In the media – National

New global standard affecting local councils acting on climate
Nearly 30 Australian local councils, including Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne, Hobart and Sydney, are likely to be affected by a set of new global recommendations (08 June 2018). More...

Australia's water resources are being managed effectively
A new report by the Productivity Commission has found Australia's water resources are being managed effectively and that achievements in water reform must be maintained (08 June 2018). More...

New Parliamentary inquiry into PFAS contamination
A new Parliamentary inquiry will examine the Commonwealth Government's management of (PFAS) contamination in and around defence bases (08 June 2018). More...

Councils failing to act on biggest risks: report
More than half of all councils are failing to execute practices to "rein in" some of their greatest risks, including human and environmental issues, according to Aon's annual risk report on local government (05 June 2018). More...

New Infrastructure Australia incentive-based modelling
Infrastructure Australia has published a new report in the infrastructure Reform Series, Making Reform Happen, which argues that the Australian Government should make additional investments in state and territory infrastructure - over and above existing commitments - in return for the delivery of much-needed reforms (08 June 2018). More... More...

Biggest risks for local governments this year revealed
Infrastructure and financial stability are among the leading risks for local councils for the year ahead, a new report has shown. The latest risk report for local governments, published by Aon, said financial challenges represented some of the largest challenges for governments across the country for 2018 (02 June 2018). More...

Consultation key to accessible communities, say disability advocates
As councils across Australia seek to make their communities more accessible for residents living with disability, advocates point to the importance of stakeholder engagement (01 June 2018). More...

Local Government Safe Cities Network
The National Local Government Drug and Alcohol Committee was renamed to reflect the environment of local government responsibilities in supporting community health, wellbeing and safety (01 June 2018). More...

In the media – Queensland

'Its going backwards': Crackdown on apartments and townhouses in suburbia ridiculed by experts
A Brisbane City Council plan to stop townhouses and apartments being built in areas for single homes could drive up property prices and is "going backwards" in terms of urban planning, experts say (08 June 2018). More...

'Look at the big picture': University solar farm approved, despite backlash
Residents of a rural Queensland town say they are "extremely disappointed" a multi-million-dollar solar farm being built for UQ has been given the green light for construction on prime agricultural land (07 June 2018). More...

Councils show support for zero waste plan
Queensland councils showed support for a zero waste plan by 2028 at the LGAQ waste forum, held this week in Brisbane (07 June 2018). More...

New anti-corruption laws could have unforeseen consequences for Queensland democracy
The Queensland Government is being urged to address concerns new laws targeting council corruption have clogged the wheels of government in six regions (07 June 2018). More...

Industry responds to developer donation ban Bill
The Property Council has provided a submission in response to the Local Government Electoral (Implementing Stage 1 of Belcarra) and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2018. The Bill seeks to give effect to the Government's proposed ban on political donations from property developers. This has been opposed by the Property Council on the basis that it singles out the property sector for inequitable treatment under electoral laws, and unduly brands Queensland's biggest non-government employer as a corruption risk (06 June 2018). More...

Anxious Kirra Beach caravan park retirees hope Minister can stop eviction
Secret development plans may be behind the eviction of about 80 permanent residents living at a Gold Coast caravan park, Queensland Housing Minister Mick de Brenni says (05 June 2018). More...

Transforming our recycling and waste industry
The Queensland Government is developing a new resource recovery and waste management strategy to set the direction for resource recovery and waste management in our state. The strategy will be underpinned by a waste disposal levy and will affect 38 local councils across Queensland. (05 June 2018). More...

Queensland councils reject proposed levy on household waste
Another grave concern for local government is the lack of commitment to ensure the levy is returned to where it's needed most (01 June 2018). More...

PCA: Industry responds to draft Brisbane Metro design
The Property Council has provided a submission on behalf of the industry on the Brisbane City Council's Metro Draft Design Report. While expressing support for the project, the Property Council has called for a wider CBD traffic management plan and outlined the importance of maintaining vehicle access to buildings along the proposed route (31 May 2018). More...

