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The NSW Department of Planning has released the Draft Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2010, which is now on public exhibition until 5 November 2010. Such an initiative is part of the Department’s drive to create ‘Australia’s best planning system’, by implementing necessary reforms to cut red tape and essentially bring confidence back to the community. Some other initiatives that were featured on The Planning Boardroom included; The Sydney Metro Strategy Review, Promoting Economic Growth and Competition through the Planning System, SEPP Housing and Commercial Codes, and the Standard LEP Template

The proposed Draft Regulation replaces the Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000. This has been the fundamental policy which has served as the backbone of the planning system for the last ten years. Provisions which applied included practical guidance on aspects such as preparation of Local Environmental Plans (LEPs), development contributions, BASIX Certificates, and relevant fees associated with applications. 

The Department has indicated they are consulting with relevant government authorities and industry groups to facilitate a proper evaluation of the proposed changes. 


Proposed Amendments 

According to the Regulatory Impact Statement, the key changes of the Draft Regulations are; 

  • changes to Part 4 development application (DA) assessment including limiting the use of ‘stop-the-clock’ provisions and introducing new determination times of 50 days for simple DAs and 90 days for more complex DAs 
  • minor changes to additional matters to be considered when determining DAs 
  • revising classes of designated development 
  •  updating fixed planning fees and charges to take into account movements in the consumer price index since the fees were last revised 
  • revising fees for Part 3A modifications to include a three-tiered fee scheme 
  • prescribing a standard maximum fee for critical infrastructure projects 
  • prescribing a fee for BASIX (Building Sustainability Index) certificates 
  • revising the contents of planning certificates 
  • extension of savings provisions for Development Control Plans 
  • removing the 1,000 square metre floor space limit for ‘change of use’ provisions relating to light industrial and commercial existing uses 
  • describing circumstances in which work is not taken to be  physically commenced, for the purposes of determining when a development consent lapses 
  • requiring the installation of smoke alarms in moveable dwellings such as caravans and campervans not captured by previous regulations or other controls 
  • minor changes to assessments under Part 5 of the Act 
  • administrative changes to the Part 3A major project assessment process 
  • administrative changes to building and other certification procedures 
  • other miscellaneous amendments 

For more information visit the Department of Planning’s exhibition website which includes fact sheets and relevant reports.














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