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Vanessa Maruna

Expertise

Vanessa holds dual qualifications in the fields of town planning and law and has been practicing as an environmental and planning lawyer and town planner for over 10 years. 

During this time, she has had experience working on large scale master planned projects and acted for a number of local governments, major developers, publicly listed companies, private entities and James Cook University providing town planning and legal advice on a large range of matters throughout Far North Queensland. 

Vanessa has extensive experience working in large multi-disciplinary teams, including project managing and advising on approval processes for large scale developments, infrastructure projects and environmental impact assessment matters including completing detailed reviews and assessment of relevant state and federal legislative and local government policy and providing project teams with advice on the impact of legislation and policy on projects as required. 

Due to her complementary skill set, Vanessa is able to clearly identify and communicate legal issues and town planning issues to project teams to ensure that legislative compliance is achieved in the most cost and time effective manner. 

Experience

Vanessa provides legal services predominantly in planning and environment law on a large variety of matters: 

  • advice on the Integrated Planning Act 1997, Sustainable Planning Act 2009 and Planning Act 2016 
  • development approval processes 
  • project management and application management 
  • advice on Regional Planning and Master Planning 
  • advice on State Planning Policies 
  • due diligence investigations on large property transactions 
  • Planning and Environment Court Appeals and declaratory proceedings 
  • development offences 
  • drafting and review of Local Laws 
  • drafting and review of Planning Schemes and Temporary Local Planning Instruments 
  • environmental approvals, compliance and enforcement issues 
  • built heritage and Indigenous and cultural heritage advice 
  • advice on vegetation, coastal protection and other environmental matters 
  • local law prosecutions 
  • swimming pool fencing prosecutions 
  • contaminated land issues 
  • compulsory acquisition of land and compensation issues.

Publications

12 March 2019 - Knowledge

Concurrence and referrals: New step in powers for the Planning Secretary

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

As part of the recent reforms to the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act, the Secretary of the Department of Planning and Environment was given new powers to seek to prevent delays to applications and resolve disputes between agencies for integrated development.

06 March 2019 - Knowledge

Inside track: Planning, Environment & Sustainability

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

Investa claims it is the first property company in Australian to achieve an approved real estate Science Based Target. The company committed to net zero emissions by 2040 in 2016 across its office portfolio and business operations.

20 February 2019 - Knowledge

Inside track: Planning, Environment & Sustainability

#Planning, Environment & Sustainability

Australia is on track to meet its Paris climate commitments five years earlier than expected — in 2025 — according to new research from the Australian National University. Lead researcher Professor Andrew Blakers said we have a very vigorous rooftop solar industry and very experienced ground-mounted solar farm and wind farm industry.