In brief - Substantial increase in penalties and government
The responsibility of companies and individuals in NSW engaging
in development activities has increased as a result of reforms to
strengthen the enforcement regime under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (the
Environmental Planning and Assessment Amendment Bill
increases maximum penalties
The Bill introduces the following substantial changes to the Act
which are aimed at strengthening the NSW government's
enforcement powers under the Act:
An increase in the maximum penalties for
offences against the Act and the Regulation.
New offences for providing false or misleading
information in connection with planning matters.
A failure to comply with the Land and Environment
Court's order regarding a brothel closure, or an order
to cease use of certain premises for such classes of residential,
tourist or other development as are prescribed by the Regulation,
may result in the court making a "utilities
order", directing that a provider of water,
electricity, or gas to the particular premises stop providing those
The expansion of the investigative powers of
council and departmental officers for the enforcement of the
Three-tiered offence regime introduced
The current planning provisions simply impose a maximum penalty
of $1.1 million for all offences, regardless of whether the
offender is a corporation or individual, or whether the offence was
serious or minor.
Tier 1 offences apply to serious offences which were committed
intentionally and which caused, or were likely to cause,
significant harm to the environment or the death or serious injury
or illness of a person.
An example is a development which was intentionally carried out
without development consent or not in accordance with the
conditions regarding fire safety, and which causes or was likely to
cause significant harm to the environment or the death or serious
injury or illness of a person.
Maximum penalty for tier 1 offences
Corporations could be penalised up to $5 million and a further
$50,000 each day for continuing offences. Individuals could be
penalised up to $1 million and a further $10,000 each day for
Tier 2 offences
Tier 2 offences apply to offences that were unintentional or did
not cause, or were not likely to cause, significant harm to the
environment or the death or serious injury of a person.
An example is the accidental spilling of waste into a stream
which was cleaned up quickly to minimise the effect on the
Maximum penalty for tier 2 offences
Corporations could be penalised up to $2 million and a further
$20,000 each day for continuing offences. Individuals could be
penalised up to $50,000 and a further $5,000 each day for
Tier 3 offences
Tier 3 offences apply to lesser procedural or administrative
offences. An example is a developer providing false or misleading
information about the requirements of a condition of approval.
Maximum penalty for tier 3 offences
Corporations could be penalised up to $1 million and a further
$10,000 each day for continuing offences. Individuals could be
penalised up to $250,000 and a further $2,500 each day for
Regulation breaches carry further penalty
In addition, the Bill introduces a further maximum penalty of
$110,000 for breaches of the Regulation.
The Council announced planning policies to encourage more inner suburban retirement village and aged care development.
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