Healthy Environment, Healthy Community, Healthy Business

Environment Protection Authority

When does cost recovery apply under the Contaminated Land Management Act 1997

What EPA costs can be recovered under section 34 the Contaminated Land Management Act 1997?

Administrative costs incurred by the EPA for activities associated with orders and voluntary management proposals.

Section 34 of the Contaminated Land Management Act 1997 describes these activities.

Orders include:

  • preliminary investigation orders
  • management orders
  • ongoing maintenance orders.

Who pays the fees?

The fees are paid by landowners and/or those responsible for significantly contaminated land subject to an order or approved voluntary management proposal.

How much are the fees?

From 1 September 2016 the fee is $87 per hour as set in the Contaminated Land Management (Adjustable Amounts) Notice 2016.

How are the fees set?

The fee is set under clause 4(2) of the Contaminated Land Management Regulation 2013, having a starting rate of $80 per hour which is adjusted by notice on 1 September each year, in line with movements in the Public Sector Wage Price Index.

The fee is based on recovering the costs for the activities described in Section 34 of the Contaminated Land Management Act 1997.

What activities are included in the administrative costs incurred by the EPA?

The activities include:

  • preparing and serving an order
  • assessing and settling the terms of a voluntary management proposal
  • monitoring action taken relating to an order or under an approved voluntary management proposal
  • seeking compliance with an order or approved voluntary management proposal
  • matters associated with or incidental to the above matters such as meetings, communication by email or telephone between the EPA and the relevant party and/or legal advice.

When will the EPA collect cost recovery fees?

Where a contaminated site is complex and its management and remediation involves lengthy time periods, the EPA will generally issue cost recovery notices and related invoices progressively to recover the costs incurred for the relevant activities overtime.

Where a contaminated site is less complicated, and the time periods involved in its management are likely to be relatively short, the EPA may only issue a single cost recovery notice in relation to the site.

Will I be consulted prior to having to pay cost recovery fees?

You will be issued with a draft cost recovery notice and will have 14 days from the date of receipt of the notice to comment. Notices will be issued by registered post. If no comments have been received by the EPA by the end of the comment period, a final notice will be issued with an invoice.

If comments are received they will be considered by the EPA, and where required the EPA will contact you before issuing a final notice and invoice.

Does GST apply to the cost recovery fees?

No GST is not payable. Generally costs or charges imposed for regulatory government functions carried out under legislation are exempt from GST.

How do I make a cost recovery fee payment?

Payments are due within 30 days of the invoice date.

Payments can be made direct to the EPA by cheque, money order, EFT (electronic funds transfer) or credit card authority (VISA/MASTERCARD). Payment instructions are provided on the invoice.

Do any cost recovery fee exemptions exist?

No. The Contaminated Land Management Act 1997 does not include exemption provisions.

Where can I get more information on cost recovery?

Please contact the EPA on 131 555 or by email at contaminated.sites@epa.nsw.gov.au

Page last updated: 30 August 2016