Overview

PPV conducts three types of public hearings

  • panels
  • advisory committees
  • environment effects inquiries

PPV has a pool of members with a range of skills and expertise, so the right members can be chosen for each matter.  A Panel, Committee or Inquiry will have one or more members, depending on how complex the issues are.  

PPV provides reports containing advice and makes recommendations. The final decision is made by the local Council or the Minister. You can access reports here.

Panels are appointed by the Minister for Planning under the Planning and Environment Act to advise on planning scheme amendments. The role of a panel is to:

  • considers submissions on the amendment
  • give submitters an opportunity to be heard in a public hearing
  • give expert advice and recommendations to the planning authority who prepared the amendment (usually the local Council or the Minister for Planning).

Panels are also appointed to consider submissions or objections in relation to a planning permit application that the Minister calls in from a local Council (‘permit call-ins’).

Advisory Committees are appointed by the Minister for Planning under the Planning and Environment Act to advise on any matter the Minister refers to it, for example:

  • a general review of planning controls or policy, for example, car parking controls or developer contributions
  • development proposals for specific sites
  • planning appeals that the Minister calls in from VCAT (‘appeal call-ins’).

The Minister will provide an Advisory Committee with Terms of Reference which outline the matters the Committee must consider and report on, and how the Committee should conduct its process.

Environment Effects Inquiries are appointed by the Minister for Planning under the Environment Effects Act to inquire into the environmental effects of a project for which an Environment Effects Statement (EES) has been prepared. The role of an Inquiry is to:

  • inquire into the environmental effects of the project
  • consider submissions on the EES, and give submitters an opportunity to be heard in a public hearing
  • give expert advice and recommendations to the Minister for Planning about how to manage or mitigate the environmental effects of the project.

Common examples of projects that require an EES are:

  • major road projects
  • large port and marine infrastructure
  • large energy projects including power stations and wind farms
  • land development proposals with significant environment effects
  • large mining projects.

The Minister will provide the Inquiry with Terms of Reference which help guide the scope and process of the Inquiry.

Panels, Advisory Committees and Environment Effects Inquiries operate in a similar way. All conduct public hearings, and hearing procedures will be similar for all types of hearings. The Terms of Reference for an Advisory Committee or an Environment Effects Inquiry will provide more specific guidance on what is required from the Committee or Inquiry and how it must conduct its hearings.

Click here for more information about the hearing process.

Anyone who makes a submission has a right to participate in the public hearing. This includes:

  • people who make submissions to the planning authority about a planning scheme amendment
  • people who make submissions about a matter that is being considered by an Advisory Committee
  • people who make submissions about an EES
  • people who make submissions or objections to a permit application that is called in by the Minister
  • people who are party to a VCAT planning appeal that is called in by the Minister.

To make a submission about a planning scheme amendment, contact the planning authority who prepared the amendment. To make a submission about an Advisory Committee or EES, visit the Engage Victoria website.

Yes. All submissions received and all information provided at a public hearing are public documents.

More information on PPV’s Guide to privacy

Yes.

To inspect submissions on a planning scheme amendment, contact the planning authority.

To inspect submissions on an EES, a matter being considered by an Advisory Committee, a permit call-in or an appeal call-in, contact PPV.

For privacy reasons, PPV does not generally put submissions online (unless it is required to do so under Terms of Reference). You can contact PPV to make arrangements to inspect hard copies of submissions.

A Panel, Advisory Committee or Environment Effects Inquiry considers all written submissions referred to it.  It also gives anyone who made a submission an opportunity to present their key points at a public hearing.

You can make your submission at a public hearing in person, or you may be represented by another person.  Your submission may be oral or partly oral and written. You can also call expert witnesses to give evidence to the Panel.

Request to be heard at a public hearing.

More information

More information on the Hearing process

More information on Expert witnesses

More information on Planning scheme amendment

More information on Frequently Asked Questions

Contact Planning Panels Victoria:

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Page last updated: 23/09/20