Property impost concerns
THE Property Council has called for a massive reduction in Queensland government imposts on real estate.
The council said it could no longer be a cash cow if the state was to regain its competitive edge and investment appeal.
The call comes in the peak property industry body’s 2011 Advocacy Agenda, which said Queensland’s reputation as a prime property investment location was in tatters and failure to act would see further decline.
‘‘ Our leaders have become fixated on reducing debt and Band-aid planning solutions,’’ said the council’s Queensland e x e c ut i v e d i r e c t o r Kathy MacDermott.
‘‘ As a result, we are losing jobs, investment and net interstate migration."
‘‘ People are not getting to live and work where they want and communities are suffering.’’
Ms MacDermott called for long-term thinking and plan-
People are not getting to live and work where they want and communities are suffering
ning, and for a shift in bur eaucracy’s culture away from blocking development and towards creating better communities.
She said property was the state’s largest employer, delivering 312,000 jobs, but that the economic engine was stalling.
‘‘ The construction industry lost 11,600 in 2010; housing c o nt r i b ut e $ 3 . 4 b i l l i o n i n 2010-11, or 35 per cent of taxes, compared with mining industry royalties of $ 2.9 billion.’’
Ms MacDermott said local government costs were crippling the industry, while development assessment was ‘‘ an absurdly long and costly process’’.
The 2011 Advocacy Agenda called for cuts in charges, i n c r e a s e d i n f r a s t r u c t u r e funding, better planning for growth, faster development assessment, and bolder leadership.
It proposes abolition of the 0.5 per cent land tax sur- charge and of stamp duty for off-the-plan sales; a cap on infrastructure charges, land tax-free construction periods, rates reform, and equitable assessment charges.
It said Queensland ‘‘ must overcome irrational loathing of government debt’’ and invest in infrastructure where it was warranted and proposes the trialling of Growth Area Bonds as a funding mechanism.
It also called for plans for infrastructure, in which the government should annually invest at least 7 per cent of gross domestic product.