In 2010/2011 the State Government introduced various legislation that established the operational framework for Development Assessment Panels (DAPs) in Western Australia. DAPs came into effect on 1 July 2011.
What is a DAP?
A Development Assessment Panel (DAP) is an independent decision-making body that determines certain development applications in the place of the original decision maker, such as local government and/or the Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC). DAPs comprise independent technical experts and elected local government representatives.
Applications received within the City of Rockingham are determined by the Metropolitan South-West Joint Development Assessment Panel (JDAP). The South-West JDAP covers the following local government municipalities:
- East Fremantle
The local government members rotate on and off the JDAP at a meeting, so that the JDAP application within each local government is represented by a relevant Council member.
Metro South-West Joint DAP
For applications received within the City of Rockingham the panel consists of:
- Mr John (Tony) Arias - Presiding Member
- Ms Lee O'Donohue - Deputy Presiding Member
- Mr Andrew MacIiver - Third Specialist
- Cr Deb Hamblin (Deputy Mayor) - Local Member
- Cr Mark Jones - Local Member
The following Alternate Members may attend DAP meeting in lieu of a Local Member:
- Cr Matthew Whitfield - Alternate Member
- Cr Lorna Buchan - Alternate Member
Division 2 of the DAP Code of Conduct prescribes a range of things DAP members should and should not do regarding communication. For example, clause 2.4.5 says:
"2.4.5 A DAP member must not participate in:
(a) a discussion with an applicant, formally or informally , in person or otherwise:
(b) a site visit, private meeting, briefing, discussion or similar even with any other DAP member;
in respect to a development application that is before the relevant DAP or which the member is aware may come before that DAP in future, unless the discussions, visit, meeting or similar event has been consented to by the presiding member of the relevant DAP and arranged by the DAP secretariat."
DAP application types
There are three types of DAP applications:
- mandatory applications
- optional applications
- applications to amend or cancel DAP determined applications.
Mandatory applications apply to a proposed development that has an estimated cost of $10 million or more and is not an Exempted Development (Note 1). A mandatory application must be determined by a DAP and cannot be determined by a local government or the WAPC.
(Note 1: Exempted Development means the construction of a single dwelling, fewer than 10 grouped dwellings or multiple dwellings, carports, patios, outbuildings or associated incidental development).
Optional applications apply to a proposed development that has an estimated construction cost between $2 million and $10 million in value. In this circumstance, the applicant may choose to use the DAP process or have their application determined by the City of Rockingham (and/or the WAPC, if applicable).
Amended or cancelled applications
There may be occasions where the DAP development approval which was granted will need to be amended in some way. For instance, following approval of a DAP application, an application may be made to the DAP seeking to:
- extend the period in which the development has to be substantially commenced
- amend or delete a condition of development
- amend an aspect of the development, in a manner which does not substantially alter the development that was approved, or
- cancel the approval.
For applications to amend or cancel an application, written justification must be provided outlining the reasons for the request in addition to normal information requirements.
All DAP applications are lodged with the City of Rockingham.
The following information is required to be submitted with a DAP application (or amended applications).