The Changing Face of the GIPA Act and the Power to Refuse to Deal

The power in s 60 of the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPA Act) to refuse to deal with an access application is a power often under-utilised by public sector agencies. In this blog, we consider whether recent amendments to the GIPA Act inhibit the broader use of the power.

Continue reading

Posted in local government | administrative law | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Time Limited Consents and Coastal Hazards

The Department of Planning’s publication, Coastal Planning Guideline: Adapting to Sea Level Rise, states that time limited development consents are an option to allow for the occupation of coastal lands until they are compromised by coastal hazards. Such development consents have often been considered as a way to balance a private person’s wish to develop land against risks to people and property and the potential liability which could arise for government if development consent is granted.

A recent case has cast doubt on when the Court will consider a time limited development consent to be appropriate.

Continue reading

Posted in environment | natural resources | climate change, planning | development | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Land Rating – When is land used ‘for’ residential accommodation?

A recent decision of the NSW Court of Appeal deals with whether land being developed for the purpose of residential apartments can be categorised as ‘residential’ for rating purposes under s516 of the Local Government Act 1993 (LG Act).

Continue reading

Posted in planning | development, property | commercial | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

There goes the (amenity of the) neighbourhood….

Consent authorities regularly impose a condition on development consents to the effect that the development approved must be conducted in a manner so as not to interfere with the amenity of the neighbourhood.  The Court recently provided guidance on the obligation imposed by the terms of such a condition and the analysis that should be undertaken to ascertain whether the condition has been breached.

Continue reading

Posted in planning | development | Comments Off on There goes the (amenity of the) neighbourhood….

The Meaning of ‘Land’

Two recent Land and Environment Court decisions have considered what constituted the land on which a heritage item is situated, and what constituted the land on which an extractive industry was being carried out. The cases remind us that the Court will not consider land by reference to one Torrens title lot, but will have regard to the scope and purpose of statutory provisions.

Continue reading

Posted in planning | development | Tagged , , | Comments Off on The Meaning of ‘Land’

UPDATE – New Model Code of Conduct and Procedures & Model Code of Meeting Practice Prescribed

On 14 December 2018 the Model Code of Meeting Practice for Local Councils, 2018 Model Code of Conduct and 2018 Procedures for the Administration of the Model Code of Conduct were prescribed. Council’s previous codes are saved until 14 June 2019. After then, they will be of no effect to the extent they are inconsistent with the model codes.

Continue reading

Posted in local government | administrative law | Comments Off on UPDATE – New Model Code of Conduct and Procedures & Model Code of Meeting Practice Prescribed

A ‘Road’ is not a ‘Building’

In the recent case of Hakea Holdings Pty Ltd v Louisiana Properties Pty Ltd [2018] NSWCA 240, the NSW Court of Appeal held that the construction of a road did not constitute the erection of a building, and as a result did not require a construction certificate.

Continue reading

Posted in planning | development | 1 Comment

Overview of Proposed 2018 Native Title Reforms

In November 2018, the Commonwealth Attorney-General’s Department and the Minister for Indigenous Affairs released exposure draft legislation which proposed reforms to the native title system under the Native Title Act 1993 (Cth). The two exposure drafts, the Native Title Amendment Bill 2018 (‘Amendment Bill‘) and the Registered Native title Bodies Corporate Legislation Amendment Regulations 2018 (‘2018 Regulations‘) are currently on exhibition for public comment. Continue reading

Posted in crown land management | native title, local government | administrative law, property | commercial | Comments Off on Overview of Proposed 2018 Native Title Reforms

When are extrinsic documents incorporated into a development consent

An issue which frequently arises in interpreting development consents is whether extrinsic documents may be taken into account. The general principle that consents are ‘stand alone’ documents, is subject to rules about when they do in fact incorporate other documents by express reference or necessary implication.

Continue reading

Posted in planning | development | Comments Off on When are extrinsic documents incorporated into a development consent

Securities for enforcement of planning agreement and consent obligations

The Department of Planning and Environment has indicated that it is updating its policies and procedures for the safekeeping, release and monitoring of financial securities for enforcement of obligations under  conditions of development consent and planning agreements (PA’s). It has also informed the NSW Audit Office that it is developing the new policies and procedures.

Continue reading

Posted in development contributions | planning agreements | value capture, enforcement | compliance | Comments Off on Securities for enforcement of planning agreement and consent obligations