Strategic Planning


Strategic Planning is responsible for the development of land use and planning policies and strategies along with administering and reviewing the Horsham Planning Scheme including amendments to the scheme.

Planning Scheme amendments can include: the rezoning of land, the implementation of Structure Plans, and changes to the Local Planning Policy Framework while also implementing the Victoria Planning Provisions.

Strategic Planning seeks to provide a decision making framework that reflects the aspirations of the Council and community, while meeting the State Planning Policy objectives.

Planning Scheme Amendments

A planning scheme sets out the direction, policies and requirements for the use, development and protection of land. Planning Schemes are regularly amended.  

What is a planning scheme amendment?

Planning Schemes are amended on a regular basis through a statutory planning scheme amendment process. A planning scheme amendment may involve a change to a planning scheme map (for example, rezoning of land or the application of an overlay) or a change to the ordinance or written part of the scheme, or both.

Sometimes a planning scheme may need to be changed to reflect new circumstances or new direction. Changes to the planning scheme are known as amendments, and the process for an amendment is set out in the Planning and Environment Act 1987.

The amendment process

Anyone can ask a planning authority to prepare an amendment. A proponent must be able to demonstrate to the planning authority adequate justification as to why an amendment should be prepared. The Council will also often prepare amendments to the planning scheme to include new plans, strategies or policies that relate to the use, development or protection of land.

Before an amendment can be prepared, it must be authorised by the Minister for Planning.

Usually, an amendment is placed on exhibition for at least one month. Once on exhibition, those who are materially affected may make a submission to the amendment. If there are submissions which cannot be resolved by the planning authority, the Minister for Planning will appoint an independent panel to consider their recommendations and either adopt or abandon the amendment.

Once Council has made a final decision to adopt an amendment, the amendment is then forwarded to the Minister for Planning for approval.

An amendment becomes part of a planning scheme when it is prepared by the Minister for Planning and notice is given in the Victorian Government Gazette.

The Planning and Environment Act 1987 makes provision for a combined planning permit and amendment process where required.