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Government and SA-Best deny community right to veto council amalgamations

27 September 2022

Regional communities have been denied the right to veto the proposed amalgamation of the Grant and Mount Gambier councils after the Labor government and SA-Best voted down an amendment put forward by Greens MLC Robert Simms earlier this morning. 

Mr Simms’ amendment to the Government’s bill to conduct plebiscites in Grant and Mount Gambier to gauge the level of support for a merger would have required a separate poll to be conducted and receive majority support in both areas to approve any amalgamation before it occurs.

“It’s disappointing to see the Labor Party and SA-Best vote down a common-sense proposal that would have ensured that the community has the final say over whether their councils are amalgamated,” Mr Simms said. 

The Greens have previously expressed concerns that amalgamated councils struggle to represent wide geographical areas, and the potential for job cuts in the local government sector during this period of economic uncertainty.