Local Planning Panel
Under legislation that was introduced on 14 August 2017 requires all Councils in the Greater Sydney Region and Wollongong City Council to have Local Planning Panels in place by 1 March 2018.
A Local Planning Panel consists of highly qualified people independent of Council and are charged with determining a range of development applications, reviewing and making recommendations about planning proposals on behalf of the Council. A local planning panel is not subject to the direction or control of the Council, except in relation to any matter relating to the procedure of the panel that is not consistent with any directions of the Minister under Section 9.1 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act, 1979.
For further information on the legislation is outlined on the Department of Planning and Environment’s website.
The types of Development Applications to be determined by the Panel include:
- Conflict of interest
- Contentious Development
- Departure from Development Standards
- Sensitive Development
- Planning Proposals
From 1 August 2020, a Panel will only hold a public meeting where the development application has attracted 10 or more unique submissions by way of objection.
A unique submission means a submission which is in substance unique, distinctive or unlike any other submission. It does not mean a petition or any submission that contains the same or substantially the same text. Separate unique submissions may be made in relation to the same issue.
All other matters will be determined by the Panel by electronic means. If an application is to be determined electronically, The Panel will still be required to:
- Consider a Council staff assessment report that addresses any issues raised during public exhibition;
- Have regard to written submissions;
- Demonstrate how community views were taken into account;
- Publish reasons for its decision.