EPC approves growth fees, despite objections from developers
Published Wednesday, October 19, 2016 10:09AM CST
Last Updated Wednesday, October 19, 2016 6:18PM CST
Members of the Mayor's inner circle have voted to approve new controversial growth fees after getting an earful from industry members on their possible repercussions.
The Executive Policy committee passed the fees Wednesday in a five to two vote, with councillors Janice Lukes and Jeff Browaty making up the dissenting votes.
This comes after developers urged the committee Wednesday to hold off on the implementation of the new charge, equating it to an attack on new neighbourhoods.
Mike Moore from the Manitoba Homebuilders Association called the levy a "new neighbour tax" and argues the city has no legal authority to impose the fees.
Even some councillors showed up to oppose the proposal. Councillor Scott Gillingham questioned the process that lead to the bylaw that will see a $9,000 fee added to an 1,800 square foot home, which exempts infill and the downtown area for now.
"To me this is not ready," Gillingham told the committee.
Other councillors voiced support for the fees. Jenny Gerbasi repeated her long standing argument that growth is not paying for related roads, bridges and services.
Mayor Brian Bowman has said this is a case of new home buyers paying more or property taxes going up more for everyone.
A final debate and vote on the new fees will be at city council next week.