Membership questions

Who can join depa?

Anyone who is a professional working in local government in New South Wales in environmental health, public health, building and development control and planning.

What sort of issues can depa help me with?

Any issue that arises at work.  We can:

  • assist you with your entitlements under the Award and/or council policies and make sure your rights are acknowledged,
  • give advice about contractual entitlements arising for your appointment (including what is held out she was a condition of your employment in the letter of offer etc),
  • assist you with advice as a Senior Staff employee under the Local Government Act
  • given the advice of his which is confidential or act on your behalf
  • act as a sounding board for ideas and inspiration at work
  • negotiate with your council about anything listed above, failed dispute in the Industrial Relations Commission if we can't reach agreement with the Council or take issues to the Division of Local Government on your behalf.
  • give advice and assistance in dealing with the Building Professionals Board
  • lobby Ministers and the NSW Government about things we think need to change.

Once I'm a member, what do I need to do?

If you decide to pay your fees annually, you will be sent an invoice by email at the time of application which needs to be paid prior to your application being accepted and becoming valid. Members paying annually shall pay the fee for one year from 1 January and, if joining during the calendar year, for the remainder of the year at the time of making application for membership on a pro rata basis, with a minimum payment of three months.

If you're on payroll deduction and your status changes from being part-time to full-time, for example, you need to let it us know so we can adjust our records. Go to online Payroll Deduction Authorisation form...

If you decide to leave one council and go to another, or if you residential address changes, you also need to tell us that too. Go to online Update Member Details form...

And if you resign from the Council and leave the industry you need to resign from depa as well. Membership obligations continue until you resign or we remove you from our membership roll. Go to online Member Resignation form...

How do I pay?

You can pay an annual fee, we send an invoice to your home address which needs to be paid before 28 February each year for you to remain a financial member and eligible for our services, or you can pay by weekly payroll deduction which you can organise with the pay office at your council.

We prefer payroll deductions – it’s effortless for you and the risk of falling into arrears and becoming unfinancial is lower. Go to online Payroll Deduction Authorisation form...

How much does it cost?

Memberships and fees are on this page.

Why should I become a member?

Local government employees are very vulnerable. The third level of government lacks the stability of the Federal and State systems and is more prone to councillors being single issue zealots, members of the community who stood for council to get square with council employees they believed had done them wrong, the self-interested and those fixated with 80 personal issues.

The political complexion of the Council can change from election to election which can mean that a council which is perceived as pro-development one term, can be equally regarded as anti-development the next. Despite this yo-yoing, professional employees charged with managing environmental, public health, development and planning legislation have to get the job done despite the politics.

Small councils, a reluctance to amalgamate, rate-pegging and limited opportunities for other income streams mean that the industry is not as well-paid as it should be, that councils will avoid training staff if they can and pennypinch on everything including providing cars to employees who need them to work to acknowledging shortage in the shortages in the industry which require payment of market salaries over the minimum set in the Award.

If I'm taking leave, can I suspend my membership?

You can if you going on parental leave for a long period of time, otherwise we encourage you to resign and rejoin when you return.

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