LG Alert - the Accreditation Authority’s new enforcement ‘tools’ under the Planning, Development and Infrastructure Act 2016 (the Act)

21  March 2024

Are you aware of the new regulation 113A in the recently-Gazetted Planning, Development and Infrastructure (General) (Miscellaneous) Amendment Regulations 2024, which states:

113A—Designated authority—accreditation authority

The accreditation authority under the Planning, Development and Infrastructure (Accredited Professionals) Regulations 2019 is brought within the definition of designated authority under section 212(1) of the Act.

The effect is that the Accreditation Authority is now able to both issue enforcement notices under section 213 of the Act and to commence civil enforcement proceedings under section 214 of the Act in respect to contravention or threatened contraventions of the Act.

We expect that enforcement notices and/or civil enforcement proceedings will now be considered as an appropriate response to contraventions of the Act by accredited professionals, including where they act with a conflict of interest under sections 83 and 84 of the Act and for contraventions of sections 91(1) – 91(5) of the Act.

As council officers are aware, the wider the range of enforcement ‘tools’ available to respond to contraventions of the Act, the more breaches that are able to be addressed – and, of course, the application of the most appropriate level of ‘sanction’ to suit the nature and severity of the contravention.

This extension of powers for the Accreditation Authority provides a timely reminder to all council officers and contractors who are accredited professionals under the Planning, Development and Infrastructure (Accredited Professionals) Regulations 2019, to ensure that they are adhering to their statutory obligations at all times.  Accredited professionals are personally liable for contraventions of sections 83, 84 and 91 of the Act. Any form of enforcement action taken by the Accreditation Authority will, therefore, be against them personally, not against their employer or client.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Victoria Shute on 08 8113 7104 or vshute@kelledyjones.com.au