Former Mayor Kevin Skinner had criticised the panel, but two spots are now open to residents.
Former Mayor Kevin Skinner had criticised the panel, but two spots are now open to residents. Contributed

Council calls for residents to sit on planning panel

THE Northern Joint Regional Planning Panel has come to the end of its first term and Tweed Shire Council is looking for nominations to fill two representative spots on the panel.

Often criticised for making decisions against the wishes of the local community, the controversial panel was first established by the NSW Government in 2009 to make decisions on development proposals of regional significance and has the power to overrule council decisions.

The panel had been criticised for approving a new police station at Kingscliff, prompting former Tweed mayor Trevor Skinner to call for its abolition after becoming frustrated with the level of control the council had over local developments.

It consists of three state members and two council representatives who will be required for matters concerning Tweed shire.

The council's director of planning and regulation Vince Connell said "the objective of the JRPPs is to create a panel of people with appropriate expertise to determine development proposals of regional significance."

Selection criteria include senior level experience in dealing with multiple stakeholders, high level communication skills, high level of analytical skills and a knowledge and assessment of complex development and planning matters.

The term of appointment is up to three years and the successful candidates will be remunerated, including travel and allowances.

Existing panel members are welcome to re-apply for a further appointment.



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