Headworks charge change plan

PRICES on new house and land packages may be slightly reduced under a new proposed headworks regime from TasWater.

The water company yesterday announced plans to no longer apply headworks charges on developments in identified growth areas, that also aligned with TasWater's asset management plans, after a review of the charges.

The new headworks regime will start when the state government's $10 million, two-year waiver on headworks charges expires, if endorsed by council shareholders at TasWater's general meeting on May 13.

TasWater chairman Miles Hampton said the board supported a review recommendation that headworks charges be aligned with strategic land use plans to give developers incentive to build in planned growth areas.

"We have proposed a new approach that is simple to understand and will enable development that makes best use of existing and planned infrastructure," he said.

"It is the board's view that this will provide a fair and equitable system while also supporting local and state governments' push to stimulate economic development."

Launceston-based subdivision and unit developer Sam Hogg said the new approach to headworks charges would stimulate investment in municipal growth areas, and the building industry.

He said a block of land cost between $50,000 and $60,000 to develop; $8000 of which accounted for developer and headworks charges.

Mr Hogg said new house and land buyers could expect to see a price reduction through TasWater's proposal.

Developer charges will stay in place, and will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

Developments outside identified growth areas, and without existing water and sewerage charges, will need to pay an "isolated service charge".

Ben Lomond Water received $8million in developer charges last financial year.

Criteria for the state government's headworks waiver until 2016 is published on its Economic Development Department website.


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