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Land use fee increase to be implemented

Posted: Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The City and Borough of Juneau Assembly approved land use fee increases that will go into effect Jan. 1, 2011.

Generally, the planning and zoning fees will go up on average of 20 percent. Community Development Director Dale Pernula said the fees haven't been updated since 1987.

"The reason for it, about a year ago or a little bit more, we were looking at the city budget and shortfalls, and noticed the fees hadn't been increased since 1987 - 23 years," Pernula said. "Even though the cost of living has increased we haven't been keeping up."

A city memo from May said that planning and zoning fees projected for FY11 and FY12 are $45,000 and that the increase would yield an additional $9,000. It said the increase is intended to reflect the actual administrative costs.

Pernula said they looked at the Consumer Price Index and if they had wanted to align fees with what could have been normal increases through that time period, they would have to increase fees by 91 percent.

"We didn't want to just do a huge bump up in the fees all at once," he said.

Pernula said the idea was to put less of a tax burden on the general public, while charging people who use the permits more.

Most fees saw a relatively low actual cost increase. For example, minor subdivision or consolidation processing fees for a simple lot consolidation will rise from $125 to $135. Other fees in the minor subdivision category went up by $50.

Permits and applications for larger projects typically went up by $100 to $150. For example, a Class IV use application is going from $850 to $1,000. Class IV uses include commercial or mixed use structures between 20,001 and 40,000 square feet on between three and six acres of land; residential structures with between 31 and 60 dwelling units; transient structures with between 91 and 180 rooms for rent and other facilities.

For the ordinance with a full list of what the costs will be as of Jan. 1, go to www.juneau.org/cddftp.

• Contact reporter Sarah Day at 523-2279 or at sarah.day@juneauempire.com.



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