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PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT BILL 2005
Introduction and First Reading
Bill introduced, on motion by Mr J.C. Kobelke (Leader of the House) on behalf of the Minister for Planning and Infrastructure, and read a first time.
Explanatory memorandum presented by the Leader of the House.
MR J.C. KOBELKE (Balcatta - Leader of the House) [3.55 pm]: On behalf of the
Minister for Planning and Infrastructure, I move -
That the bill be now read a second time.
The purpose of this bill is to consolidate the Town Planning and Development Act 1928, the Metropolitan Region Town Planning Scheme Act 1959 and the Western Australian Planning Commission Act 1985 into a single act called the Planning and Development Act 2005.
The bill is identical to the Planning and Development Bill 2004 as second read in the Legislative Council of the thirty-sixth Parliament on 19 October 2004, except for three minor amendments, which are explained below. The bill lapsed on 23 January 2005 when the thirty-sixth Parliament was prorogued and dissolved. It is necessary to reintroduce the bill.
As members will be aware, the minister introduced the 2004 bill into the Legislative Assembly of the thirty-sixth Parliament on 30 June 2004. On 16 September 2004, the Legislative Assembly referred the bill to a Legislation Committee for detailed consideration and a report. On 23 September 2004, the Legislation Committee reported that it agreed to clauses 1 to 295, schedules 1 to 11 and the title of the bill, and made amendments. On 24 September 2004, the bill was third read in the Legislative Assembly.
On 19 October 2004, the 2004 bill was introduced and second read in the Legislative Council of the thirty-sixth Parliament. As I said, the bill lapsed on 23 January 2005 and it is necessary to reintroduce the bill.
The bill is the result of extensive consultation. In addition to the scrutiny of the thirty-sixth Parliament, the consultation process has involved the release of a green bill, public notices, stakeholder forums and briefings with local government, the development industry, state agencies and other stakeholders. A number of amendments were made to the 2004 bill to address issues raised by members of the opposition and other stakeholders. The bill as amended has widespread and bipartisan support.
The bill will implement proposals for the consolidation and streamlining of the planning legislation. Significant benefits will arise from the bill. First, the bill provides for reduced complexity and more accessible legislation. Second, the bill promotes sustainability. It includes sustainable land use and development as a fundamental and underlying purpose of the planning legislation. Third, the bill streamlines planning procedures for the preparation and amendment of region schemes, the review of local schemes and the subdivision of land. Fourth, the bill provides for greater certainty and consistency. It confers greater weight to local schemes in subdivision decisions. It also introduces consistent compensation and enforcement provisions. Fifth, the bill provides equity and fairness by extending consultation requirements and rights of appeal.
I mentioned earlier that the bill is identical to the 2004 bill as second read in the Legislative Council of the thirty-sixth Parliament on 19 October 2004, except for three minor amendments. I now explain these minor amendments. First, the bill includes amendments consequential on the coming into force of the State Administrative Tribunal Act 2004 and the State Administrative Tribunal (Conferral of Jurisdiction) Amendment and Repeal Act 2004.
Second, a minor amendment is made to confirm that the Western Australian Planning Commission may approve a subdivision at variance to the provisions of a local scheme in circumstances in which the subdivision is supported by the relevant local government. This proposal is endorsed by the Western Australian Local Government Association. The bill provides that the commission may give approval to a subdivision that conflicts with the provisions of a local scheme if one or more of certain criteria is met. One criterion in the 2004 bill was that the commission may give its approval if the local government responsible for the enforcement of the observance of the scheme has been given the plan of subdivision . . . and has not made any objection or recommendation. The intent is plain; namely, the commission may approve a subdivision at variance to a local scheme if the local government has not made an objection or recommendation for refusal. However, for the avoidance of doubt, the words or recommendation have been deleted in the 2005 bill. In other words, the commission may approve a subdivision at variance to a local scheme if the local government has not made an objection or recommendation for refusal.
Third, a minor amendment is made to correct an omission in the drafting of the 2004 bill. Section 18 of the Town Planning and Development Act 1928 provides that the minister, if satisfied of certain matters, may make an order after holding an inquiry or receiving a report and recommendations from the State Administrative Tribunal. The 2004 bill omits the phrase after holding an inquiry and merely states that the minister, if satisfied of certain matters, may make an order on receiving a report and recommendations from the Tribunal. The bill corrects the omission from the 2004 bill by including the phrase after holding an inquiry. I commend the bill to the house.
Debate adjourned, on motion by Mr M.J. Cowper.