WEST Australian Planning Minister John Day yesterday announced the appointment of local government members to Development Assessment Panels across the state.
Development Assessment Panels (DAP) were established by the government earlier this year in an effort to improve the balance between technical advice and local knowledge in decision making.
According to the Department of Planning, the aim of DAPs is to improve the planning system by providing more transparency, consistency and reliability in decision making on complex development applications,
"Development Assessment Panels are set to become an integral part of the Western Australian planning system and local government DAP members will make the link between the vision for the State and local community views," Mr Day said.
"As part of the State Government's reform of the approvals process, these panels will in future determine development applications made under local and regional planning schemes."
Each panel consists of five members: the presiding member, two additional specialist members and two elected local government representatives.
Local governments were invited to nominate two local government DAP members, as well as up to two alternate (deputy) members.
Mr Day said local government DAP members ensured local panel representation when determining DAP applications within each relevant local government district.
"All panel members will be required to attend a mandatory training workshop on planning law and Codes of Conduct before they can sit on a development assessment panel," Mr Day said.
Under the new DAP process, an application with a development value of equal to or more than $7 million (or $15 million in the City of Perth) will be determined by a development assessment panel.
In addition, applicants will generally have the option for panel determination of applications between $10 million and $15 million in the City of Perth, and $3 million to $7 million across the rest of the State.