Carter Newell has a long history providing strategic advice to all levels of government across a broad range of projects drawing on our specialist expertise including Planning & Environment, Commercial Property and Construction & Engineering.

Carter Newell’s team of government lawyers understand the political and economic environment in which they operate. 

In particular, Carter Newell represents a range of local, state and federal governments in navigating the complex and ever-changing regulatory framework on matters relating to:

  • planning and environmental approvals
  • regulatory and compliance
  • infrastructure planning and charging
  • preparation and review of government legislation, policy and other statutory instruments
  • vegetation clearing
  • biodiversity offsets
  • local government rating
  • administrative law
  • property transactions
  • compulsory acquisition of land
  • land valuation disputes
  • construction disputes

Planning and Environment

Our Planning & Environment team regularly advise local governments in Queensland on issues relating to planning and environmental approvals, regulatory law and compliance, infrastructure planning and charging, vegetation clearing, contaminated land, review of government legislation and policy and local government rating issues.  

The Planning & Environment team is focused on assisting its clients to resolving legal disputes without the need for costly and time consuming litigation, it is also experienced in successfully running and advising on planning and environment court applications and appeals, Building and Development Tribunal Appeals, judicial review of administrative decisions, referrals of compulsory land acquisition disputes and land valuation appeals in the Land Court. 

Commercial Property

Partner Bronwyn Clarkson and the Commercial Property team works with local authorities, state government departments and subsidiary authorities, statutory corporations, local governments and local government business units. 

Clients rely on the Carter Newell team to provide increased certainty for projects. We are well versed in compliance with commonwealth and state legislation and regulations which come out of most transactions involving land acquisition and property development, including management of property portfolios and interests, property sales, purchase and leasing, through to dealing with unusual tenures, access issues, compliance and risk issues.In the context of our government & quasi-government clients, we recognise that a responsive and consistently resourced team is of utmost importance. Our expertise and experience in dealing with public sector clients enables our Commercial Property team to readily identify issues and provide timely and accurate advice in the most cost efficient manner, while giving every matter the due care and consideration each unique set of circumstances requires.

Construction and Engineering

Partners David Rodighiero, Luke Preston and Mark Kenney and the Construction & Engineering team offers a fully integrated service with the ability to advise on all aspects of major infrastructure, construction, engineering and mining projects, from feasibility study through to contract negotiations, operation, maintenance and dispute management for local councils and government authorities.

With approvals achieved Carter Newell can support clients moving to the construction phase with construction contacts including those with sustainable development and green buildings.

Avoiding costly and time consuming litigation is a major emphasis and we understand that pragmatic and effective risk management is critical to delivering a contractual and administrative regime under the contract that protects Council’s interests and supports Council’s image as a model corporate citizen.

Workplace Advisory

Carter Newell’s Workplace Advisory team led by Partner Lara Radik provides workplace advisory services to government and quasi-government entities. The key issues and areas where our advice is sought are mostly in the areas of unfair dismissal and unlawful discrimination claims, often linked with bullying and harassment.

Our Team also acts in matters which consider breach of confidentiality/misuse of confidential information and Work Health and Safety issues, and provides training as well as procedure reviews to address such claims. The Team regularly reviews and drafts employment-related documentation including contracts, policies, disciplinary and termination letters.

In addition, the core team works closely with our litigation team to provide our clients with service that has a strong focus on proactive management and fostering relationships with all stakeholders.  Our approach is proven to be successful in management of prosecution and defence. 

General Contracts and Commercial

Our Commercial Team has extensive legal advisory experience acting both for and on behalf of state agencies and statutory authorities. We understand the protocols, chains of command and the delegations associated with government and quasi-government decision-making, the requirement for reasoned and sustainable decisions which can withstand scrutiny by Parliamentary Committees, relevant Ombudsmen, the Crime and Corruption Committee and the Auditor–General, as well as the need to consider the competing array of internal and external stakeholders at all stages of the decision-making process.

A key component of the service we provide is the regular review of applicable statutory frameworks which has extended to advising on Ministerial and Cabinet submissions and the preparation of drafting instructions for Parliamentary Counsel in relation to new laws or regulations applicable to Government agencies and local councils.

Recognised expertise

Planning & Environment

Advising a Regional Council on local government planning scheme amendments made pursuant to the Planning Act.

Advising a Regional Council in an appeal against an Enforcement Notice given under the Planning Act.

Advising a City Council on infrastructure planning and documentation for the development of Emerging Community Areas.

Carrying out a legal review of a City Council’s Local Government Infrastructure Plan (LGIP).

Advising a State Department on land remediation relating to Unexploded Ordinances.

Advising on local government infrastructure matters relating to proposed residential development.

Advising a City Council in relation to land contamination and remediation.

Commercial Property

Advised a local government in relation to leasing projects, including the leasing of the divisional offices for the electorate. This work included the preparation of template lease documents and subsequent negotiation of lease terms with the landlords of various sites.

Regularly assist government and developer clients with their plan and document lodging, including preparation of any associated documents, including easements, covenants, mortgage releases, mortgages, consents and any other required titles office documents.

Advised local and state authorities in relation to the rights and obligations of a constructing authority under the Acquisition of Land Act.

Construction & Engineering

Provided ongoing advice to a City Council in relation to the suite of standard form contracts routinely adopted in its construction and infrastructure activities.

Workplace Relations

Provided ad hoc workplace relations advice to government rehabilitation, employment and training specialists in relation to all workplace relations issues including both front-end advice and back-end dispute resolution, which included contract drafting and interpretation; policy drafting and interpretation; understanding of redundancy obligations; understanding of and representation in general protections jurisdiction; understanding of and representation in anti-bullying jurisdiction; and understanding of and provision of advice in relation to WorkCover claims.

General Contracts and Commercial

Provided ongoing advice and training suggestions addressing the practical application of procedures and policies and assisted in the preparation of precedent responses to common queries, in particular, properly dealing with and responding to ‘right to information’ (RTI) applications made under the Information Privacy Act 2009 (Qld) and the Right to Information Act 2009 (Qld).

Related services and sectors

Publications and Presentations