The Independent Planning Commission is a standalone decision-making body. It operates independently of the Department of Planning and Environment (DPE) and other government departments and is not subject to the direction or control of the Minister for Planning, except in relation to procedural matters.
Commissioners are appointed by the Minister for their core decision-making skills and backgrounds in a diverse range of planning-related fields. One member is appointed as the Chair of the Commission. Commissioners are individually appointed for terms of up to three years and cannot serve more than six years in total.
The Mining and Petroleum Gateway Panel is a subcommittee of the Commission. Its members are appointed separately to commissioners. Read about the Mining and Petroleum Gateway Panel here.
The Chair of the Commission reports directly to the Minister. The Chair is also head of agency of the Office of the Independent Planning Commission.
The work of the Commission is, subject to the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (EP&A Act), allocated by the Chair of the Commission. The Chair may nominate another member, typically one of the two Deputy Chairs, to allocate the work of the Commission during any period the Chair is unavailable for any reason.
The allocation of the work of the Commission includes determining which members will constitute the Commission for any case.
The Chair is also responsible for meeting the Minister’s expectations, ensuring the Minister’s expectations are met by Commission panel members, enforcing the Commission’s Code of Conduct, and maintaining the reputation of the Commission. The Chair has the right to advise panel Chairs and panel members on matters relating to their duties and obligations. See the Commission’s Chair Oversight Protocol for more information.
The current Chair of the Commission is Professor Mary O’Kane AC. The two Deputy Chairs are Ms Dianne Leeson and Mr Peter Duncan AM.
The Chair of the Commission appoints members to constitute the Commission for any case.
When appointing members to a panel to determine a particular development application or provide advice on a planning matter, the Chair will ordinarily take the following matters into account:
Although Commissioners have experience and expertise in various specified fields, they do not sit on panels as subject matter experts.
The Chair of the Commission is authorised to nominate another member of the Commission to appoint panel members for any case, and may do so if necessary, for any reason.
We recognise the importance of community participation in our decision-making process. Using our ‘Make a submission’ form is the easiest way for you to make a submission on cases currently before the Commission.