The Committee continued with the deliberations on the Spatial Planning and Land Use Management Bill, starting at Chapter 5. Members asked if it was possible for conflicts to arise in respect of clause 34(2) but were assured that the local would have to approach the district municipality. Clause 35 was clarified for Members, who were assured that municipalities did not have to establish tribunals if they had their own officials capable of handling this task, and it was later clarified that clause 40 applied only to situations where the tribunal was established. It was also clarified that clause 42(2) required account to be taken of any existing legislation on environmental matters, that clause 43 required conditions of establishment to be fulfilled within five years, and clause 44 did already allow for differential time frames for consideration of applications, across different municipalities, whilst the circumstances in which compensation could be granted were clarified for clause 47. The meaning of the word “notification” in clause 51 was clarified. Members questioned if clauses 54 and 55 were not granting overly-wide powers on the Minister, but it was pointed out that the Minister could act only on request of the province or municipality. Members asked why the Bill made no reference to orders of community service, and although the Parliamentary Legal Advisor took issue with the sentence of 20 years mentioned in clause 58, other Committee Members did not see it as excessive.
The Department of Rural Development and Land Reform (DRDLR) had proposals for amendment of various clauses. The references to sections were corrected, in clause 37(2) and (3), the word “employment” in subclause (2) would be replaced with “service”, and in (3) “subject to section 139 of the Constitution” was to be added. In answer to a concern from the Parliamentary Legal Advisor and the Committee, the DRDLR was asked to insert a reference to “reasonable grounds” into clause 38(5). Clause 39 was to be amended by including a reference to “an executive authority of the municipality as the appeal authority”. In clause 41(2)(d) the phrase “except any change affecting the scheme regulations in terms of section 25(2)(a)” would be added at the end of the clause. In clause 50 the DRDLR proposed the deletion of clause 50(3), and the proviso to clause 51(1), that referred to the Municipal Systems Act, was to be deleted, as well as the last part of clause 51(3) relating to variation of decisions. In this clause, new subclauses (6) and (7) would be added to deal with appeals. In relation to clause 52, a new subclause (7) was to be inserted stating that all applications to the Minister for land use or land development must firstly be lodged with and considered by the relevant municipality. A new clause 54(2) would be inserted to set out the Minister’s obligations before promulgating regulations. The term “political office holder” would also be inserted into clause 56. A new clause 60(2) was proposed to deal with transitional provisions, to replace the original clause.
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