Effective performance measurement and management is a cornerstone of contemporary public sector management. As governments at all levels decide on the most appropriate allocation of resources and the means by which services are delivered, they need to know the impact of their decisions over time. Building basic compliance-related information systems provides the basis on which governments, especially at the local government level, can make informed strategic choices about local issues. This paper examines performance management systems in local governments in Victoria, Australia and Sardinia, Italy. Without a robust compliance-related performance management information system in place, council choices around new strategic investments are dubious at best.