New draft planning legislation released today will result in a better, faster and smarter planning system, but will also need some modifications to deliver the outcomes the Government wants, according to the Property Council of Australia.
NSW executive director Ken Morrison said the industry will now need to review the detail of the draft changes, but the package was clearly a great advance addressing most of the key weaknesses of the current system.
“The draft Planning Reform Legislation passes the big test. It will produce a better, faster, smarter system,” said Mr Morrison.
“This is clearly a big step forward which will go a long way to addressing the frustration and delays in the current system.
“The draft Bill contains important key reforms: depoliticising decision making through planning panels, streamlining assessment of small-scale projects, less complex process for plan changes, and strengthening the private certification system.
“We are pleased that the Government has kept its determination to stop development levies being abused by councils,” Mr Morrison said.
“It will now be absolutely explicit what community infrastructure can and cannot be charged to home buyers. This is an important affordability measure.
“But there are several shortcomings which need more work during the exhibition period.”
Mr Morrison the key issues of concern for the industry in the draft legislation were:
- The overly limited jurisdiction of the Joint Regional Planning Panels (themselves a very positive reform) where residential, retail and commercial projects will (in most cases) need to be over $50 million in value before they can be assessed by the JRPP.
- The proposed extension of third party review rights without adequate legislative constraints.
- A lack of progress in driving efficiencies in the performance of state government agencies, a key source of delays.
The Property Council will now prepare its submission on the draft Bill to put to the Government, Opposition and other members of Parliament.
Ken Morrison, NSW Executive Director, Property Council of Australia, 0412 233 715