The "Local Authorities Act 1902" abolished divisional boards and created city, town and shire councils. Proserpine Shire Council was established from part of Wangaratta Shire on 19 Jan 1910. The first election of Councillors was held on 11 March 1910. The Council changed its name to Whitsunday Shire on 18 Feb 1989.
Under the "Local Authorities Act 1902", the primary function of Shire Councils was to provide such public services and amenities as parks and reserves, cemeteries, libraries and recreational facilities, water and sanitation services, roads, bridges, wharves, street lighting, public health services (such as immunisations), licences and registrations for businesses, markets and animals, town planning, and the control of noxious weeds and other pests.
The Council was also responsible for administering the Local Fund, and for valuing properties within the Shire for the purpose of determining and collecting rates.
The Council could pass by-laws regarding all matters within its jurisdiction. All such by-laws required the assent of the Governor-in-Council.
Under the "Local Government Act 1993" Shire Councils 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.
Councils generate revenue from rates, grants and subsidies from state and federal governments, service charges, and loans for major projects.
The Shire Council, under the "Local Authorities Act 1902", 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.
The Council consisted of a mayor and 7 divisional councillors, and administration was the responsibility of a Chief Executive Officer. The Council administered the towns of Proserpine, Airlie Beach, Cannonvale, Shute Harbour, Conway & Wilson Beach, Dingo Beach and Hydeaway Bay. The Shire also covered islands of the Whitsunday including resorts such as Hayman, Hamilton and Daydream Island.
On 15 March 2008, Whitsunday Shire amalgamated with the Bowen Shire to form the Whitsunday Region.