BCC remove Sport & Rec land incentive
The Lord Mayor has announced that Brisbane City Council will remove the ability to build retirement village and aged care facilities on sport and recreation zoned land. The proposed changes to the City Plan 2014 to enable development of seniors' housing projects on this land had formed part of Council's broader 2016 package of incentives, aimed at encouraging age-appropriate developments in Brisbane (31 May 2018). More...

Brisbane City Council scraps aged care developer incentives
Less than two years after offering developer incentives to attract more aged care and retirement facilities to Brisbane, Lord Mayor Graham Quirk has scrapped the plan. The incentives, introduced in 2016, reduced infrastructure charges and encouraged the co-location of facilities on privately-owned sport and recreation land (30 May 2018). More...

Council to stop developers building on privately owned sporting land
Lord Mayor Graham Quirk said it was not his desire to see the issue of the shortage of aged care and retirement places to be caught up in community controversy, and will proceed without any proposed changes to sport and recreation land sites (29 May 2018). More...

Innovative program expands to protect more Queenslanders
Disaster resilience plans will be developed for Western Queensland and the Fitzroy and Mary River Regions as part of a strategy to make Queensland the most disaster resilient state in Australia. The plans will be created as part of Resilient Queensland 2018-21 – Delivering the Queensland Strategy for Disaster Resilience (31 May 2018). More...

Plan to deliver a safer, more disaster resilient Queensland
In a nationwide first for disaster recovery and resilience, the Palaszczuk Government has launched a statewide plan that will strengthen Queensland's resilience to natural disasters. Minister for State Development Cameron Dick said Resilient Queensland 2018-21 – Delivering the Queensland Strategy for Disaster Resilience was a blueprint for use across government, the community, not-for-profit sector, business and industry (31 May 2018). More...

Powerful new integrity body to deal with Councillor complaints
By the end of 2018, Queensland's integrity regime will include a new independent body charged with investigating complaints against Local Government Mayors and Councillors (30 May 2018). More...

Suspended Ipswich Mayor released from custody after bail breach
Ipswich City Council's suspended Mayor Andrew Antoniolli is granted bail again after spending the night in custody in the city's watch house, west of Brisbane, after being arrested for allegedly breaching bail (30 May 2018). More...

Iconic newsagency at Brisbane's meeting place closes after council eviction
One of Brisbane's iconic business, Rankins on the Mall Newsagency, is closing today after almost 36 years to be demolished by the council and replaced with a fountain (29 May 2018). More...

Adani to pay for Isaac council staff working on Carmichael mine activities
Adani will bankroll the jobs of local government staff tasked with assessing activities around its Queensland mine proposal — a deal anti-corruption campaigners say raises "serious questions" about independent oversight (28 May 2018). More...

Council denies conflict of interest despite Adani paying staff wages
Isaac Regional Council insists there is nothing wrong with Adani paying more than $1 million in wages, housing and car costs for council staff members whose job is to scrutinise the company's projects (28 May 2018). More...

In the media – Victoria

Call for councils to consider automated cars
Local governments need to prepare for the infrastructure challenges associated with the advent of driverless vehicles, such as new costs and a hit to revenue, Infrastructure Victoria says (8 June 2018). More...

In the media – New South Wales

Local government has a key role to play in short-term holiday letting decision
The peak body for NSW's 128 councils has welcomed the decision to give local government a role in the management of home sharing outside Greater Sydney. The NSW Government announced short-term holiday letting in rural and regional NSW will be automatically capped at 365 days, and councils given the power to reduce the cap if needed for their community. In Sydney, a blanket maximum 180-day cap would apply (06 June 2018). More...

A kinder government, or just smoke and mirrors?
A NSW Government bid to be "kinder" by reducing parking fines for overstayers could actually cost all motorists, residents and ratepayers, the local government sector has said. NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet said the State Government will reduce parking fines on the roads it maintains, and will allow councils to do the same on local roads, which make up 90% of the state's road network (02 June 2018). More...

