The $7 million Proteco plant currently being built in Kingaroy … future developments in the South Burnett could be hampered because of archaic laws that have failed to recognise changes in the media landscape

June 16, 2020

Archaic laws that mandate certain public notices must be published in printed newspapers could stifle new development approvals in the region.

Cr Scott Henschen told Wednesday’s South Burnett Regional Council meeting that current Development Assessment (DA) rules required notices to be “published in a newspaper generally circulating in the locality of the premises that are the subject of the DA”.

“With the announcement of the South Burnett Times ceasing its print production soon, it is not clear if advertising via digital media meets the requirements of the DA rules, given that digital publications are often behind a paywall and not readily accessible,” Cr Henschen said.

“Inquiries with the State’s Planning Department confirmed (it) is aware of this issue, which seems to be a statewide issue at this point in time.”

Cr Henschen said he had been advised the Department was working on a solution.

“Until a decision is available from the State, applicants are reminded that public notices must appear in printed media meeting the requirements of the DA rules,” Cr Henschen said.

In May, the South Burnett Times announced it will stop its print editions at the end of June.

The SBT is one of about 100 regional and community newspapers owned by News Corp across Australia that are either stopping printing or closing.

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