Planning Permit Application - Post Assessment and Application Outcomes
What happens now that my Planning Permit Application has been assessed and has an outcome?
Should your permit be approved and issued, it is very important that you thoroughly read through the Permit and conditions to understand your obligations.
In some cases, permit conditions need to be met before the approved use or development can commence.
Please contact Council if any of the conditions are unclear and you need them explained.
If there are standing objections to your Planning application, then Council will only issue a Notice of Decision to Grant a Permit or a Notice of Decision to Refuse a Permit.
Council aims to notify you within 3 days of an outcome decision.
Victorian Civil Administration Tribunal (VCAT) Appeals Process
The following provides and overview of the VCAT appeals process. An applicant or an objector may lodge an appeal of decision with VCAT if they are dissatisfied with the outcome of a Planning Permit.
Lodge Your Appeal
Permit applicants have 60 days from the issue date to lodge an appeal against a Council decision.
Objectors have 28 days from the issue date of Council's Notice of Decision to lodge an appeal.
- Complete an Application for Review form, available from the VCAT website
- Submit the form to VCAT and pay the relevant fee
Receive the Initiating Order
After you lodge your appeal, VCAT will send you an Initiating Order. This provides important information, including:
- the date of the hearing
- details of compulsory conferences or practice day hearings
- time frames
- the responsibilities of everyone involved
For more information about the Initiating Order, contact VCAT.
The Initiating Order may list a compulsory conference. This is an opportunity for the applicant, objectors and Council to informally discuss concerns and objections to potentially reach an agreement, without a hearing.
Practice day hearing
The Initiating Order may list a practice day hearing. This aims to resolve procedural issues before a compulsory conference or a merits hearing.
If anyone objected to your Planning Permit application, they must be notified of the following:
- appeals that have been lodged
- sufficient information to understand the nature of the appeal
- a Statement of Grounds form for the objector to complete if they wish to be involved
Prepare for your Hearing
To prepare for a VCAT hearing, you should collate all information to support your case.
If you're an objector, refer to your Statement of Grounds and any Planning Scheme controls that were considered. Our Planning department can advise you of the relevant Planning Scheme controls and policies.
We recommend you use VCAT templates for your submission. You can access these from the VCAT website.
You can represent yourself or be represented by a professional for the hearing. The Council Planning team are unable to advise you about this.
Attend the Hearing
Each party only has one opportunity to address the hearing. The hearing will run in the following order:
- preliminary discussions
- Council addresses the hearing
- objectors and third parties address the hearing
- applicant addresses the hearing
- Council and objectors have right of reply
- Council and all parties discuss what conditions VCAT should place on the planning permit, if it's approved
Council’s role at the hearing
Council has two roles at the hearing:
- inform the VCAT member of the history and details of the Planning application process
- make a submission in support of its position at the hearing
VCAT can either:
- make a decision at the end of the hearing
- reserve their decision and issue a written decision within four to six weeks
VCAT’s decision is final and binding to all parties. You have no further right, unless VCAT made a legal mistake in their decision. If there is a legal mistake, then you have the right to appeal to the Supreme Court of Victoria.
Section 173 Agreements
What are Section 173 Agreements?
A Section 173 Agreement is a legal agreement made between Council and the landowner under Section 173 of the Planning and Environment Act 1987. In some cases a third party, such as a referral authority, may also be involved in an agreement.
A Section 173 Agreement is generally required by Council in a Planning Permit for subdivision of the land where a condition of a Planning Permit or Planning Scheme controls are not adequate for particular requirements.
An agreement may provide for:
- The prohibition, restriction or regulation of the use or development of the land
- The conditions subject to which the land may be used or developed for specified purposes
- Any matter intended to achieve or advance the objectives of planning in Victoria or the objectives of the Council Planning Scheme or an amendment to the Planning Scheme, for which notice has been given
A Section 173 Agreement may be used:
- To protect native vegetation
- To restrict development to within an approved building envelope
- To ensure development of land is undertaken in accordance with a Planning Permit
- To secure off-site vegetation planting to compensate for approved removal of native vegetation
- To prevent the further subdivision of land
- To prevent the construction of additional dwellings on a lot
- To acknowledge nuisance from adjoining uses (such as agriculture)
Always know your obligations and responsibilities under your Section 173 Agreement
It is important that landowners (and their representatives) know whether or not a Section 173 Agreement affects their property, and if so, they understand their obligations under the agreement.
Independent legal advice may need to be sought to gain a full understanding of the Section 173 Agreement.
How to enter into a Section 173 Agreement
Section 173 Agreements are normally prepared by your solicitors. The cost of preparing agreements is met by the applicant.
FAQs - Post Assessment and Outcomes
I have received a Notice of Decision to Grant a Permit- Is this my Planning Permit?
A Notice of Decision (NOD) to grant a Permit indicates that Council is proposing to grant a Permit where there are outstanding objections.
An objector has 28 days from the date the NOD was issued to appeal Council's decision to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT). If no appeal is lodged, a Planning Permit will then be issued.
An applicant has 60 days to apply to review any of the conditions included in the proposed Planning Permit. The applicant must notify Council and all objectors if they apply to VCAT to review any of the conditions of the Planning Permit.
I was issued a Notice of Decision (NOD) to grant a permit- I have called VCAT and no appeal has been lodged. Can Council issue my Permit immediately?
No, Council cannot issue a Permit until the appeal time has expired.
How do I lodge an appeal against Council's decision?
You can appeal council's planning permit decision by contacting the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT). An application for appeal must be made within the prescribed time periods.
I have received a Planning Permit with a letter saying that the plans to be endorsed under Planning Permit conditions must be submitted. What does this mean?
If your Planning Permit has been approved with conditions, you will not be able to act on the permit until the plans and other documents have been endorsed.
Submit your plans or documents online, via mail or directly at Council’s Customer Service.
Can I amend my Planning Permit or endorsed plans?
Planning Permits generally consist of two documents- the Planning Permit and the endorsed plans. You can propose changes to the Planning Permit, the endorsed plans or both.
Your request to amend the Permit or plans must follow the same process as Planning Permit application, including the public notice process.
When does my Permit expire, and can I extend it?
A Planning Permit will expire when a development, a use or subdivision approved by that Planning Permit is not carried out within the specified timeframes.
These timeframes are usually set out in a condition of the Permit. The timeframes specify dates for commencing and completing the requirements of the Permit.
A request can be made to Council to extend these timeframes:
- Before the permit expires, or
- Within 6 months after the permit expires, or
- Within 12 months after the permit expires, if the development lawfully commenced before the expiry date and you wish to extend the time to complete the development. Evidence to show works have commenced may be requested by the Council Officer assessing the application.
Contact Council for further information on what is required for an extension.