The Victorian Government is ensuring bushfire-affected Victorians can more easily rebuild their homes and businesses by fast tracking the planning process for those impacted.
Under the new streamlined process, applications to rebuild dwellings or businesses damaged or destroyed by bushfire after 1 January 2019 will be exempt from some planning requirements – meaning permit applications can be assessed much faster.
While still subject to basic requirements, these types of applications will be exempt from the public notice period as well as being exempt from third party appeals to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal.
The new process also allows a CEO or delegate to make decisions on applications, rather than the full council – again clearing a path through the planning process for those Victorians seeking to rebuild.
The streamlined planning process will apply to all homes damaged or destroyed in this summer’s bushfires, in addition to homes impacted by the Bunyip Complex fires in March last year.
The changes follow measures already introduced allowing bushfire affected Victorians to build temporary residential or commercial accommodation on their land without a planning permit, subject to safety requirements.
The temporary accommodation is valid for a maximum of three years, giving people time to transition to permanent accommodation.
The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning will help guide councils and the community through the new streamlined planning process.
The Government – through Bushfire Recovery Victoria – will continue to work with affected communities to complete the necessary technical land assessments required to meet current bushfire building standards.
These standards will manage future risk and ensure the protection of human life is the number one priority.
For more information about clean-up, planning permit exemptions for bushfire recovery and Community Recovery Hubs, visit: brv.vic.gov.au.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Planning Richard Wynne
“This will make things easier for families and businesses that have already been through so much and are working hard to get back on their feet.’’
“These measures will fast-track the planning process and help make the road to recovery that much quicker for hundreds of Victorians.”
Quote attributable to Minister for Police and Emergency Services Lisa Neville
“Our bushfire impacted communities remain a key priority despite the restrictions coronavirus presents. This fast-tracked planning process will ensure we can help communities rebuild as quickly as possible, which is critical for their recovery.”