Greens MLC David Shoebridge has criticized Government proposals to adopt “undemocratic” code assessable development changes as part of its’ revamp of planning legislation.
The changes were introduced into Parliament on Tuesday and are yet to be voted on.
“If these changes become law then the rights of ordinary residents to have a say on what development occurs in their local will be greatly reduced.
“Not only will the undemocratic code assessable development be rolled out in the large urban activation precincts in the area, but a pro-developer majority on any council can impose this system on residents across the board.
“History proves that Randwick, Waverley and Woollahra Councils can all be dominated by pro-developer councillors and this Bill would let those councils exclude community participation in most development matters.
“This would be a huge step backwards for people’s rights and produce ever more intense development in Sydney’s east,” Mr Shoebridge said.
The Green MLC’s warning comes one day before the Better Planning Network is scheduled to hold a protest on the various planning changes outside Liberal Coogee MP Bruce Notley-Smith’s office.
Randwick Greens Councillor Murray Matson states that he will be attending the protest outside Bruce Notley-Smith’s office tomorrow and wants the MP to clarify some issues on behalf of local Councillors. He said today,
“Randwick Council is to have two Urban Activation Precincts in its’ area. I thus share David Shoebridge’s concern about the Government’s code assessable development proposals.
“Not only do we look like getting increased heights written into our Council’s local environmental plan via urban activation but now it seems that code assessable development provisions will mean that the Councillors will not be able to oppose these developments once the changes are in place.
“There is a lot that needs clarification by the Government. For instance, will Councillors be even able to impose any sort of moderating conditions on these developments as we can do at present? Will we even get to debate them at a Council meeting?”
“Code Assessable Development – development which meets the standards or performance outcomes in the development guidelines section of a Local Plan cannot be refused development consent (section 4.18). The Regulation is expected to require that a consent authority determine an application for code assessable development within 25 days (where the proposal meets acceptable or alternative outcomes) or within 50 days (where the application is consulted and proposes alternative acceptable outcomes)” (Robert Wilcher, Partner, hunt & hunt Lawyers )