Local Government Areas of the Northern Territory

Local Government Areas of the Northern Territory

The Northern Territory has 63 Local Government Areas; though only 6 councils are considered municipalities, there are other types of local bodies. It is expected that in 2008 rationalisation of the Local Government bodies will occur, with the proposed changes mentioned below.

List of councils and areas


*Alice Springs Town Council
*City of Darwin
*Jabiru Town Council
*Katherine Town Council
*Shire of Litchfield
*City of Palmerston
*Tennant Creek Town Council


*Alpurrurulam (Community)
*Angurugu (Community)
*Anmatjere (Community)
*Arltarlpilta (Community)
*Belyuen (Community)
*Binjari (Community)
*Borroloola (Community)
*Coomalie (Community)
*Cox Peninsula (Community)
*Daguragu (Community)
*Elliott District (Community)
*Jilkminggan (Community)
*Kunbarllanjinja (Community)
*Lajamanu (Community)
*Ltyentye Purte (Community)
*Marngarr (Community)
*Mataranka (Community)
*Nauiyu Nambiyu (Community)
*Numbulwar Numburindi (Community)
*Nyirranggulung Mardrulk Ngadberre (Region)
*Pine Creek (Community)
*Tapatjatjaka (Community)
*Thamarrurr (Region)
*Timber Creek (Community)
*Tiwi Islands (Community)
*Walangeri Ngumpinku (Community)
*Wallace Rockhole (Community)
*Watiyawanu (Community)
*Yuendumu (Community)
*Yugul Mangi (Community)

Area types

The Northern Territory is unusual in that about 22% of the territory's population lives in unincorporated areas (by comparison, only 0.02% of New South Wales population, 0.002% of Victoria's population, 0.6% of South Australia's population, live in unincorporated areas, these being the only other states or territories with both incorporated and unincorporated areas.)

There are four classes of local government areas in the Northern Territory of Australia:
* municipalities (6)
* community government councils (30)
* incorporated associations (26)
* special purpose towns (1)


The six large centres of the territory are incorporated into municipalities, dealing with similar areas to other Australian councils, except building control and planning.

Community government councils

Community Government councils are constituted differently from municipalities, and often take on extra functions. Some councils, due to nature of their area's land ownership, do not charge rates on property.

Incorporated associations

Incorporated associations provide some local government functions.

pecial purpose towns

The 'special purpose town' of Jabiru receives its power from the entity that constructed the town, rather than the territory's local government legislation.

Proposed changes

The Northern Territory Government has proposed in an attempt to rationalise resources that the existing LGAs be merged into nine shires and four municipal councils. The four municipal councils of:
*Alice Springs
*Palmerstonwill stay, while the further shire councils will be created:
*Barkly Shire
*Central Desert Shire
*East Arnhem Shire
*Roper Shire
*MacDonnell Shire
*Tiwi Islands Local Government
*Top End-Litchfield Shire
*Victoria River-Daly Shire
*West Arnhem Shire


* [http://www.lgant.nt.gov.au/demo/content/view/full/222/ list at the Local Government Association of the Northern Territory site]
* [http://www.nt.gov.au/ntg/localgov.shtml "partial" list at the Northern Territory Government portal site]
* [http://www.localgovernment.nt.gov.au/new/maps Map of Proposed LGAs]
* [http://www.localgovernment.nt.gov.au/new/update_reform_brochure Policy details]

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