Resolving the Infrastructure Funding Crisis in Australian Local Government: A Bond Market Issue Approach Based on Local Council Income
- Year: 2008
- Author: Byrnes, Joel; Dollery, Brian; Crase, Lin; Simmons, Phil
- Journal Name: Australasian Journal of Regional Studies, The
- Journal Number: Vol. 14, No. 2
- Country: Australia
- State/Region: New South Wales
Numerous state-based and national public inquiries across Australia have demonstrated conclusively that local councils face almost insurmountable problems in coping with the problem of financing a massive backlog in local infrastructure maintenance and renewal. Various solutions have been advanced to tackle the problem, including the establishment of a federal government local infrastructure fund. In this paper we develop an alternative funding approach based on the issue of asset-backed securities by local councils in the capital markets. Using the case of water and wastewater operations by local councils in New South Wales, we show that local government has access to a relatively attractive asset in the form of municipal income that can form an income stream payable on a fixed-income security issued by the Australian local government sector.