SUNSHINE Coast Council will push to ensure the developer and future ratepayers of Caloundra South pay the full cost of the development including its impacts on the broader community.
Mayor Mark Jamieson said yesterday that existing ratepayers should not be left with the bill, which has been estimated to run as high as $560 million.
It was his most revealing statement on the shortfall in infrastructure required of the development by the Urban Land Development Authority.
"Council's strong preference is to pass on any infrastructure shortfall to the
developer and future Caloundra South ratepayers through an area benefit rate levy,'' he said in a statement.
Council has been locked in negotiations with Stockland and the State Government for the past six months after staff identified shortfalls in infrastructure estimated at $360-$560 million.
In December last year, in a response to a State Parliamentary Committee on Transport and Local Government investigation into amendments to the 2007 ULDA Act, the council said initial modelling suggested the funding shortfall could result in general rate increases in the order of 12-15%.
That would be required to stay in place for 10 to 15 years.
After more detailed analysis in light of the ULDA decisions, revised council estimates indicated that an increase to the general rates of between 4.5% and 9% would have to be introduced and that increase would have to stay in place for 30 years.
At that point, the alternative was a special rate or charge levied on each rateable property in the Caloundra South urban development area.
Estimates calculated ranged from an average of $940 per year with the special charge staying in place for a period of 49 years, to fund a financial liability of $360 million, and an average of $1478 per year with the special charge staying in place for a period of 49 years, to fund a financial liability of $560 million.
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