Exactly what happened in Victoria. Just have to look at history:
- Democracy went out the window
- All elected councillors were dismissed and replaced by commissioners chosen and appointed by cabinet
- Local assets like community centres, public buildings, parks and green spaces were sold off
- Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows almost no money was saved in the process.
- The reforms also impacted on the equality of political representation: The Stegley Foundation (1998) reported that the reform reduced the number of women councillors from 453 prior to amalgamations to 129 by 1997.
- The potential of democratic governance was further reduced by halving the number of councillors and substantially increasing the size of wards, thus forcing elected representatives to spread themselves more thinly.
- When Premier Jeff Kennett sacked councils across Victoria nearly 11,000 people lost their jobs
- Local councils became a franchise operation to serve state government customers
- The Kennett Government’s economic liberal reform, in summary, had a dramatic and negative impact on the status of ‘citizenship’ and on political rights and obligations at the local government level.