Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Unelected, unaccountable, undemocratic planning panels Take 3

The state government appointed members of Hunter's unelected, unaccountable, undemocratic planning panel have been announced, giving a little background on each person.

Let's be clear: this is a state government takeover of local planning - three state government appointees with two local council nominees ensuring a state government appointed majority for every development.

But what is the home address and telephone number of these appointees? how does anyone in the community get to speak to them?



Garry Fielding has more than 35 years experience in Local and State Government, including roles with Maitland City Council, Newcastle City Council, Woollahra Council, the NSW Department of Planning and as Managing Director of Planning Workshop Australia.

Garry is a resident of Newcastle and holds a Bachelor of Arts (Urban Geography and Sociology) from the University of Newcastle, a Graduate Diploma in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of New England and a graduate Diploma in Local Government from the Mitchell College of Advanced Education (now Charles Sturt University) and is a Fellow of the Planning institute of Australia.

Jason Perica brings 20 years of expertise in planning matters, gained across Local and State Government, including with the City of Sydney, Mosman, South Sydney, Rockdale and Woollahra Councils and the NSW Department of Planning, within which he held a number of senior positions, culminating as Executive Director, Strategic Sites and Urban Renewal.

Jason holds a Degree in Science (Architecture) from University of NSW and a Master in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Sydney.

Kara Krason has undertaken planning roles in local government with Hornsby, Pittwater and North Sydney Councils and the private sector. In these roles Kara was responsible for development applications, environmental assessment, town planning and project management.

Kara holds a Bachelor of Town Planning (Hons) from the University of NSW, tertiary qualifications in Wine Technology and Viticulture and is a Member of the Planning Institute of Australia.


John Colvin has extensive experience, particularly as a community leader in local government, including seven years as Deputy Mayor and nine years as Mayor of Muswellbrook Shire Council, retiring in 2008. During this time John was instrumental in dealing with the many competing and complex demands of the mining, agriculture, wine and equine industries throughout the region. John is also a qualified teacher, having taught at Muswellbrook High School for 35 years, concluding in 1996.

A resident of the Upper Hunter, John, in addition to serving in local government, has served with the Australian Army Reserves, rising to the rank of Brigadier.

Bob McCotter is a Director of McCotter Investment Company, advising on venture capital and property investment and was previously a Director of Mitchell McCotter (1984-1994) and Deputy Chairman of Environmental Resources Management Australia (1994-2003), both of which were environmental and planning consultancies. He is well recognised as a leading practitioner in environmental impact assessment and strategic planning.

Bob holds a Bachelor of Engineering (Hons) (Civil and Structural) and a Diploma of Building Science from Sydney University, is a guest lecturer in environmental engineering at the Universities of Newcastle, Wollongong, UTS and NSW and is a Founding Fellow of the Institute of Company Directors.

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