Council’s new power to consider ‘Other Relevant Matters’ when deciding a DA has seemingly replaced the previous ‘Sufficient Grounds’ test under SPA. Other relevant matters may include, but are not limited to:
- Planning need;
- If a planning instrument is now out of date; and
- If a planning instrument was based on incorrect information.
There is little guidance given about when and how to use this new power to resolve a conflict between a development application and a planning instrument. Seemingly, the intention is for Council to weigh up all the information provided in a development application and make a decision that best serves the public interest.
How this new power will be used is yet to be seen. Undoubtedly this will be hotly debated in the Planning and Environment Court and we will provide future updates as precedence is established.