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The Integrated Planning and Reporting (IP&R) framework recognises that most communities share similar aspirations: a safe, healthy and pleasant place to live, a sustainable environment, opportunities for social interaction, opportunities for employment and reliable infrastructure. The difference lies in how each community responds to these needs. It also recognises that council plans should not exist in isolation and that they are connected.

This framework allows NSW councils to draw their various plans together, understand how they interact and get the maximum leverage from their efforts by planning holistically for the future. 

The IP&R framework is local councils’ principal planning and reporting tool. Utilising its logic to plan and program initiatives promises action in health planning and promotion. A healthy community is the main benefit. With ‘higher order’ coverage of active living and healthy eating (as elements of councils’ vision, goals or specific objectives), strategies and actions can cascade down through the IP&R framework, prompting councils to co-ordinate activities across traditional functional areas.

Active living and healthy eating should be addressed at all levels of the framework: from raising the issues during community/stakeholder engagement through the goals, objectives and strategies in the Community Strategic Plan, to specific actions targeted and budgeted for in the Delivery Program and Operational Plans. They are good examples of the need for coordination, as they must cross over traditional council activity/ functional boundaries in order to achieve their potential impact. The IP&R framework promises to improve communications with end-users and co-ordinate what may be disparate current activities.

In addition, the framework provides the potential to align local action with broader district plans, regional growth plans and State level plans eg. addressing the priorities in the State Plan and regional/district plans.