Proposed Reforms to Moderninse Victoria's Planning Act

[Victorian Government Media Release]

THE Brumby Labor Government today released five response papers that set out proposed reforms to improve and modernise the Planning and Environment Act 1987.

Planning Minister Justin Madden said the proposed reforms were prepared in response to 150 submissions to the discussion paper Modernising Victoria's Planning Act released in March 2009.

"The Brumby Labor Government is taking action to cut-red tape and improve the efficiency of the Planning and Environment Act 1987," Mr Madden said.

"Submissions were received from a variety of community organisations, government agencies, professional bodies as well as the planning and development industry, metropolitan and rural councils, and the general public.

"While I have been impressed with the range of community views, I was disappointed the Liberal/National Coalition chose not to contribute to the biggest review of the Act in more than two decades.

"Clearly, Mr Baillieu heart is not in the job. He has had three-and-a-half years to tell Victorians what he stands for.

"The Liberal/National Coalition oppose fast-tracking of developments and development assessment committees which secure jobs and housing, and are yet to articulate a single planning policy.  Are they lazy or just out of ideas?" Mr Madden said.

The Government has considered all submissions in the preparation of five response papers to give some detail about the proposed reforms and how each proposal would be implemented.

"The response papers will give the community the information they need to understand the proposed changes.  Community and industry feedback about the proposals is welcome and will help shape the final changes to the Act."

Mr Madden said while the Act had provided a robust framework for planning in Victoria for more than two decades, the proposed changes will ensure the system continues to be effective in managing the State’s planning challenges well into the future.

The Planning and Environment Act 1987 governs the use, development and protection of land in Victoria.

The review and modernisation of the Act aims to simplify current laws, remove redundant provisions and improve planning process timelines.  The response papers can be downloaded from www.dpcd.vic.gov.au/planning.

The response papers detail a range of proposed changes including modernisation initiatives and improvements to the planning scheme amendment and planning permit processes, as well as new criteria for state-significant projects.

The Government expects to release a draft of the legislation for formal comment in late November 2009.

Source: Premier of Victoria <http://www.premier.vic.gov.au/media-releases/>.

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