The Rockhampton Region is a Local Government Area in Central Queensland, Australia, located on the Tropic of Capricorn about 600 kilometres (370 mi) north of Brisbane. Rockhampton is the region's major city; the region also includes the Fitzroy River, Mount Archer National Park and Berserker Range.
|• Density||12.339/km2 (31.958/sq mi)|
|Postcode(s)||4700, 4701, 4702, 4703, 4704, 4705, 4706, 4707|
|Area||6,570 km2 (2,536.7 sq mi)|
Established in 2008, it was preceded by four previous local government areas extending to almost the beginning of local government in Queensland. On 1 January 2014, one of those local government areas, the Shire of Livingstone was restored as an independent council.
Prior to the 2008 amalgamation, the Rockhampton Region existed as four distinct local government areas:
- the City of Rockhampton;
- the Shire of Fitzroy;
- the Shire of Livingstone (now de-amalgamated);
- and the Shire of Mount Morgan.
Rockhampton was proclaimed as Queensland's fourth municipality (after Brisbane, Ipswich and Toowoomba) on 13 December 1860 under the Municipalities Act 1858, a piece of New South Wales legislation inherited by Queensland when it became a separate colony in 1859. It held its first election on 26 February 1861 and its inaugural meeting on 1 March 1861. The municipality had an area of 13 km2 (5.0 sq mi) located on the south bank of the Fitzroy River and had a population of about 600. In 1864, the council was divided into three wards—Fitzroy, Archer and Leichhardt. A proposal to greatly expand its area southwards to include Gracemere and Bouldercombe was rejected in part due to opposition from influential squatters in the area. It achieved a measure of autonomy in 1878 with the enactment of the Local Government Act.
On 11 November 1879, the Gogango Divisional Board was established as one of 74 divisions around Queensland under the Divisional Boards Act 1879. It covered an area of 16,239 km2 (6,270 sq mi) surrounding the municipality—an area significantly greater than the modern Rockhampton Region covers. Capital and people came to the area in greater numbers after the discovery of gold in 1882 at Mount Morgan, about 20 kilometres (12 mi) south of Rockhampton. A Municipal Borough was proclaimed there on 22 May 1890.
A bridge was built spanning the Fitzroy River in 1882, and a year later in September 1883, the North Rockhampton Borough was proclaimed. North Rockhampton had a somewhat unhappy 36-year existence—its small population and location opposite the stronger and wealthier Rockhampton borough made comparisons inevitable and development of its own identity almost impossible. In 1919, it was described as a "small and straggling hamlet". Nevertheless, it was able to get a loan to construct a Municipal Chambers in 1885, which was completed in December of that year. The town clerk's arrest for embezzlement in 1890 marked the beginning of a period of difficulties characterised by disputes with the surrounding Gogango Divisional Board over road construction, and internal conflict between members of council, in which the Queensland Government was often requested to intervene. It did not have a reliable water supply and at the time of its amalgamation was still trying to raise funds for a dam.
The Fitzroy Division was proclaimed on 6 April 1899 out of the southern part of Gogango. With the passage of the Local Authorities Act 1902, Rockhampton became one of three former municipalities, alongside Brisbane and Townsville, to become a City on 31 March 1903, while North Rockhampton and Mount Morgan became Towns and the divisions of Gogango and Fitzroy became Shires. Gogango was renamed Livingstone on 8 August 1903.
The State Government became concerned in 1918 after both the City of Rockhampton and Town of North Rockhampton councils proposed separate water infrastructure projects. On Saturday 25 January 1919, an amalgamation referendum held in North Rockhampton passed with 884 of the 1,029 votes cast in favour. On 15 March 1919, elections for the new four-ward council with 11 councillors took place, with their first meeting being held five days later. North Rockhampton's chambers, located in Stapleton Park, North Rockhampton, became a Main Roads office for about four decades, and eventually was restored and, since 1985, has been the home of Rockhampton and District Historical Society.
