posted March 29, 2006 by Dr. Michael Sanera
At a public hearing on April 4 the Raleigh city council will receive public input on a proposed across-the-board 72 percent increase in the city’s impact fee schedule (from $682 to $1,172 for single-family homes).1 Unfortunately, the consultant’s report that serves as the basis for an increase is flawed. In fact, Raleigh has collected impact fees for nearly twenty years without ever considering sound economic research. As the word “impact” implies, new housing generates both increased demand for public services and increased tax revenues. Surprisingly, the city council has not demanded that city staff and highly paid consultants produce reports that provide balanced and complete economic analysis. It is not too late; the council should not change the impact fee until proper economic analysis is conducted.