New plans for Hunter Valley infrastructure funding

NSW Government Hunter Valley Infrastructure Submissions Open

The NSW Government is planning to secure nearly $470 million for vital regional infrastructure projects through a new contribution scheme paid for by developers.

NSW Department of Planning and Environment’s Acting Deputy Secretary Planning and Design, Brett Whitworth, invited the community to have their say on the draft Hunter Region Special Infrastructure Contribution (draft Hunter SIC).

“The draft Hunter SIC is a key step towards supporting the delivery of vital infrastructure, including schools, roads, and transport, health and emergency services in the booming Hunter Region over the next 20 years,” Mr Whitworth said.

“As much of the Hunter Region’s new growth will be in greenfield areas we need to ensure the infrastructure is in place to support this growth.”

Mr Whitworth said the new Hunter SIC will help get new homes and industrial buildings on the market sooner by eliminating the need for a developer or builder to negotiate a voluntary planning agreement, where they agree to provide or fund public infrastructure – which can sometimes take years.

“A SIC will only take a few days to assess and calculate the infrastructure contribution they will need to make to the State Government for their project,” he said.

“The draft SIC is forecast to provide a contribution of up to $468.8 million over the next
20 years towards the total cost of infrastructure required to support expected population growth,” he said.

The draft SIC proposes to help fund the following projects: Regional roads ($265.4 million); Primary and secondary schools ($163.6 million); Health facilities ($31.5 million); Ambulance and police facilities ($1.3 million); and Planning and SIC review costs ($7 million).

The NSW Department of Planning and Environment has worked closely with the local development sector including the Planning Institute of Australia, Property Council of Australia, and Urban Development Institute of Australia, to address their concerns and offer transparency about the collection and distribution of funds for required infrastructure.

The exhibition period opened on 14 January and closes on 25 February 2019.

Submissions may be made through the Department’s website.

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