Recission of Council Policies

Consultation has on this proposal has now concluded

Port Macquarie-Hastings Council has a total of 93 Policies. A comprehensive Council Policy review has taken place over the last twelve (12) months, which has resulted in the identification of seventeen (17) Policies recommended for rescission.

It is recommended that the following Polices be rescinded:

  1. Access to Information
  2. Broadcasting of Council Meetings
  3. Council Documents and Reports
  4. Annual Reporting
  5. Airport Car Parking
  6. Release of Rating and Property Information
  7. Hazardous Waste Incidents
  8. Impounding of Cattle
  9. Impounding of Dogs
  10. Local Aboriginal Land Councils - Interim Consultation Policy regarding Council Works, DA’s and Draft LEPs
  11. Noise from Recreational Trail Bike Use
  12. Provision of Kerbside Waste Collection Services to Dwellings Multi Unit Developments Commercial and Industrial Premises
  13. Temporary Occupation of Building During Erection of a Dwelling
  14. Use of Public Land for Vegetation Offsets
  15. Aggregation of Land Values for Rating Purposes
  16. Exercising Horses on Pilot Beach Dunbogan
  17. Frontage Works to Development.

Council’s Policy Register and the Policies that are the subject of this report are publicly available via Council’s website.

Council is publicly exhibiting these policies up until Friday 24 July 2015. Writing a submission is one way of sharing your views and opinions with Council.

Any person may make a written submission to Council up until the end of the exhibition period. Submissions close Friday 24 July 2015.

Submissions will be accepted via post, email or online using the form below.

The General Manager
Port Macquarie-Hastings Council
PO Box 84
Port Macquarie NSW 2444

Email council@pmhc.nsw.gov.au

Please note: Submissions and petitions are public information and may be made public in their entirety subject to the provisions of the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009.


Port Macquarie-Hastings Council has a total of 93 Policies. A comprehensive Council Policy review has taken place over the last twelve (12) months, which has resulted in the identification of seventeen (17) Policies recommended for rescission.

It is recommended that the following Polices be rescinded:

  1. Access to Information
  2. Broadcasting of Council Meetings
  3. Council Documents and Reports
  4. Annual Reporting
  5. Airport Car Parking
  6. Release of Rating and Property Information
  7. Hazardous Waste Incidents
  8. Impounding of Cattle
  9. Impounding of Dogs
  10. Local Aboriginal Land Councils - Interim Consultation Policy regarding Council Works, DA’s and Draft LEPs
  11. Noise from Recreational Trail Bike Use
  12. Provision of Kerbside Waste Collection Services to Dwellings Multi Unit Developments Commercial and Industrial Premises
  13. Temporary Occupation of Building During Erection of a Dwelling
  14. Use of Public Land for Vegetation Offsets
  15. Aggregation of Land Values for Rating Purposes
  16. Exercising Horses on Pilot Beach Dunbogan
  17. Frontage Works to Development.

Council’s Policy Register and the Policies that are the subject of this report are publicly available via Council’s website.

Council is publicly exhibiting these policies up until Friday 24 July 2015. Writing a submission is one way of sharing your views and opinions with Council.

Any person may make a written submission to Council up until the end of the exhibition period. Submissions close Friday 24 July 2015.

Submissions will be accepted via post, email or online using the form below.

The General Manager
Port Macquarie-Hastings Council
PO Box 84
Port Macquarie NSW 2444

Email council@pmhc.nsw.gov.au

Please note: Submissions and petitions are public information and may be made public in their entirety subject to the provisions of the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009.


Consultation has on this proposal has now concluded
  • Why are these 17 policies being rescinded?

    over 4 years ago

    An explanation on why each policy is being rescinded can be found below.

    1. Access to Information Policy

    (Division responsible: Corporate and Organisational Services)

    The objective of this Policy is to describe Council’s principles regarding public access to information and to facilitate the processing of requests for access.

    With the introduction of the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (“GIPA Act”), section 12 of the Local Government Act 1993 (“LG Act”) was repealed being replaced by Schedule 1 of the Government Information (Public Access) Regulation 2009 (“GIPA Regulation”).

    The GIPA Act:

    i) Provides a comprehensive framework for the release of...

    An explanation on why each policy is being rescinded can be found below.

    1. Access to Information Policy

    (Division responsible: Corporate and Organisational Services)

    The objective of this Policy is to describe Council’s principles regarding public access to information and to facilitate the processing of requests for access.

    With the introduction of the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (“GIPA Act”), section 12 of the Local Government Act 1993 (“LG Act”) was repealed being replaced by Schedule 1 of the Government Information (Public Access) Regulation 2009 (“GIPA Regulation”).

