Central Highlands Regional Council (CHRC) offers a free pre-lodgement advice service aimed at providing potential applicants with the opportunity to obtain written advice from planning officers or alternatively to meet with planning officers regarding their proposal.
This service will identify and discuss the proposal, identify any key matters, and gain an understanding of the required development application process.
Preparing an application
Information on how to prepare a development application can be found on this link.
Company owners and individual owner’s consent must be submitted with all development applications. Templates for owner’s and company declarations are available here.
View council’s current list of fees and charges for application costs.
Relevant plans must also be submitted when making an application. The following link to the DA Forms Guide: Relevant Plans outlines what plans are required for each type of applications and the requirements of information provided on the plans.
Blackwater PDA and Blackwater East PDA
Development located on premises within the Blackwater or Blackwater East priority development areas (PDA) are assessed under the Economic Development Act 2012. The approved forms which must be used under the Economic Development Act 2012 are different to those required under the Planning Act 2016.
Lodging by email
The preferred method of lodging a development application is via email.
Files will need to be prepared in accordance with the accepted format:
Confirmation/ Action Notice
Depending on whether your application is properly made or not, council will issue either an Action Notice or a Confirmation Notice within 10 days of the application being received. If the application is properly made and you receive a Confirmation Notice, the assessment process will begin.
If applicable, the applicant must refer the application and confirmation notice to relevant referral agencies within 10 days of receiving the Confirmation Notice. This time frame may be extended if agreed upon by the assessment manager and applicant. The applicant has five days to notify the assessment manager that referral has been made.
During the assessment process, there’s a formal opportunity for the assessment manager and any referral agency to ask the applicant for more information. This will only occur if it is regarded as helpful to assessing the application. Applicants who are confident that they have included all the necessary information to manage their application may inform the assessment manager via the DA form that they don’t wish to receive an information request.
Public notification needs to be undertaken for impact-assessable applications and those that include a variation request.
Public notification of an application can start once the applicant has responded to any information requests (if relevant). The applicant is required (at a minimum) to place a notice in a local newspaper and signage on the property, and to notify adjoining landowners.
The DA Rules outline mandatory signage requirements to help the community better understand development proposals in their local area.
During the public notification period, the community can make submissions about a development application to the assessment manager, who will consider these when making their decision. The submissions must be ‘properly made’, which means they must be in writing, on topic, signed and submitted by the due date. For details on how to make a submission please go to the Planning and Development Information page
If a properly made submission is received the application will go to a general council meeting for the decision to be made.
The time frames for public notification are set out in the Planning Act 2016.
The DA rules establish how long an assessment manager has to make the decision. Any referral agency response will also inform the assessment manager’s decision. The decision may be to:
Once a decision is made, council will issues a Decision Notice to the applicant as well as advising all relevant referral agencies and submitters of the decision. The Planning Act 2016 also states that the assessment manager must issue a Statement of Reasons with the Decision Notice.
Under the Planning Act 2016, the applicant and all properly made submitters have the right to appeal against a decision about a development application. Appeals are handled by the Planning and Environment Court or, for low-risk, technical matters, to the Development Tribunal.
Council levies infrastructure charges as part of the development assessment process. These charges apply when a subdivision (reconfiguring a lot), material change of use or building work generates additional demand on trunk infrastructure networks.