WALGA to support campaign for changes to Development Assessment Panels

Media Response 13 September 2016

Background: A campaign to change the Development Assessment Panels (DAP) system has received the green light from WA Local Government Association State Council, allowing communities to have their voices heard on large scale developments. The State Council agreed on Friday 9 September 2016 to support a campaign that lobbies for changes to DAPs.

Please attribute the following quotes to City of South Perth CEO Geoff Glass.

Does the City of South Perth welcome the WALGA State Council giving a campaign to change the
DAP system?

Yes, the City of South Perth welcomes and supports a West Australian Local Government Association(WALGA) led campaign that lobbies for changes to Development Assessment Panels. At the WALGA Annual General Meeting held on Wednesday 3 August 2016, it was the City’s Mayor Sue Doherty who moved the motion to request WALGA to advocate for an independent review the WA Planning System.

Does the City agree with the changes that WALGA has outlined?
Yes, as a Council and City we hope the campaign will provide opportunities to implement greater transparency, certainty, timeliness and consistency of the decision making process.

Are there are any more changes to the system that the City would like to see?
The City would like to see a wide-reaching review of not just DAPs but the entire WA Planning System that gives consideration to; how the aspirations or values of the community are incorporated into the decision making framework; improvements to the statutory framework, including Local Planning Schemes, that would improve the transparency, certainty and consistency of the decision making process; ensuring that decision making occurs at appropriate levels that promotes good and efficient decisions for the community; ensuring that local governments have a third party right to present local community views to the State Administrative Tribunal; and examines the erosion of the roles of local government in planning for their communities.

In what ways does the City want to see WALGA lobbying for change?
Given the looming March 2017 State election we would expect WALGA to be seeking bi-partisan support for any changes to the DAP system. For effective change, agreement should be sought from both sides of politics.

The City of South Perth has previously outlined its problems with the DAP system but is there anything else the council wants to add?
We acknowledge that not all local governments hold a unanimous view of DAPs and some are of the view that they work for them, therefore calling for an independent review is a way forward where all voices and views can to be listened to. The City is committed to working with WALGA and the State Government to achieve the best outcomes for the communities of all local governments.

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