A written submission in support or in opposition to an advertised (discretionary) planning application is called a representation.
These discretionary applications are publically advertised within the Public Notice section of the Mercury on weekdays; published on the City of Hobart’s website; a public notice is placed on all frontages of the property; and all adjoining neighbours are advised in writing.
The plans and documentation relating to an advertised application can be viewed here and are also made available to you at the Hobart Council Centre, 16 Elizabeth Street, Hobart.
How to make a representation
Representations must be made in writing and can be submitted in various ways:
- Using our easy-to-use online form.
(Please click on the 'online form' link above to complete and submit a representation online).
- Sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org (please note that representations sent to any other email address will not be accepted).
Representations submitted using options 1 or 2 above must be received no later than 11.59 pm on the closing date.
- Mailed to the Chief Executive Officer, GPO Box 503, Hobart 7001; or
- Hand–delivered to the Customer Service Centre, 16 Elizabeth Street, Hobart during office hours.
Representation submitted using option 3 or 4 above must be received no later than 5.15 pm on the closing date.
Time to make a representation
You are able to lodge a representation within 14 days from the day it is advertised. The representation closing date is provided in all notices.
It is important that you submit your representation by the closing date. While it is possible for the Council to grant an extension of time to file a late representation, up to a further 14 days, this will depend on a number of factors and you should not rely on an extension being granted. If an extension is not granted then you will not have the right to appeal the Council’s decision.
The Council is only required to consider valid representations.
What to include in your representation
A written representation should include:
- your contact details – we require either an email address or a mailing address
- the address of the planning permit application or our reference number
- the nature of the merits or concerns with the proposed planning application.
Please note that if you provide your email address and a postal address then we will contact you via mail. It is the City of Hobart’s preference to be able to contact you by email.
To be effective, your representation should only raise matters addressed in the relevant planning scheme and provide reasons for your support or opposition to the proposal. The issues addressed in your representation should relate to relevant provisions of the planning scheme (Hobart Interim Planning Scheme 2015 or Sullivans Cove Planning Scheme 1997). Some common examples of valid concerns with an application could be:
- type of land use is or is not appropriate
- appearance or character
- overshadowing – e.g. shadows cast by the proposed building
- traffic generated
- insufficient parking
- the proposed development complies with or is at odds with the requirements of the planning scheme.
Getting help with your representation
The City of Hobart’s Development Appraisal Officers are able to assist you in interpreting and understanding plans and documentation submitted with an application during the public exhibition period. We recommend that you book an appointment with a planner, see our online Planning Appointment Form or call our offices on 03 6238 2715.
However, City officers are not able to discuss with you the merits of the development or possible arguments against it. The officers will provide an objective assessment of the application in accordance with the requirements of the relevant planning scheme and do not act on behalf of the developers or any person objecting to it.
To help prepare the most effective representation, especially for a complex application, you can engage a private planning consultant. A planning consultant can undertake a review of the relevant planning scheme and the proposed development and help identify and explain those valid concerns to include in a representation.
To find a planning consultant, visit the Planning Institute of Australia’s website.
Who will see your representation
A developer will not see your representation and the City of Hobart will not disclosure your name or contact details to the developer, unless you provide your consent to do so. It may be preferable to provide your consent so that the developer understands your concerns properly and is able to contact you to discuss them.
Your full representation will be considered as part of the decision to approve or refuse a proposal. If the decision is made under delegation, then the officer making the decision will read your representation and take it into account. If the decision is made by the elected members then they will receive and review the full representation. The representations are not published as part of the agenda papers, to protect the privacy of representors. The report which is provided to the elected members as part of the agenda papers will provide a summary of the issues raised in all of the representations.
If the decision made by the City of Hobart is appealed to the Resource Management and Planning Appeal Tribunal then your representation, including your name and contact details will be provided to the Tribunal, the developer and any other party to the appeal.
What happens after you make your representation
Depending on the circumstances, an application may be determined by a Council officer, the City Planning Committee or the Council.
If the decision is made by an officer under delegation, then the officer making the decision will read your representation and take it into account. You will not have any further involvement in the decision making process.
If the decision is made by the City Planning Committee then the Committee members will receive and review your full representation. It may also be possible for you to make a deputation at the Committee meeting (which is explained further below).
If the decision is made by the Council then all Elected Members will receive and review your representation. There will not be a further opportunity for you to make a deputation to the Council.
After the decision is made, you will be notified of the decision in writing and will be provided with a copy of the planning permit or reasons for refusal.
Making a deputation (verbal presentation)
You may also have an opportunity to make a deputation (verbal presentation) to the Committee. This option is not always possible due to tight and strict timeframes under the applicable legislation.
If you provide us with an email address, we will update you on when the application will be considered by the Committee at one of its fortnightly meetings. The number of deputations heard for an item are at the discretion of the Chair of the Committee. A deputation is not an essential part of the decision making process and if you do not wish to make a deputation then the concerns you have already raised in your representation will still be taken into account.
To register to make a deputation to the City Planning Committee, please complete an online deputation registration form. Alternatively, please contact the City’s Council Support Officer on 03 6238 2734 or via email at email@example.com. A City of Hobart staff member will contact you to confirm the next steps.
If you register to make a deputation to the City Planning Committee then the City of Hobart will automatically contact the developer to ascertain whether they also wish to make a deputation. A developer may also initiate making a deputation to the Committee.
If the decision must be made by the full Council, rather than the City Planning Committee, there will not be a further opportunity for you to make a deputation to the Council.
If you have made a valid representation then you are entitled to appeal the decision to grant a permit or to join an appeal against a decision to refuse an application.
Appeals may only be lodged with the Resource Management and Planning Appeal Tribunal. An appeal must be made within 14 days after the day on which notice of the granting of the permit (or refusal) is provided by the City of Hobart to a representor.
Please note that the Tribunal with not directly notify representors if an appeal is lodged by an applicant. You may either look for the notice of appeal, which will be published in the Mercury, or contact the Tribunal directly.
The Tribunal can be contacted on 03 6233 6464 or www.rmpat.tas.gov.au or GPO Box 2036, Hobart 7001. The Tribunal has a required form and a prescribed fee for making an appeal.