How to become a Local Government Inspector

Local government inspectors are responsible for enforcing various council by-laws, parking and traffic regulations and provisions contained in the Local Government Act, and other legislation enforced by councils.

Personal requirements of a Local Government Inspector

  • Enjoy working outdoors and willing to work in all types of weather
  • Able to deal politely and, at times, firmly with members of the public
  • Good communication and conflict-resolution skills
  • Mature and confident
  • Patient, able to show initiative and be discrete
  • Able to cope with the physical demands of the job

Education & Training for a Local Government Inspector

You can work as a local government inspector without formal qualifications. You will probably get some informal training on the job. Entry to this occupation may be improved if you have qualifications. You may like to consider a VET qualification in local government, specialising in regulatory services or health and environment. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information. You can also become a local government inspector through a traineeship in Local Government (Health and Environment/Regulatory Services). Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10. For more details, see Section 2. Ask your career adviser about the possibility of starting some of this training in school.

Duties & Tasks of a Local Government Inspector

Inspectors may perform the following tasks:

  • talk with people who dispute council actions
  • issue notices to cut back or remove plant growth that overhangs footpaths and streets, as well as undergrowth from premises
  • issue notices to people found littering
  • patrol streets and parking areas to check that vehicles are legally parked (have not exceeded maximum parking times, for example)
  • issue notices to people parking illegally
  • provide information to the police about stolen or abandoned vehicles
  • issue notices to people in violation of environmental protection regulations (such as lighting an incinerator outside specified times or illegally burning substances such as rubber)
  • catch stray and unregistered animals and, if possible, notify owners
  • follow up complaints, conduct interviews and issue penalty notices to animal owners who are in violation of the various acts and by-laws
  • keep records of issued notices and payment of penalties
  • attend court to give evidence in support of any prosecutions
  • give timely and courteous advice to the community.

Working conditions for a Local Government Inspector

Duties performed by inspectors vary among councils depending on where the council is and the inspector's experience and training. For example, an inspector employed by a coastal council is likely to perform duties relating to provisions contained in the Coastal Protection and Boating Acts. In some councils, inspectors perform both traffic and general inspection duties. Inspectors mainly work outdoors without direct supervision and may be required to wear a uniform. They may be required to work some evenings, weekends and public holidays, overtime or shifts. Inspectors have a considerable amount of contact with the public.

Employment Opportunities for a Local Government Inspector

Inspectors may be employed on a full-time, part-time or casual basis within metropolitan and regional local government authorities.

Specialisations:


Compliance Officer (Local Government)

A compliance officer (local government) performs site inspections, investigates and reports on new and existing land use and building activities, and resolves complaints. They liaise with solicitors, developers, property owners and occupiers to achieve compliance with local government legislation. Compliance officers need to be able to communicate effectively and have a broad skill and knowledge base.

Additional Information
To work as a local government inspector, you may need to undergo a National Police Check and medical assessment. You may also need a drivers licence for cars and/or motorcycles. Contact your local council for further information.
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