PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA

Opinion

City fees need review

By From page A4 | November 14, 2012

Impact fees in Placerville are slightly less than county fees in the unincorporated area. We can’t quibble with the sewer fees, though we are not sure why the city charges a water hookup fee that is nearly the same as that charged by the El Dorado Irrigation District. The city buys water from EID at a wholesale rate. We are not sure $16,000 for a Placerville water hookup is justified, especially since water and sewer rates went through the roof to pay for replacing old pipes.

It’s not like there is a lot of new construction going on in this town anyway.

Two other fees that make no sense are $7,425 school impact fee for a school district that has a shrinking student population and $14,256 for traffic impacts. We would like to see the city piggyback onto the county’s new traffic consultant and its more sophisticated computer modeling. Show us the impacts from getting a few new residences built. The real impacts are from all the people who come into town to work and all the tourists who come to shop and dine.

At one time Placerville tried to get a sales tax to help pay for street repaving, but out-of-towners like Bill Center campaigned against it. A small sales tax that scoops up street improvement funds from tourists and those who work here and live here is a more equitable way to fund street improvements. It works to keep the Police Department staffed. The city ought to study it along with a street improvement plan.

Mountain Democrat

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