    The GIPA Act:

    i) Provides a comprehensive framework for the release of information by Council.

    ii) Places annual reporting requirements on Council.

    iii) Incorporates appropriate access methods and appeals processes.

    The GIPA Act legislates Council’s principles regarding public release of information and the processes to follow for information release.

    Schedule 1 of the GIPA Act outlines the only and specific reasons for denial of information and section 14 provides the only considerations for denial.

    Establishing a ‘more restrictive’ Policy in this area would be in conflict with the objectives of the GIPA Act.

    The current Policy was previously used in conjunction with Freedom of Information (FOI) legislation. The current Policy was updated (2010) to include references to GIPA legislation.

    The GIPA legislation is considered to provide a sufficient framework for the provision of information.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    2. Aggregation of Land Values for Rating Purposes

    (Division responsible: Corporate and Organisational Services)

    The Policy objective is to outline Council’s Policy in relation to the aggregation of land values for rating purposes.

    Local Government Act 1993 (extract)

    Section 548A - Aggregation of values of certain parcels subject to rates containing base amounts
    (1) If the Council is of the opinion that the levying of a minimum rate or of a rate containing a base amount:
    (a) would apply unfairly, and
    (b) could cause hardship to a rateable person who is rateable in respect of two or more separate parcels of land subject to the rate, it may aggregate the land values of such of the parcels as it determines and levy the rate on the aggregated land values.

    (2) Land values may be aggregated under this section for separate parcels of land only if each separate parcel is subject to:
    (a) the same category or subcategory of the same ordinary rate, or
    (b) the same special rate.

    (3) A council must not aggregate the land values of two or more separate parcels of land:
    (a) if each parcel is a parcel on which a dwelling is erected or a parcel that comprises (or substantially comprises) a dwelling in a residential flat building or;
    (b) if the parcels are a combination of parcels referred to in paragraph (a).

    This Policy is not required as the subject matter is covered by statutory provisions of the LG Act section 548A.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    3. Airport Car Parking

    (Division responsible: Corporate and Organisational Services)

    The Policy objective is to ensure that car parking is available for users of Port Macquarie Airport and that fees charged for parking at the Airport are used to support ongoing operations, loan repayments and future improvements of the Airport.

    This Policy is a duplication of the Schedule of Fees and Charges (Revenue Policy) – which is adopted by Council annually as part of its annual Integrated Planning and Reporting documents.

    The exemption/concession clause of this Policy, which states that the fees charged are at the sole discretion of Port Macquarie-Hastings Council, is in conflict with a current delegation to the General Manager, in that:

    The General Manager can:

    “vary, waive or reduce various fees as detailed in Council's Statement of Fees and Charges in those circumstances where the organisation/person involved is a charitable organisation, or where the fee charged is not achieving a usage/level of sales envisaged, or if the specified fee is unreasonable or inappropriate in defined or exceptional circumstances.”

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    4. Annual Reporting

    (Division responsible: Economic and Community Growth)

    The Policy objective is to outline Council’s policy in relation to producing an Annual Report.

    This Policy was adopted in 1996 and has not since been revised.

    Council’s obligations concerning annual reporting is heavily legislated, is part of the Integrated Planning and Reporting framework and supplemented by direction and guidance from the Office of Local Government.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    5. Broadcasting of Council Meetings

    (Division responsible: Corporate and Organisational Services)

    The objective of this Policy is to outline Council's Policy in relation to the broadcasting of Council Meetings.

    Clause 273(1) of the Local Government General Regulation 2005 (“LGGR”) states:

    “A person may use a tape recorder to record the proceedings of a meeting of a council or a committee of a council only with the authority of the council or committee.”

    It is understood that local community radio may have previously broadcast Council Meetings, under which the establishment of this Policy stemmed.

    This Policy is in contradiction to the current Code of Meeting Practice. This Policy, in part, removes the need for a person to seek Council permission under clause 273(1) of the LGGR.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    6. Council Documents and Reports

    (Division responsible: Corporate and Organisational Services)

    The objective of this Policy is to ensure the availability of reports, studies and publications to the public.

    Internet and Web access to Council documents has increased dramatically over the last 5 years and is envisaged to continue to increase. Schedule 1 of the GIPA Regulation outlines the required documents to be “open access” (available) to the Community:

    Four (4) types/classes of information:

    1. Information about Council (Community Strategic Plan/Delivery Program/Operational Plan, registers of information, disclosure returns, agendas/minutes).

