New fee to hit developers

Developers whose new subdivisions cross county lines and extend into surrounding rural areas will soon have to pay a fee for extending sewer service into those areas. The fee of about $12,000 for a 100-acre project, plus lesser charges per each additional acre, will help the county cover staff time, paper, public hearings, and other expenses involved with processing urban service area expansion requests.

The fee, which Dane County Executive Joe Parisi considers a “user fee,” was approved in May by the Capital Area Regional Planning Commission.

CARPC could make as much as $50,000 from the fees in 2015, according to a report in the Wisconsin State Journal. The funds would help restore the commission’s depleted funds before being used to offset operating dollars.

Developers, and even some on the CARPC board, bristle at the thought of the fee, saying it will hurt smaller developers, who are usually far in debt at the start of a project. A Madison Area Builders Association representative noted the fees will increase the cost of housing for consumers.