Saturday 15 June 2013




New home buyers are winners in the NSW 2013-14 Budget with extra funding for both first home buyers and $99 million for essential suburban infrastructure.


Treasurer Mike Baird and Minister for Planning and Infrastructure, Brad Hazzard said this year’s Budget will continue the NSW Nationals & Liberals commitment to fast-track housing supply and deliver the critical infrastructure needed to support more housing across the State.


The NSW 2013-14 Budget will extend the State’s generous first homebuyers scheme to further boost new housing supply, while councils will receive $99 million under the Local Infrastructure Growth Scheme to deliver essential infrastructure.


“As part of the Building the State package announced in last year’s Budget, the NSW Government more than doubled the First Home Owners Grant for new homes costing up to $650,000 to $15,000 and we are already seeing signs of life in the critical housing sector,” said Mr Baird.


“First home-buyers of new homes get more than $35,000 in assistance and this has significantly increased the take-up, with 60 per cent more grants provided in the first few months of 2013 compared to 2012.


Mr Baird said the NSW Government has decided to extend its generous scheme for homebuyers of new properties (which was due to drop from $15,000 to $10,000 in 2014), for a further two years until January 2016.


“The turnaround in this important sector of our economy is proof that the NSW Government’s targeted incentives are working.


“This Budget continues to tackle the housing shortage across NSW to get more people into new and more affordable homes sooner,” said Mr Baird.


Minister for Planning and Infrastructure Brad Hazzard said the $99 million through the Local Infrastructure Growth Scheme funded the gap between what councils can charge developers in infrastructure levies and what it actually costs councils to build infrastructure such as new local roads and stormwater drainage.


More than 20,000 homes in the Hills and Blacktown communities are among those to benefit from the scheme.


“This funding demonstrates the Government’s commitment to assist local government to help deliver the new housing the State needs, Mr Hazzard said.


“The State’s new planning system will include a fairer, more transparent and more economically feasible system of infrastructure contributions that will help unlock the supply of new housing.


“In the meantime, the Government is committing funds to meet the gap.


“This funding ensures that the supply of new housing is not blocked by exorbitant developer contribution charges, while still making sure the necessary infrastructure gets built,” he said.


The Local Infrastructure Growth Scheme will mainly benefit councils with new land releases, due to the greater costs associated with providing infrastructure to previously undeveloped land, but is also available for new housing developments in existing urban areas.


To be eligible for funding, a council must have its contributions plan reviewed by IPART, showing that a gap exists between what it is able to charge and what the reasonable infrastructure cost will be.


To date, contributions plans for five new release areas in the Hills and Blacktown council areas have been reviewed by IPART and endorsed for funding.


“This $99 million commitment shows how serious the NSW Government is about delivering the infrastructure needed for our new housing areas, particularly in Western Sydney,’’ Mr Hazzard said.


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