Tuesday, March 5, 2024

NSW planning dept seeks council experts for rezoning program

NSW Department of Planning and Environment is inviting subject matter experts at councils to provide early technical information on eligible projects under the Government’s Rezoning Pathways program as part of its selection process.

As a probity measure, given the sensitive, commercial and confidential nature of some of the information, and because these are only preliminary nominations rather than formal planning proposals, these experts will need to sign conflict of interest and confidentiality deeds, should they wish to view any project information and provide input, the Department said in a statement.

“If selected, any resulting planning proposals will still be subject to the same strict assessment requirements as usual, which includes consultation with councils and community,” it said.

“This early engagement is not mandatory, and councils will be able to provide input as part of the usual planning proposal process.”

The Department says the industry nomination pilot process has been designed in lockstep with independent probity advisors, is being conducted in accordance with strict probity provisions, and is consistent with legal advice.

The Department sought advice from the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption to ensure the process safeguards against corruption risks, it said.

“The department’s Secretary will determine which proposals will be state assessed, based on recommendations from an assessment panel of department staff, an independent panel member and a probity advisor.”

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