Local Environmental Plan
The Port Stephens Local Environmental Plan 2013 (LEP) guides planning decisions for our local government area. It does this through zoning, development standards and assessment requirements, which provide a framework for the way land can be used.
LEPs are the main planning tool to shape the future of communities and also ensure local development is done appropriately.
The latest LEP is available on the NSW legislation website:
- Port Stephens Local Environmental Plan 2013
- Port Stephens Local Environmental Plan 2013 Map Index
- See the Grid Map Index Sheet to understand the map types and map identification numbers.
Community information on rezoning requests
- A rezoning request submitted by a landowner is received and an assessment by Council staff against relevant adopted plans commences.
- Adjoining and adjacent neighbours of the proposed rezoning are notified in writing.
- Council considers if the request warrants further investigation in accordance with the Rezoning Request Policy.
- If the rezoning has sufficient merit to proceed to community exhibition, a planning proposal is referred to the NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment (DPIE) for Gateway assessment.
- If DPIE issues a Gateway determination, Council will consult with relevant agencies, and the proponent will be required to undertake further studies and prepare a rezoning proposal for community consultation.
- The rezoning proposal is placed on public exhibition. The community and neighbours are notified and invited to make submissions.
- Council considers the rezoning and community feedback. The community has an opportunity to address Councillors prior to the Council meeting.
- If supported, the planning proposal can be made.
- The amendment to the LEP is drafted, gazetted and becomes law.
- Adjoining and adjacent neighbours will be notified of site specific rezoning requests on lodgement.
- There are no statutory exhibition or notification requirements for rezoning requests before Gateway certification.
- For rezoning requests being reported to council prior to a Gateway determination – a Public notice will be published on our website 10 days before the council meeting. It will include information about the proposed rezoning and the date of the Council meeting. This will be updated if the date of the Council meeting changes.
- Community consultation is required after a Gateway determination is issued and all relevant studies and reports have been completed. This ensure the community has clear, evidence-based information available to help make informed submissions on the proposal.
- Rezonings will continue to be exhibited publicly in accordance with legislative requirements after a Gateway certificate is issued.
Request to amend the LEP — rezoning request
To amend the LEP, a rezoning request is required. A rezoning request follows a statutory process under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 (EP&A Act).
Rezoning requests should be consistent with strategic plans prepared by the NSW Government and Council, including:
- Hunter Regional Plan 2036
- Greater Newcastle Metropolitan Plan 2036
- Port Stephens Local Strategic Planning Statement (LSPS) (PDF 5MB)
- any other relevant strategies prepared by Council
- any other relevant legislative or planning policy documents.
Note: Requests to amend the LEP that are inconsistent with adopted strategic plans will require further detailed justification.
The rezoning request process for developers
The process involves a number of steps outlined below.
Discuss your request with Council officers to:
- access to professional advice
- discuss with relevant consultants
- identify key issues
- identify lodgement requirements.
Prepare a draft Planning Proposal. Make sure to:
- prepare maps and supporting documents
- use the Planning Proposal Template (PDF 415KB) — an editable version will be emailed following a meeting with Council
- follow Council's Rezoning Request Guide (PDF 2MB)
- follow A Guide to Preparing a Planning Proposal (Department of Planning, Industry and Environment).
Submit a draft planning proposal for review:
- check for completeness
- legislation check
- clarification of any issues
- amendment of planning proposal to address any identified gaps
- determine fees for lodgement
Council staff will:
- review proposal
- report to Council for adoption
- prepare Gateway determination request.
Note: rezoning requests which are consistent with adopted local or State strategies are not required to be reported to Council.
Gateway determination issued by Department of Planning, Industry and Environment.
- respond to any gateway conditions
Exhibition of planning proposal:
- public authorities and State agencies provide comments
- respond to community submissions and agency comments.
Council makes the plan. This includes:
- reporting planning proposal to Council
- preparing draft local environmental plan
- plan notified and comes into effect.
Reclassification of Land
The LEP process is also used for the reclassification of Council owned land. For information relating to reclassification of Council owned land, please discuss with Council's Property Services Section in the first instance. Please refer to the Acquisition and Divestment of Land Policy on our Policies page.
Planning Proposal Tracking System
The Department of Planning and Environment has an electronic system that allow users to track the progress of a planning proposal and view documents associated with its assessment.
Port Stephens Development Control Plan
The Port Stephens Development Control Plan 2014 (DCP) contains planning provisions, which provide further guidance to those provisions under the LEP. Both plans are key matters for consideration when Council is assessing development under s79C of the EP&A Act.
Previous LEP maps
These maps relate to certain sites having potential dwelling entitlements. Some of these maps are large in file size and will take a little while to open.
Note: A link to the maps under the current LEP is located under the Local Environmental Plan heading at the top of this page.
- Map 1 - 1987 Local Environmental Plan - Seaham (PDF 19.3MB)
- Map 2 - 1987 Local Environmental Plan - Williamtown (PDF 18MB)
- Map 3 - 1987 Local Environmental Plan - Fullerton Cove (PDF 16.3MB)
- Map 4 - 1987 Local Environmental Plan - Tomaree (PDF 16.2MB)
- Map 5 - 1987 Local Environmental Plan - Raymond Terrace (PDF 19.4MB)
- Map 6 - 1987 Local Environmental Plan - Medowie (PDF 18.3MB)
- Map 7 - 1987 Local Environmental Plan - Tanilba Bay (PDF 17.2MB)
- Map 8 - 1987 Local Environmental Plan - Salamander Bay (PDF 17.8MB)
- Map 9 - 1987 Local Environmental Plan - Anna Bay (PDF 17.2MB)
- Map 10 - 1987 Local Environmental Plan - Nelson Bay (PDF 20.9MB)