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Inside track: Planning, Environment & Sustainability

22 July 2020

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

Inside track: Planning, Environment & Sustainability

In the media

Planning rules 'silent' on major risks, bushfire royal commission hears
Planning and property laws aren't fit to manage the growing threats to property, the bushfire royal commission heard. Housing regulations are particularly urgent given the large scale rebuild required in the wake of the Black Summer fires, which destroyed around 3000 homes between NSW, Victoria, South Australia and Queensland (08 July 2020).  More...

$1 billion waste and recycling plan to transform waste industry
The Morrison Government will commit $190 million to a new Recycling Modernisation Fund that will generate $600 million of recycling investment and drive a billion-dollar transformation of Australia’s waste and recycling capacity (06 July 2020).  More...

Environmental approval for Snowy Hydro 2.0
Australia’s largest ever renewable energy project, Snowy 2.0, has been given the green light to create thousands of new jobs and put downward pressure on electricity prices (30 June 2020).  More...

Homebuilder grant: As construction dries up, NSW, Victoria and Qld yet to sign on to scheme
The federal government is still to sign agreements with the bigger states to deliver its $25,000 homebuilder subsidy scheme nearly a month after its announcement. The actual delivery will be via state agencies who must assess the applications to ensure they are within the scheme rules (30 June 2020).  More...


Draft plan to shape Crown land for communities
The NSW Government is calling on the community to have their say on how to manage the State’s vast Crown land assets now and into the future, with the draft State Strategic Plan released for public feedback (09 July 2020).  More...

Have your say on contributions system reform
The NSW Government is undertaking a once in a generation review into the State’s infrastructure contributions system with feedback now being invited on the NSW Productivity Commissioners Issues Paper, which was released (08 July 2020).  More...

Man found guilty of delaying EPA officer during investigation
A Sydney man has been convicted and sentenced after being found guilty of wilfully delaying an authorised officer from the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) who was investigating possible waste offences at a premises in western Sydney (06 July 2020).  More...

Planning Panel reforms to boost construction pipeline
Local and Regional Planning Panels have been streamlined so they can better support the State’s economic recovery while maintaining their independence and integrity. The reforms will ensure projects are not held up by unnecessary delays in the assessment stage (03 July 2020).  More...

Contributions deferral to drive job creation
A Ministerial direction has been issued and changes made to the Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000 that will allow developers to pay all contributions prior to an occupation certificate being issued, instead of up-front before construction commences (03 July 2020).  More...

GANSW: Greener Places: An urban green infrastructure design framework
The Government Architect of NSW has released Greener Places, a design framework for urban green infrastructure. It outlines four principles to help deliver green infrastructure in NSW (30 June 2020).  More...


Newspaper closures force planning law changes for Queensland
The collapse of regional media has forced Queensland to alter planning laws so developers no longer have to place public notices for major developments in local newspapers. For years, developers have been legally required to lodge formal notification of developments in newspapers, in "hard-copy" form, but now if a newspaper has gone digital developers may meet requirements by publishing online (07 July 2020).  More...

Planning law changes to keep projects moving and Queenslanders in jobs
Changes to Queensland’s planning laws will allow job-creating infrastructure projects to keep progressing across the state during the COVID-19 pandemic (06 July 2020).  More...

Fast-tracked approvals a 'free run' for Brisbane developers, says Labor
Brisbane City Council will fast-track development applications for "minor changes" and domestic-level new houses and alterations, sparking concern from opposition councillors that developers will have a "free run" in the city and face less public scrutiny (26 June 2020).  More...

In Practice and Courts

Announcements, Draft Policies and Plans released 2020


Draft State Strategic Plan for Crown land
Crown land assets now and into the future, with the draft State Strategic Plan released for public feedback. The community will have the opportunity to provide feedback and participate in consultation activities from, 9 July 2020 to 20 August 2020. See the draft State Strategic Plan for Crown Lands here.

NSW Productivity Commissioners issues paper
Public feedback is now welcomed on whether the right principles have been identified, which will inform the potential reform options by the Commission. Stakeholders and the community can provide feedback on the discussion questions in the Issues Paper until 5 August 2020 (08 July 2020).  More...

NSW Revenue: 2020 land tax COVID-19 relief - guidelines
09 July 2020 - The NSW Government has introduced measures to provide relief to commercial and residential landowners.  More...

Draft Greener Places design guide
 The draft guide provides strategies, performance criteria and recommendations to assist planning authorities, and design and development communities to deliver green infrastructure. The draft Greener Places Design Guide is now on exhibition, visit the Planning Portal to have your say. The exhibition closes 7 August, 2020 (30 June 2020).

NSW Land and Environment Court

COVID-19 Pandemic Arrangements Policy
1 July 2020 - The COVID-19 Pandemic Arrangements Policy is replaced by a new Policy effective from 8 July 2020. The new Policy sets out arrangements for the staged return to face-to-face attendances in Court and on-site.  More...

Court fee increase
1 July 2020- Effective 1 July 2020 the Civil Procedure Amendment (Fees) Regulation 2020 and Criminal Procedure Amendment (Fees) Regulation 2020 has increased the Court's fees by 1.5%. The fee schedule is now available.

Service NSW is currently trialling a pilot NSW strata portal – your feedback is important
The Strata Portal is an online register that collects information from strata schemes across NSW. It will become a central and accessible point of critical information on the state’s strata schemes for citizens, regulators and owners (23 June 2020).  More...

