The City Council this week approved spending $60,000 on a consultant to come up with detailed plans for imposing impact fees on new development projects.
The fiscal consulting firm TischlerBise will prepare reports detailing how the city can recover costs for the additional burden new developments place on parks and recreation and library services as well as water services and roads.
The city staff estimates the impact fees could raise between $1 million and $15 million for the city over the next 10 years.
The staff says the additional money could be used to update park facilities more often, improve the library’s book collection, recover capital costs of expanding the city’s water plant and improve the quality of its road network.
Those programs were identified based on a preliminary report by the same consultant. A staff memo says that impact fees can only be used for capital improvements and not for hiring additional staff.
For that reason impact fees for fire and police services are not being included in the study, since those two departments have primarily staffing rather than capital needs.
Impact fees on new development projects
Don’t the residents of the new condo developments pay taxes? (Answer: Of course they do). Isn’t that partly why we are seeing so many new developments in town — because the city receives a boost in tax revenue? In most of the articles I read about new developments, there is always some discussion about how much money the city will receive each year due to taxes, if/when the project is completed.
In my opinion, the tax revenue should be enough. If the population increases, so does the revenue generated from taxes. Therefore, there is more money to pay for park improvements, water services, road work, etc.
If the city needs additional money, they should increase taxes for everyone. They should not slap developers with various “impact” fees to pay for things that would normally be funded by tax revenue.
That’s how I see it, anyway.
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