The NSW Government has outlined its plan to reform developer levies and contributions to unlock new housing supply, deliver vital community infrastructure and boost investment in NSW.
Planning and Public Spaces Minister Rob Stokes today announced he had appointed Productivity Commissioner Peter Achterstraat to undertake a review of the current contributions and provide recommendations for a new system by the end of the year.
“The number one issue I hear from industry is that we need a more transparent and certain contributions system where everyone is clear about who pays for what,” Mr Stokes said.
“Contributions reform has been stuck in the too-hard basket for too long, but we are committed to working with industry to deliver true change.
“Our pathway forward includes a mix of quick wins and longer-term reforms, which will ensure NSW remains the economic powerhouse of Australia.
Mr Stokes said $70 million will also be invested to co-fund vital new community infrastructure in the high-growth areas of North West Sydney where thousands of new houses are being built.
“Our population is growing, and we need to make sure that where we’re unlocking housing supply, we’re also facilitating the delivery of vital community infrastructure so people are moving in to connected and vibrant communities,” Mr Stokes said.
“I also want to work with councils to help them spend money they already have to stimulate their local economy, create more jobs and great public spaces.”
A series of more immediate changes will also be released today for public comment, including measures to require councils to publish how much they have collected in developer levies and where they have been spent, new guidelines related to the State’s Special Infrastructure Contributions, options to simplify and shorten the process for reviewing s7.11 local contributions plans, and proposed changes to s7.12 levies and voluntary planning agreements.
NSW Treasurer Dominic Perrottet welcomed the appointment of Mr Achterstraat, and said the overhaul of the system would help boost the NSW economy at a critical time.
“We are facing unprecedented health and economic challenges at the moment, and we need to ensure we best position NSW to rebound,” Mr Perrottet said.
“This is a great opportunity to undertake reform which will help boost investment and create jobs and enhance prosperity for the State.”
In November, Premier Gladys Berejiklian outlined four key areas for reform to the NSW planning system in 2020, including fixing the uncertainty of developer contributions to drive investment in NSW.