    2. Plans and policies (Policies, plans of management, Local Environmental Plan(s), Development Control Plan(s), contribution plans, etc.).

    3. Information about development applications.

    4. Approvals, orders and other documents.

    The GIPA Act provides a comprehensive framework for the release of information by Council and has access methods and appeals processes. The GIPA Act also places heavy obligations on council’s to make information available via their websites.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    7. Exercising Horses on Pilot Beach Dunbogan

    (Division responsible: Development and Environment Services)

    The Policy objective is to outline Council's Policy on the exercising of horses on Pilot Beach, Dunbogan.

    The Policy is not required as it is managed by signage as required.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    8. Frontage Works to Development

    (Division responsible: Development and Environment Services)

    The Policy objective is to ensure land use developments provide appropriate infrastructure works along their respective property frontages to service the infrastructure demands associated with the development.

    This Policy is no longer required as this area is managed through the development application process.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    9. Hazardous Waste Incidents

    (Division responsible: Development and Environment Services)

    The Policy objective is to outline Council’s Policy in relation to hazardous and orphan waste incidents.

    It is recommend to rescind this Policy and subsequently develop a WHS Procedure to manage these matters - which is considered a more appropriate approach.

    10. Impounding of Cattle

    (Division responsible: Development and Environment Services)

    The Policy objective is to advise the location of the Livestock pound for the reception, detention and sale of straying Stock.

    The Policy is no longer required as it is covered by statutory provisions of the Impounding Act 1993.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    11. Impounding of Dogs

    (Division responsible: Development and Environment Services)

    The Policy objective is to nominate the place for the acceptance and detention of dogs and cats. The Policy is no longer required as it is covered by statutory provisions of the Companion Animals Act 1998.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    12. Local Aboriginal Land Councils – Interim Consultation Policy regarding Council Works, Development Applications and Draft LEPs Policy

    (Division responsible: Development and Environment Services)

    The Policy objective is to enable the relevant Local Aboriginal Land Council to notify Council of any Aboriginal significance for sites subject to proposed Council works, to Development Applications, and to Draft Local Environmental Plans, pending completion of a Local Aboriginal Heritage Study.

    This Policy is no longer required as Council’s planning legislation, Gateway process and current Community Engagement Policy provide sufficient and contemporary guidance.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    13. Noise from Recreational Trail Bike Use

    (Division responsible: Development and Environment Services)

    The Policy objective is to:

    • Identify areas where recreational trail bike riding activities are not appropriate. To identify areas where recreational trail bike riding may be appropriate.
    • To provide guidelines that assist in the minimisation of noise impacts from recreational trail bike riding.
    • To outline Council’s approach to dealing with noise complaints about trail bikes.
    • To promote responsible use of recreational trail bikes.

    The Policy is not required as this area is covered by statutory provisions of the Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997, Protection of the Environment Operations (Noise Control) Regulation 2008 and the Noise Guide for Local Government.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    14. Release of Rating and Property Information

    (Division responsible: Corporate and Organisational Services)

    The Policy objective is to outline Council's Policy in relation to the release of rating and property information.

    The Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 (“PPIP Act”) outlines Council’s obligations in this area. The PPIP Act requires Council to have a Privacy Management Plan. Council has both a Plan and procedures for the release of information considered “personal information”, which includes rating and property information.

    This Policy duplicates Council’s legislatively required Privacy Management Plan.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    15. Provision of Kerbside Waste Collection Services to Dwellings Multi Unit Developments Commercial and Industrial Premises

    (Division responsible: Development and Environment Services)

    The Policy objective is to provide definitions on the types of waste services available, the implementation of these services, the methods of charging and the application of the Policy to residents within the Port Macquarie-Hastings Local Government Area.

    This Policy is not required as the matters are either covered by Council's Fees and Charges or are appropriately assessed in conjunction with a development application.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    16. Temporary Occupation of Building during erection of a Dwelling

    (Division responsible: Development and Environment Services)

    The Policy objective is to allow the temporary residential occupation of a building during the construction of a permanent dwelling on the same site.

    This Policy is not required as it is managed on a merit basis through the development application process under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.

    17. Use of Public Land for Vegetation Offsets

    (Division responsible: Development and Environment Services)

    The Policy objective is to outline Council’s position in relation to the use of public land to provide off-sets to vegetation removal for private development and to ensure that the benefit of public land is reserved for the broader community and for potential off-sets associated with Council public infrastructure works.

    This Policy is currently preventing the use of Council land to assist in offsetting developments with a public benefit.

    It is recommended to rescind this Policy.