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City seeks to streamline fees

Connie Baker

The City Council on Tuesday took steps to upgrade its impact fee

schedule by approving $50,000 to hire a consultant to update a system

developed in 1993.

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Economic & Planning Systems Inc. (EPS), a land economics

consulting firm with offices in Berkeley, Denver and Sacramento, won

the bid out of 10 competing companies. The firm is experienced in

services relating to real estate, government and public

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infrastructure, as well as financial feasibility and impact fee

analysis.

The city’s existing impact fee structure calls for a certain

amount of money per square foot from developers to support enhanced

city service and infrastructure that will be directly affected by the

new developments.

At last December’s annual review of the fee schedule, staff

recommended an updated study would be conducted to review the current

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fees. In February, a committee was formed to evaluate the system and

assess the future needs of the city.

Currently, the impact fees benefit fire protection, library,

parks, police and transportation programs. According to staff, $3.6

million in fees have been brought in through the current system since

1993.

According to Ross Young, an administrative analyst for the city,

development fees are incurred by developers based on square footage.

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For instance, an assessment of $1,876 is charged for a single-family

residence. The fee for a multi-family resi- dence is $1,388 per unit,

and commercial space charges begin at approximately $5.69 per square

foot.

“We do the assessments incrementally, and we want to have the fee

schedule based on the intensity of each particular use,” said Sue

Georgino, director of the Redevelopment Agency.

“When we have a growth in population based on new development,

there are impacts on the parks, sewers, etc., and the developers have

to pay for those impacts.”

The proposal from the firm will also include addressing added

potential beneficiaries of develop- ment impact fees, such as sewer,

water and storm- drain facilities, child-care facilities and

technology- related projects.


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