PLEASANT VIEW -- Before they can even bring a site plan to the city, developers must first pay a new $250 charge, according to a recently change in the fee schedule approved by the city council.
The concept plan fee will now be charged for items including a rough lay out, drawing or sketch and a review with the city on the plans.
In the past the city has not charged a fee for bringing in a concept plan, said Community Developer Valerie Claussen, but that will now change.
Claussen said without a fee for the concept plan, there is no incentive for the developer to move forward. Then, if the developer chooses not to continue, the city is left with some engineering costs whether or not the plan comes to fruition.
Claussen said it usually takes the city 60 to 90 minutes to review concept plans. That cost to the city that will now be passed on to the developer.
"We will collect the fee up front, but some may exceed that sweet spot," said Claussen, explaining that sometimes the costs do exceed the $250.
Claussen said the city is not here to design the project for developers, but the fee is a way to formalize the development process.
City Engineer Brandon Jones of Jones and Associates said engineering bills for concepts have been sent in the past, but not paid. It will benefit the city to have this fee paid up front, Jones said.
"Why not charge $100," asked councilman Toby Mileski.
"At $100 the city is eating whatever is left," said Claussen, "if the council wants to subsidize the subdivision that's fine."
Jones said engineering costs generally run $100 per hour.
Claussen then said a review of a project by the city can run up to three hours and then the city is still subsidizing $50 of the cost.
"The number one thing is then they know the answer to 'can it work'?" said Jones, "It is the best $250 they have spent. It is cheap compared to research."
"Then they know instead of kicking a can down the road and finding out (the answer) later," said Mayor Doug Clifford.
Council members approved the new $250 fee with councilman Michael Humphreys abstaining from the vote. Humphreys is a developer who has done work in the city.