In Practice and Courts

Consultation on possible amendments to telecommunications carrier powers and immunities
The Australian Government is seeking comments on possible amendments to telecommunications carrier powers and immunities. They require feedback on proposals from telecommunications carriers to amend the Telecommunications (Low-impact Facilities) Determination 1997, the Telecommunications Code of Practice 1997 and potentially, Schedule 3 to the Telecommunications Act 1997 (the Act). Consultation closes on 21 July 2018. More...

Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements
The federal government plans to replace the existing Natural Disaster Relief and Recovery Arrangements with Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements on 1 July 2018. The DRFA permanently removes restrictions on the use of normal-hours salary and wages staff (day labour) and internal plant/equipment hire to councils that agree to revised co-contribution arrangements. Councils are encouraged to review the DRFA arrangements online and provide early feedback, via an online survey.

Reminder: Round 2 Smart Cities and Suburbs Program
Councils are encouraged to apply for for Round Two of the Government's Smart Cities and Suburbs Program, which commits $22 million to support local governments to solve local problems. To see the full guidelines and to apply click here, and for more information about the Smart Cities and Suburbs Program click here. Applications close on 2 July 2018.

OAIC Key dates
Australian Government Agencies Privacy Code
Commences 1 July 2018

Australia 2021 Census – Have Your Say
The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) is reviewing information in the 2021 Census of Population and Housing to ensure the data collected will meet Australia's needs to inform decisions made by governments, community organisations, businesses and individuals. A public consultation has been launched and councils are encouraged to make a submission before the 30 June closing date.

National General Assembly (NGA) of Local Government 2018
This year's event is taking place at the National Convention Centre in Canberra from 17 – 20 June.
The theme for the 2018 Conference is Australia's Future: Let's make it local. It reflects Local Government's ability - and potential - to influence the political agenda for the upcoming federal election.

LG Professionals Australia's National Congress and Business Expo 2018
The LG Professionals Australia National Congress 2018 will be held in Canberra, 22-24 August, at the Canberra Rex Hotel. More...

Local Government Regulation & Compliance Conference
24 - 25 July 2018, Sydney - The national conference will examine strategic approaches to regulatory compliance. Strategies will be evaluated and successes measured. The forum will provide a platform to discuss how the sector as a whole can strive for consistency. High-level strategic themes will be tackled so that lessons can be applied across all compliance divisions within local government. More...


Local Government Bulletin No 4: Increase in the value of a penalty unit
The purpose of this bulletin is to inform local governments that: the value of a penalty unit for most offences under state legislation will increase to $130.55 effective from 1 July 2018; the value of a local law penalty unit for most local governments will also increase to $130.55 effective from 1 July 2018. More...

BCC: Brisbane City BluePrint 2018
Future Blueprint - Eight principles and 40 actions to guide our city's next exciting chapter (released June 2018). More...

LGAQ: draft documents for new Councillor Complaints system
This is your chance to provide feedback on these important documents so please take the time to review them and submit your feedback. Feedback is due Friday, 29 June 2018 (08 June 2018). More...

LGAQ: Heavy vehicle update: Chain of responsibility laws
On 1 October 2018, amendments to the Chain of Responsibility (CoR) laws will come into effect. These changes will apply a direct duty of care on local government and more and more closely align the laws with Work Health & Safety laws. (07 June 2018). More...

LGAQ: Planning for airport safety
Public Safety Zones, or PSZs are the designated areas of land at the end of airport runways where certain planning restrictions may apply. They are an important area of consideration for councils impacted by strategic airports in Queensland, who can help manage the already low risk of an air transport accident affecting people who live, work or travel in close proximity to airports (07 June 2018). More...

