ANDREW Barr says the ACT Government will stand up for Canberra against Liberal government cuts by adding another two years to a stimulus package designed to keep development moving in the Territory.
“The Lease Variation Charge stimulus package reduces the charge when a leaseholder or developer seeks to vary a lease on their property which increases its value,” Andrew said.
“In light of the Abbott Government’s cuts, in March last year the Government announced a two-year reduction in the amount of LVC payable. This increased remission in the amount of LVC has now been extended for a further two years.
“This extension recognise the difficult economic times over the last few years and encourages more development across Canberra. This supports jobs across our city and ensures urban renewal in our town centres is not threatened by the impact of Commonwealth cuts on our economy.
“Despite assurances from the previous Prime Minister, the Federal Liberal Government has continued its crusade to sack Canberrans and this week announced a further efficiency dividend on Canberra’s national institutions. This efficiency dividend is a new way for the Federal Government to hurt our economy. The national institutions are a cornerstone of the ACT’s tourism industry and this measures puts further financial pressure on places like the National Gallery and the National Museum that attract thousands of visitors to the ACT every year.
“Over the past few years, the ACT Government has introduced a range of measures to help the ACT economy withstand this assault, and, with more Liberal cuts announced this week, has decided to extend the LVC stimulus for a further two years.
“The extension of LVC remissions announced today demonstrates the ACT Government is listening to the local construction industry and helping to get new projects up and running. Extending the economic stimulus remission for two years will allow developers who are working towards lodging their applications sufficient time to benefit from the stimulus, while retaining an incentive for developing as soon as possible.
“The economic principle underlying the LVC is that the community should receive the benefit from the increase in wealth arising from changes to lease conditions which are granted by the Government. Analysis of past development indicates that lease variations are required for generally less than 15 per cent of projects in the ACT.
“The ACT economy has showed itself to be resilient in responding to the Australian Government’s significant cuts to spending and jobs, with recent economic data indicating a moderate turnaround in the ACT economy.
“That’s why the ACT Government will continue to push ahead with our agenda of job creation and urban renewal.”