On 12 May 2016 the NSW Government announced the formation of 19 new councils.
The proclamation of the new Bayside Council occurred on 9 September 2016, following the conclusion of legal action by Botany Bay City Council in the Court of Appeal.
This took the total number of new councils created in 2016 to 20.
On 14 February 2017, the Government announced it is continuing its in-principle support for the creation of a further five new councils in metropolitan Sydney, subject to decisions of the courts.
This would see the number of councils in Greater Sydney reduced from 41 to 24.
There will be no further regional council mergers. Regional councils have already undergone much more consolidation than the city – prior to the new councils created in 2016, regional council numbers had already decreased from 133 to 111 in the past 15 years. By comparison, in Sydney, most council boundaries have not changed since the 1940s, and some have remained unchanged for more than 100 years.
The 20 new stronger, more efficient councils that have already been established will remain in place and are working harder for residents and delivering better services and infrastructure such as roads, parks, playgrounds and sporting facilities.
New councils will receive a wide range of additional benefits:
- Each new council will receive up to $15 million to invest in community projects like junior sporting facilities, playgrounds and library or pool upgrades.
- Each new council will receive up to $10 million to streamline administrative processes and cut red tape, with the option of redirecting unspent funds into community projects.
- Ratepayers in new council areas will not experience rate rises as a result of mergers. They will pay no more for their rates than they would have under their old council for the next four years.
The following new councils commenced in 2016:
- Armidale Regional Council : The merger of Armidale Dumaresq and Guyra Shire councils
- Bayside Council : The merger of City of Botany Bay and Rockdale City councils
- Canterbury-Bankstown Council : The merger of Bankstown City and Canterbury City councils
- Central Coast Council : The merger of Gosford City and Wyong Shire councils
- City of Parramatta Council : The merger of Parramatta City*, The Hills Shire*, Auburn City*, Holroyd City* and Hornsby Shire* councils
- Cumberland Council : The merger of Parramatta City*, Auburn City* and Holroyd City* councils
- Edward River Council : The merger of Conargo Shire and Deniliquin councils
- Federation Council : The merger of Corowa Shire and Urana Shire councils
- Georges River Council : The merger of Hurstville City and Kogarah City councils
- Cootamundra-Gundagai Regional Council : The merger of Cootamundra Shire and Gundagai Shire councils
- Hilltops Council : The merger of Boorowa, Harden Shire and Young Shire councils
- Inner West Council : The merger of Ashfield, Leichhardt Municipal and Marrickville councils
- Mid-Coast Council : The merger of Gloucester Shire, Great Lakes and Greater Taree City councils
- Murray River Council : The merger of Murray Shire and Wakool Shire councils
- Murrumbidgee Council : The merger of Jerilderie Shire and Murrumbidgee Shire councils
- Northern Beaches Council : The merger of Manly, Pittwater and Warringah councils
- Queanbeyan-Palerang Regional Council : The merger of Palerang and Queanbeyan City councils
- Snowy Monaro Regional Council : The merger of Bombala, Cooma-Monaro Shire and Snowy River Shire councils
- Snowy Valleys Council : The merger of Tumbarumba Shire and Tumut Shire councils
- Dubbo Regional Council : The merger of Dubbo City and Wellington councils
The Government announced on 14 February 2017 that it supports in principle the following mergers in metropolitan Sydney proceeding, subject to the decision of the courts:
The Minister has decided not to proceed with these mergers:
- Armidale Dumaresq, Guyra Shire, Uralla Shire and Walcha councils
- Bathurst Regional and Oberon councils
- Blayney Shire, Cabonne and Orange City councils
- Dungog Shire and Maitland City councils
- Newcastle City and Port Stephens councils
- Shellharbour City and Wollongong City councils
- Port Stephens and Dungog Shire councils
In 2016 the Minister decided not to proceed with these mergers:
- Berrigan Shire and Jerilderie Shire* councils
- Boorowa and Young Shire councils
- Cootamundra Shire, Gundagai Shire and Harden Shire councils
- Corowa Shire, Lockhart Shire, Urana Shire councils
- Dungog Shire and Gloucester Shire councils
- Goulburn Mulwaree and Palerang* councils
- Hawkesbury City and The Hills Shire* councils
- Jerilderie Shire* and Murrumbidgee Shire councils
- Kiama Municipal and Shoalhaven City councils
- Manly, Mosman Municipal and Warringah* councils
- North Sydney and Willoughby City councils
- Palerang* and Queanbeyan City councils
- Pittwater and Warringah* councils
- Tamworth Regional and Walcha councils
- City of Botany Bay, City of Sydney*, Marrickville*, Randwick City* and Rockdale City* councils
- Kogarah, Hurstville and Rockdale City Councils
(Content sourced from Council Amalgamations – Stronger Councils NSW)