We all use email as a common business communication tool. In a legal-sense and at VCAT, email is considered a valid means of giving notice and communication. However, the new world is not without its problems
One Planner's Archive
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.
As most readers will be aware, when Council requests further information in relation to your planning permit application, they will specify a lapse date by which time the information must be provided. If the information is not provided then the application will lapse.
Only for the brave: Council refuses to support a planning permit application, then amends its position to support the application, then seeks to argue for the application to be refused, is then forced to support the application – but in the end the permit is refused and the permit applicant left to ponder how this ‘whole-planning-thing’ works.
In late October the State Government introduced amendment VC152, which incorporates substantial changes into the planning scheme and effects how Residential Aged Care Facilities (RACFs) are defined and assessed under Victorian Planning provisions.
Tika v Yarra CC  VCAT 894 highlights the importance of accurate information to properly assess off-site impacts, including overshadowing of neighbouring secluded private open space (SPOS) under Standard B21 of Clause 55.04-5. This was a proposal for two 3-storey dwellings on a 235sqm lot in Richmond. Errors were identified in the plans relating to the conditions of the neighbours’ land and therefore the extent of shadow proposed to the neighbours’ SPOS.
Until recently, the planning permit application requirements for managing stormwater within development and subdivision approvals has varied from Council to Council, largely dependent on the local planning scheme policy and whether it has or hasn’t provided for stormwater management.
Over the past few months there have been a number of Red Dot decisions relating to changes to planning provisions that occur prior to a VCAT hearing, which will be of interest to readers.
As noted above, Amendment VC149 was gazetted early August 2018. In addition to the C3Z the state-wide amendment seeks to provide more protection for existing roof top solar panels.
On 29 August 2018 the State Government approved Planning Scheme Amendment VC149 introducing the Commercial 3 Zone into the Victorian Planning Provisions. The new zone is part of the Victorian Government’s broader program of Unlocking Enterprise is a Changing Economy, seeking to consolidate “Enterprise Precincts” throughout Melbourne. Enterprise Precincts are local areas to champion new enterprise, diversity of employment, and product and process development in dense, accessible and amenity-rich precincts. The focus of the precincts is also to promote innovative and enterprising mixed-use precincts, with niche and creative industries, start-up businesses and businesses leveraging off automation, post industrialisation and the digital economy. The new zone seeks to implement the State Government’s Planning Strategy Plan Melbourne Implementation Plan Action 8, to unlock enterprise in a changing economy.