The NSW Government have enacted changes to legislation to enable business to ‘quickly adapt and accelerate planned capital investment’.
Titled Building Business Back Better Reforms, the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE) have amended the State Environmental Planning Policy (Exempt and Complying Development Codes) 2008 (Codes SEPP).
It follows upon the release, within the same month of its Consultation and Engagement Summary.
Changes that will start from February 1, 2022 include: ‘a wider range of land uses so businesses can quickly adapt their offerings to new market demands for things like entertainment facilities, indoor recreation facilities and creative industries; new and larger building allowances to attract more investment; flexibility to carry out site and parking upgrades to accommodate new modes of delivery’; and, ‘stay open for longer in certain areas to support night time economies’.
An Explanation of Intended Effect (EIE) for the reforms was on public exhibition from March 31 until May 9, 2021.
Regarding ‘amenity and enforcement’ (page 17), DPIE say some NSW councils expressed concerns about ‘an additional complaints and compliance burden owing to the increased range of land uses, and proposed hours of operation’; and, ‘noise, with specific mention of the cost and difficulty of enforcement’.
In their response, DPIE replied, ‘It is imperative to support the growth of economic activity in the appropriate zones and in turn, business and industry must be aware of their responsibilities in complying with controls. Councils must be supported to use the appropriate legislative tools to manage non-compliance.’
Other concerns raised by NSW councils included the certification process, specifically ‘safety and other amenity considerations being overlooked in the certification process’.