What is being decentralised?

What exactly is being decentralised?

The Decentralisation Policy identifies 28 functions (tasks) that should be decentralised (handed over) to regional councils and local authorities in the short term. These functions, listed below, are services that directly affect the life of the communities:

  • community development and early childhood development;
  • administration of settlements;
  • rural water development and management;
  • management and control of communal lands;
  • primary health care;
  • pre-primary and primary education;
  • forest development and management;
  • physical and economic planning (including capital development projects);
  • emergency management;
  • resettlement, rehabilitation and housing;
  • regional council personnel responsibility;
  • vehicle testing and licensing;
  • rural electricity distribution;
  • town planning schemes within the framework of approved master plans;
  • business registration;
  • housing provisions;
  • electricity distribution;
  • liquor licensing;
  • environment and conservation;
  • social services;
  • youth, sports and recreational activities;
  • collection of assessment rates and some form of taxes, excluding income tax, general sales tax, and additional sales levies;
  • libraries;
  • agency services to towns, villages and settlements;
  • traffic control;
  • control of aerodromes;
  • rural assets management; and
  • small miners development.

Other functions identified in the policy document are intended to be decentralised either in the intermediate or long term.