Development Assessment Panels (DAPs) have operated in Western Australia since 2011 and are intended to enhance planning expertise in decision making by improving the balance between technical advice and local knowledge.
There are five panels covering the State. The current structure is a transitional arrangement to a future model of no more than three panels, as outlined in the Action Plan for Planning Reform.
Each panel consists of five members, comprising three specialist members and two local government councillors. Members are appointed by the Minister for Planning and a pool of additional members are available to substitute if required. View the DAPs membership page for more information.
The role of panels are to determine development applications of a certain type and value threshold through consistent, accountable, and professional decision-making.
Operating under Development Assessment Panel Regulations, each panel determines development applications as if it were the responsible planning authority, against the relevant local or region planning scheme.
DAP Regulations state that applications considered by a panel cannot be determined by local government or the Western Australian Planning Commission (WAPC).
There are two different types of DAPs:
Local Development Assessment Panels (LDAPs)
An LDAP only has one local government within its boundary area. An LDAP is established to service a single local government, where it is deemed to be a high-growth local government with enough development to support its own panel. There is currently only one LDAP, for the City of Perth.
Joint Development Assessment Panels (JDAPs)
JDAPs service two or more local governments. There are currently four JDAPs in Western Australia.
Changes to Development Assessment Panel Configuration and Membership (April 2020)
A number of changes were introduced to Western Australia’s DAP system in April 2020 to deliver more robust processes and promote greater consistency and transparency in decision making. A streamlined five-panel model was introduced as a transitional measure to an ultimate configuration of no more than three panels for the State.
A reduced number of specialist members were also permanently appointed, with another group appointed to a member pool providing a substitute reserve if required.
Further legislative amendments will be progressed to reduce the configuration to a maximum of three panels.
Administration of Development Assessment Panels
Under the Planning and Development (Development Assessment Panels) Regulations 2011, DAPs must be administered by an officer(s) of the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage, and the CEO of the Department must establish a DAP website.
Development Assessment Panels report directly to the Minister for Planning, and do not form part of the Department of Planning, Lands and Heritage or the Western Australian Planning Commission. For administrative efficiency, the DAP website is hyperlinked from the Department of Planning and Western Australian Planning Commission website.
Contact details and feedback
Development Assessment Panels Secretariat
Locked Bag 2506
PERTH WA 6001
Contact email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Contact phone: (08) 6551 9919
Should you wish to provide feedback or lodge a complaint on the DAPs process, please contact us by email.