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Swan Hills MLA Jessica Shaw, Planning Minister Rita Saffioti and Swan Valley Planning Committee chair Charlie Zannino discuss the Swan Valley Action Plan, released in October 2019.

Act to guide Swan Valley planning

ONE year on from the tabling of the Swan Valley Planning Act 2020 in Parliament, the planning scheme has now taken effect.

In August last year planning Minister Rita Saffioti said the introduction of the Swan Valley Planning Bill would serve as the basis of a new Swan Valley Planning Scheme to provide clear planning guidance, define ‘rural character’ and outline appropriate tourism and development uses.

As of August 1, 2021, the new Swan Valley Planning Scheme is now operational and will guide planning and development decisions for the area under the Swan Valley Planning Act 2020.

The Swan Valley Planning Act 2020 is now in effect and is an important milestone in the future planning and development of the Swan Valley and the protection of this beautiful and unique region,” Ms Saffioti said.

“Together with the new Swan Valley Planning Scheme, we have developed a contemporary planning framework with a single decision maker that will protect and guide a sustainable future for the State’s first viticultural area, while ensuring it remains a thriving and accessible tourism attraction.”

The Swan Valley Planning Act 2020 also provides for the Western Australian Planning Commission’s Swan Valley Statutory Planning Committee which will determine development applications in accordance with the scheme.

A new community-based advisory body, the Swan Valley Strategic Leadership Group, will support Ms Saffioti on matters relating to the protection, promotion, marketing and enhancement of the region.

The legislation was prepared in response to an independent review which identified the need to support growth in tourism and hospitality in the area while protecting its agricultural and viticultural activities.

The final planning scheme and map were informed by 139 community submissions.

For more information, visit www.dplh.wa.gov.au/swan-valley

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