Making a representation

Show information about: What is a representation?

A ‘representation’ is your comment, in writing, about a plan or a specific proposal for development that has been advertised for comment. Under the Act it includes ‘a written statement of facts or reasons in support of or in opposition to the scheme, amendment, application or project’.

For example, your comments about a planning scheme amendment.

Any person or organisation can make a representation.

Show information about: Why would I make a representation?

Making a representation is a way of adding your local knowledge or specific expertise to the process. If you make a representation and there is a hearing, you will be given an opportunity to be heard.

Show information about: How do I make a representation?

As long as your representation is in writing, it can be by email, via an online application, or in a letter.

Keep your comments to the relevant issues. For example, a relevant planning issue may include whether allowing more houses to be built in the area will create traffic congestion.

Your comments may also support a proposal.

If your comments are specific to any documents that are part of the application, it is helpful to include quotes, page numbers or clause references.

You should give your reasons for your opinions and if you are presenting factual information, identify the sources or documents that support that information. Refer to any specialist qualifications or knowledge you have, if it is relevant to your comments.

Make sure your comments are received by the due date or you may miss the opportunity for them to be taken into account.

Show information about: Will my representation be made public?

Although other organisations may have differing policies on how they manage representations, the Commission’s policy is that your representation will be treated as a public document.

The Commission must ensure that all parties to a hearing have equal access to the documents relied upon in the hearing process in the interest of procedural fairness. It routinely publishes representations, along with any application material, council reports and submissions received during the hearing on www.iplan.tas.gov.au.

Defamatory representations will not be accepted.

Show information about: How do I make a further submission?

If the Chair directs you to make a further submission or a response submission, you must do so within the required timeframe. Send your submission to tpc@planning.tas.gov.au and it will be published on the relevant assessment on the Commission’s website so that others can view it.

About public hearings

Show information about: Why does the Commission hold hearings?

The Commission holds hearings, as required under legislation for planning and other processes.  The purpose of a hearing is to explore relevant issues to help the Commission reach a decision about an amendment or combined amendment and permit.

Show information about: When does the hearing happen?

Hearings are held after a draft amendment or combined amendment and permit have been publicly exhibited and the Commission has received a report from the council about any comments received.

Show information about: How will I know about a hearing?

If you have made comments to the council, the Commission will write to you to confirm whether you wish to attend the hearing.  The Commission’s hearings are also advertised in the newspaper and on www.iplan.tas.gov.

Show information about: Do I have to go to the hearing?

Anyone who made comments to the council can speak at the hearing but it is not necessary for you to do so.

Show information about: Can I attend the hearing if I didn’t make a representation?

Hearings are public and anyone can go, but unless you made comments to the council, you will only be able to have a say at the hearing if the Chair agrees.

Show information about: What happens at the hearing?

The Commission appoints delegates to hold the hearing, including a Chair.  At the hearing, the Chair will set out the procedure for the hearing.

Although there are some formalities, the Commission’s hearings are not as formal as going to court. For example, you may have a lawyer or planner represent you, but it is not essential.

It is a good idea to be present at the start of the hearing.  This is when the Chair explains the procedure and the order each person will be heard.

Generally, if there are any legal issues, these are dealt with first.  The Chair may request that submissions be made in writing to clarify any legal issues. This may mean the hearing is deferred or adjourned to allow time for the written submissions to be made and for everyone to have had the opportunity to read them and respond.

Once the hearing is underway and when it is your turn to be heard, there is no need to read your original comments to Council out aloud. Simply highlight the issues you think are most important and stick to relevant planning issues.  Don’t raise new matters.

At the end of the hearing, each person will be asked to make a closing statement.  This happens in the reverse order to the initial proceedings or may be requested in writing.

The hearing is recorded, but only to help the delegates (the recording is not transcribed).  Others at the hearing are not allowed to record the hearing.

Show information about: How do I make a further submission?

If the Chair directs you to make a further submission or a response submission, you must do so within the required timeframe. Send your submission to tpc@planning.tas.gov.au and it will be published on the relevant assessment on the Commission’s website so that others can view it.

Show information about: What happens after the hearing is finished?

The council and all those who made comments to the council will be advised of the decision and it will be available on the relevant assessment on the Commission’s website for a period of two months. It is also published on Austlii.

The decision is final, unless appealed to the Supreme Court on a matter of law.

Show information about: Can I get copies of the hearing documents?

Council’s reports and other relevant documents are available on the relevant assessment on the Commission’s website by searching for the relevant assessment.

If you require any further information about the hearing process, please contact the Commission on  (03) 6165 6828.

About the amended Owners' Consent form

Show information about: Must Form No. 1- Owners’ Consent be provided in every instance?

Form No. 1- Owners’ consent must be completed and signed by all owners of land when a request for an amendment of an LPS or draft amendment of a planning scheme and an application for a draft combined permit is made by a person who is not the owner, or sole owner of the subject land. The Form is not required to be provided if the request and application is signed by the owner or owners of the subject land.

Show information about: When do I use the amended Form No. 1- Owners’ Consent?

The amended Form No. 1- Owners’ consent became effective from 1 October 2020 and must be used from that date.

Show information about: What if Form No. 1- Owners’ Consent and accompanying documentation are incomplete or inadequate?

The Commission will not proceed to consider the request.

The requirements for owners’ consent are found in sections 37(3) and 40T(6) and former sections 33(2A) and 43D of the Act, which state that requests and applications must be:

  1. signed by the owner or owners of the land; or
  2. accompanied by the written permission of the owner or owners to the making of the request.

Section 10A of the Acts Interpretation Act 1931 provides that the term ‘must’ is generally a mandatory provision. This means that failure to provide the owner’s or owners’ consent in the correct form invalidates any request and application and will result in a decision of the planning authority to initiate and certify a request and decide an application being a nullity.

Show information about: Can Form No, 1 – Owners’ Consent be completed retrospectively?

No.  The owners’ consent must be provided before the planning authority initiates and certifies an amendment of an LPS or draft amendment or approves an application for a draft combined permit.

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