Digitising DAs

February 26th, 2023

Digitising DAs

2023-02-26 11:57

With all the talk of AI and chat botts taking over, it seems NSW planning is going digital as well. To the consternation of many and the enthusiasm of some, processing DAs and the approval process will be handled online in the future.

Development Applications are being lodged on the Department of Planning portal and not individual councils like in the past. Once the DA is logged, stored, and a fee taken, it is then sent to the respective council for processing and (mostly) approval. In time this digitising process will probably eventuate in council staff processing DAs on behalf, and for, state planning and not under their own auspice.

Some councils in Queensland are already fully digitized. The cost-saving exercise has the potential to cut the DA process from 32 man-hours to 4. Many applicants interacting with of Byron Shire Council will be happy to see this introduced here. NSW LGAs are supposed to have a turnaround time of 40 days per DA. Byron council can take anything up to 10-12 months.

Could it be that the long delays in BSC applications are a strategy to hold up excessive development? Could it be that the state government is conducting LGA amalgamation by stealth? The cost and efficiency savings of council amalgamations looks tempting but amalgamations have turned out to be a no-go option with the electorate.

NSW E-planning strategy

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