Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979 No 203
Historical version for 4 July 2007 to 19 July 2007 (accessed 29 November 2014 at 03:54) Current version
Part 6Division 2Section 119

119   Public inquiry

(1)  The Minister may at any time direct that an inquiry be held, in accordance with this section, by a Commission of Inquiry appointed under subsection (2) with respect to:
(a)  any matter relating to the administration and implementation of the provisions of this Act or any environmental planning instrument or relating to the administration and implementation of the provisions of any other Act administered by the Minister,
(b)  all or any of the environmental aspects of proposed development the subject of a development application (whether or not it is designated development), or of a part of any such proposed development, or
(c)  all or any of the environmental aspects of an activity referred to in section 112 (1), or of a part of any such activity, or
(d)  a proposal to constitute, alter or abolish a development area under section 132 or 133, or
(e)  all or any of the environmental aspects of a project under Part 3A.
(2)  Where, pursuant to subsection (1) or section 49 (1) or 89 (3), an inquiry is directed to be held, the Minister may appoint one or more Commissioners of Inquiry to constitute a Commission of Inquiry to hold the inquiry and may appoint one or more persons to assist such a Commission.
(3)  Any person appointed under subsection (2) to assist a Commission of Inquiry shall be paid such remuneration and allowances as may be determined in respect of the person by the Minister.
(3A)  Where the Chairperson of Commissioners of Inquiry is appointed with one or more Commissioners of Inquiry to constitute a Commission of Inquiry, the Chairperson shall preside at the proceedings of the Commission.
(3B)  Except as provided by subsection (3A), where the Deputy Chairperson of Commissioners of Inquiry is appointed with one or more Commissioners of Inquiry to constitute a Commission of Inquiry, the Deputy Chairperson shall preside at the proceedings of the Commission.
(4)  Where there is more than one Commissioner of Inquiry constituting a Commission of Inquiry, neither or none of whom is the Chairperson of Commissioners of Inquiry or the Deputy Chairperson of Commissioners of Inquiry, the Minister shall appoint one of the Commissioners to preside at the proceedings of the Commission.
(5)  Except as provided in subsection (1), a Commission of Inquiry is not subject to directions by the Minister or any other person in relation to the contents of its report, findings or recommendations.
(6)  A Commission of Inquiry constituted under this section shall hold an inquiry in accordance with the direction of the Minister or Director-General, as referred to in subsection (1) or (2), shall report its findings and recommendations to the Minister or Director-General, as the case may be, and shall, after so reporting, but subject to subsection (7), make public those findings and recommendations.
(7)  A Commission of Inquiry shall not make public any evidence or matters in respect of which directions have been given under section 120 (5) (b) or matters the publication of which is excepted from section 120 (8).
(8)  If the inquiry was held with respect to proposed development (other than designated development), or part of any such proposed development, the subject of a development application, a copy of the findings and recommendations, and of any comment that the Minister may consider appropriate to make on them, must be forwarded by the Minister:
(a)  to the consent authority having the function of determining the application, and
(b)  to any public authority whose concurrence to the granting of consent to the application is required.
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