Lithgow Council wants to ensure potential developers are fully aware of their responsibilities so that they don’t find themselves in trouble by carrying out building work without the necessary approvals.
Council is concerned that there have been a number of examples recently where it has been necessary to take action against owners and developers for building work that has been carried out without Council approval.
“There appears to be a growing trend for owners to take their chances in trying to avoid the building approval process. Orders to demolish and penalty infringement notices have been issued on a number of buildings where the structure has been constructed without prior Council approval” Lithgow City Council Mayor, Councillor Ray Thompson said today.
Whilst some exceptions can apply, construction of all but very minor structures, such as garden sheds not greater than 10m2 in floor area, without approval is an offence under the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act.
Anyone intending to build needs to be aware that they are required to obtain approval before building work commences and that failure to comply is an offence. Council can order demolition and issue Penalty Infringement Notices and/or a court can impose very severe penalties for illegal building works.
Owners and builders should be aware that Council cannot approve an application for building works that have already commenced or have been completed.. Approval must be obtained before construction commences.
Council's Environmental and Development staff are available during office hours to discuss any concerns and provide advice in relation to legal requirements involved in construction and development.