Where NSW’s revised planning laws lead …

Image: Eugene, The Conversation

The NSW Government is proposing further amendments to the State planning laws.  The community has until Friday 31 March 2017 to comment.  Follow this link to make your submission.

Worrying changes that are proposed:

  • Weaker requirements to achieve ecologically sustainable development
  • Poor standards for native species protection under the biodiversity legislation
  • Department of Planning will be able to override advice from other expert agencies if approval time frames aren’t met.

Corymbia maculata, artist Edward Minchin

Some positive changes:

  • Another nail in the coffin of ‘Part 3A’ (the major projects law that failed on community engagement, transparency, accountability and environmental protection).
  • New public participation plans and clearer exhibition periods
  • New local planning panels to improve transparency in decision making.

Changes that are concerning and should be included:

  • Strengthen the effectiveness of environmental impact assessment in major developments
  • Address climate change in plan making and development decisions
  • Protect community appeal rights to appeal:  reinstate third party merit appeals.

This Briefing note from Environment Defenders Office outlines the proposed changes and their implications.  You can also check their PODCAST:  NSW Planning law reforms, Environment Defenders Office.

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