The Public-funded Planning system in WA, over-centralised, inefficient and out-dated


This paper describes in outline and critically analyses the operation of the existing WA Government administered land-use Planning system – that applies state-wide and determines almost every aspect of the creation of future environments for people in WA.

It highlights obvious weaknesses in terms of how poorly the system currently responds to wide-ranging and rapidly changing community consumer needs. It alleges inefficiency and uneconomic overlap of function with Local Authorities, absence of relevant skills and misplacement of others.

It suggests that a current opportunity is arising with the reduction in number of Local Authorities (Note: that is under the separate supervision of the Department of local Government and Communities) that the time is right to urgently reappraise and change the functions and operation of the Planning system as a whole. That is – in order to give the community improved assurance that the creation and design of their future urban living environments (that are the intended results of Planning), are relevant to need.

Read Full Paper..


  1. With some neighbours I had a problem with a proposed local development. When the Council advertised for comments we took the trouble to write out a full explanation detailing various sensible grounds for our concern – but that apparently didn’t reach the Councillors.

    All that appeared in the Planning Committee’s Agenda in a ‘Submissions’ chart from the Planning Officers, was only ONE SHORT SENTENCE, missing altogether the main points in our explanation, so that Councillors would not be aware of our reasoning.

    We felt insulted by this treatment and believe the Planning Officers, who we had never seen, use this method to make their own advice to Councillors prevail. Their comments referred repeatedly to the “Local Planning Strategy“ , that they had no doubt written themselves.

    Since those Planning people obviously had no idea about local opinion or conditions, this proves the point in the Paper that people don’t matter and that no one really cares about Community needs, and Consultation with the present planning system is a farce.

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