Norfolk Island is Australia's first non-mainland territory to have gained self-government. On March 19, 2015, the Commonwealth stated that the island's self-government will be withdrawn and replaced by a local council, with the state of New South Wales providing services to the island. The new council will be called the Norfolk Island Council.
Norfolk Island has its own parliament on the mainland of Australia at Sydney. The capital city of Norfolk Island is Norfolktown, which has a population of about 1,000. The main industry is fishing and farming.
The population of Norfolk Island was 2,205 in 2016. Of this number, 96 percent were born in Australia, and the majority (72%) were born in New South Wales. There are no ethnic groups represented among the population. About 14% of the people speak English as their first language, while another 57% speak other languages including French, Greek, Italian, Maltese, and Spanish. Most Norfolk Islanders speak multiple languages at home.
There are only 9 schools on the island, with 5 primary schools and 4 secondary schools. Enrolment is small with around 150 students attending each school. The median age is 28.5 years old, and almost half (48%) of the population is over 45 years old.
Norfolk Island is an Australian territory located in the Pacific Ocean around 1600 kilometers northeast of Sydney. Norfolk Island is one of Australia's most remote localities and one of its oldest territories, having been colonized six weeks after the country's establishment in Sydney, New South Wales.
Norfolk Island has a population of 2,205 and an area of 362 square miles (948 km2). The island's only city is Norfolk Town on the south coast. The main industry is agriculture, with some tourism. Norfolk Island potatoes are famous throughout Australia.
Norfolk Island was originally inhabited by settlers from Britain and Ireland who came to work on the new colony. They established crops and livestock that are similar to those used today in Australia, although less efficient methods were employed. After just five years, the majority of the farmers left the island because there weren't enough jobs for all of them. With no indigenous people around to enslave, the farmers merely went back to Europe or North America and brought back money to build more farms. This process continued until every available area of land was cultivated several times over.
Since the end of World War II, the population of Norfolk Island has declined significantly as many farmers returned home because of the expense and difficulty of living on such a small island. There are plans to develop tourism but this would need to be done carefully so as not to upset the balance between humans and nature on the island.
On July 1, 2015, the Norfolk Island Legislative Assembly was disbanded, and the Australian Government assumed control of the island through an Administrator (now Eric Hutchinson) appointed by the Governor-General of Australia. The island's legislative body was responsible for creating laws for the island prior to its dissolution in 2015.
Norfolk Island has been a self-governing territory of Australia since 1901. It is one of four territories that form part of mainland Australia but are not states - the others being the Northern Territory, Queensland and South Australia. Norfolk Island has its own parliament located in Kingston Town, which consists of nine members elected across three constituencies. The members serve three year terms and cannot stand for election again. Prior to becoming legislators, they were all mayors of different towns on the island.
The Commonwealth can make laws applicable to Norfolk Island with the approval of the Parliament of Australia. Some laws require the consent of the Norfolk Island Council to be applied to the island, but these are rare. For example, the Criminal Code (1901 c. 25) requires consent to apply to Norfolk Island because it includes a provision for the death penalty. However, this does not affect the power of the Commonwealth to make such laws in the first place.
Australia's constitution provides for a system of government known as "representative democracy".
Norfolk Island is the principal island of the Australian external territory of Norfolk Island, located in the Pacific Ocean between Australia and New Zealand, approximately 692 kilometers (430 miles) south of New Caledonia.
Norfolk is a self-contained, full-service city with exclusive local government taxation authority inside its borders. Its governing power is derived from the City Charter, which was first approved by the General Assembly of Virginia (the "General Assembly") in 1918 and permits a council-manager style of administration. The charter can be revised or amended by another vote of the people through a direct initiative or referendum.
The city is led by a mayor-council government system, with a mayor elected at large for a four-year term and a seven-member city council responsible for policy decisions and oversight of the executive branch. The present mayor is Mary Jane Rhee, who took office on January 2, 2010, after former Mayor Paul Denny resigned to take a job with the International Olympic Committee. The city's administrative offices are located in downtown Norfolk.
Taxes are levied exclusively by the city government, with rates set by ordinance. The total estimated annual revenue of Norfolk is $75 million, with approximately one-third coming from taxes and the rest made up of grants, fees, and investments.
Norfolk has a small but diverse economy dominated by defense and maritime industries. It is also becoming an arts and culture destination with several museums and theaters.
Norfolk is the largest city outside of Virginia without a county government.
Norfolk Island's immigration regulations have been changed to allow Australian and most New Zealand nationals to live, work, retire, or explore investment and business opportunities on the island. The new regulation allows for a three-year stay with possible renewal.
In addition, Canadian citizens and residents of Canada can apply for a special permit which allows them to enter and remain in the country. If this permission is granted, the applicant can apply for a residence permit once they have been living on the island for two years.
The majority of those who arrive on Norfolk Island are employed as seasonal workers by small businesses or government agencies, but some find jobs on large commercial farms or in tourism.
Those who decide to make Norfolk Island their home need to understand that there are limited resources on the island. In fact, there are only about 1,500 acres of usable land, which accounts for less than one percent of Norfolk Island's total area. This means that if you plan to settle on the island, you'll need to know exactly what kind of job you can find and be able to afford a place to live.
In conclusion, living on Norfolk Island is possible, but it requires a commitment to find a good job in the short term and be able to pay for one.