Riverina businesses will get a 50 per cent discount on planning applications for state significant developments.
Deputy Premier Troy Grant announced the decision was a straight-forward way to open up the regional economies of the west and stimulate more local jobs.
“The 50 per cent reduction came into effect for local government areas west of Parkes in the Central West, Wagga in the south-west and Moree in the north-west for rural industries on Tuesday,” Cootamundra MP Katrina Hodgkinson said.
“State significant developments valued at more than $287 million have been approved for western NSW over the last decade that involve rural industries,” Mr Grant said.
“We know that it can cost more to run a business in the west, when you consider freight and transport.
“This will give country businesses a helping hand to grow and to create more jobs.
“The discount will apply to a range of rural industries such as milk factories, tanneries, meat packing, abattoirs, agribusiness and development on farms.’’
Member for Murray Adrian Piccoli said he was pleased with the decision and thought it would help create jobs in the area.
“This significant discount for rural industries will lead to a boost in investment and ultimately new jobs for the Western NSW community,” he said.
“I have been very involved with bringing this idea to fruition following issues that were brought to my attention in relation to planning costs.
“I applaud this move as an incentive to encourage investment and employment in Western NSW.
“The NSW Liberals and Nationals Government is making NSW the place to do business in regional towns.
“All Local Government areas in the Murray Electorate are eligible for this 50 percent reduction.”
A proposal to repeal 16 state planning policies and return those powers to local government was also proposed by Planning Minister Rob Stokes.
Mr Stokes said the review of these state planning policies is one of the first stages to declutter the planning system and make it easier to understand.
“Our initial review of these policies uncovered 16 policies that were no longer needed,” he said.
“The more complex policies will now be reviewed and we will look for further improvements.
“This decision will remove unnecessarily confusing rules that add nothing but complexity to the planning system.
“Having redundant regulation in place makes building new homes and businesses more costly and less efficient.
“The proposal I’ve released shows that we can abolish some of these policies that have served their purpose, or transfer the parts that are still required into modern policies, all the while reducing the system’s red tape.”
The review will examine more than 60 planning policies and consider if they are still necessary and how they can be improved.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.