NSW Planning Department: Have your say - Draft plans and policies

Greener Places Design Guide
Notification start-end date 25/06/2020 - 07/08/2020
The Draft Greener Places Design Guide has been released for consultation. The draft guide provides information on how to design, plan and implement green infrastructure in urban areas throughout NSW.  More...

A housing strategy for NSW
Notification start-end date 15/06/2020 - 24/07/2020
A Discussion Paper has been prepared to seek feedback and form the basis of a NSW Housing Strategy. The Strategy will take a whole-of-government approach to meeting NSW’s housing needs.  More...

Changes to Housing SEPPs
Seniors Housing State Environmental Planning Policy – the SEPP will not apply in heritage conservation areas in Greater Sydney until 1 July 2020.


COVID-19 Update on Courts, Commissions, Tribunals, Property law
QLS will provide up to date information on our website regarding the evolving COVID-19 situation and the response of the Courts, Commissions, and Tribunals in Queensland (updated 09 July June 2020)
Extension or suspension of planning framework periods under the Act - Extension to timeframes for undertaking approved development.  More...

Queensland Planning Legislation
Urgent amendments to the Planning legislation are in effect to address concerns raised by a range of stakeholders, including local government and industry, in response to the COVID-19. Learn more Note Temporary use licence updated 08 July 2020.



Pastoral Investment Land & Loan Pty Ltd v Central Coast Council [2020] NSWLEC 85
APPEAL - appeal against Commissioner’s decision on questions of law – dismissal of proceedings for want of prosecution with due despatch under r 12.7 UCPR – whether misdirection, misconstruction and misapplication of r 12.7 – absence of assessment of significance of impacts on threated fauna species – significance assessment not a jurisdictional fact – absence of significance assessment not fatal to determining development application – absence of significance assessment did not delay proceedings – failure to consider and balance prejudice to parties by dismissing or not dismissing proceedings – whether denial of procedural fairness on summary dismissal – failure to give fair opportunity to be heard before dismissal – remitter of proceedings to Commissioner.

Marks v Perham (No 2) [2020] NSWLEC 84

ENVIRONMENT AND PLANNING – Land and Environment Court – practice and procedure – costs – tree dispute – whether order for costs fair and reasonable – no order as to costs.

Michael Brown Planning Strategies Pty Ltd v Wingecarribee Shire Council [2020] NSWCA 137
ENVIRONMENT AND PLANNING – development application – power to grant consent – local environmental plan – requirement that proposed development “is compatible” with the “flood hazard” of the land – assessing compatibility at date of determining application – whether future measures to ameliorate flood hazard relevant – future measures not part of application – Wingecarribee Local Environmental Plan 2010 (NSW), cl 7.9(3)(a) STATUTORY INTERPRETATION – extrinsic materials – dictionaries – usefulness of reliance on dictionaries in statutory interpretation STATUTORY INTERPRETATION – immediate context – consistency of operation – local environmental plan – statutory precondition to granting development consent – grammatical tense of clause – requirement for contextual construction of clause.

EACT Pty Ltd v Canterbury-Bankstown Council [2020] NSWLEC 1289
DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION – boarding house – compatibility with character and streetscape – parking provision with car share – bulk and scale – accommodation room size – interpretation of a savings provision.

El Cheikh v Liverpool City Council [2020] NSWLEC 1281
DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION – shop top housing – heritage conservation – State Environmental Planning Policy (Sydney Region Growth Centres) 2006 - Appendix 8 Liverpool Growth Centres Precinct Plan – initial more intense development in a low density setting.

Mackenzie Architects International Pty Ltd v Ku-ring-gai Council [2020] NSWLEC 1276
DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION – conciliation conference – agreement between the parties – non-compliance with development standards for floor space ratio, height of buildings and site requirements for residential flat buildings.

Olumn Pty Limited v Randwick City Council [2020] NSWLEC 1275
DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION – conciliation conference – agreement between the parties – boarding house development.

Munro v Inner West Council [2020] NSWLEC 1240
DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION – heritage conservation area – Birchgrove Distinctive Neighbourhood – building bulk, form and scale – building location zone – view loss.


Amendment to the list of threatened ecological communities under section 181 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EC145)
08/07/2020 - This instrument amends the list of threatened ecological communities by including in the list in the critically endangered category the Elderslie Banksia Scrub Forest in the Sydney Basin Bioregion.


Regulations and other miscellaneous instruments
Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment (Occupation Certificates) Regulation 2020 (2020-391) — published LW 8 July 2020
Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment (Modification of Consent) Regulation 2020 (2020-367) — published LW 3 July 2020
Water Management (General) Amendment (Metering Equipment) Regulation 2020 (2020-370) — published LW 1 July 2020

Environmental Planning Instruments
State Environmental Planning Policy (Penrith Lakes Scheme) Amendment (Miscellaneous) 2020 (2020-402) — published LW 10 July 2020
State Environmental Planning Policy (Major Infrastructure Corridors) 2020 (2020-374) — published LW 3 July 2020
State Environmental Planning Policy (State and Regional Development) Amendment (Regional Panel Development Applications) 2020 (2020-375) — published LW 3 July 2020

For the full text of Bills, and details on the passage of Bills, see Bills.

The information in this publication is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavour to provide accurate and timely information, we do not guarantee that the information in this newsletter is accurate at the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future.

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