Coalville cancels development fees
Without any immediate prospects of significant residential development, Coalville Mayor Duane Schmidt said the city has eliminated most of its impact fees.
Impact fees are charged to developers for services like water, sewer, streets, storm drains, parks and recreation facilities. The idea is to make developers pay for the additional demands on the community their buildings will bring.
But without any major projects planned, the city didn’t see the need for them and eliminated all but those for water and sewer.
"At the present, it’s in the best interest of the city to have eliminated those fees. If the economy changes and we start seeing more development coming in here, chances are we’ll have an analysis done to figure out what we should be charging and probably reinstate them," he said Monday.
Schmidt said it was not a conscious decision to entice more developers to North Summit. He predicts it will have the effect of prompting people who were waiting to build in Coalville to begin, but he said it isn’t a tactic or a strategy.
"What it does right now, with the economy the way it is, is help individuals building single-family homes, which is a lot of what we have in Coalville. There are not any tract developments going on now," he said.
That’s not from lack of trying. Schmidt has been cheerleading efforts to build an industrial park in the city and in 2009 welcomed a residential developer who proposed building 97 homes above the Coalville cemetery.
But the residential project is now "dead in the water" and the commercial project is slow-going, he said.
That’s OK with many Coalville residents, Schmidt said. A March 16 Park Record story about Coalville’s population slightly shrinking over the past decade while most East Side communities grew was titled, "Coalville misses the boom." Schmidt said many in North Summit are happy with the size of their city.
Personally, Schmidt said he’d like to see the city welcome five to 10 new homes and families per year. Two or three were built this spring, so they are right on track.
"Growth is a healthy thing, but we don’t need double digits," he said.
If a new plan comes online to build 150 homes in the area or even as few as 40 the city council will likely reassess its needs and reinstate the impact fees. But for now, Schmidt said the council is promoting a welcoming atmosphere for slow, steady growth.
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