Hello my name is David and welcome to Auspol Explained. We’re gonna be discussing what the local vs state vs federal
government is. What’s the difference? So Australia has three tiers of government.
Now federal is perhaps the one we’re all the most familiar with. That is the one
with the Prime Minister. A lot of Australians would recognize Parliament
House in Canberra but what are the other two? And what are they even responsible
for? Who knows? I do. And soon you will too. So the federal government covers all of
Australia… obviously. It’s made up of politicians in the Senate and the House
of Representatives. If you don’t know anything about that check out my first
video. Australia is a two-house system or, if you’re feeling really fancy and want a
new word that you will almost never use, bicameral. Means two houses. Bills must
pass in both houses to become law. So the state government covers its own state.
Naturally! Wow. I’m really teaching you a lot. Okay so each state has own
constitution and Parliament. The head is called the Premier. Quick note though:
territories do actually have a different type of government even though they are
the same sort of tier. The Northern Territory and the ACT have a different
system. The parliament of states is divided into the Legislative Assembly
and the Legislative Council – unless of course your Queensland where they only
have one which is the Legislative Assembly because in 1922 they thought
nah screw it like this-ffff- nyer and they were like yeah we’re gonna only have one!
It’ll work. I mean it works for the Northern Territory and the ACT because
they also only have the Legislative Assembly. This means that they have one
house or if you’re still feeling fancy – unicameral. The ACT’s Legislative
Assembly has the power of a local council as it has no local government
itself. It’s pretty small. Territories also don’t have the same scope of
legislative powers as state governments. The federal government can come in to a
territory and just simply override any law at any point in time. For example the
ACT legalized same-sex marriage back in 2013. The High Court then challenged it
based off the Liberal government’s insistence. It was then undone in December of
the same year. Thankfully four years later in 2017 marriage equality passed
and was federal law all across Australia. Side note though: I used to get confused
when I see offices of politicians and it’s like “it’s the member for such-and-such”
and I’m like “that’s not the- that’s not the federal Member for such-and-such.” That’s
because they’re not federal they’re state and so if you ever see a sign that
says blah-dee-blah MLA or blah-dee-blue MLC like AHA! Wierd
name but I know that you’re a state politician. That’s how you know. Fun fact:
no one called blah-dee-blah has ever run for federal parliament. It’s just uh, look it
up. That’s a fact. Local government is things like the City Council or Shire
Council. This is where we get Mayors or Shire Presidents. Here’s the thing: the
size of a shire or a local council isn’t necessarily one per town. Large
metropolitan areas can actually have several. This explains why if you’ve ever
seen something like the city of Subiaco and you’re like “but we’re in Perth?
Subiaco is a suburb…” Well, yes, Subiaco is a suburb, but it is also “the city of
Subiaco” as in a local government. A local government can be as small as just
simply covering a handful of suburbs. So what do they even do? Well first off the
federal government is the most important and the highest tiers. Laws can vary
between states but if there’s a conflicting law on the same subject
between a state and a federal then section 109 of the Constitution
allows the federal government to just override it. It can override any
conflicting element of the state law so long as it is constitutionally allowed
to do. So the federal government makes laws about things such as foreign
affairs, social security such as welfare and pensions, industrial relations, trade
with other countries, immigration and citizenship, currency, the census, marriage and
divorce, bankruptcy, the postal service – very important that is federally owned –
lighthouses – also very important – and defense. That’s right, they’re charged
with running the country’s overall economy and the laws that we must all
abide by no matter where we live in the country.
It gets its power from section 51 of the Constitution. Ooh
constitutional law! The sexiest of all the laws. Yes that’s right: Section 51 of
the Australian Constitution does specifically state that the federal
government has jurisdiction over lighthouses. Hey, it was the year 1900.
That was apparently the peak of importance. What the Prime Minister says
about lighthouses we must all obey… about what the Prime Minister says about
lighthouses. I want to know every federal election what is the stance on
lighthouses? How will you change the law regarding lighthouses? It is compulsory
to vote in federal elections. Register to vote or update your electoral details
if you have moved house recently at the Australian Electoral Commission website
that is www dot AEC dot gov dot au. The AEC is your friend. Once enrolled to vote on a
federal level you are enrolled to vote in all elections state, local, and federal.
