"The primary accountability of a local government is to its community, and that the decisions of the local government must be made with regard to the benefit of the entire local government area."

Local Government Act 2009 (Qld)

Throughout the month of March 2019, Ipswich City Council encouraged residents to help shape their future council by sharing their views on the most appropriate divisional boundary model for the city via a survey. The feedback we received from the community was included in a report prepared by council for consideration by the State Government Change Commission.

On 18 October 2019 the Change Commission published it's final determination, confirming that Ipswich City Council will be represented by a mayor and eight Councillors across four divisions (2 Councillors per division)after the March 2020 local government elections.

The City of Ipswich local government area is one of the fastest growing areas in Australia. With population and jobs both growing at around 4 to 5 per cent each year, the city is seeing rapid changes in its people, where they live, where and how they work, and what they want in their communities.

As the various communities around Ipswich grow and change, it could be expected that they will also have differing views on what they want from their council compared to when the city was first established some 160 years ago.

Ipswich communities have seen significant upheaval in their council in recent years, with the dismissal of the mayor and councillors and the appointment of an Interim Administrator in August 2018.

Accordingly, throughout the month of March 2019, Ipswich City Council encouraged residents to help shape their future council by sharing their views on the most appropriate divisional boundary model for the city via a survey.

A Discussion Paper and Background Document was published for the community. In particular, Appendix A and B in the Background Document provided a summary of the reasons why a review of the divisional boundaries within the Ipswich local government area is required.

While there is no single accepted view of which divisional boundary model is best placed to contribute to good governance, there are three broad models of electing councillors as community representatives (each model resulting in a minimum of eight and maximum of 12 councillors being elected). The Discussion Paper and Background Document also detail these three models and the potential advantages and disadvantages for each model.

Please note that while we sought the views and preferences of local residents about their preferred divisional model, the community cannot directly determine the local government electoral model. That is a matter for the state government to decide under the Local Government Act 2009 (Qld).

The feedback we received from the community was included in a report prepared by council at the end of the community consultation period and provided to the Minister for Local Government on 30 April 2019. The Minister for Local Government then applied to the Local Government Change Commission (the Change Commission) for an assessment of the proposed changes to the electoral arrangement and divisional boundary review.

The Change Commission, on 9 July 2019, published a Proposed Determination Report, and invited public comments on the proposal. Public comments on the Change Commission’s proposal closed on 30 July 2019.

On 18 October 2019 the Change Commission published it's final determination, confirming that Ipswich City Council will be represented by a mayor and eight Councillors across four divisions (2 Councillors per division) after the March 2020 local government elections.

The Change Commission's Final Determination Report can be viewed on Queensland Government's Change Commission webpage.