Queensland's new resource recovery and waste strategy
To help develop the new strategy, the Recycling and Waste Management Stakeholder Advisory Group has been formed. View the Advisory Group's Terms of Reference here. The directions for a new strategy and initial details for the waste disposal levy are outlined in the Transforming Queensland's Recycling and Waste Industry Directions Paper which is now available for public submissions. Submissions close on 29 June 2018.

LGAQ: Have your say on adaptation plan for QLD
A state-wide adaptation plan for Queensland's biodiversity and ecosystems is being developed. Here's how Queensland councils can have their say (04 June 2018).

LGAQ: Have your say on the reuse of bio-solids
The LGAQ needs your council's input into how bio-solids produced by sewage treatment plants are managed and reused. An "End of Waste" code will replace the current beneficial use arrangements and legislative requirements due to expire at the end of the year (28 May 2018). More...

LGAQ: $1.95 million of funding
Following the pre-application stage, round 2 will be open for formal submissions for eight weeks, closing 27 July 2018. Updated funding guidelines are applicable for round 2 and applications can be submitted online through the Department of State Development, Manufacturing, Infrastructure and Planning (25 May 2018).

Resilient Queensland
Resilient Queensland was developed by the Queensland Reconstruction Authority, Australia's only permanent disaster recovery agency. The Disaster Resilience Fund will enable local governments, state agencies and non-government organisations to deliver mitigation and resilience projects across four years starting in 2018–19, in parallel with disaster reconstruction works (31 May 2018). More...

Recent changes to legislation – implementation of Stage 1 of the Operation Belcarra report recommendations and automatic suspension of Councillors
The purpose of this bulletin is to inform Local Governments of legislative amendments to provide for the automatic suspension of Councillors charged with a disqualifying offence and provide for additional powers of State intervention if it is in the public interest (28 May 2018). More... More...

Local Laws - Queensland Government Gazette
Queensland Government Gazette of 1 June 2018

Planning Act 2016
Gazettal of notice under the Planning Act 2016, s 293 that on 29 May 2018 the Hinchinbrook Shire Council resolved to adopt a Planning Act 2016, aligned Hinchinbrook Shire Planning Scheme 2017 to commence on 2 July 2017.

Planning Act 2016
Gazettal of notice that under Section 21 of the Planning Act 2016 that on 28 May 2018, Scenic Rim Regional Council adopted a Local Government Infrastructure Plan (LGIP) and an Administrative Local Government Infrastructure Plan Amendments (Administrative LGIP Amendments) for the Beaudesert Shire Planning Scheme 2007, Boonah Shire Planning Scheme 2006 and Ipswich Planning Scheme 2006. The new plans take affect from 20 June 2018.


Improving Stormwater Management Advisory Committee
An advisory committee has been established under the Planning and Environment Act to provide advice to the Ministers for Planning and Water on ways to improve stormwater management, and strengthen links between planning and urban water management. An issues paper has been released as a starting point to set the scene for matters being considered as a lead-up to stakeholder consultation. The committee is required to prepare a report by August 2018, with comments on the issues paper accepted until 29 June.

Pick My Project
The State has committed $30 million in funding to Pick My Project, with grants between $20,000 and $200,000 available for community ideas and grassroots projects that make local communities a better place to live. Applications close on 24 June.

New South Wales

More housing options for NSW: Low Rise Medium Density Housing Code
The new Code will allow one and two storey dual occupancies, manor houses and terraces to be built under fast-track complying development approval across NSW and also promotes good design for medium density housing. Low rise medium density housing as complying development is only allowed where medium density development is already permitted under a council's local environmental plan. The Medium Density Housing Code will commence on 6 July 2018.

Greenfield Housing Code
The changes start on 6 July 2018, the new Code will be included in the State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008. In essence; it is a simplifying of the development process and aligning the requirements for development across greenfield areas; the planning rules and the code are also presented in plain English to clearly explain planning rules.
Note: There will be a three-year transitional period, where applicants can choose whether to use the Greenfield Code, or the new simplified Housing Code or Transitional Code (until 13 July 2019). More...


