Team appointed to overhaul WA planning system

A planning reform team, led by town planner Evan Jones, has been appointed to deliver improvements to Western Australia's planning system. It will be established within the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage

Parliamentary Secretary John Carey will work with the reform team to ensure key objectives align with policies such as METRONET.

Overarching policies will aim to increase housing choice, boost public transport and enhance the built and natural environment.

The reform team will have a range of objectives, which will address community concerns around how planning decisions are made.

Objectives of the planning reform team will include:

  • Making strategic planning the cornerstone of all planning decisions;

  • Opening up the planning system so that it is understandable to all;

  • Clarifying local and State planning roles and functions of the WA Planning Commission and Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage;

  • Responding to community concerns about accountability and transparency of Development Assessment Panels;

  • Formally recognising the need for community participation;

  • Creating more certainty for industry and cutting red tape; and

  • Refining developer contribution schemes.

The review team will provide regular reports on findings and measures that can be implemented subject to final ministerial endorsement and legislative changes if required.

Meanwhile, the position of WA Planning Commission chairperson will be advertised shortly, with the successful appointee to start in 2018. The current chairperson's term was recently extended to December 31.

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