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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 13 Hansard (14 December) . . Page.. 4145..

MR CORBELL (continuing):

context. The Planning and Land Authority must, as far as practicable, give effect to sustainable development.

I turn to the issue of territory plan variations. A number of changes have been made to streamline the territory plan variation process:

  • New time limits apply to the different stages of the variation process. For example, interim variations will lapse after 12 months if they are not progressed.

  • The planning and land authority will be able to amend territory plan codes by a notifiable instrument following a minimum 15 working day public consultation period, provided the change is consistent with the code's purpose and the policy framework.

  • The planning minister will have the discretion to refer or not refer variation proposals for consideration by the Standing Committee on Planning and Environment or its equivalent.

  • The bill requires the Planning and Land Authority to consider, at least once every five years, whether a review of the territory plan is necessary. If a review is considered necessary, the authority will undertake a detailed, strategic environmental assessment in relation to the review and make the findings public.

I turn to the issue of the review of the Planning and Land Act 2002. Section 54 of the current Planning and Land Act requires that the minister must begin a review of the operation and effectiveness of this act not later than 31 December 2006. The review is to have regard to the effectiveness of the operations of the entities established by this act, the need for the continuation of the existence of each entity, and the need for the continuation of this act. The act also requires the minister to prepare a report based on the review and to present a copy to the Assembly.

The Planning and Land Act is to be repealed when the new Planning and Development Act commences, which is scheduled to be from 1 July 2007. It is considered that the process of preparing the exposure draft of the new bill, with the detailed consultation processes, together with the fact that the government considered the role of bodies established by the Planning and Land Act—which resulted in the discontinuation of the Planning and Land Council—constitutes the required commencement of the review by 31 December 2006.

Mr Speaker, this is a significant review of planning and land administration in the territory. The bill represents the most significant change to planning and development assessment in the territory since self-government. It is the result of a broad and extensive package of work. It is with much pleasure that I commend the bill to the Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Mr Seselja ) adjourned to the next sitting.

Planning and Environment—Standing Committee

Report 22—government response

MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Attorney-General, Minister for Police and Emergency

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