Commercialisation of State Valuation Services

September 4, 2018

2 August 2018 

 

The Hon. J.A. DARLEY (14:30): I seek leave to make a brief explanation before asking the Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, representing the Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Local Government, a question about commercialisation of the state valuation services.

 

Leave granted.

 

The Hon. J.A. DARLEY: Last year the previous government commercialised the Land Services Group, including valuation services which were previously undertaken by State Valuation Office. Part of the services which have commercialised is the objection process, which is now provided by the private consortium Land Services SA.

 

Earlier this year I called the evaluation inquiry line to request sales evidence used to determine the 2018-19 site and capital values for two properties. This information is essential to have as a precursor to an objection to decide whether the sale of similar properties used to determine the valuation of a property are comparable and relevant.

 

I was advised over the phone that could take up to 90 days to receive this information from Land Services SA. This time frame is too long considering the fact that objections must be made within 60 days of receiving your first rates notice. I decided to object to the valuation of the two properties before receiving the sales evidence. I received an automated response stating it could take up to 12 weeks to determine an outcome for evaluation objections. My questions to the minister are:

 

1. Can the minister advise why it takes twice as long to obtain sales evidence now that the service has been commercialised?

 

2. What KPIs have been set in relation to response times for dealing with valuation objections and inquiries?

 

3. On average, how long did it take to finalise an objection before the commercialisation?

 

4. On average, how long is it taking to finalise objections now that valuation services have been commercialised?

 

The Hon. D.W. RIDGWAY (Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment) (14:33): I thank the honourable member for his ongoing interest in the matters, especially the privatisation of the Lands Title Office. I could be tempted to say that the questions he has asked are a symptom of another failed privatisation by the previous government. But it is a detailed question and so, rather than attempting to answer it and get it wrong, I will take the question on notice and bring back a reply.

 

___________________________________________________________________________________

 

Answer to Question 

 

4 September 2018 

 

The Hon. D.W. RIDGWAY (Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment): The Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Local Government, Minister for Planning has advised:

 

1. The Deputy Valuer-General confirms there has been no change to the approach for assisting a property owner to obtain sales evidence pre or post commercialisation, and there are no legislative time frames associated with the provision of this assistance.

 

The Deputy Valuer-General further advises that following a residential capital value objection, comparable sales data is included in the decision letter where the objection has been disallowed (i.e. the existing capital value is upheld). Sales data is also included for other property types where specifically requested by the objector.

 

Typically, and in instances where the enquiry relates to lodging an objection, callers are advised by the call centre that the Office of the Valuer-General makes every effort to determine an outcome and provide a decision letter within 12 weeks. The length of time involved depends on the complexity of the objection and the type of property involved. For requests that are related to other valuation matters, such as seeking sales evidence information, the time frame is significantly shorter, being four weeks.

 

In comparison, the 12-week time frame allows for the objection process to occur from the lodgement of the objection through to completion, which includes obtaining relevant sales evidence.

 

2. From the date that the Office of the Valuer-General submits a property owner's objection to Land Services SA for consideration, the following time frames are set for response:

 

30 business days for a residential objection in the metro area.

40 business days for a non-residential objection in the metro area.

40 business days for a residential objection in a regional area.

50 business days for a non-residential objection in a regional area.

 

These response time frames are set out in the Land Services Agreement and are subject to review following a verification process that concludes at the end of October 2018.

 

For KPI's related to general enquiries that the Valuer-General receives directly, in accordance with the Land Services Agreement, the Valuer-General may request assistance from Land Services SA to resolve an enquiry, and time frames are dependent on the nature of the enquiry.

There are certain timeframes around requests related to a proposed supplementary change, an objection, a review by valuer, a review by the South Australian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (SACAT) and appeal proceedings relating to a review by SACAT. For all other inquiries, the service provider must provide the assistance requested by the Valuer-General as follows:

 

Two business days – if the request is initiated by a minister.

 

Five business days – if the request is initiated by the Ombudsman, the Auditor-General or any other government agency exercising investigative powers under any law.

 

21 business days – if the request is initiated by an owner, representative group or industry organisation.

 

These response time frames are set out in the Land Services Agreement and are subject to review following a verification process that concludes at the end of October 2018.

 

3. The Deputy Valuer-General advises that between the 10-year period from financial years 2008-09 through to 2017-18 (noting that commercialisation occurred on 13 October 2017), the average time from receipt of an objection, to the outcome being issued, to the objector is as follows:

 

29 business days for residential objections in the metro area.

 

52 business day for non-residential objections in the metro area.

 

43 business days for residential objections in non-metro areas.

 

60 business days for non-residential objections in non-metro areas.

 

4. The commercialisation of land services functions occurred effective 13 October 2017, therefore there has not been a full financial year to provide reportable data. The Deputy Valuer-General advises that the 2018-19 valuations effective as at 1 January 2018 came into force as at midnight 30 June 2018. Therefore, there is minimal data to provide meaningful averages for processing of objections for the 2018-19 financial year to date.

 

 

 

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