Speaking in Cardiff at the first of four regional events in north, south, east and west Wales the Minister congratulated all members on their election but warned them that in the current climate, their role in running public services will not be easy.
The Minister said:
"While we are all committed to making sure that the people of Wales have the best public services that we can provide, we must work together more effectively or we will let down the people of Wales.
"Elected members must be open to new ways of working so that we deliver the best services and tackle the challenges of poverty, educational attainment, improved health, safe communities and ensuring that our older people can live dignified, fulfilled lives.
"I want Wales to be recognised across the world for its passion and commitment to effective partnership working which delivers high quality, effective and efficient public services."
The Minister stressed that while the current financial climate is challenging, action must be taken. He said:
"There are proven models of collaborative working which can generate savings and provide improved services. Doing things 22 times does not make sense for a small country and is not affordable.
"My agenda for reform is ambitious. The pace of change must increase and elected members need to understand that not engaging would have consequences for the people they serve.
"Each local authority must look critically at how and what is best delivered where. Sometimes this might be through local arrangements, often this will be through wider regional arrangements and at other times the best solution will be national.
"Even though services might be provided in a different way, elected members are still accountable for how good and effective they are. Councillors need robust evidence to support this and while there is already a wealth of performance data, this needs to the presented in a way that shows what people can reasonably expect of local services.
"I will therefore shortly publish comparative information which will aim to set out what people should reasonably expect and how the performance of each authority reflects against those expectations.
"The people of Wales need and deserve the best efforts of each and every one of us. By working together to tackle the challenges we face as public service leaders we can make a big difference."