Ultimate Property One Management Pty Ltd v Body Corporate for the Pivotal Point Residential Community Title Scheme 33550 [2018] QCAT 157
It is declared that: (a) The remedial action notices of 24 August 2015 and 21 March 2016 are invalid;
(b) The applicant has complied with the remedial action notice of 22 October 2015; and
(c) The resolution of 7 June 2016 to terminate the caretaking agreement and letting agreement was invalid and of no effect.
REAL PROPERTY - STRATA AND RELATED TITLES - MANAGEMENT AND CONTROL - BODY CORPORATE: POWERS, DUTIES AND LIABILITIES - where the body corporate issued remedial action notices issued under s 131 of the Standard Module - where the body corporate at general meeting passed a resolution to terminate the manager's caretaking and letting agreement on the basis the remedial action notices were not remedied within time - whether the time allowed to remedy defects reasonable.
REAL PROPERTY - STRATA AND RELATED TITLES - MANAGEMENT AND CONTROL - BODY CORPORATE: POWERS, DUTIES AND LIABILITIES - where the body corporate issued a remedial action notice issued under s 131 of the Standard Module - where the remedial action notice remedied within time - where termination pursuant to statute nor under the service contract available - whether common law termination available.
CONTRACTS - GENERAL CONTRACTUAL PRINCIPLES - CONSTRUCTION AND INTERPRETATION OF CONTRACTS - where caretaker had a duty to maintain a log of relevant matters - where the extent of the duty unclear under the deed of agreement - where use of extrinsic evidence of surrounding circumstances available to assist interpretation - where preceding managers provided no logs of relevant matters over preceding 9 years to the body corporate.
CASE: caretaker breach of duty of ensuring that the pool and spa were cleaned and maintained so as to conform to the local government regulations within the RAN 3 time for remediation.

Kelly v Smith [2018] NSWCATAD 122
LOCAL GOVERNMENT - the dismissal of a person from civic office - irregularity in the manner in which the person has been elected or appointed to that office – completion of Candidate Information Sheet allegedly containing incorrect information – failure to show – necessity of establishing that the result of the election is uncertain - Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2013; Local Government Act 1997; Local Government (General) Regulations 2005 (NSW).

Chief Executive, Office of Local Government v Bagnall [2018] NSWCATOD 84
LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT 1993 - code of conduct - misconduct – investigate and report on misconduct – consideration of penalty – when the Tribunal may dispense with hearing – appropriateness of suspension, reprimand, disqualification.
Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2013 (NSW); Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act 1999 (NSW); Local Government Act 1993 (NSW).

Li v Willoughby City Council [2018] NSWLEC 1262
1. The appeals are upheld.
The emergency order, being Order 2973, made by Willoughby City Council for 9 Centennial Avenue, Chatswood, pursuant to s 124 of the Local Government Act 1993 and dated 16 February 2018, has been sufficiently complied with, pursuant to s 180(4)(d) of the Local Government Act 1993.
INTERIM HERITAGE ORDER: whether the jurisdiction for the council to have made an Interim Heritage Order was sufficiently engaged; whether on further inquiry and investigation the existing dwelling house on the site is likely to be found to be of local heritage significance.

Boston Blyth Fleming v Hornsby Shire Council [2018] NSWLEC 1270
DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION: seniors living development - residential care facility – compatibility with rural character.

O.T.A.R Investments Pty Ltd v Burwood Council [2018] NSWLEC 1272
DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION: Alterations and additions to heritage buildings for a boarding house; heritage impacts of height; no parking provided; objections.

Malton Road Development Pty Ltd v Hornsby Shire Council [2018] NSWLEC 1265
APPEAL: development application: infill self-care housing; clause 4.6 variation; access pathway; SEPP seniors housing clause 26.

