MaroondahUrban Sustainability

Presentation on the Strategic Direction of VCAT

By June 3, 2010June 8th, 2010No Comments

The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) is part of Victoria’s legal system and hears a number of civil matters including planning appeals, which comprise 6% of the tribunals workload.

This morning Justice Ian Ross, President of VCAT, visited Maroondah City Council to discuss the strategic direction of the tribunal. Ian discussed VCAT’s approach to planning and suggested improvements that would assist Councils in being able to be fairly represented during hearings, including a right of reply to reaffirm decisions. Currently VCAT hears all matters in King Street in the CBD and Justice Ross suggested that VCAT could explore a presence in suburban locations, to make it easier for people to attend hearings.

It is encouraging that VCAT is developing a strategic plan that includes consultation with stakeholders and aims to improve the response time of decisions.

Ultimately improvements to the planning system requires action from the State Government. Currently either applicants or objectors can appeal a planning decision to VCAT, where they disagree with the decision made by a Council. This has the effect of eroding local government and State Government legislation should be amended to respect the decisions made by councils, where the outcome was consistent with planning policies.

Alex Makin

Alex Makin

Alex Makin is a councillor for the Mullum Ward in the City of Maroondah. Alex has been a councillor since 2005, representing ratepayers, businesses, community groups and residents. I aim to continue making a difference and welcome any thoughts you may have in regard to life, community and business in Maroondah. Phone: (03) 9870 8202 or 0408 311 645 Email: alex@alexmakin.com.au

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