MAYOR Polglase is proud the council is an online trailblazer.
MAYOR Polglase is proud the council is an online trailblazer.

Tweed Council on pilot scheme

THE use of the internet and emails in day-to-day town planning for the Tweed has taken a leap forward, with Tweed Shire Council named as just one of 12 NSW councils to take part in an online scheme to speed up devel- opment approvals.

Tweed mayor Warren Polglase said the council is to be one of 12 role model councils to test out the new Electronic Housing CodePilot scheme.

At a Local Government Association conference in Tamworth, NSW Minister for Planning Kristina Keneally this week announced the successful group of councils jointly trialling electronic planning initiatives with the NSW Government.

Councillor Polglase said in a prepared statement he was proud that the program would focus on “fast-tracking online service delivery in planning and will set the pace for other NSW councils to follow later in 2010 and onwards”.

He said the scheme would“assist in fast-tracking approval processes, contributing to housing affordability through time and cost savings”. It would also reduce “the resources needed to prepare, monitor and evaluate proposals as well as reducing holding costs through the faster processing and approval times”.

“The end game is to make it more cost-effective for government, state as well as local, to offer these services online.

Minister Keneally said the pilot program would show the way forward in meeting the planning needs of high-growth NSW communities.

Local Government Association president Genia McCaffrey said in the same joint prepared statement the program represented significant collaboration “in thee-planning area”

“The use of electronic processes in delivering planning and development services can contribute tangible benefits to all planning system stakeholders,” her statement said.

Shires Association president Cr Bruce Miller added: “This dynamic e-planning initiative is an important opportunity for productive partnership between the Department of Planning and NSW local councils. Everyone canbenefit.”

The scheme has been funded by the Federal Government's Housing Affordability Fund.

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