The Local Government Engineering Branch of the Department of Works and Local Government was established on 1 February 1936. (1)
In 1942 it was renamed the Local Government Engineering and Defence Works Co-ordination Branch.
On 28 March 1944 the Survey Drafting Branch and the Surveyors' Section of the Local Government Engineer's Branch amalgamated. (2)
In 1945 it was the Defence Works Co-ordination Branch. In 1946 it again became the Local Government Engineering Branch. (3)
In 1969 the functions of the Local Government Engineering Branch were:
1. Collections and analysis of statistical data for determination of annual grants for rural road construction to councils under the Commonwealth Aid Roads Act, 1964. Distribution of annual allocation to councils and grant administration.
2. The examination of detailed applications, plans, specifications, estimates of cost, and tenders submitted by shire, municipal and city councils together with construction supervision in respect of:
(a) Works included in rural road construction programmes, which conform with Department's policy and design standards, from funds provided under the Commonwealth Aid Roads Act, 1964.
(b) The construction of subsidized bridges, and major culverts, from funds provided under the same Act.
(c) The construction of bridges to replace subsidized ferries on rural roads, under the same Act.
(d) The restoration of flood, storm and bushfire damage to roads, bridges, and other council properties, under the same Act.
(e) The construction, repair and renewal of miscellaneous minor works - from Revenue Vote.
(f) The construction of public swimming pools in country towns - from Loan Vote.
(g) Works for the relief of unemployment.
3. The provision of overriding supervision on behalf of the Local Government Department, of grant programmes for road construction, public buildings and improvements to public recreation reserves.
4. The examination in respect of Loan applications of plans, specifications and estimates submitted by councils to the Local Government Department for roads, bridges, drainage schemes, swimming pools, town improvements, etc.
5. Investigation, design and / or construction and supervision of special major projects, eg. Lord Howe Island Airfield, etc.
6. The maintenance of landing grounds in the Western Division for the Flying Doctor Service.
7. The planning including survey, design, preparation of specifications and estimates and the supervision of construction and maintenance of roads, bridges, drainage, ground improvements, swimming pools, etc., for client departments and other Government authorities.
8. The preparation, collation and dissemination of up to date design standards, specifications and engineering data in regard to local government works.
9. Promotion of research and field experiments into special projects associated with Local Government works, such as: low level bridges, culverts, causeways, pavement strenghthening, bitumenous surfacing and swimming pool construction.
10. The preparation, collation and dissemination of up to date design standards, specifications and engineering data on ground improvements and other civil engineering works on sites.
11. Preparation and issue of administrative and technical instructions on local government engineering matters to district offices and rural councils.
12. Forward planning and programming of subsidized works in collaboration with local government authorities. (4)
Public Service List, 1936-1960.
(1) Public Service List, 1936, p.85.
(2) Report of the Department of Public Works for the year ended 30 June, 1945, p.1.
(3) Public Service List, 1945-1946.
(4) NSW Parliamentary Papers, 1969-70-71. Vol. 7, p.1304; Report of the Department of Public Works for the year ended 30 June, 1969, p.56.