We hope you find this edition of the MAV Planning Bulletin an interesting read.
Gareth & Michelle What we have been doing...
New Rural and Regional Planning Officer
We’d like to welcome Stuart Grigg our new Rural and Regional Planning Officer. Stuart has worked in state and local government, and the Housing Industry Association. You will meet Stuart out and about over the next couple of months.
Metropolitan Planning Authority – take two
The MAV recently reconvened the Metropolitan Strategy Reference Group to develop a local government view on the proposed Metropolitan Planning Authority (MPA). Dr Marcus Spiller, Principal and Partner of SGS Economics and Planning led the discussion, building on councils’ initial views on the MPA documented in our May forum and from his extensive work in the area. The model will assist the MAV and councils advocate a position that reflects sector views on the MPA.
Switching on the bright ideas
The MAV is proud to announce the release of the preliminary agenda for the coming STEP Planning Improvement Conference: Switching on the Bright Ideas. This exciting agenda includes three streaming master classes in the afternoon on planning enforcement, VicSmart, and planning scheme amendments. These classes will be important for professional development and staying on top of what is happening. Speakers for this event will be announced in the coming weeks.
Register for this important event now.
Sponsorship opportunities are still available for this event. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more details on how to take advantage of this opportunity.
Rural and Regional Planning Conference – the wrap
Thank you for attending the MAV Rural and Regional Planning Conference and for your favourable feedback. Most presentations are available to download from the MAV Rural and Regional Planning Conference webpage. The remainder will be uploaded over the next couple of weeks. Thank you to Spiire, Planisphere and the Department of Transport, Planning and Local Infrastructure for their support; and our fantastic facilitator Jen Lilburn from Kismet Forward. Please recommend this annual conference to you peers if you enjoyed it.
Understand the staffing implications of planning controls
We have commenced a new project to provide councils with an understanding of the resource implications (staffing) of planning controls. As you are aware, councils are required to consider the resource implications of planning scheme amendments. Currently, no methodology exists to calculate these implications. Please let us know if you are aware of any work being done on this topic.
Financial costs of settlement patterns modelling tool
The financial costs of settlement patterns in rural and regional Victoria modelling tool has now been distributed to all planning directors and managers. The tool provides rural and regional councils with a high level understanding of the costs of different settlement patterns based on essential infrastructure items and density.
Training sessions for councils have been arranged where the tool will be explained in detail. Please note that the Melbourne session will be recorded and available to download.
Planning and Environment Amendment (General) Act 2013
On 22 July the first stage of the Planning and Environment Amendment (General) Act 2013 commenced. All councils should have received a letter from the Department explaining the changes in detail. Some of the changes include:
abolishing Development Assessment Committees
providing for the establishment of Planning Application Committees
setting out the duties of a referral authority
making a referral authority, rather than the Responsible Authority, liable for compensation in certain circumstances
including referral authorities in the list of bodies that must act expeditiously
clarifying when a bond or guarantee can be required as a condition in a section 173 agreement
amendments to clarify the allocation of liability for compensation arising from the reservation of land for a public purpose
amendments to allow a Responsible Authority to amend a permit issued at the direction of the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT)
limiting the scope of VCAT to extend an expired permit
allowing VCAT to limit its review of a matter to the specific issues in dispute between the parties
altering the time for permit holders to request an extension for an expired permit, and
a new definition of 'business day'.
For a quick summary of the impact of the changes view the HWL Ebsworth website.
Proposed Planning and Environment Act regulations
Changes to planning regulations are proposed due to recent amendments to the Planning and Environment Act 1987. They affect:
which classes of amendments are to be dealt with under the streamlined process: new section 20A
information and notice requirements to amend or end a S173 agreement, and
information to be given to a referral authority under section 55 and the time for them to apply for review.
Online comments are sought by 19 August. For further information contact Carol Szancer at the Department of Transport, Planning and Local Infrastructure on 9947 1204.
