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At the March 2021 Ordinary Council Meeting; Council resolved to make the most significant amendment to the Narrabri Local Environment Plan (LEP) in living memory – to facilitate the establishment of the Northern NSW Inland Port (N2IP).

Mayor, Cr Campbell was pleased with the Council’s decision saying that it now paved the way for Narrabri Shire to capture the opportunities the community pushed Council so hard to achieve.

“The Northern NSW Inland Port has taken a monumental step forward.

“The community has been clear to Council, in that Council was to work hard and push for every economic opportunity available to the Shire, whether that be via the Narrabri Gas Project, Inland Rail or from any other state significant development project slated for the Shire.

“With Council’s decision to rezone this land by making the planning proposal amendment to the LEP, Council has opened the door to opportunity and future prosperity for the broader community for generations to come.”

Council determined at its November 2020 Meeting that the Planning Proposal be placed on public exhibition for a period of 28 days, in accordance with the Environmental Planning and Assessment Regulation 2000 and that Council invite submissions from the community during this period.

Council, in January 2021, determined to provide an extension to the public exhibition period by an additional 14 days to give the community additional time to lodge submissions.

A total of 14 submissions were received during the exhibition period. Eleven were received during the first 28-day period and 3 were received during the additional 14-day period.

Prior to making a determination on the Planning Proposal, Council reviewed all submissions and assessed them against all applicable legislative requirements. The submission review was included in the Council report considered at the March Ordinary Council Meeting.

The Planning Proposal does not include any future development of the land, and as such, the likelihood of what may or may not be developed on the site in the future, could not be determined nor assessed at this time.

Consultation on the Planning Proposal was detailed and extensive, which included consultation commencing well in advance of the legislative requirement to do so.

General Manager, Mr Stewart Todd reiterated the lengths Council staff had gone to ensure the community remained well informed on the process regarding the rezoning of the N2IP site and said, “Council staff have been extremely open and transparent surrounding the development of the N2IP site.

“Council began its consultation with stakeholders and the wider community well in advance of the NSW Government Gateway Determination being issued. Council have undertaken broad and comprehensive consultation above and beyond legislative requirements.

“This is a catalyst project for Narrabri Shire, Council’s consultation has enabled the broad community to not only understand the project but also comprehend the enormous opportunity the project holds for the future of Narrabri Shire and the broader region.”

Council is committed to keeping the community up to date with the progress of this exciting project and will maintain its open dialogue with the community as the project moves forward.