Fix the inequity in our planning scheme
IN the wreckage of our broken planning system, we could at least fix the inequitable fees-and-charges system associated with it. Charges are far too high for small-scale developers – the bread and butter of our resilient construction industry – and far too low for proponents of large developments, some of whom have no intention of developing but rather will simply try to on-sell any development consent they obtain. The low flat fee charged by the planning commission for review of proposed planning scheme amendments is similarly inequitable – ensuring that the same amount is paid to the commission by both a speculator seeking a complicated rezoning to secure a massive windfall profit, and a small property owner seeking to correct a flawed planning code overlay affecting their land. Instead, we could have a fairer system of planning fees and charges, one that encourages small-scale developments, ensures cost recovery for assessment of large-scale and complex proposals, and discourages property speculators and those who manipulate the planning system to obtain profit.
Peggy James, Howden