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A Critical Note on 'Eco-Civic Regionalisation' as the Basis for Local Government Boundaries in Australia

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The notion of 'eco-civic regionalisation' has been applied recently to New South Wales by Brunckhorst, Coop and Reeve (2004) in order to identify the appropriate administrative boundaries for 'socio-civic' regions and 'biophysical' regions. On the basis of this analysis, they recommended inter alia that 49 future non-metropolitan 'local government areas' be established. This proposal was adopted with alacrity by advocates of the NSW government's program of compulsory council amalgamation, including official 'Facilitators' appointed by the State government to draft formal consolidation proposals. This paper disputes the applicability of 'eco-civic regionalisation' as the foundation for local government boundaries in Australia.

Keywords: Amalgamation; communities of interest; decentralisation theorem; eco-civic regionalisation; local government boundaries; principle of subsidiarity

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/0004918042000311322

Affiliations: Latrobe University (Albury-Wodonga), Australia

Publication date: November 1, 2004

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