Reform to the State Planning Policy Framework
A review of the State Planning Policy Framework has been announced. This review aims to integrate key strategic directions identified in the new Metropolitan Planning Strategy and Regional Growth Plans in the framework so they can be implemented into planning schemes across Victoria. Chairman Geoff Underwood, alongside Lester Townsend, Cazz Redding and Nicola Smith will review the role, structure and format of the State Planning Policy. The Advisory Committee will deliver its first report in October.
12 months to convert residential zones – starting now!
Most of you will now be well aware that new commercial and industrial zones were introduced into planning schemes on 15 July. Councils now have twelve months to convert to the new Residential Growth Zone, General Residential Zone and Neighbourhood Residential Zone. To kick-start the thinking process we are arranging a sector meeting to allow councils to share with each other their thoughts on how they are intending to convert to the residential zones over the next year. You will be hearing from us shortly.
Victorian Design Review Panel a win for councils
Councils now have access to free design advice from the Victorian Design Review Panel. The Panel was established to provide independent and authoritative advice about the design of significant development proposals.
Environmentally efficient design local planning policy
The Minister for Planning has appointed a combined Panel and Advisory Committee to consider submissions on the environmentally efficient design local planning policies for Banyule, Moreland, Port Phillip, Whitehorse, Yarra and Stonnington councils.
VicSmart released for consultation
The Minister for Planning has released the proposed new VicSmart provisions for consultation prior to their finalisation. VicSmart is a new dedicated, streamlined planning permit process for straightforward planning applications that will apply across Victoria. Twelve classes of application are included in the new provisions. Comments are being sought on the draft provisions by Friday 30 August. The MAV will be making a submission and we encourage councils to do the same.
The Department is running information sessions across Victoria at the following locations:
31 July - Barwon South West Region, VicRoads Office, 180 Fyans St, South Geelong (10 – 12 pm)
1 August - Warrnambool / Moyne / Southern Grampians, MAV (10 – 12 pm)
1 August - Barwon SW councils (video link at MAV) (9.30 – 12.30 pm)
5 August - Peak Industry Group, Level 15, Room 2 and 3, 1 Spring St, Melbourne (11 – 1 pm)
6 August - Hume Region, Wangaratta Gov Centre Council Chambers, 62 Ovens Street, Wangaratta (11.30 – 1.30 pm)
7 August - Gippsland Region, 71 Hotham St, Traralgon (1 – 3 pm)
To attend please RSVP to Connie Whytcross.
Places of Public Entertainment Permits
The Minister for Planning has announced amendments to the Building Regulations to allow an exemption for certain community events from the need for a Place of Public Entertainment Permit (POPE). DTPLI and the Victorian Building Authority have developed an Interim Practice Note on Occupancy Permits for Places of Public Entertainment to provide guidance concerning the POPE requirements and their application to sporting, recreational and other activities and events conducted by community based organisations.
Land Supply Reporting and Monitoring Tool
An online Land Supply Reporting and Monitoring Tool has developed by Spatial Economics for the G21 Geelong Region Alliance as part of the G21 Regional Growth Plan – Implementation Plan Project. The tool provides an innovative mapping interface, available to the public, to view and report on both industrial and residential land supply data within the region.
Changes to what is published in a Section 32 Agreement
Section 32 of the Sales of Land Act 1962 will be amended to require a seller to disclose if a property for sale is in the bushfire prone area from 31 July 2013. The amended section will state ‘32(2)(dc) if the land is in a bushfire prone area within the meaning of regulations made under the Building Act 1993, a statement that the land is in such an area’. Find out more on the Consumer Affairs website.
Getting to Yes: online survey
Melbourne University in conjunction with industry partners is researching the barriers to affordable, family friendly housing in the inner city. Please complete the survey to help inform their research. The COAG Review Panel on Construction Costs and Productivity are also due to report on the barrier to affordable housing. Keep an eye on the COAG website.
Interesting tid bits