On 3 January 2012 the Major Cases List was reintroduced
as a sub-list of the VCAT Planning and Environment List,
this time as a "user pays" model.
The Major Cases List was reintroduced following a 12
month pilot program, which successfully expedited hearing dates and
reduced delays for major cases by fast-tracking applications with a
development value of more than $5 million in a separate major cases
list. Hearings in the Planning and Environment List are
currently being listed as late as six months after an application
is lodged with the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal
(VCAT). In comparison, final hearings in the Major Cases
List are expected to be listed within 14 weeks, and decisions
provided within four weeks of the hearing.
Hearings in the Planning and Environment List are currently
being listed as late as six months after an application is lodged
with the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT). In
comparison, final hearings in the Major Cases List are expected to
be listed within 14 weeks, and decisions provided within four weeks
of the hearing.
The key change from the pilot program is that the reintroduced
Major Cases List will operate as a "user pays"
system. Applicants will be required to pay an application fee of
$3,000 and an additional fee of $3,114.90 for each day that the
hearing runs. VCAT has indicated that over time the additional fees
generated through the Major Cases List are intended to
free up additional resources for other planning cases and all of
the fees will be allocated to improve the performance of the
VCAT Planning and Environment List.
Other features of the Major Cases List include:
An applicant that meets the thresholds for eligibility can
apply to have a proceeding included in the Major Cases
List, but if the matter is included they cannot later apply to
"opt out" from the Major Cases List.
The threshold for inclusion of industrial, commercial and other
non-residential developments in the Major Cases List will
remain at $5 million "estimated cost of development." The
threshold for residential developments has increased to $10
A new procedure will be adopted which involves the issue of
standard initiating directions for advertising of an application, a
compulsory practice day hearing and compulsory scheduling of a date
for mediation (however the mediation may be cancelled at the
discretion of VCAT).
Responsible authorities and referral authorities will need to be
able to respond to the information requests and speedy timetable of
the Major Cases List. They may need to identify an officer
to handle this matter to ensure an appropriate response.
Further information, including relevant application forms and
the revised practice note "PNPE8 - Major Cases
List", can be found on the VCAT website
This publication is intended as a general overview and
discussion of the subjects dealt with. It is not intended to be,
and should not used as, a substitute for taking legal advice in any
specific situation. DLA Piper Australia will accept no
responsibility for any actions taken or not taken on the basis of
DLA Piper Australia is part of DLA Piper, a global law firm,
operating through various separate and distinct legal entities. For
further information, please refer to www.dlapiper.com
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