Requesting construction of an unmade road
If you are a property owner seeking the construction of the unmade road that you live on, Council may be able to facilitate this road upgrade using funding collected from yourself and other land owners that would benefit from the road upgrade.
We call this a Special Charge Scheme.
When is a Special Charge Scheme used?
We may use a Special Charge Scheme when:
- a project is deemed to have minimal broader community benefits
- the project primarily benefits the property owners in the immediate vicinity of the project
- there is enough interest from affected property owners to proceed
What projects are covered by Special Charge Schemes?
We are able to pass on the cost of constructing the following works to the affected property owners:
- sealed roads
- kerb and channel
- underground drainage
- other capital infrastructure
Special Charge Schemes for business owners
Special Charge Schemes may also be used for projects in shopping or business precincts.
Contributions collected from business owners within the precinct can be used for marketing, branding or promotional activities to stimulate economic growth and prosperity within the precinct.
How to request a Special Charge Scheme
In order for us to investigate the request, we need to see evidence that approximately 65% of affected property owners have indicated their support or interest of the proposed upgrade.
In most cases this is initiated by property owners using petitions or a multi-signatory letter signed by the property owners.
Without the above evidence, Council will be unable to investigate the request.
How long does it take to implement a Special Charge Scheme?
Special Charge Schemes can be complex depending on the project requirements and level of support from property owners.
In some cases it can take many years to initiate.
Upon receiving evidence of support, Council will:
- determine the actual level of support through a formal property owner survey
- obtain preliminary estimates of the total cost of the scheme
- estimate of the amount required to be contributed by each property owner
How much money are property owners required to pay?
The amount of money contributed by an individual property owner can depend on:
- the benefit received from the proposed works
- the size of their property (compared to other affected property owners)
- the length of the property road frontage (compared to other affected property owners)
- future subdivision potential
For roads projects, other factors may be considered including the benefits received by:
- improved access (e.g smoother road, improved road safety, improved property access)
- improved amenity (e.g less dust, less noise, improved drainage)
How are property owners charged for Special Charge Schemes?
The rate or charge for each property is required to be repaid over 4 to 10 years, depending on the financial amounts involved.
Property owners will be invoiced upon completion of the works and payments may be made by a lump sum or by quarterly invoices.
What if you can't afford the charge?
Information about financial assistance is available for those who may experience undue financial hardship as a result of being included in a Special Charge Scheme.
In many instances a payment arrangement may be entered to help property owners make manageable payments.
For further information on financial assistance, contact our Revenue Team on 03 5734 6200.
The technical explanation of a Special Charge comes from legislation (under the Local Government Act 1989) that allows Councils to recover the cost of works from property owners who will gain special benefit from that work.
The below document may help to answer any questions you have about the process to implement a Special Charge Scheme.
For further information on the implementation of a Special Charge Scheme for new infrastructure, contact our Engineering and Major Projects Team on 03 5734 6200.