The unelected Central Coast Council has sent a draft Local Environmental Plan for the whole new LGA to the NSW Department of Planning for gateway approval prior to being exhibited for public comment.
When Central Coast Council was established in May 2016, the State Government decreed that the four planning instruments currently applying across the Coast should remain in place until a new Local Environmental Plan (LEP) was adopted.
At his first media conference after being appointed interim CEO, Mr Rob Noble said it would not be the responsibility of the Administrator, Mr Ian Reynolds, to make significant planning decisions.
During the administration period, development has continued to be assessed under the planning controls which were in place prior to the merger.
“In order to move towards a uniform set of planning controls across the Coast, Council has developed a draft consolidated LEP,” said Council’s Group Leader Environment and Planning, Mr Scott Cox.
The draft is currently with the Department of Planning and Environment for gateway approval prior to being exhibited for public comment.
Mr Cox said that it was important to get the consolidated LEP right to ensure a consistent approach to development on the Coast, but it hadn’t stopped development proceeding in the meantime.
“Since the creation of Central Coast Council, over 3,400 Development Applications have been determined, valued at over $1.2 billion to the local economy, under current planning controls,” Mr Cox said.
“The consolidated LEP has been developed and is with the Department of Planning and Environment for review.
“Once they give it the green light, it will need to go out to State agency and community consultation which is the appropriate process.
“We need to undertake State agency consultation first, which does usually take a few months, so the draft LEP will be presented to the new council, and community consultation will follow.
“This Administration period has been all about preparing a solid foundation for the newly elected Council to build on.
“The consolidated LEP will do that by laying down the groundwork for a comprehensive review of planning controls.
“The preparation of a comprehensive LEP is a longer process.
“It will give us an opportunity to really look at the Central Coast as a whole and see what stand-alone planning controls are needed to continue to develop the Central Coast in a sustainable way.”
Administrator, Mr Ian Reynolds, said Council was continuing the conversation with the development sector, the State Government and the community to deliver the housing and infrastructure to meet the growing community needs.
“Feedback from our pop up and community strategic plan engagement stalls is that people want to see development moving, particularly in Gosford, that will create jobs and opportunities on the Coast.
“We have planning controls in place which continue to facilitate development, as we work on a longer term solution that will see the Coast thrive and prosper.”
Media release, May 30
Central Coast Council media