1216.0 - Australian Standard Geographical Classification (ASGC), July 2011  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 05/10/2011  Final
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Contents >> Local Government Area Structure >> Purpose and Structure


LGAs are defined within the ASGC to enable the ABS to disseminate social, demographic and economic statistics on this widely used administrative region.

The LGA Structure is separate from the Main Structure because:

  • Unlike spatial units in the Main Structure, LGAs do not cover the whole of Australia
  • Unlike SLAs which aggregate to form SSDs and SDs, some LGAs do not wholly fit within an SSD and an SD (e.g. Mid-Western Regional Area in New South Wales).


Incorporated areas only

The LGA Structure covers only incorporated areas of Australia. Incorporated areas are legally designated parts of States and Territories over which incorporated local governing bodies have responsibility. The major areas of Australia not administered by incorporated bodies are the northern parts of South Australia and all of the Australian Capital Territory and the Other Territories.

The LGA Structure has three levels: SLAs-LGAs-S/Ts (Incorporated Areas). The spatial units in each level relate to each other in a straightforward manner: LGAs comprise one or more whole SLAs.

Processing LGAs for the ASGC

LGAs are proclaimed by State and Territory government authorities and changes are gazetted throughout the year. The ABS has broadened the categories of legislation used to define local government areas for statistical purposes to include the Indigenous Council areas in the States.

LGAs are used as the base on which SLAs are defined. Because this definition process takes time, LGAs gazetted during the year leading up to an ASGC edition cannot always be included in that edition. For instance, complex LGA changes which result in complicated redesign of SLAs, or changes gazetted too close to the effective date of 1 July of an ASGC edition, may have to be included in a later edition.


The current LGA Structure, down to SLA level, is shown in The Classification Structures. This table is available in both the publication pdf and as a .csv file.

For example:
  • Local Government Areas and Statistical Local Areas - Alphabetic


1 Albury (C) 10050 Albury (C) 155050050
1 Armidale Dumaresq (A) 10110
1 Armidale Dumaresq (A) - City 130150111
1 Armidale Dumaresq (A) Bal 130150112

Note that there is no SD or SSD code for the LGA because LGAs are not part of the Main Structure. This table also shows SLAs which cover unincorporated areas and are therefore not part of the LGA Structure.

For example:


1 Unincorporated NSW 19399
1 Unincorp. Far West 160108809
1 Lord Howe Island 125108859

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