Fast Focus: 'Should schools collect impact fees on new housing?' Questions to consider

April 27, 2014 

Collecting impact fees from new housing is a vague statement because which housing are they talking about? Is it referencing, single-dwelling, duplexes and other multiplexes, or multi-unit dwellings (apartments)? Since a fee is a one-time charge, single-dwelling will be the main point of the fees.

Multi-unit dwellings to include the multiplexes, the renter will be covering these fees through the rent they pay. As we know, rent never goes down. The owners of the properties set the cost of rent to what the market can bear, not according to the renter's finances. As the market adjusts, so does the rent, but never down.

These fees will stymie new construction of single-dwelling homes. The owners of multi-dwelling are not stupid. If they cannot recover the cost, they will not build. While apartments are classified as a business, they are still in the realm of housing and it will depend upon who the taxing authority is and how they classify it.

Since we are talking at the local level, who will levy these fees? The city councils, or the county commissioners? Or will it be placed on the ballot? If it is the elected officials, they need to remember who they work for because they can be replaced.

Never a day that goes by that we make history that will never make it into the books. When one wishes that they could do it over again, they come to realize they make the same mistake twice.

-- LLYOD BECKER, Richland

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