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The LEP amendment process
Making a Local Environmental Plan amendment

To make a new Local Environmental Plan (LEP) or amendment an existing LEP, the relevant planning authority must commence the planning proposal process. The relevant planning authority is usually a local Council or in some circumstance, can be the Secretary for the Department of Planning and Environment or the Joint Regional Planning Panel(JRPP) where the Minister for Planning believes the LEP relates to matters of State or regional significance; or a Council has failed to comply with its obligations to make a proposed LEP or has not carried out its obligations in a satisfactory manner.

The intended effect of an LEP amendment must be clearly explained and justified, with relevant maps that show the land to which the rezoning applies and details of the community consultation process.

The Planning Proposal must contain:

  • A clear statement of the objectives and intended outcomes;

  • Explanation of the intended provisions;

  • Justification of the objectives and outcomes, which also includes implementation;

  • Maps with the appropriate level of detail (i.e. land use zone, minimum lot size, heritage item or heritage conservation area, flood planning map etc.);

  • Details of the public consultation process.

When a landowner (developer) or a representative of a landowner requests a rezoning, the relevant planning authority (Council) can commence the rezoning process. Council then prepares a planning proposal on condition that the developer carries out any additional studies (to determine environmental impacts) where needed and pays the required fees and charges set by Council.

The planning proposal is forwarded to the Department of Planning and Environment to determine on behalf of the Minister for Planning, whether the Planning Proposal should proceed and under what conditions. This process is called the Gateway determination process.

LEPs are assessed based on their complexity and likely impact.  The Gateway determination process allows for early consideration and assessment. It also provides for the preparation of any supporting documents (studies where needed) to ensure that information is provided at the appropriate stage of the process.

A relevant planning authority can vary a planning proposal at any time during the LEP process. Any variation to the proposal must be provided to the Minister for Planning. A planning proposal can also be withdrawn at any time.

Community consultation forms an important part of the LEP amendment process and must be meaningful to ensure the community is informed. The community consultation process includes:

  • Making the planning proposal publically available during the consultation period;

  • Providing opportunity for any person to make written submissions on Councils Making Submission webpage to Council (Note: Council or other relevant planning authority cannot vary any part of an amending LEP that is mandatory under the Standard Instrument – Principal Local Environmental Plan;

  • Council or the Relevant Planning authority can determine whether or not to make submissions public.

Following community consultation the LEP amendment proposal is then forwarded to NSW Parliamentary Counsel’s Office  for formal drafting of the LEP. The Planning Proposal sets out the intention of the LEP and Parliamentary Counsel’s Office ensures that intention is legally drafted. Parliamentary Counsel’s Office then forwards the draft Amendment to the Minister for Planning for final approval.

Once finalised the amendment to the Singleton LEP is published on the NSW Legislation website (www.legislation.nsw.gov.au) in the As Made section for EPIs (Environmental Planning Instruments) and then incorporated into the Principal Plan (the Singleton LEP 2013).

Singleton Council
PO Box 314 Singleton NSW 2330
Ph: 02 6578 7290