The state government can make laws on anything that isn’t covered by the
federal government. It makes laws on things like consumer affairs, issues on justice
such as police laws and prisons, health, emergency services, education,
conservation and environment, sport and recreation, industrial relations, public
transport and roads. And that’s why when you go interstate you need a different
travel card for every single capital city’s form of public transport. The
state government! They did this to us! Why do I need an opal card?The smart rider
does the exact same thing! Voting in state elections is compulsory
too so don’t forget that. There is a specific website for each electoral
commission of each state or territory like the Victorian Electoral Commission
the West Australian Electoral Commission. You can just google it all but for
convenience I will put all the links in the description. So the duties of the
local government though are more focused because, well, they have to be. They’re very
small areas. So they do deal with things such as local road maintenance, picking
up the garbage and sewerage, building regulations and land subdivisions, pet
control, public health, libraries, footpaths, community services, town planning
and recreational facilities. Basically it builds you parks and it maintains the
area and then tells you when your bin day is. When I say it does libraries I
mean local libraries not like the State Library and which is different from, say,
the national libraries. Look: just support whatever library you see at any point in
time. Don’t be afraid of libraries… is the one thing that you should take away from
this video. Support them. Get close to them. Learn their secrets. And yes, you
heard me. Pet control. It is your local government that tells you that you’re
not allowed things like a sheep, goat, pig, alpaca, horse, deer, camel, llama, emu,
ostrich, or even a kangaroo! If you live in certain suburban areas. Oh well.
They’re the ones controlling your camel ownership. They’re the ones to complain
to if for some reason you desperately want to shove a camel into suburbia you
weirdo. They also say things like, for example, I am only allowed to own six
chickens but no roosters. I’m allowed six chickens but no roosters and they have
to be a certain distance from the fence and also like food preparation areas
and where I live I’m also allowed a maximum of 30 pigeons. That’s the law!
I cannot have 31. I don’t know what the law says if I break it and I buy
thirty-one pigeons but I am too much of a coward to find out. I am allowed bees
though and until the state or federal government tells me otherwise nothing
will stop me from owning as many bees as I like except for financial
restrictions, my allergy to bees, and how scary that makes me feel being near them.
Quick note: voting in local elections isn’t compulsory in Western Australia,
South Australia, and Tasmania. Everywhere else you do have to pay attention to
that. Voting is very important in Australia just keep doing it. Details
about your local elections can be found at the Electoral Commission website of
the specific state you live in. But wait there’s some crossover in some of these
duties. For example: health. The federal government’s budget always mentions
health as a prominent feature but also the state and local government also have
duties regarding health. So what’s happening there? Let’s explore.
The health system is actually jointly run by all three tiers of government so
let’s start from the top and work our way down.
Federally we have Medicare which is the foundation of our medical system. It
helps cover some of the medical costs for a lot of different procedures and
doctor’s visits and helps people from descending into U.S. styled medical
bankruptcy. So the federal government funds Medicare, the Pharmaceutical
Benefits Scheme, subsidizes aged care services and protects the community from
radiation from nuclear safety research. What? Yep that’s what it says right on
the health dot gov dot au website. Uh thanks? I didn’t realize that I was at risk of
radiation. Thanks to the federal health system for protecting me and also
you from just too much radiation.I love not living in Fallout! The federal and
state government have the shared responsibilities of funding public
hospitals. So for instance in the twenty seventeen to eighteen financial year the
federal government gave the South Metropolitan Health Service in Western
Australia nineteen thousand eight hundred eighty seven million dollars. I
don’t know why they just didn’t… put that in billions. And the Western Australian
government gave two thousand one hundred and fifty two million dollars. This was
spread out over several hospitals. The state and local government then have a
shared responsibility when it comes to managing public hospitals, community and
mental health services, and food safety and handling regulations. So let’s
discuss a few more examples of cross-over. In the case of roads the federal
government has a national road funding. The state government then looks after
things like buses, major roads, road taxes, traffic lights, police, road signs, etc etc.
The local government then deals with things like local roads, street signs, and
bus stops. For education the federal government funds states and higher
education. State government deals with their educational department and school
funding, and then local government in Victoria and New South Wales for example
deal with kindergarten and preschool. For taxes the federal government has taxes
to raise money like the GST or income tax,
or sometimes the corporate tax rate. States have their own way of raising
money like transfer duty, land tax, gambling tax, etc but depend on the
federal government for more than half of their funding. Local governments have
these things called rates which are basically taxes for property owners like
your council rates for owning a house. They then use this to help support the
community. So there you have it! Your local government deals with things such
as parks, town planning, and chickens, while your state government deals with
things like public transport, and managing hospitals, and the federal
government deals with things like immigration, the post office, lighthouses,
and I guess the military. Together they work for an intermingling system that
covers every single facet of the Australian government. Now you can
impress everyone with your amazing knowledge of the different tiers of
Australian government. Win the admiration of all your peers as you
regale them with everything that you learned in this video… or just share it
with them so they can learn it as well. Thank you very much for watching. Don’t
forget to like, share, and subscribe – but also comment down below what you would
like to learn next. Also there is a link in the description to a copy of the
script full with citations to the specific things that I have mentioned so
you can read more about them or use them as resources in an assignment or essay
because although the things that I’ve said are correct you can’t use a youtube
video as a citation in an essay. Sorry. Also there is a Patreon in the
description so if you want to support free educational content please
contribute. Rhank you very much and I will see you again.