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Impact fees topic at FBMA


Future Farragut homeowners and commercial developers may be subject to impact fees to assist new road construction and road maintenance costs in the town of Farragut.

Jim Duncan with Duncan & Associates made a presentation on impact fees to the Farragut Board of Mayor and Aldermen at the regularly scheduled meeting Thursday, Oct. 13, at Town Hall.

According to www.impactfees.com, an impact fee is defined as a charge on new development to pay for the construction or expansion of off-site capital improvements that are necessitated by and benefit the new development.

Farragut Mayor W. Edward Ford III said, “Our objective is to provide the highest quality road infrastructure that we can provide to the citizens of not only Farragut, but those citizens who are coming through our community. Also [this municipality] does not have a property tax, so we have a very limited income and really we have no control over improving or increasing that income. It’s fixed in all cases.”

Duncan said impact fees have not stunted municipal growth in cities and towns that charge them and impact fees soften public anti-growth sentiment.

“Everybody wins and nobody loses,” Duncan added.

Duncan said impact fees are not a tax as ruled by the courts; they are a one-time, up front fee charged at the plat or the building permit phase.

Ford said he thinks the building permit phase is the phase to implement the fee, which could be a flat fee or could be based on criteria such as number of bedrooms in a single-family home.

Duncan said $2,000 is the national average fee for single-family homes.

State Sen. Tim Burchett, District 7, was present for the presentation. Burchett said Tennessee Speaker of the House James O. Naifeh did a “complete one-eighty” and now supports impact fees and Burchett said he has to “handle the business” at the local level.

Duncan said government officials have found involving homeowners and developers when installing impact fees is important to the process.

Ford asked Vice Mayor Michael Haynes to work with town attorney Thomas Hale and Town Administrator Dan Olson to develop an action plan to consider an impact fees ordinance, which will be presented to the Board at the first Board meeting in January.

In follow-up to the Development Review Process Evaluation Committee Report, the Board unanimously agreed, 5-0, to create an exempt position for an associate town administrator who will report to Olson.

The salary range has not yet been determined, but Olson said an appropriate range may be from $66,300 to $95,200.

In community donations, the Board unanimously approved a $7,000 donation to each public Farragut school to use for technology equipment improvements in the schools.

In old business, the Board:

• unanimously approved the second reading of the Stormwater Ordinance.

In new business, the Board:

• unanimously approved lease agreements with Knox County to rent space in Town Hall for the Knox County clerk, the Knox County trustee and the Knox County Sheriff’s Office.

• unanimously approved agreements with KUB for easement and relocation of utility lines along Evans Road.

 

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