MOSMAN Park and Peppermint Grove councils want greater third party appeal rights for residents than the option considered by the WA Local Government Association (WALGA) to have the best chance at becoming WA law.
“That option is looking only at the big end of town, with a focus on larger developments,” Wellington Street resident Sue James said at her council’s meeting last week.
Councils are currently considering support of WALGA’s preferred option one, from four choices, for third party appeal rights used by residents to challenge decisions made by contentious development assessment panels.
WALGA does not support appeal rights, but it was forced to consult with its member councils about the issue at its annual general meeting last year.
The change would bring WA in line with all other states which each have varied powers for residents feeling aggrieved or impacted by planning decisions.
However, option one could exclude neighbours affected by a new single house or structure, and WALGA’s development of the options, including workshops with 25 councils and consultation with 30 planners, has also been criticised.
Ms James, with Mosman Park residents Ernie Evans and John Fisher, argued for wider powers, represented by WALGA’s option three, so all planning bodies, and any of their discretionary powers used in an “outrageous manner” for unwanted high rise, could be challenged.
Council staff said option one was considered by WALGA to have the greatest chance of getting through State Parliament later this year.
Town of Mosman Park Councillor Zenda Johnson said the council and residents had to maintain debate to get more appeal rights, before councillors agreed to support option one and add it was the first step into further consultation and research into other options.
Peppermint Grove councillors widened their support of option one so third-party appeals could be against planning decisions and approvals where discretion is used in R-Codes, local planning policies and schemes, and encompass all planning authorities in WA.
Tonight, Cottesloe council will consider third party appeal rights because its February 27 meeting went until 10.30pm before it was decided to reconvene for its second half.