Impact Fees were discussed at the 6/26/2018 Workshop.

Impact Fees were discussed at the 6/26/2018 Workshop.

It is necessary that the Town secure additional funds for the upcoming budget and Impact Fees were discussed.  Previously, Impact fees were removed because Woody Woodard, James Smith and Joe Griffin at the time were concerned about impact fees impeding growth in White Springs.  Here, follows some of the information pertaining to Impact Fees which are placed on Newcomers rather than those already living in the Town of White Springs.

Overview of Impact Fees and Affordable Housing

The Legislature’s Office of Economic and Demographic Research defines impact fees as a type of regulatory fee “imposed by local governments against new development to provide for capital facilities’ costs made necessary by population growth. Rather than imposing the costs of these additional capital facilities upon the general public, the purpose of impact fees is to shift the expense burden to newcomers.”1 Examples of capital facilities include the provision of additional water and sewer systems (Which White Springs Charges for under the ordinance pertaining to Sewer and Water)schools, libraries, parks and recreation facilities. Impact fees are typically assessed using a fee schedule
that sets forth the charge per type of dwelling unit or per square footage of floor space. These onetime,up-front charges, are usually paid at the time of building permit approval.
Impact fees have expanded and evolved substantially over recent decades, and currently appear in a wide variety of forms. In Florida, impact fees are governed through a combination of constitutional and statutory authority and case law. One way impact fees often intersect with affordable housing is through the granting of fee waivers or deferrals. These waivers or deferrals essentially represent a local government’s commitment to subsidize and thereby incentivize the production of affordable housing. Though common, waivers for affordable housing are not ubiquitous. Like all issues related to impact
fees, decisions to grant waivers for affordable housing are jurisdiction-specific and subject to local circumstances, vetting (including legal interpretation) and control.

The Florida Department of Financial Services monitors impact fee revenues collected by all local governments.6 The most recent data reflect statewide County Impact Fee Revenues of slightly over $500 million in 2015. Statewide Municipal Impact Fee Revenue Fees were slightly more than $225 million in 2015.

 

Constitutional and Statutory Authority for Impact Fees2

The Florida Constitution grants local governments broad home rule powers.
3 Regulatory fees such as impact fees are home rule revenue sources that may be imposed pursuant to a local government’s police powers in the exercise of a sovereign function.4 Impact fees are enacted by local home rule ordinance and are tailored to meet the infrastructure needs of new growth at the local level. Given their local creation and emphasis, impact fee calculations vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction and from fee to fee. Impact fees also vary extensively depending on local costs, capacity needs, resources, and the local
government’s determination to charge the full cost of the fee’s earmarked purposes.
The Florida Impact Fee Act, s. 163.31801, F.S., provides requirements and procedures to be followed by a county, municipality, or special district when it adopts an impact fee. These requirements include basing an impact fee’s calculation on recent and localized data and detailed accounting and reporting of collections and expenditures.

Waiving impact fees does not eliminate the cost of the infrastructure that the impact fees
are designed to pay for. Either new development or existing residents must pay the cost
of needed infrastructure improvements. If new development, which puts additional
demand on county facilities, does not pay its fair share of infrastructure cost through
impact fees, then existing residents will have to pay those costs through higher fees or
taxes.
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The 2018 Florida Statutes

Title XI
COUNTY ORGANIZATION AND INTERGOVERNMENTAL RELATIONS
Chapter 163 
INTERGOVERNMENTAL PROGRAMS
View Entire Chapter
163.31801 Impact fees; short title; intent; definitions; ordinances levying impact fees.

(1) This section may be cited as the “Florida Impact Fee Act.
(2) The Legislature finds that impact fees are an important source of revenue for a local government to use in funding the infrastructure necessitated by new growth. The Legislature further finds that impact fees are an outgrowth of the home rule power of a local government to provide certain services within its jurisdiction. Due to the growth of impact fee collections and local governments’ reliance on impact fees, it is the intent of the Legislature to ensure that, when a county or municipality adopts an impact fee by ordinance or a special district adopts an impact fee by resolution, the governing authority complies with this section.
(3) An impact fee adopted by ordinance of a county or municipality or by resolution of a special district must, at minimum:

(a) Require that the calculation of the impact fee be based on the most recent and localized data.
(b) Provide for accounting and reporting of impact fee collections and expenditures. If a local governmental entity imposes an impact fee to address its infrastructure needs, the entity shall account for the revenues and expenditures of such impact fee in a separate accounting fund.
(c) Limit administrative charges for the collection of impact fees to actual costs.
(d) Require that notice be provided no less than 90 days before the effective date of an ordinance or resolution imposing a new or increased impact fee. A county or municipality is not required to wait 90 days to decrease, suspend, or eliminate an impact fee.
(4) Audits of financial statements of local governmental entities and district school boards which are performed by a certified public accountant pursuant to s. 218.39 and submitted to the Auditor General must include an affidavit signed by the chief financial officer of the local governmental entity or district school board stating that the local governmental entity or district school board has complied with this section.
(5) In any action challenging an impact fee, the government has the burden of proving by a preponderance of the evidence that the imposition or amount of the fee meets the requirements of state legal precedent or this section. The court may not use a deferential standard.

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