Town and Country Planning Act to be amended


The Government will be moving ahead with amendments to the Town and Country Planning Act, which will lead to greater effectiveness for planning land use and development in Jamaica.

Minister of Water, Land, Environment and Climate Change, Hon. Robert Pickersgill, made the announcement during his contribution to the 2012/13 Sectoral Debate in the House of Representatives, on July 24.

He also noted that the amendments will enable improvements to the development approvals process.

Some of the major recommendations include: the period for the serving of Stop and Enforcement Notices; the role of the Minister versus the role of the National Environment and Planning Agency; the roles of local government, especially in relation to enforcement of planning control; and the empowerment of the Government Town Planner.

Other recommendations for the Act include: whether to include Development Plans as legal stand alone planning instruments, or whether to adopt the general permitted development Orders along with development plans as allowed in the Bill.

"The feasibility of a proposed new environment and planning legislation will also be addressed," Mr. Pickersgill said.

He added that best practices are being researched and drafting instructions for some of the amendments are currently being prepared.

JIS Social