A MOVE by council to more than double some of its fees for new developments will kill an already crippled building market, local developers have declared.
Under the proposed changes, developers will be forced to pay an additional $7000 for access to water and sewerage for each new property.
The increase is part of a council review of land development charges and includes a rise in water fees for each block from $3449 to $7232.
Sewerage charges will go up from $1992 to $5021 per tenement.
Subdivisions and unit developments are set to be the hardest hit by the changes, with the combined fees increasing developers' costs by tens of thousands of dollars.
Outraged Zeplan Developments principal Zep Lanza railed against the proposal, saying it would impose "death by council" on the local industry.
His plans to build two unit blocks in Collina in the near future would have to be put on hold.
"Unit blocks in Griffith are already on their last breath - this will kill them," Mr Lanza said.
"We are working on a narrow margin at the best of times. If this comes in, we might as well forget about having units in Griffith.
"Development is already crippled in town and a decision like this will kill it, full stop."
Mr Lanza said council would have to find its money somewhere else instead of imposing more costs on developers.
“They’re not going to raise any revenue from developer contributions if no one is developing any more,” he said.
Council has invited submissions to its proposed Development Servicing Plans, with the changes to be implemented if no objections are received by October 5.
The charges are imposed to cover the cost of providing water and sewer-related infrastructure to new developments.
Local architect Steven Murray said he already had several clients who were either not proceeding with multiple residential developments or not proceeding beyond development approval due to council-imposed costs.
“The increases are over 100 per cent, which is massive,” Mr Murray said.
“Add this extra cost to other council imposts such as DA and construction certificate fees, Section 94A contributions, water allocation transfers and excessive consent conditions, and the result will be a future shortfall in residential properties.
“Griffith City Council needs to have a good look at its approach to development in this city.”
Just last week, council celebrated the official opening of its $26 million water reclamation plant, which has the capacity to service new developments over at least the next four decades.
Director of utilities David Tull said it made sense to recoup the cost of the plant and future infrastructure works from developers.
“The estimated cost of major infrastructure has been quite horrendous over the past 10 years,” Mr Tull said.
“These fee increases are reflecting the cost increase and the need to service new developments in the future.
"Of course the impact on development is a concern for council but, some way or another, those costs will have to be met.
"Developers will have to pay their fair share, otherwise the community will have to pay for it.”