At its meeting on 30 May, Council finalised amendments to Local Planning Policy 7.2, which will see Development Application (DA) fees cut for applicants who engage in dialogue with their neighbours as part of their DA process.
A 25 per cent reduction in the DA fee will soon be available to applicants who provide evidence that they have consulted, or attempted to consult, with relevant adjoining property owners in accordance with the amended Local Planning Policy 7.2 – Refunding, reducing and waiving planning fees (LPP 7.2).
Planning fees are regulated by State Government, but the City’s amended policy means that someone who previously would have paid a fee of $2343 on a new two-storey house with an estimated cost of $750,000 will soon be able to apply for a 25 per cent reduction of $586, if they can show they have involved their neighbours in the process prior to submission.
Mayor David McMullen said, “Through this policy we hope to improve how the City assesses standard development applications.
“This is a proactive approach which we hope will help reduce the level of surprise neighbours may have when receiving the City’s standard consultation letter. Consultation between neighbours can not only foster good connections but also produce a higher standard of development outcomes.
“From the City's perspective, consultation between neighbours can create efficiencies and assist with informed decision making when it comes time to determine development applications.
“The reduction of planning fees provided for in the policy should be a worthwhile incentive for applicants to engage with this new process.
“The policy recognises that neighbours are important stakeholders in any Development Application process. We encourage applicants to engage early, and be open to design changes which work for all parties".
The newly amended policy 7.2 does not replace or substitute the statutory requirement for public consultation to occur, but will complement it. The City will continue to undertake public advertising for standard DAs in accordance with LPP 7. 3 – Public Consultation for Planning Proposals.
|Examples of potential DA fee savings under the pre-consultation concession
||Estimated Cost of Development
||Pre-consultation concession (25%)
||Balance of DA fee
|Addition to Single House
|3 x Two-storey Grouped Dwellings