By Nancy Gutierrez
At the Lindsay Unified School District Board meeting the board approved a resolution adopting a school facilities increase and 2004 developer fee justification. Education code allows school district to asses fees on new residential and commercial construction within their respective boundaries.
The district currently assesses a fee of $1.72 per square foot for residential construction and 28 cents per square foot for commercial/industrial construction. The resolution and justification study allows the district to assess the current maximum fees authorized by legislation of $2.24 and 36 cents per square foot for residential and commercial/industrial construction, respectively. The board was presented with a study on the justification of raising the developer fees in the city. The purpose of the fees is to provide adequate school facilities for the increase of students in the district generated by residential development and commercial/industrial development in the district. The increase brings the district to Level 1 status, a step needed to qualify for hardship classification. Once classified as having hardship the district will receive funding for facility projects. To qualify for hardship the school must levy the maximum developer fees (which is Level 2), be 60 percent in debt and be unable to match state funds. The district must be at Level 1 in order to increase to Level 2 fees which equal $3.74 for residential.
"Level 1 brings the district to current state standards. It is a significant increase because we are the lowest district in the entire county," presenter Ken Reynolds said. "With the projected activity in the district you are short changing yourselves if you don't increase the fee."
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