Western Australia Minister Assisting The Treasurer Bill Marmion
Land Tax Exemption Eases Pressures On Caravan Parks To Sell Up
Victor P Taffa
Caravan park operators, residents and visitors will benefit from amendments to the Land Tax Assessment Act 2002 that will make caravan parks exempt from land tax.
The amendments introduced to State Parliament yesterday were announced as part of the 2010-11 State Budget.
Minister Assisting the Treasurer Bill Marmion said the Act currently provided a 50 % land tax concession for caravan parks, park homes and camping grounds.
“From July 1, 2010, that exemption will be 100 %.” Mr. Marmion said.
“An increase in land values across the State was putting financial pressure on caravan park operators, who were being hit with big increases in land tax bills.”
“This was having an impact on the viability of caravan parks as businesses, threatening the future of low cost, affordable holiday accommodation in the State’s popular tourism destinations and undermining the outlook for the many people who have chosen to live in caravan parks for budget and lifestyle reasons.”
“Removing land tax on parks completely is removing one more reason for a caravan park owner to sell up to developers, displacing longer-term residents in the process.” Mr. Marmion said.
Mr Marmion said the State Government recognised that land values had risen rapidly and the new concession would assist the long-term viability of many caravan park businesses a very important part of the Western Australia’s tourism industry.
The concession will be accompanied by an increased ‘clawback’ period for reassessment of land tax from five years to 10 years in the event caravan park land is subdivided.
The Minister said the amendments flowed from the recommendations of a 2009 Legislative Assembly Economics and Industry Standing Committee report on WA’s caravan parks and camping grounds.
“The Standing Committee found that rising land values had effectively negated the value of the 50 % land tax concession to caravan park operators.” Mr. Marmion said.
“The committee recommended the land tax concession for caravan parks that provide predominantly tourist caravan and camp sites be increased to 100 % and the clawback period that applies if caravan park land is subdivided be increased to 10 years.”
Mr. Marmion said the estimated cost to the state in revenue foregone due to the changes would be about $1 Million per year.