COMMENTING ON DEVELOPMENT APPLICATIONS
Q Can I obtain more information about the proposal?
A Yes. Large scale site plans, elevations, a statement of environmental effects and other relevant information is available for public viewing at the times and places specified in the letter you received. You may also contact the Council officer, whose name appears on that letter, if you have any questions.
Q How do I make a submission?
A Your submission should be in writing and addressed to the General Manager. It should include the following-
* The Reference Number and the address of the property that the development application relates to. This information is in your notification letter.
* Clearly state the reasons why you object to, or support the development proposal. Often, your concerns relate to how the proposal will affect the enjoyment of your land.
* The officer assessing the development application may need to clarify matters you raised in your submission so please include your daytime telephone number.
You may post, fax, personally deliver or email your submission to Council. Our address, facsimile and email address are on the back page of this fact sheet.
Q When should I send my submission to Council?
A Your submission must be received at Council offices by the date and time specified in Council’s letter. If you are sending your submission through the mail, make sure you allow sufficient time for delivery by 4.00pm on the closing date of the submissions.
If for some reason you can not meet this deadline, talk to the Council officer handling the application before the closing date for submissions.
Q Should I make a submission?
A You should judge whether or not the proposal would affect you. This may involve some discussion with the Council officer handling the application. If you are satisfied, there is no need to make a submission. In any case, Council’s officer will make an assessment of the proposal. This includes matters such as overshadowing, privacy, noise, views, traffic and building design.
Q What will happen to my submission?
A We acknowledge receipt of your submission in writing, confirming the name of the officer who is dealing with the development application and your submission.
Your submission, along with others received, will be considered as part of an assessment. In some cases the concerns raised in submissions may be forwarded to the applicant for their response. Sometimes this leads to a redesign of the development.
The submissions received form part of the assessment of an application and must be balanced with Council’s statutory obligations.
Q Will the applicant or anyone else know that I made a submission?
A Council is subject to the Freedom of Information Laws and does not publish the names or addresses of those who make submissions. However, the applicant may be advised of the source and detail of submissions to enable them to resolve any problems raised.
Q Should I sign a petition?
A You may find that someone has started a petition to object to a development proposal. Someone may also ask you to sign a pro forma letter. Council will consider petition and letters received. However, an individual letter about how the proposal will affect you gives Council a much clearer picture of the likely effects.
Q Will I be advised after the notification period closes? Will I be advised after the notification period closes?
A If you sent a submission to Council, an acknowledgement letter will be sent out to you. The Council officer handling the application will notify you if-
If you sent a submission to Council, an acknowledgement letter will be sent out to you. The Council officer handling the application will notify you if-
* amended plans were subsequently received (after the notification period), and/or
* the application is likely to be reported to a Council meeting.
You may, if you wish, also contact Council to find out the progress of the development after the notification period has closed.
A GOOD SUBMISSION IS:
1. Brief and to the point
If your submission needs to be lengthy because of the issues involved or a number of grounds for objection, then it is a good idea to include a single page summary sheet for easy reference.
2. Backed up by reason and facts
Take the time to gather the facts. Talk to the Council officer who is dealing with the application prior to writing your submission and make sure that you understand what is proposed. Base your submission on the facts, not on hearsay. Once you are sure of the facts, prepare your submission based on how the proposal will affect you and the enjoyment of your land.
3. Specific, not generalised
Part of a good argument is to be as specific as possible. For example, you can refer to particular aspects of a specific multi-unit house proposal, rather than medium density everywhere.
Address all correspondence to: The General Manager
Adapted from http://www.idetermine.nsw.gov.au/facts/dacom.htm