Lake Macquarie City Council to place draft development contributions plan on exhibition from April 13 to May 12

DEVELOPER PAYS: Under the current system, development is levied based on a calculation of 'peak vehicle trips' generated. A new, simpler system based on a flat fee is being proposed. Picture: David Stewart
DEVELOPER PAYS: Under the current system, development is levied based on a calculation of 'peak vehicle trips' generated. A new, simpler system based on a flat fee is being proposed. Picture: David Stewart

Commercial and business development in Lake Macquarie will be levied differently under a draft contributions plan by Lake Macquarie City Council.

The draft plan proposes that non-residential development be levied for new public amenities and services based on the value of their development.

The council's head of development and planning Justin Day said most funds collected from the levy would be allocated for public amenities and services.

"Under the current system, development is levied based on a calculation of 'peak vehicle trips' generated," Mr Day said.

"This can create anomalies where relatively small businesses that generate high volumes of traffic are levied disproportionately, compared to the value of their investment.

"And, due to the structure of the contribution plan, in some cases development is not levied at all."

The new system, known as the s.7.12 Contributions Plan, features a much simpler, flat fee structure based on the value of development.

Business and commercial developments valued at less than $100,000 will be exempt from paying developer contributions, while those worth $100,000 to $200,000 would pay only 0.5 per cent of the total development value.

Development over $200,000 will contribute one per cent of the total development value.

"Overall, the number of commercial and business developers levied will increase, but the amount each contributes will generally be significantly lower," Mr Day said.

"Adopting s.7.12 also aligns Lake Macquarie with other Hunter councils already using this approach to levying employment-generating development."

The draft plan will be on public exhibition at shape.lakemac.com.au/712-contributions from Saturday, April 13, to Sunday, May 12.

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