New source of funds for SA

Householders in Adelaide’s newest subdivisions may soon be directly funding PT services

People living in new developments on the outskirts of Adelaide may soon have to pay a new type of ongoing tax, to help the South Australian Government fund new public transport services.

The current system sees home buyers pay a single new infrastructure fee as part of the initial purchase price, but SA minister for planning John Rau says this is does little to cover the long term cost of extending bus and rail services.

"Decisions about land releases and new developments on the outer fringe of the current city can cost future taxpayers tens of millions of dollars," he says.

"The state’s current extensive zoning requirements will be replaced with a consolidated new set of planning rules with quality design at their centre."

A feature of the new legislation is the establishment of a new State Planning Commission that will assess each new development based on its merits, rather than Adelaide district councils and the creation of a growth boundary for the city.

"The commission will streamline the current system and be responsible for assessing significant developments," Rau says.

The new legislation takes responsibility away from elected councillors and the planning minister alone and allows for a more objective assessment of any major developments proposed.

"These decisions are bigger than the minister of the day alone should determine," Rau says.

"Local council elected representatives will also no longer be involved in merit based approvals for developments in their areas."

The new infrastructure delivery model still being developed and no detail around how much, or for how long householders would be expected to pay, has been released.

This system will allow the State Planning Commission to estimate the likely cost of delivering infrastructure in new areas and use this as a basis to determine the new infrastructure tax rate per household.

A final announcement on this extensive and ambitious planning reform will be made later this year.

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