culture
3 846
Fuel and energy
15
Agriculture, forestry and construction
48
Mining, manufacturing and construction
306
Transport and communications
5 811
Other economic affairs
967
Public debt transactions
376
Other
999
Total
26 153


The table above can be found on the General Government expenses by purpose page in the current Summary of Government Finance Statistics, Australia (cat. no. 5512.0). This publication contains more financial and function data and 2009-10 data are due for release on 12 April 2011.


Quarterly


The ABS conducts a quarterly survey of financial information, from a selected sample of councils each quarter. Reminders for the next round of quarterly survey data will be despatched in the third week of March. Responses are required by 8 April 2011. Early attention to the survey forms enabling a timely return to the ABS will ensure that the financial activity of local government is accurately represented in Australia's National Accounts.

The ABS thanks councils for their cooperation in providing timely and high quality data for these collections. The information provided is used in making important policy decisions concerning the sector and it is important that accurate and timely information is returned by councils to build this data set.


Visits to Departments of Local Government and Grants Commissions

Each year, the LGSU endeavours to meet with state/territory Grants Commissions or Departments of Local Government to review the recently completed annual collection and to commence preparations for the next cycle. These meetings are to be scheduled in accordance with the forward work program of LGSU and are in the process of being finalised.


Contact


For further information or inquiries about Local Government Statistics, contact the Local Government Statistical Unit on (07) 3222 6404.

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