ABC Online
Tasmania’s Planning Institute is concerned the State Government will try to weaken the independence of the Resource Planning and Development Commission. The RPDC assesses large developments such as Gunns’ Tamar Valley pulp mill and Walker Corporation’s residential marina proposed for Ralphs Bay on Hobart’s eastern shore. Premier David Bartlett is to announce an overhaul of the state’s planning system next week but Emma Riley from the Planning Institute says there is concern the Government’s policy arm will merge with the RPDC, or independent commissioners will be replaced with bureaucrats. “I don’t think really it’s what the community desires at this point in time,” Ms Riley said. “Particularly given the political process that was involved with the pulp mill and the fact the integrated impact statement has just been lodged for Ralphs Bay.” Premier David Bartlett has confirmed there will be massive reforms to Tasmania’s planning system but he won’t say what. “I’ll be revealing all the detail of the planning review and our massive reform program for planning in Tasmania in my state of the state speech on Tuesday,” Mr Bartlett said. Read more here

On Tasmanian Times, Emma Riley’s 4-part analysis of planning: Here