THE Queensland Government last week said that development applications relating to state heritage places will now come under greater scrutiny with the Queensland Heritage Council (QHC) to have a stronger role in the assessment process.
Minister for Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning Jackie Trad said an amendment to the State Development Assessment Provisions (SDAP) formalised the QHC's involvement in assessing what are termed 'destructive DAs'.
"During last year's consultation on our new planning legislation, the QHC raised concerns that destructive DAs could be approved without it having any say as to whether there was 'a prudent and feasible alternative' to the development," Ms Trad said.
"I asked my department to find a solution, and this amendment means that the State Assessment and Referral Agency (SARA), will now obtain advice from the QHC, via the Department of Environment and Heritage Protection, before it provides its referral response or makes its decision.
"This is a common-sense consultative approach, as the QHC is responsible for decisions about what is entered in the heritage register.
"The Department of Environment and Heritage Protection will continue to play an important role in interacting with the QHC and providing technical advice to SARA."
The revised SDAP will also reduce red tape for low-risk maritime developments, such as private pontoons, by streamlining SARA processes through a new fast-track framework.
More information is available from the Department of Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning website at <http://www.dilgp.qld.gov.au/planning/development-assessment/state-development-assessment-provisions.html>.