It's "not surprising" to see a drop in the number of development applications going through Dubbo Regional Council, says development and environment director Stephen Wallace.
In April there were 31 development applications approved by council. They were worth a combined estimated value of $4.5 million.
It's significantly fewer than the $100 million in applications approved in April 2019. During that month there were 50 developments approved.
The number of developments across the financial year to date it also down.
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Since July there have been 573 developments worth $130.9 million. At this time last year there had been 50 more - at 623 - and they were worth more than double the value at $269.5 million.
Mr Wallace said it had been a difficult time for people across the Dubbo Regional local government area.
"After finally seeing some relief from an extended period of drought, the coronavirus meant a number of restrictions were put in place, as such, it's not surprising to see there has been a drop in both the number of determined applications and their total value," he said.
"However, we are also seeing a rebalance, following more than $300 million worth of development approved in the last financial year."
And it's good news for the region. Mr Wallace said the upward trend was expected to continue.
"There is evidence of resilience, with a good level of applications continuing to be lodged in recent weeks, and in particular, during the period of restrictions. An easing of drought conditions, combined with historically low interest rates could help to offset some of the weakening in the development section," he said.
"The role of Dubbo Regional Council, as always, will be to facilitate good development wherever it arises."
The residential sector is also looking strong.
In April there were eight single dwellings approved and another classified as 'other residential developments'. It means 121 single dwellings have been given the green light in the financial year.
"Given the recent drought conditions and COVID-19 restrictions, the resilience of the residential sector is reflected in only a slight softening in single dwelling approvals for the year-to-date in comparison to last year," Mr Wallace said.
The development and environment director said council remained committed to assisting people lodge their development applications. He said anyone with enquiries could contact council on 6801 4000 or email the staff through DevelopmentandEnvironmentApplications.Officers@dubbo.nsw.gov.au.