Albemarle County is considering a significant increase on the cost of development, Brian McNeill wrote in the Progress yesterday. For example, right now they charge $720 to review a preliminary plat submitted by a developer. But a study of their own staff time has found that the real cost of that time is much higher, and so now they intend to charge $4,100 for the same procedure. The county went to the Planning Commission to get approval to raise those rates, hoping to cover 50% the costs incurred by developers, but the Planning Commission ended up approving covering 75% of those costs via fees, with the rest being made up by you and me in the form of taxes. Jay Willer, of the Blue Ridge Home Builders, complains to the Progress that developers shouldn’t have to pay for those costs, but that the rest of us should bear that cost on their behalf, which is rather the opposite of the libertarian stance generally taken by developers.
The Planning Commission only approved these increases by a one-vote margin. Now the matter goes before the Board of Supervisors.