IMPORTANT – Rural zone reforms – effective 5th September, 2013

 
15 Aug 2013

The final stage in Victoria’s zone reform has been announced with the release of rural zone reforms.

The reformed rural zones make it easier to start and operate rural industries and to give rural and regional councils much greater flexibility in managing their own municipalities.

Regional growth is supported by providing a greater range of housing options in the Rural Living Zone and less red tape for people in rural areas altering or extending their homes.

Some of the changes include:

  • encouraging agricultural use of land, particularly in the Farming and Green Wedge Zones
  • allowing councils to consider more ‘off farm’ income streams on farms, such as farm machinery repair businesses
  • increasing the permit threshold for extensions to farm out-buildings, such as work sheds, shearing sheds and dairy facilities from 50 m2 to 100 m2
  • removing the need for a permit for primary produce sales, rural stores and most rural industries in the Rural Activity Zone
  • removing onerous restrictions on crop structures, to ensure protection from hail and other elements
  • allow councils the ability to determine smaller lifestyle lots in the Rural Living Zone where land has already been taken out of agricultural production
  • allow greater consideration of tourism uses in all but Green Wedge zones; and
  • promoting farm gate sales such as the sale of fruit, vegetables and other produce.

Councils will also have greater flexibility to consider land uses that were previously prohibited like primary and secondary schools.

The rural zone reforms are the final component of Victoria’s sweeping zone reforms and will come into effect on 5 September 2013.

For more detail refer http://www.dpcd.vic.gov.au/planning/theplanningsystem/improving-the-system/new-zones-for-victoria/new-and-improved-rural-zones