On 31 Mar 1903 Einasleigh Divisional Board became Einasleigh Shire Council under the "Local Authorities Act 1902", and on 15 Mar 1919, by Order in Council, the name Einasleigh Shire Council was changed to Etheridge Shire Council.
Under the "Local Authorities Act 1902", Shire Councils provided such public services and amenities as parks and reserves, cemeteries, libraries, recreational facilities, water, sanitation services, roads, bridges, wharves, street lighting, etc. The Council also administered the Local Fund, valued properties within the Shire for determining and collecting rates, and passed by-laws regarding all matters within its jurisdiction (by-laws required the assent of the Governor-in-Council). Increased powers were given to Council by subsequent local government legislation, for example, fire prevention, public nuisances, public carriers, slaughter houses, traffic, building regulation, the environment, public utilities and business undertakings.
Local Government Councils under the "Local Government Act 1993" and subsequent "Local Government Act 2009" and through local laws: promote economic development; own and manage public infrastructure including roads and public works, sewerage, and water storage and distribution; regulate activities which affect the environment including air, noise and water quality, land use and waste disposal, pests and noxious weeds, and building control; provide community services including recreational and cultural facilities and public health services.
Under the "Local Government Act 2009". local governments have " the power to do anything that is necessary or convenient for the good rule and local government of its local government area" including conduct joint government activities, engage in business enterprises. construct and maintain roads and other infrastructure. Indigenous Councils which are also Trustee Councils are responsible for business related to trust land while Community Forums may be established to discuss community issues.
Initially, the Shire Council included a chairman, town clerk and a number of other members. From time to time, the Council could appoint committees for special or general purposes. Council also appointed its own officers, who were paid from the Local Fund. Each year the Minister appointed an independent auditor to review the financial statements of the Council. The Council submitted an Annual Statement of Revenue and Expenditure to the Minister, which was published in the Government Gazette.
Under the "Local Government Act 1993", the title Chairman was replaced by Mayor. Special or general purpose committees were appointed reporting to Council. Council appointed its own officers to administer its business, headed by a Shire Clerk/Chief Executive Officer. The Etheridge Council administers the towns of Einasleigh, Georgetown, Mt Surprise and Forsayth.