Next round of planning reforms introduced

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A Bill has been introduced into State Parliament to facilitate the delivery of the next round of reforms to Western Australia’s planning system.
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The State Government has introduced the Planning and Development Amendment Bill 2023 into Parliament as part of its commitment to deliver a modern, consistent and efficient planning system.

The Bill aligns with the National Planning Reform Blueprint as recently agreed at National Cabinet and continues delivery against the State’s 2019 Action Plan for Planning Reform.

The Bill proposes various changes to the Planning and Development Act 2005 including for key reform proposals that will:

  • Introduce a new permanent pathway for significant development proposals with the same eligibility thresholds of $20million in the Peel region and Perth metropolitan areas and $5million in regional areas, retaining the Western Australian Planning Commission as decision maker and introducing a 120-day timeframe for determinations.
  • Clarify local government responsibilities in planning decision making, empowering the Chief Executive Officer (or an authorised officer) to determine most single house and ancillary development applications and allowing Councils to focus on strategic planning functions.
  • Streamline planning processes, including further reforms of the Development Assessment Panel (DAP) system to reduce the number of panels to three, appoint fixed-term, full-time members and amend the thresholds to the DAP pathway.
  • Reform of the WAPC will improve efficiency in decision making, streamline membership and clarify its role as an expert advisor and independent decision-making body with the necessary technical expertise.

The Planning and Development Legislation Amendment Bill 2023 draws on extensive consultation undertaken over the past six years.

The Bill will now progress through standard parliamentary processes.

For more information about the Planning and Development Amendment Bill 2023 in the Explanatory Memorandum, and on the Department’s website.

Read the media statement – Planning reforms lead National plan to accelerate housing delivery