Local Government is the sphere of government which most directly affects people. Most of South Australia is divided into local areas, each of which is governed by an individual authority, known as a Council. Council activities include waste management, local environmental management, local roads, town planning, parks, libraries, social planning and many other services. In South Australia, Councils are called District, Town or City Councils.
The State Parliament creates the legal framework in which Local Government operates. Most of this framework is outlined in the Local Government Act 1999 (SA) and the Local Government (Elections) Act 1999 (SA) which contain information on how Councils are established, how elections should be run, how and when Councils should meet, how rates are to be charged, how Councils can spend money and what things Councils can do.
In addition to these two Acts, Councils are given powers by many other pieces of State and Federal legislation including the Food Act 2001 (SA), the Development Act 1993 (SA) and the Dog and Cat Management Act 1995 (SA) to name just a few. Councils also have the power to make their own regulations and by-laws.