Section 94 Policies and Agreements

The following policies have been adopted in relation to Section 94 Development Contributions;

A Voluntary Planning Agreement is a contractual arrangement between a Planning Authority and developer as a means of obtaining contributions for a public purpose that can be entered into either as part of a rezoning or a development application. There is no need to demonstrate a nexus or link between the public purpose and the development, however they must be exhibited and registered and are then binding on the title of the land. Additional monetary Section 94 Contributions may or may not be payable depending on the particular circumstance of the case.

To ensure transparency and to guard against misuse, a specific policy governing the use and procedures that will apply to such agreements has been prepared and publicly exhibited in accordance with statutory requirements. The Policy sets out the Council’s objectives for and the fundamental principles governing the use of Planning Agreements in the LGA, the circumstances under which Council will co nsider negotiating such agreements and when they will be considered acceptable. The specific procedures that will relate to the use of such agreements are also detailed.

Under the provisions of Council’s Section 94 Plan a developer may, with Council’s approval, construct a facility identified in the Section 94 Plan to offset the cash contribution or the land dedication required as a Section 94 contribution. This practice is referred to as ‘works-in-kind’. The provision of public facilities by an applicant undertaking a works in kind can facilitate early provision of public facilities concurrent with the demand generated by a new development. This approach may be desirable to both the developer and the Council.

A material public benefit can consist of either a works in kind or the provision of certain public amenities or services that are not scheduled within a contributions plan, such as the provision of a swimming pool or car park as part of a development and may offer substantial benefits to Council and residents if accepted.

The aim of the Works-in-Kind / Material Public Benefits Policyis to provide guidance to developers and Council in the procedures to be followed in the assessment, valuation and acceptance of a material public benefit and the rights and responsibilities associated with the carrying out of such works.