What is a planning proposal?

A planning proposal is a document that requests permission to amend the Local Environmental Plan.

A planning proposal may be a request to alter land uses through rezoning and/or amend the development standards, such as height of building, floor space ratio, heritage, additional permitted uses or other clauses.

A planning proposal is the first step in making an amendment to the LEP through the Department of Planning and Environment Gateway Process.

Planning Proposal Guidance

In December 2021, the Department of Planning and Environment (DPE) released a new Local Environmental Plan Making Guideline. The Guideline provides an updated list of Planning Proposal categories, outlines the steps across the whole process, provides benchmark timeframes for each stage and provides support to councils and proponents.

Local Environmental Plan Making Guideline

Council is updating some of its processes and guidance to reflect the new Guidelines. This will make the process easier for the community and proponents to understand and will clearly outline what we expect in planning proposals submitted to us.

Categories of Planning Proposals

There are four categories of Planning Proposals outlined in the Guidelines, but one of these is generally undertaken only by councils. The categories are discussed below.

Currently, Council’s Fees and Charges only identifies standard and complex LEP amendments, which are based on Council’s own definition. Updates to the Fees and Charges will be forthcoming which will provide for Basic, Standard and Complex LEP amendments. You can find more information about the proposed changes on the Proposed Updates to Fees and Charges for Planning Proposals Connect Wagga page.

If these changes are adopted, future planning proposals will be categorised based on the qualifying criteria identified below, drawn from DPE’s Guidelines.

A basic planning proposal refers to any one or more of the following proposed LEP amendment types, including an amendment:

  • To correct an administrative error
  • For a few minor ‘housekeeping’ amendments
  • To list a local heritage item, that is supported by an Office of Environment and Heritage endorsed study
  • To reclassify land where the Governor’s approval is not required
  • That is consistent with a Department endorsed/approved local strategy, such as a Local Housing Strategy
  • That is consistent with Section 3.22 Expedited Amendments of Environmental Planning Instruments of the EP&A Act to:
    • Correct an obvious error in the principal instrument consisting of a misdescription, the inconsistent numbering of provisions, a wrong cross-reference, a spelling error, a grammatical mistake, the insertion of obviously missing words, the removal of obviously unnecessary words or a formatting error.
    • Address matters in the principal instrument that are of a consequential, transitional, machinery or other minor nature, and/or
    • Deal with matters that the Minister considers do not warrant compliance with the conditions precedent for the making of the instrument because they will not have any significant adverse impact on the environment or adjoining land.

A standard planning proposal can be any one or more of the following proposed LEP amendment types, including an amendment:

  • To change the land use zone where the proposal is consistent with the objectives identified in the LEP for that proposed zone;
  • That relates to altering the principal development standards of the LEP;
  • That relates to the addition of a permissible land use or uses and/or any conditional arrangements under Schedule 1 Additional Permitted Uses of the LEP;
  • That is consistent with an endorsed District/Regional Strategic Plan and/or LSPS; and/or
  • Relating to classification or reclassification of public land through the LEP.

A complex planning proposal can be any one or more of the following proposed LEP amendment types, including an amendment:

  • To change the land use zone and/or the principal development standards of the LEP, which would result in a significant increase in demand for supporting local, regional or State infrastructure and would require infrastructure funding.
  • To respond to a new policy (e.g. local character or new provision not in the standard instrument template).
  • That is inconsistent with a District/Regional Plan or Council’s endorsed LSPS.
  • Responding to a change in circumstances, such as investment in new infrastructure or changing demographic trends.
  • That is progressed under the Aboriginal Land SEPP.
  • Any other amendment or amendments that are not categorised as a principal LEP, standard or basic planning proposal.

A principal LEP planning proposal can be any one or more of the following proposed LEP amendment types, including an amendment:

  • To create a new LEP that applies to the whole LGA;
  • To implement a change in local policy that affects the LGA;
  • To consolidate one or more LEPs into a new comprehensive LEP; and/or,
  • That includes multiple ‘housekeeping’ amendments or a combination of a number of planning proposals.

A principal planning proposal is generally only undertaken by Council.

Council’s Role

Council considers each planning proposal on its merits. Not all applications are supported and, even if Council supports an application, it does not mean that the proposal or rezoning will proceed. If Council resolves to support a proposal to rezone, the planning proposal is then forwarded to the Minister for Planning for "Gateway Determination".

More information on this stage can be found on the Planning proposal process page.