Recommendation goes to City Council
Mayor Don Wesely said today’s vote by the Lincoln-Lancaster Planning Commission on impact fees is a major step forward for the City’s investment in infrastructure financing. The Planning Commission voted to recommend to the City Council that impact fees be established as part of an infrastructure plan. The Council will have a public hearing on the impact fee proposal at its meeting November 4.
"Impact fees address both funding and fairness. They are a very important part of a larger package for financing water, sewers, parks and streets in existing and new areas of Lincoln," said Wesely. "I want to thank the City staff and members of the public who have worked so hard on this issue and the members of the Planning Commission for recognizing the importance of this issue to the growth of our community."
The City of Lincoln has been studying the issue of infrastructure financing for several years, and impact fees have been proposed as a partial solution. The financing gap that remains is being addressed by a 14-member Infrastructure Finance Committee appointed by Mayor Wesely October 3. The Committee has several interim reports due in December 2002 and is scheduled to complete its work by June 2003.
In Lincoln, the growth costs traditionally have been negotiated on a case-by-case basis between the City and the developer. The system has drawn complaints from developers that it is inconsistent and concerns from those in established areas that the City pays too much of the cost for growth, thus reducing the money available to maintain aging infrastructure.
The impact fee schedule would start at $2,500 for a single-family home and be phased in over five years to $4,500 for a single-family home, with annual inflation for construction costs added. The proposal excludes low-income housing buyers and renters from impact fees. If adopted by the City Council, impact fees and additional infrastructure finance measures are proposed to take effect next summer.