Wards were abolished at some point and were not reintroduced until 1982, when the council was restructured with 10 divisions each electing one councillor, plus a mayor elected by the entire City. On 1 July 1984, the City grew northwards by annexing Parkhurst, where its water treatment facility was being constructed, from the Shire of Livingstone. The council tried on several occasions to expand further into the Livingstone and Fitzroy areas, but a referendum in Fitzroy on 9 February 1991 was opposed by 83% of valid votes cast.
In July 2007, the Local Government Reform Commission released a report making recommendations for statewide reform of local government boundaries, and recommended that the four areas of Rockhampton, Fitzroy, Livingstone and Mount Morgan amalgamate, due to a community of interest centred upon Rockhampton. The very weak sustainability rating given to the Shire of Mount Morgan was of particular concern. On 15 March 2008, the City and Shires formally ceased to exist, and elections were held on the same day to elect councillors and a mayor to the Regional Council.
In 2012, a proposal was made to de-amalgamate the Shire of Livingstone from the Rockhampton Region. On 9 March 2013, the citizens of the former Livingstone shire voted in a referendum to de-amalgamate. The Shire of Livingstone was re-established on 1 January 2014.
Wards and electionsEdit
The Council consists of a Mayor and seven Councillors. The Mayor is elected by the public, and the Councillors are elected from ten single member divisions using an optional preferential voting system. Elections are held every four years.
2016 - Margaret Strelow 
2012 - Margaret Strelow 
2008 - Brad Carter 
Suburbs, towns and localitiesEdit
The Rockhampton Region includes the following settlements:
* - shared with the Shire of Livingstone
The populations given relate to the component entities prior to 2008. The census in 2011 was the first for the new Region.
|Year||Total Region||Rockhampton||Livingstone||Fitzroy||Mt Morgan|
The council owns six business units which are city-owned enterprises managed on commercial lines:
- Rockhampton International Airport
- Fitzroy River Water
- Rockhampton Showgrounds
- Gracemere Saleyards
- Pilbeam Theatre
- Rockhampton Regional Art Gallery
Rockhampton Regional Council operates a headquarters public library at 230 Bolsover Street, Rockhampton ("Southside"). Branch libraries are located in Berserker ("Rockhampton North"), Gracemere, Mount Morgan and West Rockhampton ("Anytime" at Rockhampton Airport).
- "3218.0 – Regional Population Growth, Australia, 2017-18: Population Estimates by Local Government Area (ASGS 2018), 2017 to 2018". Australian Bureau of Statistics. Australian Bureau of Statistics. 27 March 2019. Retrieved 25 October 2019. Estimated resident population, 30 June 2018.
- 22 Vic No. 13 (Imp), assented 27 October 1858
- McDonald, Lorna (1995). Rockhampton : a history of city and district. Rockhampton City Council. pp. 108–109. ISBN 0-9599897-3-0.
- "North Rockhampton Borough Chambers (entry 601370)". Queensland Heritage Register. Queensland Heritage Council. Retrieved 20 April 2008.
- Queensland Local Government Reform Commission (July 2007). Report of the Local Government Reform Commission (PDF). 2. pp. 273–278. ISBN 1-921057-11-4. Retrieved 3 June 2010.
- "Capricorn Coast Regional Council & Rockhampton Regional Council: a Partnership Approach for Sound Regional Governance: Unity and strength with community of interest representation: De-amalgamation Submission to the Queensland Boundary Commissioner August 2012" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 28 April 2013. Retrieved 14 August 2013.
- "De-amalgamation". Queensland Government. Archived from the original on 26 August 2013. Retrieved 14 August 2013.
- "Local Government (De-amalgamation Implementation) Regulation 2013" (PDF). Local Government Act 2009. Queensland Government. Retrieved 14 August 2013.
- "2016 Rockhampton Regional Council - Mayoral Election - Election Summary". Retrieved 4 December 2017.
- "2012 Rockhampton Regional Council - Mayoral Election - Election Summary". Retrieved 4 December 2017.
- "2008 Rockhampton Regional Council - Mayoral Election - Election Summary". Retrieved 4 December 2017.
- "Rockhampton Regional Library, Public Libraries Connect". Public Libraries Connect. 1 September 2014. Retrieved 1 February 2018.