Ulster councillors are to seek the backing of their Great Britain counterparts in the campaign to win significant new powers from the Stormont Executive.
The National Association of Councillors (NAC) is holding its annual conference in Belfast at the weekend and will focus on a number of national issues.
But its overall theme - Power to the People: working with local communities - ties in with the demands of the Northern Ireland Local Government Association (NILGA), which has asked the Stormont Executive to think again over its initial proposals.
Criticising the proposals as a "travesty" if they are implemented, NILGA has complained that they water down the vision for councils outlined by former Secretary of State Peter Hain.
But, with devolution returned, Executive Minister Arlene Foster has argued a balance between regional and local government will have to be struck - and it won't be in the short term.
Heather Moorehead, chief executive of NILGA, is to address the NAC gathering at the Ramada Hotel tomorrow and will point out that the Assembly this week agreed to simply note rather than endorse proposals.
All parties also agreed to an Ulster Unionist amendment calling for the transfer of "meaningful and significant" new powers to local councils.
The NAC, meanwhile, will hold its annual meeting today, and over the weekend consider a number of initiatives designed to strengthen local structures.
Among the main issues are proposals for local area agreements, which have some degree of overlap with Mr Hain's proposals to allow councils power for local community planning, and participation in budgeting by Government departments.
Hazel Blears, the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Communities, said earlier this month: "This is a watershed moment for local government. Here is an opportunity to recognise the uniqueness of every area but also a challenge to make every town, city and village a place to be proud of.
"More local decision making is the key to better services, greater public satisfaction and will show what local democracy in action can do."
The NAC is an all-party organisation, representing councillors at all levels of local government and has not held its annual conference in the province for several years.