Community engagement, also known as ‘public participation’, is about involving people in decision-making and it is at the very core of our democratic processes in local government.
The City of Parramatta Council has an organisation-wide commitment to engaging our communities on the issues that matter in a transparent, open, and accountable way.
The City of Parramatta recognises that people have a right to be informed and to have a say on projects that are important to them, or which have an impact on their daily lives.
Community engagement provides Council with a better understanding of community views and values, and helps us to make more informed decisions and deliver better services.
The Community Engagement Strategy outlines our approach to engaging with the community and stakeholders. It provides transparency and clarity for all stakeholders so they can understand their role in the decision-making process.
The strategy outlines who, when and how we will engage in plans and policies. The level of community involvement varies depending on the project and the potential impact of the decision.
In December 2020, Council consolidated the 9 sets of development application (DA) notification requirements from the Development Control Plans, into a single and consistent set of requirements. The Consolidated Development Application Notification Requirements have formed an appendix to the Community Engagement Strategy.
The City of Parramatta’s approach to community engagement is guided by eight key principles, which are based on the Community Participation principles outlined in the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979:
- Building relationships - we act in an honest open and respectful way at all times to build strong relationships, partnerships and trust with our stakeholders.
- Right to be involved - we believe that our stakeholders have a right to be involved in decisions that affect them.
- Clarity of purpose - we are clear on why, how and about what we are engaging with our stakeholders.
- Accessible and inclusive - we provide a range of engagement activities to ensure that the broadest possible range of stakeholders can participate.
- Timely and coordinated - we engage early on and provide enough time for stakeholders to provide input, and we actively collaborate to ensure our engagement activities are well coordinated.
- Tailored - we use a range of engagement and communication methods that suit the purpose and type of project we are consulting on.
- Transparent - we make our decisions in an open and transparent way and provide feedback to our stakeholders in order to explain our decisions and let them know how their input has been considered.
- Learning from practice - we evaluate our engagement activities and learn from the feedback that has been provided to us.
For more information on Council’s approach to community engagement, visit Have Your Say