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Planning reform in Australia's island-state
journal contributionposted on 2023-05-26, 08:27 authored by Castles, AK, Elaine StratfordElaine Stratford
Tasmania's Resource Management and Planning System chiefly addresses land-use planning and approvals, environmental management and pollution control, state policies and projects, and the formation of independent statutory bodies for planning oversight and appeals. Its emergence coincided with a period when sustainable development/ecological modernisation was central to Australian Government policy, and when neoliberalism became entrenched across the nation. The Land Use Planning and Approvals Act 1993, pivotal to the system, has been the subject of many amendments. Since 2007, some such amendments have provided for regional planning, streamlined planning schemes, private certification processes and improved information. These changes have been motivated by commercial, social, economic, political, environmental and ethical considerations, and their passage has been more complex than originally anticipated. Drawing on planning documentation and insights from key stakeholders involved in state planning, in this paper we outline the scope of reform. We find that well-documented refrains play out again, among them the contestability of planning's objectives and the values underpinning them; the human and financial resources required to effectively manage the system and implement change; and the paradox that planning's shortcomings ‚Äö- and the gains from consequent reform ‚Äö- are often overstated.
Publication titleAustralian Planner