Future Nillumbik Committee FAQs

Why has there been a change to Council’s Committee structure?

Following the general election in October 2016, Council reviewed its committee structure and then resolved on 22 November 2016 to establish a single Special Committee called the Future Nillumbik Committee to replace the previous two Special Committees – the Policy and Services and Planning Committees.

Who is on the Future Nillumbik Committee and who chairs it?

All seven Councillors are members of the Future Nillumbik Committee.

The committee agenda will be structured on the portfolios assigned to individual Councillors, with the relevant portfolio Councillor to chair the section of the meeting for those items which relate to their portfolio.

The portfolios are Community Services (Cr Jane Ashton), Economic Development and Marketing (Cr Karen Egan), Environment and Sustainability (Cr Grant Brooker), Finance and Governance (Cr Peter Clarke), Infrastructure (Cr John Dumaresq), Social Infrastructure (Cr Bruce Ranken) and Planning (Cr Peter Perkins).

What matters can the Committee consider?

The Future Nillumbik Committee has delegated authority from Council to consider most matters, with some exceptions such as declaring a rate or charge and approving and abandoning planning scheme amendments.

Can I still register to make a verbal presentation to the Committee on any item on the agenda?

The Terms of Reference for the Future Nillumbik Committee involve a change to the way members of the public can address the Committee.

Under the previous Committee structure, any person could register to speak to the Committee on any item on the agenda.

Under the Future Nillumbik Committee, this entitlement will be limited to those people who have already made a formal, written submission to Council in relation to a matter which has been the subject of public consultation.

These new arrangements will require changes to Council’s Meeting Procedure Local Law before they commence operation. Changes to the Local Law will take place in coming months and residents will be able to provide feedback on the proposed changes to the law.

What about planning applications? Can I still come along to oppose or support a planning application?

Under the previous Council, if a planning application triggered more than five objections or had more than five dwellings, it was automatically reported to the Planning Committee for a decision.

Now, all planning applications will be determined by Council officers under delegation unless:

  • The Ward Councillor in whose ward the application is located, advises in writing that the Councillor wishes to refer the matter to the Future Nillumbik Committee for a planning decision  
  • Any Councillor other than the Ward Councillor in whose ward the application is located, advises in writing that the Councillor wishes the matter to be referred to the Future Nillumbik Committee for decision, and that request is supported in writing by one other Councillor.

To put it simply, only matters which have been ‘called in’ by Councillors will now be reported to the Committee.

How will I know about planning applications in my neighbourhood?

There is no change to the way planning applications are advertised to the public. This will continue to be undertaken in accordance with the requirements of the Planning and Environment Act 1987.

Find out what planning applications are currently being advertised on Council’s website.

How will Councillors know about planning applications in their wards?

To keep Councillors informed of planning applications which may be of interest to them and the community, they will be provided with a weekly list of planning applications that are ready for a decision, with the number of objections listed. It’s at this point that Councillors can ‘call in’ a planning application to the Future Nillumbik Committee to decide.

So can I come along to the Committee to speak to a planning application?

Residents will only be able to address the Committee on a planning matter if they have formally lodged a written submission at least seven days prior to the scheduled Committee meeting date.

In the context of planning applications, the permit applicant (or their representative) will automatically qualify, however only objectors who have lodged their written objection seven days prior to the meeting will be allowed to make a verbal presentation.