The Hunter JO recently wrote to the Minister for Local Government, Shelley Hancock, to formally request a three-year extension to the transitional arrangements in place under the NSW Coastal Management Plan (2016), or alternatively, that the Coastal Zone Management Plans (CZMP’s) remain in effect until they are replaced by the Coastal Management Programs (CMP’s). This action arose from the Hunter Central Coast Coastal Management Practitioners Roundtable, a regional collaborative forum of council and agency staff focused on coastal management.
With all Councils in the region having CMP’s that would not have been completed by the cut-off date, the direct implications included:
- Restrictions on the ability to apply for grant funding
- No requirement for Council’s to consider existing CZMP’s for either rezoning or development
- A more resource intensive and lengthier approval pathway for some coastal protection works during this gap period
In response to this advocacy from ourselves and other Councils along the NSW coast, we were delighted to hear in mid-October that the Minister has now introduced legislation into the Parliament to extend the timeline by two years for councils to complete their Coastal Management Programs.