Thinking of challenging the validity of a development consent? The sooner, the better!

Generally proceedings challenging an administrative decision must be commenced within 3 months of the decision being made.  However, the Court does have the discretion to vary this time frame.

Three recent decisions in the Land and Environment Court involving challenges to the validity of development consents have required it to exercise this discretion.

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Is it a bird or is it a plane? – the use of drones for enforcement activities

In September 2018 the Department of Planning and Environment (‘DPE’) released guidelines for the DPE compliance unit for the operation of remotely piloted aircraft , also known as drones or unmanned aircraft (‘Drones’) in compliance and enforcement functions. Continue reading

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Western Sydney Airport – development in protected airspace

The protected airspace for Western Sydney Airport was declared under the Airports Act 1996 (Cth) and the Airports (Protection of Airspace) Amendment Regulation 1996 (Cth) on 19 October 2017.

Development that infringes on protected airspace may require approval from the Australian Government’s Department of Infrastructure, Regional Development and Cities (the ‘Department’) in addition to any approvals required under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (NSW). Consent authorities and certifiers are obliged to notify Western Sydney Airport of applications received for development that infringes on protected airspace.

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UPDATE – proposed planning framework for Short-Term Rental Accommodation available for comment

The Department of Planning & Environment (Department) has recently released for public comment an Explanation of Intended Effect (EIE) regarding proposed amendments to the planning rules relating to short-term rental accommodation (STRA) in New South Wales (NSW).

Amendments to existing planning instruments will establish the state-wide planning framework that will form part of the regulatory framework for STRA in NSW that is expected to commence in 2019.

The key amendments include: Continue reading

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Draft Urban Design Guide for Regional NSW – on public exhibition

The draft Urban Design Guide for Regional NSW: A Guide for Creating Healthy Built Environments in Regional NSW (“Guide”) has been prepared by the Government Architect NSW in collaboration with the Department of Planning & Environment and is currently on public exhibition.

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Inland Code for exempt and complying development

The NSW Department of Planning & Environment (‘DPE’) has announced that in regional NSW, approvals for new homes, home renovations and farm buildings will be made easier and faster when the Inland Code commences on 1 January 2019.

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Infrastructure SEPP amendments commence – additional consultation requirements for certain activities

On 31 August 2018, a range of changes to State Environmental Planning Policy (Infrastructure) 2007 (‘Infrastructure SEPP‘) came into force following the commencement of the  State Environmental Planning Policy (Infrastructure)  Amendment 2018 (‘2018 Amendments‘).

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When timing is everything in commencing class 5 prosecutions…

A recent decision of the Land and Environment Court is compulsory reading for statutory authorities with prosecution powers (or those the subject of a prosecution) as it examines how the period of limitation for commencing proceedings should be construed, as well as considering the Court’s jurisdiction to apply common law doctrines which have not been incorporated into a statute. Continue reading

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Existing use rights – what land do they attach to and which controls apply?

The Land and Environment Court (LEC) has recently considered what land can be considered to have the benefit of existing use rights and the application of development standards and controls in development control plans (DCPs) in the merit assessment of development relying on existing use rights.

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Amendments to Standard Instrument retail land use definitions

Earlier this year we blogged on the public exhibition of proposed amendments to the retail land use definitions in the Standard Instrument (Local Environment Plans) Order 2006 (Standard Instrumenthere.

New or revised definitions came into effect on 27 July and  31 August 2018.  In order to ensure consistency with the Standard Instrument, amendments were also made to State Environmental Planning Policies. Continue reading

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