The Greater Sydney Commission

17/09/2015 7:37 am
This article was prepared by DFP

A Plan for Growing Sydney - connecting jobs and homesThe NSW Government has announced details on the structure and role of the Greater Sydney Commission.

The Structure of the Commission

The Greater Sydney Commission will comprise 13 appointees, including:

  • An independent Chair who will report the Commission’s progress to the Minister for Planning;
  • Three independent Commissioners – Economic, Social and Environment to provide expert advice on how to deliver sustainable development across Sydney;
  • Six District Representatives to be nominated by the District’s Councils to give Councils and the community an opportunity to shape their broader Districts;
  • Three Secretaries to represent the Department of Planning and Environment, Transport for NSW and Treasury.

The district representatives will be required to have expertise in one of the nominated fields, including but not limited to, planning, urban design and engineering. Mayors, Councillors, MPs and property developers will not be eligible for the role in a bid to depoliticise planning decisions.

The Role of the Commission

The Greater Sydney Commission will undertake a number of roles, including:

  • Finalising district plans for each of Sydney’s six districts (which are the existing subregions), including the Central, North, West Central, West, South West and South district;
  • Conducting regular reviews of Council’s Local Environmental Plans (LEPs) in accordance with Section73 of the EP&A Act;
  • Replace the Minister and delegates role in conducting decision-making and plan-making on rezoning proposals;
  • Replace the Sydney Joint Regional Planning Panel (JRPP) functions in assessment and plan making;
  • Ensure Councils give effect to regional growth plans and district plans when amendments are made to local plan in rezonings and new environmental planning instruments (EPIs);
  • Continual monitoring and reporting to the Government on the progress of delivering ‘A Plan for Growing Sydney’.

In order to progress the establishment of the Greater Sydney Commission, legislation will be introduced to the Parliament and the recruitment of Commissioners and District Representatives will commence. It is anticipated that the Commission will be formally established towards the end of 2015.

The Greater Sydney Commission has been established out of concerns that local Councils and Government Departments are operating in silos and the Commission has the potential to streamline many planning processes. However, without adequate resources the Commission is at risk of adding another level of bureaucracy to planning and development in Sydney.

If you have any questions regarding the Greater Sydney Commission, please contact Rachel Gardner on 9880 6933.