The City has engaged property developers and the business sector to ensure they comment on the Draft Development Charges Policy.
Comments closed on 10 May.
Deputy City Manager for Economic Development Philip Sithole explained.
“The policy aims to promote transparency, consistency, fairness, and predictability of development charges management. It will apply equally across all development and will bring fairness to developers and the City.”
A development charge is a once-off charge levied by a municipality on the landowner/developer as a condition for approving land development applications. It is imposed to cover the costs incurred by the Municipality when installing new infrastructure or upgrading existing infrastructure. It relates only to the cost of bulk engineering services.
The charges are imposed in accordance with Section 229(1) of the Constitution, Section 75A of the Municipal Systems Act No.32 of 2000, and Section 49 of the SPLUMA, 2013. The policy details how the charges will be calculated, and how payment should be made as well as exemptions.
Chief Financial Officer Sandile Mnguni said an agreement between the City and the developer will be drawn up to ensure that funds are ringfenced and spent on the specific infrastructure it is intended for. He reminded developers that they will also be able to build the infrastructure required in accordance with the agreement undertaken.
The property sector welcomed the engagement and provided their input on the policy. Bernadette Khumalo from the South African Property Owners Association cautioned the City against pricing itself out of the market.