Mornington Amendment Concerns

Permit applicant’s that regularly work in Mornington Shire Council will be aware that during 2018 Council had started to assess planning permit applications against the Mornington Peninsula Housing and Settlement Strategy 2017.  This strategy has formed the basis for planning scheme amendment C219 which seeks, among other things, to mandate minimum lot sizes of 300sqm and 450sqm in GRZ and NRZ respectively. However, the Minister’s office has not yet provided approval for amendment C219 to be prepared.

So at this stage the changes proposed in amendment C219 and the Mornington Peninsula Housing and Settlement Strategy 2017 can not be given significant weight. Any applicant’s dealing with Mornington on this matter should be aware of the position taken by Tribunal on this issue in Staffy Pty Ltd v Mornington Peninsula SC [2018] VCAT 887, where it stated:

15.       The Council has applied for authorisation to prepare a planning scheme amendment (C219) to implement the recommendations of the Mornington Peninsula Housing and Settlement Strategy 2017 by introducing among other things the Neighbourhood Residential Zone into the planning scheme. I was provided with correspondence from the Department of Environment Land, Water and Planning to the Council, advising that further work is required prior to authorisation being granted. Amendment C219 is not therefore a seriously entertained planning policy and I have accorded it no significant weight. The Housing Strategy is a document that has been adopted by the Council and it is therefore relevant for me to consider it. It is however a document that sits outside the planning scheme and because aspects of it conflict with the provisions of the planning scheme, the weight that I accord to that document is diminished, particularly in circumstances where attempts to implement its recommendations into the planning have been unsuccessful.

In summary, Council should not give any significant weight to the Mornington Peninsula Housing and Settlement Strategy 2017 or the changes sought by amendment C219 when assessing your applications.

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