1. #1
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    Default surcharge to fund fire protection on new construction

    Okay in the arena of creative financing who out there charges a fee during the permit phase of construction to fund fire protection?

    I suggested this to my village president and to one of the more influential village board members and they both liked the idea. I just need advice and opinions from anyone who already does this. Besides the nuts and bolts of how this works and the procedure I am interested in the fee you charge and if it varies for differing kinds of construction. Such as a higher fee for business, industrial, or apartments versus a lower fee for single family dwellings.

    Once again thanks for your help.

    FyredUp

  2. #2
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    Thumbs up Well.......

    In Maryland, we have what are called "impact fees" which is an up front fee at the time permits are pulled. The revenue is used to offset the "impact" of development on a community, by distributing the revenue where the need is greatest. No agency is guaranteed a share, but all are considered on a case by case basis. I don't have to tell you education ALWAYS has both hands out, wanting all of it. Some impact money has funded fire station construction/renovations, etc. As most apparatus is purchased directly by the Volunteer organizations, not much funding goes to apparatus. We also have a number of counties who charge a fee for plans review by the Fire Marshall's office. That is revenue for the county, and often finds it's way to the FD budget. Stay Safe....
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    hwoods...


    As I proposed it this money would solely fund fire protection.

    I am at a loss however as to what a fair amount would be. $100, $500? Differing rates by occupancy?

    I am going to have to sit down and figure out how to present this to the full board.

    Thanks for your help.

    FyredUp

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    I know of several forward thinking municipalities in PA that have the impact fee and the fees vary.

    But depending on the cost of the home what is an extra $1,000 to $2,500 if you divide the money, $200- $500 each, to the Police, Fire, School District, Ambulance and Water/Sewr Department?

    I tried to get our borough to do this 15 years ago, they didn't and now we are just about built out. In the last 15 years we've had a new borough hall and 3 new schools built and now they are starting to talk about building 2 more schools. I die thinking of the tax savings we'd have if the fees had been enacted.

    Good luck.
    Last edited by dragonfyre; 07-23-2003 at 04:11 PM.
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    DragonFyre...

    Exactly my point...if they can afford to build a new home they should be able to bear some of the brunt of expansion of needed public services. Particularly in my circumstance, fire protection.

    I may expand the idea to include DPW and Police to make this point even easier to sell to the board.

    Thansk for your response.

    FyredUp

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    So what is the incremental service cost that arises from the construction of that new $150000 house in your community (or that new $1000000 business/factory with multiple new jobs)? Is this new structure going to increase your fireflow requirement (ISO)? What service are you going to provide for this "fee"? I assume you are an ISO 1; or perhaps only a 5 (or 9/10)? Your "fee" to be based on your performance or just on how much money you think you can squeeze out of the new guy on the block?

    Perhaps they are going to pay more in local taxes (property or other). Perhaps at a higher level than the existing 30year old structure next door? Might a goodly portion of these tax collections flow to your fire dept?

    Or perhaps you prefer those new structures go up in MY town/fire district?

    A fee, a tax, or just picking a new comers pocket?

    Perhaps you just require they install a sprinkler system if it would otherwise increase your fireflow req. Would cost them more but they would at least have a payback.

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    neiowa...

    Not quite sure I see the need for your hostility.

    It is no different than any other impact fee. I look at it as a buy in for the infra-structure all ready in place. And to be honest, I would rather have that fee than raise taxes on long time residents. If a one time fee to help support local services makes someone choose not to build in my community you can have them, because they really don't want to be a part of the community. They are the type of resident who will complain about every tax increase, every expenditure, every decision.

    The fee would be used to help build a capital fund to assist in purchasing fire apparatus.

    I am not sure what point you are trying to make reference to the ISO rating. We are not a 1 or a 9/10. We are a 5 and working to get better than that. Are you a 1? Maybe you are a 9/10.

    Maybe you guys down there in Iowa can raise millions doing fund raisers, and maybe your guys like doing them, and we do them here too, but I am of the mind that if the community wants a fire department they need to pony up appropriate funding. Maybe your community has DPW fund raisers, and police fund raisers, but mine doesn't. The fire department is the only agency expected to raise money on its own to support its operation. I am the only resident that anyone can remember to stand up at a budget hearing and say PLEASE RAISE TAXES. Can you say YOU have ever done that? I got a resounding we're not going to do that. People want low taxes.

    I deal with people like you all the time...people who want the best services but gripe at any plan to pay for them. So pardon me if I choose to go forward with this as you did nothing but berate it, I didn't see any alternative plan from you.

    FyredUp

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    Im also interested in learning what fees are attatched to new construction, as well as any fire departments that are supported through a set tax. If any departments in pennsylvania are doing this, please email or pm me. I am working on adding a fire tax to the upcoming budgets, we are currently 100% self supported. We are currently on the verge of a major uprising over fund raising. I can't get into specifics here, but if anyone can email or pm me, Id be happy to explain.

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