Amending Council’s LEP is a legal process which must be carried out in accordance with Part 3 of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.
The requirements and stages of amending a LEP, which is referred to as the Gateway Process, is outlined on the Department of Planning and Environment's website, under the ‘Plans For Your Area’ tab.
Initiating an LEP Amendment
The first step in the rezoning process is to contact Council’s Strategic Planning staff and arrange a meeting, as this will assist you in deciding whether to proceed, based on the following considerations:
- Is an amendment necessary to enable your proposed activity or is there an alternative means available?
- Is the proposed amendment the preferred mechanism for amending the LEP, (ie. amendment to either Clauses, Schedules, or Maps) taking into account the broader implications of such an amendment?
- Would the amendment have strategic merit and be consistent with State, Regional and Local strategies and policies?
- Are there any known constraints and risks (eg. flooding, contamination, bushfire, etc.) that would preclude an amendment from proceeding, or are further studies required to determine this?
- To seek clarification of the potential constraints or risks on a specific parcel of land please also refer to the following Council web pages: S10.7 Planning certificates; Contaminated land; and Flooding and Waterways.
Formally requesting an LEP Amendment
To make a formal request to Council to amend Newcastle LEP 2012, applicants are required to provide a completed Request to amend the Newcastle LEP 2012 form, and an accompanying written submission, which addresses each part of the Department of Planning and Environment’s document ‘A guide to preparing planning proposals’ and any other matters identified by Council.
Please note that it is essential that all political donations are declared on the Political Donations and Gifts Disclosure Statement form. For further information on this matter please refer to the Political donations and Gifts Disclosure Statement explanatory information.
Preparing a formal request requires specialised knowledge; hence it is recommended that a qualified town planning consultant be used to ensure that submissions are comprehensive and complete.
Upon receipt of a completed request, Council will invoice the applicant for Stage A fees in accordance with Council's Fees and Charges.
Assessment and Reporting
Council staff will assess the request through an internal LEP assessment panel, which includes a meeting with applicants to clarify any unresolved matters. The panel undertakes a comprehensive assessment to ensure all necessary matters are adequately addressed by the applicant’s written submission prior to being considered by the elected Council.
Upon payment of a Stage B fee as per Council's Fees and Charges Strategic Planning staff will prepare and report a Planning Proposal for Council’s endorsement prior to forwarding this to the Department of Planning and Environment.
Where supported by Council elect, a Planning Proposal is forwarded to the Department of Planning and Environment for determination by the Department’s Gateway Panel.
Gateway determination identifies if the proposed amendment is supported in principle by the Minister for Planning and any conditions with respect to the following:
- Any further studies to be prepared prior to public exhibition
- Which government agencies to consult
- The length of the public exhibition period
- Whether a public hearing is required
- If Council has delegations to prepare the draft amendment
- The timeframe for completing the process.
Upon payment of the Stage C fee as per Council's Fees and Charges Strategic Planning staff will implement the requirements of the gateway determination. Pending the outcomes of this process a draft LEP amendment will be prepared for the Minister for Planning to make.
To view the details and progress of all planning proposals that Council has forwarded to the Department of Planning and Environment for gateway determination follow the links to the ‘LEP Tracking System’ on the Department of Planning and Environment's website.