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National Competition Policy and its Implications for Local Government


Felmingham, BS and Page, B, National Competition Policy and its Implications for Local Government, Australian Journal of Public Administration, 55, (2) pp. 26-35. ISSN 0313-6647 (1996) [Refereed Article]

DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1467-8500.1996.tb01197.x


Two aspects of National Competition Policy (NCP) are likely to be the catalyst of change in Australian local government (LG): competitive neutrality and the reform of public monopolies. Competitive neutrality will be achieved in LG through the imposition of tax equivalents, removal of debt guarantees and cross-subsidisation deemed not to be in the public interest. The reform of public monopolies will open more functions to competition. But other items of the NCP are also of significance to LG. The imposition of prices oversight of LG services will make these more cost reflective. Legislative reviews at LG level will produce deregulation in some cases and greater uniformity in others while the issue of allowing private access to LG assets has competitive potential in relation to the services and provision of roads, parks and sewerage treatment. We emphasise the importance of recognising the present benefits of current LG operations and cite the current proposal to privatise Tasmania's water and sewerage services as an example. NCP has the potential to produce further LG boundary amalgamations, or to accelerate regional cooperation as an alternative. The role of cross-border and competitive tendering in this respect are highlighted. Finally, we analyse the implications of the NCP for the Local Government Grants Commission process.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Research Division:Economics
Research Group:Applied economics
Research Field:Welfare economics
Objective Division:Economic Framework
Objective Group:Microeconomics
Objective Field:Microeconomics not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Felmingham, BS (Dr Bruce Felmingham)
UTAS Author:Page, B (Mr Bruce Page)
ID Code:8460
Year Published:1996
Web of Science® Times Cited:2
Deposited By:Economics and Finance
Deposited On:1996-08-01
Last Modified:2011-08-19

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