NSW Department of Planning and Environment

Independent Planning Commission

The Planning Assessment Commission will now be known as the Independent Planning Commission (IPC) in recognition of its independence and decision-making role.

The Commission will continue to make decisions about the most complex State significant development applications but will no longer perform duplicative review functions.

Its public hearing process will be improved to allow more scope for the community to present their concerns at an early stage of the assessment, and for the Commission to more rigorously test the development proposal.


The changes to the Planning Assessment Commission, except for the changes to its hearing process will commence immediately. The improvements to the IPC’s hearing process are expected to be implemented by July 2018.

Memorandum of Understanding

On 5 May 2020, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the Department of Planning, Industry and Environment and the Independent Planning Commission in relation to planning and assessment matters under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act. It was updated to respond to the recommendations made by the NSW Productivity Commissioner’s 2019 Review of the Commission.

To learn more about the changes to the Act see Part 2 - Local Planning Panels.

Page last updated: 22/11/2022