Member for Goulburn Wendy Tuckerman today announced the NSW Government established a Local Planning Panel (LPP) for Wingecarribee Shire.

Mrs Tuckerman said Local Planning Panels comprise independent experts who make decisions on sensitive, complex and high-value development applications on behalf of councils.

“The LPP for Wingecarribee will bring greater transparency and accountability to the local planning system,” Mrs Tuckerman said.

“We are confident this move will increase the level of engagement and consultation with the community on local planning matters and help restore public confidence in the system.”

Mrs Tuckerman said LPPs had improved decision-making across Greater Sydney, Central Coast, Wollongong and now the Southern Highlands.

“Last year, these panels paved the way for nearly $3 billion worth of development by approving 1,150 of 1,484 proposals,” Mrs Tuckerman said.

“They also enable councillors to focus on long-term strategic planning for their local government areas.”

The council’s interim administrator made the decision that a planning panel was required as one of the actions to restore organisational stability and community confidence in Wingecarribee Shire Council.

Wingecarribee’s new LPP has been in place from 1 July. The council’s interim administrator will appoint a chair, a community representative and two independent technical experts chosen from a pool of qualified candidates.

The interim administrator will continue to lead the council until 10 September when the newly elected Wingecarribee Shire Council will meet for the first time following the Local Government elections.