Hepburn CEO, Bradley Thomas, recently acknowledged that planning approvals were taking much more time than expected partly as a result of a high number of applications and partly because the planning department was understaffed.

The staffing shortage is due in part to a shortage of trained planners across the state and partly due to the fact that planners can earn much higher salaries for the same work in Ballarat.

In order to address delays in receiving advice, Council has initiated an online booking appointment system for aplicants to obtain pre-application advice.

From Monday 11 April 2022, for all pre-application advice, you are required to book an appointment online by clicking the Planning button on the Council website and following the link to ‘Pre-application Service’ or send an email to shire@hepburn.vic.gov.au.

For all other planning enquiries, you can call to speak with a planner from 1pm to 4pm, Monday to Friday (except public holidays) on (03) 5348 2306.