Governor Wentworth Pty Ltd v Council of the City of Sydney [2018] NSWLEC 1233
MODIFICATION APPLICATION AND DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION: modification of Stage 1 development consent; Stage 2 development application; adaptive reuse of former warehouse building, demolition of adjoining commercial building and construction of a 19 storey mixed use building for hotel and residential accommodation; no issues pressed following amendments made to the proposal.

Maloney v Inner West Council [2018] NSWLEC 1269
DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION: proposed subdivision of land; Marrickville DCP 2011 section 3.2.2 Control C5; prevailing cadastral pattern; anomalous street and lot configurations; interpretation of the term 'same street'.

Platford v van Veenendaal and Shoalhaven City Council (No 2) [2018] NSWLEC 86
COSTS – judicial review proceedings – applicant successfully invalidated development consent – costs follow the event – both respondents filed submitting appearances – whether consent authority only should be liable for costs – costs ordered against both consent authority and beneficiary of consent.

Jakovljevic v City of Ryde Council [2018] NSWLEC 1257
DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION: multi dwelling housing, Non-compliance with development standard for site width, slope.

Prajna Monastery Australia Incorporated v Georges River Council [2018] NSWLEC 1258
DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION: place of public worship, traffic, amenity, plan of management.

Hamdan Co Group Pty Ltd v Canterbury-Bankstown Council [2018] NSWLEC 1255
DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION: boarding house; isolated site; character of local area; setbacks; landscaping; amenity of neighbours; privacy; overshadowing of aged care facility.

Al-Mabarat Benevolent Society Limited v Goulburn Mulwaree Council [2018] NSWLEC 1261
APPEAL: Development application for cemetery; characterisation; permissibility.

Satmell Holdings Pty Ltd v Blacktown City Council [2018] NSWLEC 1256
DEVELOPMENT APPEAL: North West Growth Centre urban release area – Medium Density Residential development – agreement on planning matters- whether the proposed stormwater discharge from the site is appropriate – applicable contributions plan – appeal upheld.

Pemell Newtown Holdings v Inner West Council [2018] NSWLEC 1254
DEVELOPMENT APPLICATION: boarding house, floor space bonus, compatibility.

Carbone v Council of the City of Ryde [2018] NSWLEC 1253
DEVELOPMENT APPEAL: amendment sought to an existing consent – amenity impacts on adjoining property – compliance with Council's parking provisions – impacts on adjoining properties privacy – public interest.

Fairfield City Council v Gray [2018] NSWLEC 81
SWIMMING POOL - non-compliant fencing - direction given under the Swimming Pools Act 1992 to rectify non-compliances - direction not complied with - order sought to require compliance - order made COSTS - costs sought for proceedings - costs not appropriate to be ordered for such portion of the proceeding relating to any invalid emergency order - costs ordered with respect to proceedings founded on valid direction made under the Swimming Pools Act 1992.

Central Coast Council v 40 Gindurra Road Somersby Pty Ltd [2018] NSWLEC 79
INTERLOCUTORY APPLICATION - application to restrain filling of land – filling allegedly in contravention of development consents and complying development certificate – serious question to be heard – balance of convenience, including protecting public interest, favours restraining the filling until serious questions heard and determined –interlocutory injunction granted.


No 38 Building Regulations 2018
Commencement: 02/06/2018: reg. 3 Not yet in operation: Regs 1-286: on 02/06/2018: reg. 3
Division 6 —Duties of council 49 Period that documents must be kept.
50 Relevant council to make documents available on request.
51 Requests for information from relevant council.
52 Fees for requests for information.
The Victorian Commencement Book is available here.

New South Wales

Bills introduced – Government – 08 June 2018
Fair Trading Amendment (Short-term Rental Accommodation) Bill 2018
Water Management Amendment Bill 2018

This publication does not deal with every important topic or change in law and is not intended to be relied upon as a substitute for legal or other advice that may be relevant to the reader's specific circumstances. If you have found this publication of interest and would like to know more or wish to obtain legal advice relevant to your circumstances please contact one of the named individuals listed.