Planning Scheme

Planning Scheme image
Planning Scheme image

Flinders Council Planning Scheme 1994 is the legal document regulating development in the Municipality. If you are planning to develop your land or property, it must meet the use and development standards of the Planning Scheme. 

Each parcel of land has what is known as a “zone”. Depending what “zone” your land is in determines what use and development standards you are required to meet. Zone maps are available on Council’s Planning Scheme webpage. To find out your properties current zoning and overlays, contact the Development Services Department at the Flinders Council and quote your property ID number. 

NEW! Planning and Building Information Pack

We have put together a Planning and Building Information Pack for those wishing to plan or build within the Flinders Municipality. This information pack contains all relevant application forms, frequently asked questions and process flowcharts.

I think I’m Exempt?

Your proposal may be exempt from needing a Planning Permit – see the List of Exemptions in Part 3 of the Flinders Planning Scheme 1994. All development proposals are assessed by Council.  If your proposal is exempt you will recieve a certificate to confirm that your development was assessed by Council and a permit was not required.  This consultation service is free of charge.

Looks like I need a permit…what should I do?

You will need to submit a valid Development Application with the following documents:

  • Completed Council Development Application form.
  • A copy of your Title including folio map and folio text.
  • A site plan of the subject land, including everything that already exists on the land plus all that is being proposed.
  • Elevations of proposed development.

Note: You can apply for multiple developments and/or uses in the one Council Development Application. As such, you may wish to take into consideration during the application process any future plans for the site.

What happens now I have all my application details together?

Please submit your completed application to Council; if anything is missing, you will be asked to submit it at a later stage. A Council Officer will be in contact within a few days of your application being lodged to notify you of whether your application is ‘permitted’ or ‘discretionary’. At this stage, they will also be able to advise you how much the application will cost. Please see the Flinders Council fees and charges booklet for further details.

If you decide to go ahead with the application, your application will be submitted for assesment to a consultant planning team made up of senior town planners. You may receive a letter from the planning team asking for further information, and you can always call Council for clarification or help with such requests.

Under the Land Use Planning Approvals Act 1993, Council is required to make a decision about your application within 42 days from the date of submission. If Council requires additional time to decide, they will request this formally from the applicant.

What does it mean if my application is permitted?

A permitted application means that your proposal met the requirements of the Flinders Planning Scheme 1994. For example, you may have proposed to build a house in a Village Zone that met all the necessary height and setback parameter restrictions. In such cases, Council Officers are able to complete the assessment in-house and do not have to notify or consult the general public. Considering that relatively less work is involved in processing this type of application, the application fee is minimal.

What does it mean if my application is discretionary?

The Flinders Planning Scheme 1994 categorises all use and development applications as either “permitted” or “discretionary”. Discretionary means that your proposal may not fulfill the requirements of the development standards or the intentions of your given zone. For example, you may want to build closer to the boundary than the scheme allows for; or, it might be that the use (residential in a rural zone) is discretionary under the table of uses that forms part of the zone standards.

A discretionary application must be advertised for 14 days. Signs must be placed on the property, at Council offices and in the local newspaper (The Examiner – Northern Tasmania). Adjoining land owners and occupiers are advised in writing and the community has the opportunity to view the proposal at the Council office or on the website, and may wish to make a representation. If this happens, the proposal is heard at a Council meeting and you, the applicant, is invited to sit in on this process. If there are no representations, you may receive a permit (with conditions) from Council without it being referred to a meeting.

Council’s Development Services staff are available to assist you with this process.

I’ve got a Planning Permit… what now?

Read your conditions! If the permit is for a built structure you should now apply for a Building Permit – see the Building Application Page.

The Planning Permit will last 2 years. To ‘activate’ the permit you must make a substantial start on the matters approved in the permit within 2 years. Once ‘activated’ the permit should remain that way. It is never ‘closed’ or ‘completed’, as such, but remains with the property forever. This means that any conditions of the permit must continue to be complied with as long as it remains active, which may be many years.

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