The purpose of this paper is to consider recent developments in the provision of public tacilities and the administration of these facilities in non-metropolitan areas in Australia. In the first section of the paper some of the limitations of the growth centre approach in urban and regional development planning are discussed. Regional centres are necessary to complement growth centres in order to achieve improvements in regional welfare throughout the country. Several basic functions of regional centres are outlined in the second section with reference to the provision of services in the health, welfare and educational fields. In the third section varying degrees of dominance of the state capital city in each state are taken into account in assessing the range and type of functions that could be expected in regional centres throughout the nation.