How to make a submission to a Development Application

To make a submission on a proposal, you may email or send a written submission to Council. All submissions must specify the name(s) of the writer(s) and respective address, telephone and fax numbers if available.

If the submission is an objection, the reasons for your objection must be clearly explained in the submission. It is important that submission letters only contain information relevant to the proposal.

Petitions may also be used for submissions provided they satisfy the same guidelines mentioned above.

Council will acknowledge in writing the receipt of all submissions. In the case of a petition only the head petitioner will be sent an acknowledgement letter and it is the responsibility of that head petitioner to keep all the co-signatories advised of the progress of the application.

Please note: Individual households represent only one objection to a DA irrespective of the number of individual objections received or signatures provided on behalf of that household.

Who can make a submission?

Any person who feels that the enjoyment of their property may be affected by a proposed development is welcome to make a submission in response to a Development Application (DA).

In making a submission, it is recommended that you consider the following:-

  1. Property owners or anyone obtaining consent by the property owner, are entitled to make applications to develop their properties.
  2. Council is obliged to consider those development applications within a legal framework established by the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 and related documents including LEPs and DCPs. That framework grants landowners certain entitlements. For example, it may zone land for residential flat buildings, in which case the landowner is entitled to build a residential flat building provided other criteria specified in the planning documents are met.
  3. Matters raised in submissions should relate to a planning matter such as the impact of the proposed development in terms of bulk, scale, privacy and solar access.
  4. Council may either approve (with or without conditions) or refuse an application. If an application is refused, the applicant can appeal Council's decision in the Land and Environment Court. The lodging of a submission does not imply that Council will refuse the application.

What happens if I make a submission?

Council must consider all matters which have been raised within any submission before making a decision regarding development applications. As reporting is open it is important to note that your submission may be made public and could appear in a document available to the general public.

From 1 October 2011 any submission received will not be made available on the City of Parramatta Council website. Any submission received relating to a development application will be made available subject to an Informal request for access to information under the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (GIPA). If such a request is received, your submission, including your name and address, may be made available. Should you wish to have this information withheld, please clearly state this in large text at the beginning of your submission and Council will consider this.

How is a decision made?

Development Applications must be considered in accordance with the requirements of the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 and the planning instruments and policies of Council. In determining a DA, City of Parramatta Council considers the following matters:

  • Provisions of the relevant planning instruments and codes
  • Likely impacts of the proposed development
  • Suitability of the site for the proposal
  • All submissions regarding the proposal
  • The public interest

Who discloses a political donation or gift?

Any person who lodges a relevant DA and/or public submission regarding a DA to Council is required to disclose the following reportable political donations and gifts (if any) made by any person with a financial interest in the application within the period commencing two years before the application is made and ending when the application is determined:

  • All reportable political donations made to any local councillor of that council, and
  • All gifts made to any local councillor or employee of that council.

Any person who lodges a written submission either objecting to or supporting a relevant DA must also make a disclosure if the person has made a reportable political donation. Ask Council staff for a 'Disclosure Statement of Political Donations & Gifts' form or download it from the City of Parramatta Council website. Detailed reportable donation disclosure requirements are outlined within that form.

This also applies to anybody who lodges a relevant planning application and/or submission to the Minister or the Director-General.

Who decides?

City of Parramatta Council receives approximately 1,200 Development Applications each year. The majority of these applications are for relatively minor works such as alterations and additions to dwelling houses. If no submissions are received on these applications and they conform to Parramatta planning controls, they are dealt with by planning officers under the delegated authority of the Council.

If there are not more than 7 objections to the development received, the application will usually be determined by a panel of senior staff. Submissions relevant to the application are carefully considered before such a decision is made. The application may either be approved or refused. A letter is sent to all submitters explaining the reasons for either decision.

Where more than 5 submissions are received, the application is determined by the elected Council. If the application is determined by Council, all persons who prepared a submission will be contacted and details of the meeting date and time will be advised.

Council generally meets to determine development applications on the second Monday of each month at 6.45pm. The public is welcome to attend these meetings which are held on Level 4, City of Parramatta Council Chambers, Civic Place, Parramatta.

How do I find out what is happening with my submission and the assessment of the application?

Any person may track the progress of an application lodged on or after 1 July 2005 online any time here or alternatively, phone Council's Development Unit on 9806 5600.

You may be contacted for further clarification of the matters which have been raised in your submission or to be advised that the application is being referred to Council for determination.

Following the determination of an application, all persons who made a submission will be notified of the decision regarding the application.

Last updated on 10 Jan 2014