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Development Contributions

Development contributions are payments or works-in-kind made by the proponent of a new development that play an important role in delivering essential infrastructure to new and growing communities. Within the planning system, the Planning and Environment Act 1987 provides three mechanisms by which development contributions can be sought and collected, including:

• Development Contributions Plans (DCPs);
• Conditions on planning permits; and
• Voluntary Agreements.

Development Contributions at Mount Alexander

Mount Alexander Shire Council is currently experiencing an increase in demand for residential development in growth areas, which can be attributed to population growth. To ensure that this development is matched by appropriate infrastructure and services (such as roads, drainage, community facilities), Council seeks to collect monetary or ‘in-kind’ contributions from developers. ‘In-kind’ contributions are where the developer provides the required infrastructure in lieu of a monetary contribution.

Council uses the ‘voluntary agreement’ approach to development contributions, also known as informal shared funding arrangements. This approach provides an opportunity within the planning system for land owners, Council and other parties to freely negotiate agreements for the provision of infrastructure, at the time a development proposal is considered, or a planning scheme is amended.

Section 173 of the Planning and Environment Act 1987 provides a mechanism for formalising a voluntary agreement; the agreement is usually registered on the title to the land that it affects to ensure that the owner of the land at the time will meet any obligations contained within the agreement.

Infrastructure Framework Plans

An Infrastructure Framework Plan identifies the critical infrastructure to be the subject of development contributions, and provides the strategic basis and justification for negotiating contributions, which is then formalised within an agreement between relevant parties. It generally includes the development of a per lot contribution rate for specific sites subject to development contributions.

Council currently has the following Infrastructure Framework Plans (either complete or in progress):

Area Status Description
Harcourt Draft Plan Harcourt was adopted by Council in August 2020, and is now in the process of being translated into a planning scheme amendment to implement the proposed planning scheme changes. An Infrastructure Framework Plan is currently being prepared for Harcourt to identify the critical infrastructure to be funded by development contributions. Find more information on the Harcourt Infrastructure Plan here.
Campbells Creek Complete Investigation into infrastructure funding for the Campbells Creek South area. The development contributions will go towards higher order infrastructure, which will provide benefit to the surrounding catchment.
Diamond Gully Complete A Development Contributions Framework for the Diamond Gully Structure Plan area has been completed.

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