Data collected to make recommendations for NT Grants Commission

The Northern Territory Grants Commission collects a range of different data sets as part of its recommendation process on the distribution of Financial Assistance Grants and other grant programs.

Read below for the data sets.

As part of the distribution of the Identified Local Road grants, the Northern Territory  Grants Commission maintains a local roads data base.

The Northern Territory Grants Commission maintains and update the local roads data based through the assistance of councils each year via the Annual Road Return data collection process. The Road Returns are sent to councils in February each year for update of which council’ s Chief Executive Officers must certify the accuracy of the roads data supplied.

The Northern Territory Grants Commission’s local roads data base is also used by the Department of the Chief Minister and Cabinet in assessing and confirming eligibility of damaged roads under the Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements.

The latest collection of road lengths used by the Northern Territory Grants Commission in the grant recommendations includes details of the road lengths for each council, broken up into the following categories:

  • sealed roads
  • formed roads
  • gravel roads
  • unformed roads
  • cycle paths.

Local Road lengths for any given year for all councils can be found in the Northern Territory Grants Commission Annual Reports  – Schedule 3.

Annual reports can be found on the Territory Stories website.

The Northern Territory Grants Commission collects information from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) on population every year to use in their grant recommendations. Each year the latest ABS estimated resident population figures usually available late March are then adjusted to align with the population total advised by the Commonwealth for funding purposes for the coming financial year.

Population totals for any given year for all councils can be found in the Northern Territory Grants Commission Annual Reports  – Schedule 1.

Annual reports can be found on the Territory Stories website.

The Northern Territory Grants Commission in assessing relative need for allocating general purpose funding uses the balanced budget approach to horizontally equalise based on the formula:

Assessed expenditure need - assessed revenue capacity = assessed equalisation requirement.

The general purpose funding methodology calculates standards by applying cost adjustors and average weightings to assess each local government's revenue raising capacity and expenditure need.  The assessment is the Northern Territory Grants Commission's measure of each local government's ability to function at the average standard in accordance with the National Principles.

Data collected through the Annual Financial Returns allows the Northern Territory Grants Commission to make an assessment of the income and expenditures of individual councils and to determine total income and expenditure of all local governments in the Northern Territory.  The Australian Bureau of Statistics, in its local government financial statistics and national accounts, also uses this data.

Revenue raising capacity

The collection of actual accurate financial data through the Northern Territory Grants Commission’s Annual Returns enables the following revenue categories: municipal, regional and shire council rates, domestic waste, garbage other, special rates other, parking and interest to be assessed in the methodology.

In addition, and in accordance with the National Principles “other grant support” to local governing bodies by way of the Roads to Recovery, library and local roads grants are recognised in the revenue component of the methodology.  In the case of recipients of the Roads to Recovery grants 50 per cent of the grant is included.  Recipients of library grants and local roads grants have the total amount of the grant included.

Rateable land valuations and lot data is provided by local government councils through the Annual Financial Returns. For the municipal councils the Northern Territory Grants Commission uses unimproved capital value and land use type in the following categories to calculate an average equalised rate:

  • residential
  • commercial (including industrial and other).

For the regional and shire councils as the ownership of the land on which many communities are located is vested in land trusts established pursuant to the Aboriginal Lands Rights (Northern Territory) Act 1976 (Cth) it is not possible to use a land valuation system solely as the means for assessing rate revenue raising capacity. Therefore in the methodology for the regional and shire councils the Northern Territory Grants Commission distribute the total rates revenue raised on a per capita basis.

Read more about the expenditure functions.


Last updated: 03 June 2022

Give feedback about this page.

Share this page:

URL copied!