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The Federalism Project Why is a more effective model of regional governance so hard to find and implement? Ten Questions A J Brown John F Kearney Professor.

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Presentation on theme: "The Federalism Project Why is a more effective model of regional governance so hard to find and implement? Ten Questions A J Brown John F Kearney Professor."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Federalism Project Why is a more effective model of regional governance so hard to find and implement? Ten Questions A J Brown John F Kearney Professor of Public Law Centre for Governance & Public Policy Griffith University, Gold Coast QLD, Australia Armidale, 12 October 2012

2 The Federalism Project Why is a more effective model of Australian regional governance so hard to find and implement? Because of: A.Constitutional questions 1.Should regional governance be part of our basic political structures? 2.If so, how? B.Cultural questions 3.Competing regional attachments (state-regionalism v. region-regionalism) 4.Australian administrative / governance culture 5.The ‘mendicant mentality’ of local and regional politics C.Pragmatic / policy questions 6.What regions? 7.What boundaries? 8.What functions? 9.What institutions? 10.What public value / efficiency / return on investment?

3 The Federalism Project Why is a more effective model of Australian regional governance so hard to find and implement? Because of: A.Constitutional questions 1.Should regional governance be part of our basic political structures? Yes, of course Yes, but only in administrative (not political or constitutional) arrangements Isn’t it already? No… what’s the issue? 2.If so, how?

4 The Federalism Project New state ideas (Country Party?) No state ideas (provinces/regions) (ALP?)

5 The Federalism Project Australian Constitutional Values Survey Conducted nationally in Australia by Newspoll Limited Originally funded by the Australian Research Council, Discovery Project DP – led by Griffith University, with Charles Sturt University, University of New England, University of Melbourne, UNSW Conducted by telephone over 1-8 May 2008, 1-14 March 2010, September 2012 (underway) Stratified random sample, respondents aged 18 years and over Results post-weighted to Australian Bureau of Statistics data on age, highest level of schooling, sex, and area National 2008: 1,201 respondents National 2010: 1,100 respondents

6 The Federalism Project Major preferences for the future, ‘say 20 years from now’ Australia 2008 n= n=1100 Qld (2010) NSW (2010) WA (2010) No federal level No state level No local level Keep states and create more Create new regional level Overall… Keep system the same Structural reform Don’t know Thinking again about how our system of government could be in 20 years, in particular, about four possible levels of government – federal, state, regional and local. Which of those four levels of government would you have in the future? You can have as many or as few as you like.

7 The Federalism Project Fig 4. Main combinations of preferences, 20 years from now

8 The Federalism Project Why is a more effective model of Australian regional governance so hard to find and implement? Because of: A.Constitutional questions 1.Should regional governance be part of our basic political structures? 2.If so, how? B.Cultural questions 3.Competing regional attachments (state-regionalism v. region-regionalism) 4.Australian administrative / governance culture 5.The ‘mendicant mentality’ of local and regional politics

9 The Federalism Project rLocal areaRegionStateAustralia Local area *.374*.184* Region *.280* State * Australia 1.00 *p <.001 Strength of belonging to local area, region, state, nation (2008) (n=1201) Multiple regression

10 The Federalism Project For each of the following, please say if you think it is a desirable feature, or an undesirable feature of having different levels of government: % Desirable Un- desirable Neither \ dkTotal a Having power divided up between different levels of government b Allowing different laws in response to varying needs and conditions in different parts of Australia c Being able to elect different political parties at different levels of government g Different governments arguing over who is responsible for a particular problem Table 1. Desirability of features of a multi-levelled system (2010, n=1100)

11 The Federalism Project NSWWAAustralia Subtotals% 1. Strong federalists (a, b, c, g all desirable) Strong / clear federalists (1+2) Clear federalists (divided power & legal diversity both desirable) Conflicted federalists (divided power desirable, legal diversity undesirable) Conflicted federalists/ non-feds (3+4) 32.1 Subtotal — federalists Conflicted non-federalists (divided power undesirable, legal diversity desirable) Clear non-federalists (divided power & legal diversity both undesirable) Strong / clear non-federalists (5+6) Strong non-federalists (a, b, c, g all undesirable) Subtotal — non-federalists Don't know (a &/or b) Total Table 2. Australian federal political culture (2010, n=1100)

12 The Federalism Project Federal political culture, by regional belonging groups (%) (2008) More federalist   Less federalist

13 The Federalism Project Thinking of the federal government as being the highest level of government, and state and then local as being lower levels of government. Which one of the following comes closest to your view about where decisions should be made? (2008)

14 The Federalism Project Why is a more effective model of Australian regional governance so hard to find and implement? Because of: A.Constitutional questions 1.Should regional governance be part of our basic political structures? 2.If so, how? B.Cultural questions 3.Competing regional attachments (state-regionalism v. region-regionalism) 4.Australian administrative / governance culture 5.The ‘mendicant mentality’ of local and regional politics C.Pragmatic / policy questions 6.What regions? 7.What boundaries? 8.What functions? 9.What institutions? 10.What public value / efficiency / return on investment?

15 The Federalism Project Major combinations of preferences for system of government, 20 years from now – case study regions (March 2010, unweighted)

16 The Federalism Project Major combinations of preferences for system of government, 20 years from now – case study regions (March 2010, unweighted)

17 The Federalism Project Central Western Queensland - ABS Statistical Division - former RAPAD (ROC & REDO) - current RAPAD (ROC & REDO) - Qld Govt [Draft] Regional Plan & Reg Planning Advisory Cttee (Qld Dept of Infra & Planning) - Outback Regional Roads Group (Qld Dept of Main Roads) Desert Channels Qld NRM regional body Local Govt variants - LGAQ Central West District - Western Queensland LGA Federal Government - Central Qld Area Consultative Committee (ACC) - Regional Development Australia (Central Qld) - Qld Dept Communities, DEEDI (Fitzroy/CWest) Central Western Queensland Federal & State agency admin regions km

18 The Federalism Project Griffith Wagga Wodonga Albury Shepparton Deniliquin Mildura CMA boundaries Former ACC boundaries Changes – new RDA boundaries RAMROC / REROC boundary Riverina (Murrumbidgee) & Murray region(s)

19 The Federalism Project Greater Western Sydney

20 The Federalism Project Natural resource mgt regional body ACC Transport planning groups Regional health Meeting / conference support Regional budgeting & resource pooling Planning & community engagement coordination Accounting, governance & reporting support Training & capacity-building Major projects Regional Coordination Advisory Board Membership determined by local consultation and/or local convention, including: Local government (direct) Local government (ROC(s)) Area Consultative Committee(s) NRM Regional Body / Catchment Management Authority Other regional program advisory committees etc Federal government (DOTARS, PM&C) Local government State government (Premiers, DLG) Director Regional Coordination Unit Chair, Federal & State Regional Managers Forums Chairperson, Deputy Chairperson Regional Coordination Advisory Board Secretariat directly elected at time of local elections Appointed $$$ A model of regional governance (Brown 2007)

21 The Federalism Project Why is a more effective model of Australian regional governance so hard to find and implement? Because of: A.Constitutional questions 1.Should regional governance be part of our basic political structures? 2.If so, how? B.Cultural questions 3.Competing regional attachments (state-regionalism v. region-regionalism) 4.Australian administrative / governance culture 5.The ‘mendicant mentality’ of local and regional politics C.Pragmatic / policy questions 6.What regions? 7.What boundaries? 8.What functions? 9.What institutions? 10.What public value / efficiency / return on investment?


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