Application Determination

In March 2018, under changes to the NSW Planning legislation, the Mayor and Councilors no longer have any involvement in determining Development Applications under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979. These applications include: Development Applications, Modifications to Consents, Review of Determinations, Building Information Certificates, Construction Certificates, Subdivision Certifications or Occupation Certificate. Accordingly, the Mayor and Councilors are unable to instruct or direct staff in relation to these matters.

As a result the majority of applications are now determined under Delegated Authority by Council’s Senior Development & Building Staff, unless they are required to be referred to the Georges River Local Planning Panel or the Sydney South Planning Panel for determination. Council Officers / Relevant Planning Panels have the full authority to approve or refuse an application.

In making a determination, Council use a peer review process. This ensures that all recommendations made by our assessment officers are reviewed by a senior officer and where required by the relevant planning panel. This ensures transparency and consistency in the recommendations and decisions made by our staff.

The levels of authority are outlined generally as follows:

Determination Level Types of Applications Considered
Sydney South Planning Panel
  • Value of works over $30 million
  • Council or Crown Development over $5 million
  • Private Infrastructure and Community facilities over $5 million
Georges River Local Planning Panel
  • Any Council application less than $5 million
  • Any application where an Elected Councilor, Member or Parliament (or their relative as defined by the LG Act 1993) is the applicant
  • Any application where a Council staff member (who is involved in the assessment of applications) is the applicant
  • Any application with more than 10 unique submissions
  • Any application which seeks a variation to a Development Standard by more than 10%
  • ‘Sensitive’ applications including Residential flat buildings, licensed premises, sex service premises, demolition of a heritage item
  • Any application accompanied by a Voluntary Planning Agreement
Council Delegate
  • All other applications

As the Mayor and Councilors do not have a role in the determination of applications, any contact or submission you direct to an elected offical maybe forwarded to Council’s Development and Building team to be taken into consideration during the assessment of an undetermined application.


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