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Update on COVID-19- The safety of our communities, customers and staff is our top priority. We are continuing to monitor daily developments in response to COVID-19. Find out the latest.

Online lodgement

The NSW Planning Portal is the new destination for lodging and tracking a range of applications with Port Stephens Council.

Lodge your application online now

It's easy to lodge and track your Development Application (DA) or modification to consent online via the NSW Planning Portal.

These applications must now be lodged via the NSW Planning Portal:

  • development applications
  • complying development certificates
  • modifications of development application
  • construction certificates
  • occupation certificates
  • subdivision certificates

These applications must still be lodged through our Council:

  • building certificate
  • swimming pool certificate
  • septic tank application
  • Principle Certifying Authority (PCA)
  • privately certified applications (CC,OC,CDC)

For subdivision certificate applications, one signed/stamped original copy of the Administration Sheet, Linen plan and 88B instrument (if applicable) is required, as well as an electronic copy.

How to use the Portal

  1. Register for a NSW Planning Portal account to start your application.
  2. Log in to complete the online application form.

If you need help using the Planning Portal, you can access a range of quick reference guides.


The NSW Government requires all NSW councils to use the NSW Planning Portal for all applications. Port Stephens Council had to adopt this system by 31 December 2020.

The change to online planning and building applications:

  • improves convenience and customer service
  • reduces printing, posting and storage costs
  • reduces paper use, helping us to be more environmentally friendly
  • streamlines the development assessment process
  • enhances public transparency
  • improves communication between our Council and the applicant.

Once we have reviewed your application and we are satisfied that you have submitted all relevant documentation, you will receive an email notification requesting fees to be paid.

You'll need to log on to the NSW Planning Portal where you will find a request for payment from our Council with instructions on how to make your payment. Alternately, you can call us on 02 4988 0255 to make a payment.

Your application will not progress to lodgement until fees are paid.

We may request additional information to help us assess your application, which must be submitted via the NSW Planning Portal.

Please refer to the relevant quick reference guide on how to submit additional documentation.

Additional documentation received by email or hard copy will not be accepted.

Service NSW provide technical support for the NSW Planning Portal. For assistance, email eplanning@planning.nsw.gov.au or call 1300 305 695.

For help using the Planning Portal, you can also access the quick reference guides.

Yes. Routine and proactive release of information will be made available in accordance with the Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009. Some documents may be published on our Council's DA Tracker website during exhibition periods.

No, unfortunately we can no longer accept paper or email applications.

Need help?

While Council staff cannot prepare your documentation or provide legal advice, we can offer tips on where to find relevant information and what documentation is required. We aim to work with you towards a successful outcome as quickly and cost effectively as possible.

Development application process

The DA process can seem complicated. Let us step you through the process.

Development application FAQs

Got a question? We've probably heard it before. Take a look at our frequently asked questions.

Development application enquiries

Need DA advice? Find out how to get the help you need.