Campbelltown Mayor slams Channel 7 report

Campbelltown Mayor George Brticevic.
Campbelltown Mayor George Brticevic.

Campbelltown mayor George Brticevic has slammed a Channel 7 report which said Macarthur home owners who benefit from increased land values, will be “slugged” with an extra tax.

Channel 7 reporter Sean Berry “exclusively” revealed details about the deal struck between councils, state and federal governments on air last night.

“Seven News can exclusively reveal a group of seven western Sydney councils have stuck a deal with the government,” Mr Berry said.

“This document bearing the seven mayors’ signatures confirms that Badgerys will be serviced by a  new north-south rail line.

“It also reveals that councils have signed up to expose countless ratepayers to what’s called value capture. If your $500,000 property is suddenly worth $2 million because of the airport or train line, you could be slugged a tax.”

An irate Cr Brticevic was dumbfounded by the report.

“In terms of value capture, nothing has been signed, nothing has been negotiated yet,” he said.

“We are going into lockdown tomorrow and there may be a deal (announcement) on Sunday.

“But talk of value capture relates to future development around railway precincts. It’s similar to section 94 (developer contributions). It won’t hit mums and dads.”

The report focused on the Western Sydney City Deals – a planning partnership which will involved seven councils, including the three in Macarthur, plus state and federal governments.

Councils have been eager to learn about details of the deal with millions of dollars in funding expected to be provided once they sign up.

Mr Berry said “in exchange for signing on, councils get up to $15 million each”.

On the wish list for Campbelltown was an art centre contribution, while Camden wanted money for the Narellan Sports Hub.

Cr Brticevic said “in terms if the art centre, nothing has been signed or agreed to,” he said.

“The innuendo is disappointing. It has just caused a whirlwind for no reason.”