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Report 14 - Land Use in the ACT

Administrative Review Council report

Administrative law
Publication date

Land Use in the ACT, 1981

Summary of the report

The report was transmitted to the Government on 16 November 1981, and was tabled on 21 October 1982.

The report contains 12 recommendations, including:

  • that jurisdiction be conferred on the Administrative Appeals Tribunal ('AAT'), to perform the review functions presently exercised by: the Design and Siting Review Committee; the Building Review Committee; the Valuation Review Board; and, those performed by the Supreme Court of the ACT under section 28(4) of the City Area Leases Ordinance 1936,
  • that certain decisions under the City Area Leases Ordinance 1936, and the Building Ordinance 1972, which were not subject to review, should be reviewable by the AAT,
  • that third-party rights of review in respect of certain decisions be available,and
  • that decision-making with respect to applications under sections 10 and 11A of the City Area Leases Ordinance 1936 should remain with the Department of Territories, but that the statutory role of the National Capital Development Commission should be recognised by a statutory requirement of consultation between the Department and the Commission.

Response to the report

The report was not implemented before moves were made towards self-government for the ACT.

The Council suggested to the Attorney-General in August 1988 that, upon self-government, the Council ought not have a role in advising on administrative review matters for the ACT, as those matters would appropriately be matters for the ACT administration. However, as it was then proposed that merits review under ACT laws would initially be conducted by the AAT, the Council said that it may need to monitor the effect on the AAT as a whole of its ACT jurisdiction, in order to ensure that the ACT workload did not prejudice the overall functioning of the AAT. The Government agreed with the Council's views, and saw a continuing role for the Council where overriding Commonwealth legislation may be involved.

The Council advised the Government on various aspects of the ACT administrative law package, through both formal letters of advice and informal consultation. The package, which took effect on 11 May 1989, incorporated a number of suggestions made by the Council, while retaining for the ACT basically the same administrative law provisions that apply under Commonwealth law.