Changes to the legislation
The Australian Government is changing the way aged and disability services will be delivered in the future. The government plans to increase consumer choice to ensure services are efficient and cost-effective.
The changes will come into effect by 2020 and will mean Councils won’t automatically be the provider of aged services in their area.
What these changes mean for residents of Surf Coast Shire
Surf Coast Shire Council is investigating how the changes could impact on the services it provides.
One thing Council has already committed to is that we will not leave the community without a much-needed service. Appropriate services must be available.
You can also read the Community Engagement Options Paper(PDF, 2MB) if you want more background information including information about the methodology and detailed findings of this review.
Has Council already made up its mind (has a decision already been made)?
Definitely not. An extensive review has been completed and a series of possible options and scenarios identified. Community feedback is now being sought to fully inform the decision making process.
When will Council decide and what will happen then?
In May Council will receive the Preferred Option Paper which will include community feedback and it is at this time that they are likely to make their decision on the options. The next stage will include the development of an Implementation Plan which will need to be endorsed by Council early in the new financial year before being rolled out.
Will clients be left without a service?
Definitely not. Council has previously resolved to not leave the community without access to a critical service.
Why should prospective new clients sign up with Council when the future is uncertain?
The external market is currently weak and some services are currently only available from Council, although this is likely to change over time. Prospective new clients should not be deterred, Council clients will not be left without a service. With the Federal Government Aged Care Reform, there will be changes but we will plan for service continuity and future transitions as a part of the service review implementation plan.
The current service is great, can’t Council just leave things as they are?
By 2020, local government will no longer be automatically chosen as the service provider and the ability to plan good outcomes for clients and staff will be lost. If we do nothing we will lose this opportunity to plan for the change that is coming.