Residents attending community forums on Wyong Shire Council' 2012 LEP were assured that the use change of publicly owned land to operational was NOT a precursor to selling it. As expected and contrary to assurances, the land is now in the process of being sold. A cinema complex is being built in Lake Haven where there once was a public skate board park. Airport land has been purchased from Terrace Towers for more than 80% over the Valuer General's valuation and a $10 million block of land has been sold for a Chinese Theme Park on a deposit of $10,000.00. None of this inspires confidence in either the independence or commercial acumen of council when it comes to land deals.
We have had our own experience of Council's way of dealing with valuation and property issues. In 2009 it was our land and Wyong Shire Council were running the Mardi Mangrove Pipeline through our farm. As one would expect with our stance on Warnervale Airport and other Council activities, we were always going to cop the pipeline.
Council's valuer, PRP Valuers and Consultants valued the pipeline easement through our property at $12,000.00. (click here for PRP valuation)
Under the Just Terms Compensation Act, the Department of Lands valuer, acting for the NSW Valuer General, valued the easement at $38,152.00. (click here for Valuer General valuation)
So from a Council valuation of $12,000.00 in January 2009 to a Valuer General's valuation of $38,152.00 in 2010. Over three times the Council valuation. Council were all set to rip us off! Today we are unable to farm a part of the easement, as we used to, as it is constantly waterlogged from the pipeline works. Council will not remediate the water logging.
Most landowners in the Yarramalong Valley accepted the value from Council and if our experience is anything to go by, they were under compensated by several million dollars in total.
Ratepayers of the Wyong Shire should fully expect to be ripped off in these land sales, if our experience is anything to go by.