The report on workforce and future skills in local government concluded there were a number of reasons for the shortages such as the location of some councils meant they could not attract suitable candidates and an inability to match wages in the private sector.
Local Government Association of Tasmania senior policy officer Michael Edrich said the report found nearly 70 per cent of the state’s councils were experiencing skills shortages and almost half of them reported unmet training needs due to insufficient local tertiary and vocational training services.
The study did note councils were combating the issue of skills gaps through secondments, on-the-job training with coaching and mentoring, and other targeted training programs.
“Our councils also report the wide use of resource sharing between councils as an economically efficient means of sustaining services in the face of scarce resources,” he said.
The report said local government was a key employment driver in regional and remote areas and the sector employed 4185 people statewide.
It said 20 of the state’s 29 councils employed less than 100 staff.
The report recommended councils increase their take-up of cadetships in occupations with skills shortages in the state.
It said since 2012, apprenticeship and traineeship numbers across all Tasmanian industries and in local government had been in decline.
Apprenticeship numbers in local government had decreased by 61.5 per cent, the report said.
The report said more than 30 per cent of councils indicated they did not have enough trainees or apprentices to meet their future skills need.
Part of this was to do with financial limitations, it said.