New incentive scheme and action plan to boost housing supply

Published on 10 April 2024


Council has boosted its housing and land incentive to a massive $5 million to demonstrate its commitment to increase housing supply across the region.

Mayor Andrew Smith said Council was focused on attracting housing developments to keep pace with our growing region.

"The demand for local housing continues to grow, and Council is serious about doing everything it can to counter the national housing shortage and encourage this type of investment in the region," Cr Smith said.

"The housing and land development incentive is designed to stimulate construction of units, multicomplexes, and housing subdivisions across the Western Downs by offering generous application fee discounts and discounted infrastructure charges to approved developments.

"We're not alone when it comes to the lack of housing supply across the country, but as a Council, it's important to demonstrate we're open for business and supportive of the types of developments to ensure the Western Downs continues to be a desirable place to live, work, and relax."

The Scheme was first introduced in mid-2022 and included a $1 million investment by Council. Following a review of the policy and ongoing industry research and stakeholder feedback, Council has now increased the value of the scheme to $5 million and extended the application period to 31 December 2025.

The new scheme also includes an opportunity to 'reserve' 50% of the infrastructure charge at the time of approval, so to reduce the risk of missing out on the incentive, and eligible housing developments or residential subdivisions will no longer have to pay the costs to prepare a flood impact assessment, up to the value of $10,000. Cr Smith said along with a supercharged incentive scheme, Council had also adopted a Local Housing Action Plan (LHAP), in partnership with the Queensland Government and Local Government Association of Queensland.

The LHAP aims to develop agreed priority actions to respond to local housing needs, establish strong foundations for longer-term housing responses, and boost collaboration between levels of government, housing providers, and social services.

"The Local Housing Action Plan was a direct action out of the region's first Futures Summit held in May 2023 and is about achieving strong housing outcomes for the future of the region," he said.

"The LHAP identifies key priorities and actions to address the region's housing needs, which hinges on strong partnerships between all levels of government, as well as private and not-for-profit organisations.

"Some of the areas addressed in the Plan include identifying underutilised land or property to optimise development, review the Planning Scheme to identify options to expand development, and explore opportunities to extend trunk infrastructure networks in the western corridor of Dalby, "It also defines opportunities to advocate state and federal agencies for more funding for social and affordable housing in the region, and the requirement for large scale development approvals to explore housing needs and consider new housing stock for workforce accommodation."

The LHAP is delivered as part of the Queensland Housing Strategy 2017-2027 which sets out a clear vision for the state's housing system.

View the full Local Housing Action Plan here Learn more about Council's House and Land Incentive Scheme here





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