Portland’s last mayor looks back on 1994 amalgamation
TODAY marks the 25th anniversary of the Victorian Government’s landmark announcement to dissolve the state’s 210 councils and create 78 local government areas.
Championed by then-Premier Jeff Kennett, who took power in the 1992 election, the exhaustive state restructure saw struggling rural shires forcibly merged with larger regional councils in a bid to save money and restore the government’s finances.
Less than two years after taking power, the Kennett government pushed aside more than a century of history with one proclamation.
Amongst all of the chaos, the current day Glenelg Shire was formed, an amalgamation of the City of Portland with sections of the Shire of Heywood and most of the old Shire of Glenelg.
Local historian Bernard Wallace, the City of Portland’s last mayor, looks back at the amalgamation that transmuted the political landscape of country Victoria.