Notifying Prospective Buyers and Developers Of Flood Prone Land (Section 149 Certificate)

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What are Section 149 certificates: As a member of the public you can request (at a prescribed cost) a basic planning (Section 149(2)) certificate or a full planning (Section 149(5)) certificate from Council. These planning certificates provide land owners, prospective buyers and developers information about the land use zoning and development controls applying to the land, as well as information about potential development constraints or other planning-related characteristics of the land. As part of these certificates a Council must disclose whether land is subject to flood related development controls.

Improves community access and recreational use:

Not applicable. Why? Section 149 certificates are an education tool that provides information about land use zonings and controls. As a result they cannot directly improve community access and recreational use.

Does not disadvantage individual members of the community:

Section 149 certificates are perceived to disadvantage individual members of the community. Why? Some property owners perceive that 149 certificates could disadvantage them when selling a property that has flood related development controls. This is may be true to an extent however, it would disadvantage the community and particularly the buyers if this information was not disclosed as people would not realise the properties known exposure to flooding.

Provides safety to the community during flooding:

Not applicable. Why? As stated previously Section 149 certificates are an education tool that provide information about land use zonings and controls. As a result they cannot directly improve safety unless it improves community memebers awareness of the local flood issues and causes behavioural changes.

Raises community awareness and understanding of the local flood risk:

Section 149 certificates improve community awareness and understanding of the local flood risk. Why? A 149 certificate directly informs the land owner, prospective buyer and/or developer if there are flood related development controls applied to that land. This increases the awareness of the local flood risk up to heights where the planning controls apply. Sometimes however, floods greater than the flood planning height may not know to the owner, prospective buyer and/or developer which can cause a false sense of security.

Does not threaten local plants and animals and their habitat:

Not applicable. Why? As stated previously Section 149 certificates are an education tool that provide information about land use zonings and controls. As a result do not directly threaten local plants and animals and their habitat.

Does not cause water quality issues:

Not applicable. Why? As stated previously Section 149 certificates are an education tool that provide information about land use zonings and controls. As a result do not cause water quality issues.

Initial Costs (i.e design/construction) require minimal council expenditure:

Section 149 certificates have no initial costs to council Why? These certificates are typically populated by Council staff when a member of the public applies. The Council staff costs are generally re-covered by the associated application fee.

Requires minimal ongoing council expenditure after implementation:

Section 149 certificates have no ongoing costs to council. Why? As mentioned above Council staff typically populate these certificates upon application. The associated application costs cover the Council staff’s costs to populate the certificate.

Reduces flood damages to the community:

Section 149 certificates may slightly reduce flood damages to the community. Why? Section 149 certificates can inform the public about potential flood risks and such indirectly reduce flood damages a community member takes action to reduce their damages. 

Does not cause negative flood impacts to other areas (both upstream and downstream):

Not applicable. Why? As stated previously Section 149 certificates are an education tool that provide information about land use zonings and controls. As a result do not cause negative flood impacts to other areas.